Just don’t upset the children.

Nursery rhymes are being altered in order for them to have happy endings. In a recent BBC broadcast Humpty Dumpty was not beyond repair, if fact all the King’s horses and all the King’s men were able to make Humpty happy again. Then on a CBeebies channel near you, Little Miss Muffet was spotted welcoming the spider that sat down beside her. Is the santisation of children’s literature a good thing, or should we be preparing our little people for the harshness of life?
Well, which of the following do you prefer?

Three blind mice, three blind mice,
See how they run, see how they run,
They all ran after the farmer's wife,
Who cut off their tails with a carving knife,
Did you ever see such a thing in your life,
As three blind mice?

Three kind mice, three kind mice,
See all their fun, see all their fun,
They all looked after the farmer’s wife,
Who cut them some cake with a carving knife,
Did you ever see such a thing in your life,
As three kind mice?

Personally, I like happy endings, but only after the characters have suffered on a difficult journey. Many fairytales aren’t far off the mark. With their goblins, witches, and trolls they are the stuff of nightmares but, by and large, they end in a happy place and all is forgiven. Imagine the Brothers Grimm trying to get published today. “It’s a horror story for kids. The title ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, basically a wolf disguises himself as a grandchild in order to eat her Granny.” Good luck with that!

And another thing, If the fun police are to insist on protecting little Timmy from violence then they should start with computer games.