As sure as eggs is eggs, and day turns to night, once entrenched in parenthood, you’ll spend mornings, weekends, and the occasional after-hours marathon in the company of Peppa Pig. It’s unavoidable. You might say you won’t, you might say your children will never be subjected to screens of any kind, and you may even believe that for a little while too – but once sleep deprivation has gripped you by the eyelids, and the tractor beam has got you in its orbit, resistance is futile. The flying pigs (in Miss Rabbit’s helicopter) will become as alluring as the smell of bacon to an unconvincing vegetarian.
You may even start to ape their perpetual oinking, subconsciously adding little snorts to punctuate your sentences (you never know!), you’ll growl “Dine-Saw GRRR” for no apparent reason, you’ll say “Have a LOVELY DAY!” as you leave shops, and you’ll even find a special place in your heart for the hapless patriarch, DADDY PIG – the real hero in this porcine odyssey.
See, for decades, probably stretching back into centuries, fictional fathers have been stoical, cruel, iron fisted old tyrants, or narrow-minded philistines, or overly-moralistic dullards. But in Daddy Pig, we have a big-hearted family man/pig, brimming with unwavering optimism, but fallible to the point of pantomime. We have a doofus.
Where Peppa is curious, Mummy Pig loving, and George sweet, Daddy Pig is just a gigantic lummox. A father intent on painting the world in enormous brush strokes to mask over his own ineptitude. A father incapable of getting through life without tripping himself up, exposing the cracks. If he tries to put a picture on the wall, he ends up accidentally demolishing the house, if he goes on holiday, he drives the car into a lake. If he purports to speak a foreign language, he’ll just do REALLY LOUD ENGLISH.
Some dads find this insulting, as if he’s somehow undermining the role of the father, making us all look like idiots and buffoons. But actually, Daddy Pig serves the opposite purpose – he’s making us look amazing. His haplessness and ineptitude shines a light on our capability. He’s the piggy embodiment of the waiter who stacks it carrying your food, or the soldier who leaps from the trenches and gets tangled up in his own side’s barbed wire. Or the only person in the world to ever have their eye taken out by a tennis ball.
In short, he’s setting the fatherhood bar unbelievably low, and your child will be drinking it all in like a giant sponge – using him as their yardstick for modern masculinity, and reflecting these expectations back at you. So, when you manage to hang a picture up, or drive somewhere without making a hash of it, the apple of your eye will look on you as a genius, a true hero. The best daddy in the whole world. All thanks to this royal Porkiness.
We love Daddy Pig.
Everyone loves Daddy Pig!
Josh Burt is a freelance writer, who lives in South London with his wife Hannah, and his two children Gabriel and Vivienne. Over the last 20 years, he’s written for everyone from FHM to Grazia to The Times and The Telegraph, he’s had two so-so books published, and was once the online voice of Big Brother.