Disney Junior has bowed to pressure from the social community to renew popular children’s programme Doc McStuffins amidst rumours of cancellation.
For those unfamiliar with the show, Doc McStuffins features an African-American girl as a doctor who fixes her stuffed animals when they become sick or broken. There are multiple facets to the ongoing conversation for why the show should be saved, but they all hit on pertinent factors of the Conscious trend.
Here is a little girl who is depicted not as a princess, but as a doctor – following in her mother’s footsteps – which, in itself, is a powerful message to young girls. But most importantly to the community, Doc McStuffins is black.
With the lack of diversity still an issue in Television, the social community took action with trending hashtag #renewdocmcstuffins to show Disney Junior just how hugely important it was to protect their only show featuring an African-American lead.
Supported by celebrities and fans alike, this movement made clear the significance of Doc McStuffins to the wider community in providing genuinely diverse role models for the next generation. This is a perfect example of the Conscious trend; the community seizing opportunity to facilitate change using the platform of social conversation.
From the other side of the coin, it would seem that, like Disney Junior, brands must value social chatter as a real-time taking of the cultural temperature. Failing to understand the social significance of their decisions can mean real cultural damage.
Image @ Disney Junior