My Blue's Clues pages:
Informative things to check out:
- Backstage at Blue's Clues (from the DVD of "Blue's Big Musical")
- Behind the Clues: 10 Years of Blue
- Interview with Alice Wilder and Angela Santomero from the Nick Jr site
- Interview with Donovan Patton from 2010 (mainly about Team Umizoomi, but still interesting)
- Interview with Angela Santomero and Traci Paige Johnson from 2016
- Interview with Steve Burns from 2017 (mainly about StevenSteven, but they still talk about the show)
- Interview with Donovan Patton from 2018
- Interview with Josh Dela Cruz from 2019
- Very short behind the scenes video and interview with Josh Dela Cruz from 2019
- Interview with Josh Dela Cruz from 2020
- Interview with Josh Dela Cruz from 2021
- Blue's Clues tag on Angela Santomero's site that you can look through
- Don't forget to check out the wiki!
Some fun stuff to look at:
- Storytime with Steve, Joe, and Josh: the Three Little Pigs and Jack and the Beanstalk
- Nick Jr. Summer with Joe!
- Playlist of Blue's Clues promos
- Compilation of Blue's Clues commercials
Some fan made things to check out:
- Stephanie's website
- Morvia's website (free Blue's Clues graphics)
- Meghan's page
- Brit's Blue's Clues Puppy Place
- Lisa's claymation comic
- Steve Burns rocks! (mainly about Steve, but still interesting to look through)
- Backstage at Blue's Clues Twitter account
- Blue's Clues ASMR
Blue's Clues (1996-2006)
The episodes in this show seemed to go by rather quickly compared to other preschool shows that I've watched. There's a lot of viewer engagement so it doesn't drag on and you don't notice how much time has passed. Sometimes I felt like I didn't have enough time to answer. There would be an image on screen that I didn't have enough time to comprehend what was being shown to me and so I would forget what I was supposed to be looking for, but I also was not paying attention sometimes so it's partially my fault. Despite my lack of attentiveness, I still think things got answered rather quickly. It did feel like you had more time to answer later on in the show so I guess they changed it a bit. I'm not so sure, I could just be completely wrong and could be remembering things incorrectly. The humour in this show is rather interesting. It felt very subtle and I don't think I would have noticed it at all as a child and it would be things that you would mainly notice as an adult. The music in this show is also amazing! It's definitely something I wouldn't have properly appreciated as a child. I would advise to listen to every album they released. One major thing that I also really enjoy about the show is the inclusion of sign language. It's used more often later on in the show.
The animation is so interesting to watch. I love the look of everything and it all being cut out felt pieces stuck together and animated on a computer. I really wish there were more shows like this. Maybe I'll look for some that have that storybook look to them. I think the voice acting was very interesting, too. I like that they're all voiced by children! All of the obvious adult characters are voiced by adults, but Mailbox confuses me a lot. He turns ten in his birthday episode, but I thought he was an adult the entire time. I obviously was not paying attention during his birthday episode, but he's voiced by an adult so it made me think that he was an adult. Most of the characters had voice actor changes which I didn't notice at first until we got to Pail's second to last voice actress because she sounded different than the previous ones and I felt like Shovel and Pail kind of sounded the same before. Sidetable Drawer did not change her voice actress which intrigues me because she's one of my favorite characters and she was the only one with a voice actor that I was already familiar with.
I know as a kid I got sucked into the "Joe sucks" crowd, but I think Joe is awesome! I love Joe a lot and I think Donovan did such a great job as him. I think I would have been rather annoyed if they tried to make Joe just Steve 2.0 and didn't give him is own personality. I absolutely adore the fact that he changes the color of his shirt (which I think the reason for that was to get kids to change their clothes). I guess I would say that he is my favorite host out of the three, but I do love all of them a lot. I would love to talk about the differences in their singing voices, but I am not so educated on stuff like that and don't have the proper terms to thoroughly explain my thoughts on them. The differences between how Donovan and Steve sing the "So Long Song," the song that explains how to play Blue's clues, and any other song that they both sing in the show is just so interesting to listen to. One thing about Joe is that there aren't many toys of him! There's only one plush doll of him and there aren't many plastic toys of him. You mainly see him on educational toys which is fine since this is an educational show, but I'm more into dolls so it's just sad to see how neglected he is. I know he was only the host for about two years, but he should have more toys of him. Here's a little archive I started making of different merchandise with Joe on them. Sidetable Drawer also barely has any toys of her and we see her in every episode! She's the most important character and then they just choose not to make many toys of her. My favorite characters always end up being the most ignored ones.
There were some things in this show that I did not like. One thing that bothered me was that Joe stopped drawing the clues down in his Handy Dandy Notebook and instead they were drawn on the paper in post. Once drawn down they would dance around and sing. The songs were absolutely wonderful and the children singing did NOT have to be so amazing as they were, but I want to see Joe draw! They could have combined Joe writing down the clues himself and them singing and dancing if they wanted to. Another thing that bothered me was the inclusion of Blue's Room. I do like the show as its own thing, but I don't like how it was tacked onto the end of an episode and it would end up shortening the actual Blue's Clues episode. I don't think I would have minded it that much if it were introduced earlier on in the show, but it was only there for season six and season six only had nine episodes. The episode itself didn't transition well into Blue's Room and it felt very random whenever Blue would leave to open the box. The obvious things that this additional segment shortened was the song that explained how to play Blue's clues and the "So Long Song" was replaced by the "Goodbye Song." I do like both of these songs, but I did miss hearing the "So Long Song." I also do like that Joe calls you a sweet potato, that was really cute. Another thing that I didn't like about the show in general was that it felt like the clues were solved faster later on when in the thinking chair. Steve would guess things wrong at first and then the children would have to correct him. I think they stopped doing that in season two.
The specific episode that I want to talk about is "Blue's Big Musical." It's not really an episode and is actually a movie, but I have so many thoughts on this. I understand that this film is supposed to teach children to work through adversity and to never give up, but this film is so incredibly stressful and frustrating to watch. Usually things like this are rather silly to me because all of their problems can be solved by just talking to each other which is exactly how this film is, but the use of this trope is so different than what I've seen before. For some reason things like this just feels so different when it comes to children. Every child has experienced the feeling of being constantly ignored or being too shy to say what they want to say or to do what they want to do and it's all so much more frustrating as a child because children are never taken seriously and their feelings are never acknowledged. I can totally relate to Periwinkle and Sidetable Drawer in this film. With Periwinkle, he misheard what they were singing about in the beginning and thought they were putting on a magic show instead of a music show. Throughout the film he kept trying to get Steve's attention and show his magic tricks to him. Steve wanted to see what Periwinkle wanted to show him, but he kept getting distracted by other things that were going on with the music show. Steve would then go off to deal with that situation and so he never got to see Periwinkle's magic tricks. Once Periwinkle was actually able to get Steve's attention, he learned that they were putting on a music show and not a magic show so he got really sad and he tried to make himself disappear. With Sidetable Drawer, she was far too shy to ask Steve to be in the show. A few times she felt ready to ask him, but then Steve would get distracted again and so she never really got to ask him. She was constantly ignored and was pushed off to the side to hold their hats and then to be the ticket collector. She did end up being the answer to Blue's clues, but it was so sad just seeing her try so hard to get the courage to ask Steve a simple question and then not being able to be apart of the show until the last second. Another frustrating part was that Steve was so overwhelmed by everything. He was in charge of the checklist and he had to help everyone with everything. He also had to write a song and solve Blue's clues. He was struggling so much and got so sad that he's never gotten to find a clue himself and that we always found them before he did. Fortunately, everything ended up fine in the end. Periwinkle got to show off his magic tricks in the show, Sidetable Drawer got to sing, and Steve was able to sing the song that he made and we sang it with him. Also, how the heck did they get Ray Charles to be in this film? They also got the Persuasions to be in this film! That's so amazing! I would highly suggest to listen to the soundtrack! I think it would be interesting if this film was adapted into an actual live show. I have so many ideas for it!
Blue's Room (2004-2007)
In the section here, I previously said I was confused about the educational part of this show, but I bought a copy of the Blue's Clues magazine from 2004 which had some interesting information about Blue's Room. In that magazine, it says that this show is to help children develop their literacy skills and communication skills whereas Blue's Clues was to help children develop their thinking skills. Each episode is a different playdate with Blue and every segment of that playdate is to help with literacy skills. I would like to quote an excerpt from the magazine because it goes over different parts of the playdate and how it can help with developing literacy skills. "In Blue's Room, early literacy skills are promoted through talking, reading, writing, pretending, and playing. Every puppet and every nook and cranny of Blue's playroom was specially designed to support the show's literacy goals. Here's how: Dress Up Trunk - dressing up and pretend play involve the creation of imaginary situations, role-playing, and use of language. Dictionary - a word of the day used in context, defined, and recalled will give preschoolers new vocabulary. Each word is sounded out to promote phonics. Journal - journal gives preschoolers a place to remember, reflect, analyze, express, draw/write about themselves and others. Boogie Woogie - music and dance help promote rhyming, patterning, word play, comprehension, listening, movement, remembering, and sequencing. The Book Nook - reading stories and asking preschoolers to make predictions, pretend, comprehend, "read" along, listen, reflect, and analyze boost pre-reading skills. Doodle Board - drawing/writing, labeling pictures, and then making a group of drawings tell a story helps a child with self-expression. Snack Chat - conversations between our characters, live kids, and the home viewer model elements of communication and language. Silly Seat - jokes are a verbal and visual form of word play that kids love." There's much more said about the show in the magazine, but I think that part was quite interesting. I feel like some of these things were mostly there in the first season. I would have to rewatch the show to figure it out.
My favorite characters in this show are Fred and Roary. They have the best voices especially Roary. I absolutely love the fact that Roary is a dinosaur because he has really short arms and it's funny whenever he moves them around. Fred also has such an interesting voice and she reminds me of Mona from Nanalan' (I have never seen that show before, but they have similar vibes to me). Blue's voice bothers me a bit. I feel like she sounds too normal especially compared to all of the other characters who have such goofy sounding voices. I wish she sounded differently, but I know that her being voiced by a child was important for the show. I also wish she could have been more expressive in regards to her face. I know they're puppets so there's not much that you can do, but she could have had some eyebrows or eyelids to help. Her ears can be moved up to show that she's interested in what you have to say or something, but it wasn't very noticeable when she would do that. I also really like watching her ears flap around whenever she moves. I especially like when that happens with Polka Dots. I like watching him opening and closing his doors in the pillars because his ears are just flapping around and he looks so flimsy. I really like his design and how his pattern is seen on every character. It's a nice subtle touch.
Blue's Clues & You! (2019-)
I really like that we get to see Steve and Joe again. It's not that important if they're there because it's Josh's time to shine, but it is nice to see them again. We did see Steve again when Joe was the host for the "100th Episode Celebration" and we also got to talk to him on the phone in "Blue's First Holiday" which was quite nice, but that was the last time we saw him until "Meet Josh!" came around. I would assume the two of them will mainly appear in more special episodes. We have seen Joe more often than Steve. I assume this is the case because Joe works at the present store and it's more likely that Josh and Blue would visit there often than Steve's detective agency. We got to see Boris again in an episode! He appeared in "Bluestock" and I always get so happy to see Boris and Horace. I hope we get to see Horace again and I hope Josh gets his own stuffed animal. If Josh does get his own stuffed animal, I hope all three of them get to meet up and hang out with each other. I think Josh should have a pig named Doris and she also sings in a chorus. One thing that I like about this show is that they kept the whole storybook feel to it with stuff being made out of paper, clay, and other materials. I can tell that it's mostly digital now, but the different textures are still there and it's awesome to look at especially since everything is in such better quality.
The most jarring thing that I had to get used to was everyone having different voices now. Most of them did change voice actors in the original series, but Mailbox, Sidetable Drawer, and Mr. Salt didn't so their new voices sound kind of odd to me. Another thing that I did not like is that Green Puppy was replaced by Magenta in the episode that would have introduced her. I miss Green Puppy. I feel like Magenta being the one to knock down Blue's block tower doesn't make any sense because they're already established as being best friends. It would make more sense if Magenta was introduced in this episode and they would eventually grow to become best friends, but she was introduced in the second episode of the show and not that one. Another episode that I didn't really like was "Blue's Night Before Christmas." In the previous holiday episodes there would be some sort of explanation of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and even Ramadan in one of them, but in this one it's all about Christmas and I really don't like that. I know the explanations of those holidays were so basic, but it made more sense than having the whole episode be about Christmas because not everyone celebrates that holiday. Another major difference that I don't have any strong opinions on is Josh gets emails sometimes. I just imagine Mailbox on his little tablet scrolling through some sites and is just waiting for an email notification to pop up so he can tell Josh about it. It makes sense for him to get emails since it's very common for people to send emails in this current time period. I don't know if anyone is annoyed by Josh getting emails, but I need people to know that he still gets letters. I would say it's pretty 50/50. He still sings "Mailtime" and he still sings "We Just Got a Letter" (or "We Just Got an Email" if he's gotten an email on that day) so there's nothing to be angry about. I don't like how short the letter segments are at all. There was much more to the old ones, but they film in a different area than before so I'm sure they had to change it somehow and possibly change it to save time. Forget what I said here before at this part, I do like how Blue and Magenta are animated now. I am glad that they gave them eyebrows. I think Blue was really needing those in Blue's Room. It's much easier to understand how Blue is feeling now since her face is able to change more. I do like the limitations of the old version, but it's fun watching her expressions change in the background whenever someone else is talking now.
I am very excited to see how the future episodes are going to turn out. We did get a bunch of remakes in the first season, but in the second season we seemed to have gotten less of them. A lot of them are still similar to old episodes in terms of concepts and what subject the episode is about, but they're extremely different and seem to be more of their own creation. They're all really cool to see and I love picking out the similarities and differences between the two versions. Josh is such a great host, man. He's absolutely perfect!