Pop Culture

Goodbye Dora The Explorer, Hello Dora The Texter

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dora and friendsSay goodbye to the bowl haircut, Swiper the Fox, and the purple backpack with something called a “map” inside. Dora The Explorer has gotten an update, and she is now the flowing-haired, cell phone-toting ( with a map app) Dora of Nickelodeon’s new show, Dora and Friends. While the changes make sense, I can’t help but be sad about the change from sporty little bowl-headed Dora into…well…pretty Dora.

In the new show,Dora has gotten older and moved to the city from her little house in the middle of the jungle. She now has a group of four girlfriends and a boy named Pablo. The creators promise that she will still have adventures and will be speaking even more Spanish than before. That’s all awesome. And ultimately, as long as she isn’t facing dilemmas like whether which color lip gloss to wear with her leggings, I’m going to be more or less on board. But I can’t help but feel let down that she has been changed into this long-haired, sparkly-eyed, super-attractive young girl. Can’t Dora be plain? Not that you can’t be pretty and adventurous, and it’s a good message that you can be “girly” and still get your hands dirty and your knees scraped. I just liked having a girl on TV that wasn’t into fashion, earrings, or flower prints. I liked that Dora wasn’t “girly.” And the fact that she is no longer “the explorer” bums me out.

Other parents are a little more concerned. When the idea for the new Dora was first floated way back in 2009, parents had mixed reactions. In response to an Entertainment Weekly article asking is the new Dora is “too sexy,” some moms shared my feelings:

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While others thought that this was all much ado about nothing:

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For better or worse, I know my daughter will love this. However, this is one I am going to watch with her the first few times just to make sure this show hasn’t gone completely off the rails.

By the way, I could not help but notice that Dora has a charm bracelet that plays a role in the show, so I want to thank Nick Jr for giving parents something else to step on in the middle of the night besides Legos. I’m also curious about what they’ve done with her parents in the remix, because if mom is the editor of Cosmo I am going to hurt someone. And why does Dora still have that high, grating voice? And is Abuela still alive, or is this Abuela In A Home In The City? I have a lot of questions, Nick Jr.

Dora and Friends, Into The City premieres tonight on Nick Jr.

(photo: Twitter)