Heart-Eyes for Dewey

by Laura Findlay

dewey cotton candy







Dear Zoo,

If you were alive (when were you not?) at some time in the early 2000s you will be familiar with the glamorous lives of the Malcolm in the Middle family. The thing is that you might not have given the show the eyeballs it deserves. That’s a shame. It seems these days our interests are only piked when peoples heads are decapitated…and put on pikes. (Did I ruin your dinner? Sincerest apologies). But it’s kind of true right? There’s like a blood quota that modern shows have to fill. Ick. I’m not really for that. I have fond television viewing memories sans blood (watching Smallville every Friday night –  there is still room in my heart for Clarke Kent). But I also have a lot of  love for the situation comedy (#rossandrachelforever). The thing is with this genre, on first glance it’s just empty comedy. It’s one belly laugh in 20 minutes or a few LOLs – you know, just kind of amusing.

Scratch a millimeter below the surface – watch the whole show, a whole season, all the episodes end-on-end – and something different this way comes. There is a profoundness to this genre. Because in comedy lives brilliant characters. I’m not saying that’s the only place they live, of course not. But a good sitcom sure has its gems. Like Chandler. I will always love you Chandler Bing. But, we aren’t here to talk about him today (for some reason that is no longer clear to me). We are here to talk about my most recent favourite: Dewey. Good grief I love Dewey. His character is just delightful. He has a giant heart and this great love for all living things – flies to stray dogs. He is also wickedly clever, endlessly curious and wise beyond his years. The thing about sitcoms over, say, meth-making bandits, is that at the end of the show you feel really happy. Like there is a warm glow radiating from within (that’s probably just your dinner. Cottage pie? Saagwala?). I don’t come away wanting to punch people or feeling a bit green, like I’ve seen one too many corpses. I just feel pleased. And head for the cookie jar (who is an owl named Jasper).

Dewey made a piano out of house parts he snuck when his father wasn’t looking. He pretended he ate an entire roast dinner to protect his new stray-dog friend (and subsequently visited the hospital). Moreover, Abba’s Fernando will forever make me grin (and want to climb onto the nearest dining room table). So here’s to the little guy and the shows that got forgotten with the arrival of blockbuster television.

I was just going to write a sentence, maybe two, to accompany Dewey and his cotton candy animals, but you know me, right?

Yours with square eyes,


P.S if you made a sitcom, who would it be about?