Matt Heath is a radio host on Radio Hauraki and Herald columnist

Matt Heath: Larva - simply a stage that kids go through

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Netflix offering will leave most parents mystified and disgusted.
Parents, switch off! Larva operates completely in the realm of child logic. Photo / Supplied
Parents, switch off! Larva operates completely in the realm of child logic. Photo / Supplied

I saw something last week that made me realise I don't understand my children at all. Something so peculiar and punishing I simultaneously lost respect for them and myself.

The thing I saw was Larva. A show on Netflix so painful to parents you feel like smashing the TV after a couple of 90-second episodes. Yet to kids Larva is like an icecream laced with methamphetamine, smack and crack. They love it.

It's a very simple show. There are a bunch of insect larvae called Yellow, Red, Black, Brown, Stick Insect and Pink the snail. Each episode they make weird noises as they get burned, squashed or eaten. One episode Red was birthed out of a rat's butt.

I asked my son Chaz why Larva is funny. He said "because the yellow one farts in his own face while he's asleep and he doesn't even know he's doing it".

Which actually sounds pretty funny. I asked my other son, Baz, and he said "because they fart a lot and do all these funny things and sometimes they need water or food". That also sounds pretty funny. There is no doubting that flatulence is universally and eternally funny. A yellow bug farting in his own face should have me in stitches. However, I couldn't even work out that that was happening. Larva operates completely in the realm of child logic.

Kids' shows like SpongeBob SquarePants, Adventure Time and the Regular Show operate on two levels. Super dumb for kids and secretly smart for adults. Right now my boys are watching the yellow larva covered in concrete pulling himself along the ground by his tongue towards a sausage, for some reason. Both my sons are laughing so hard they can't talk. I just told them to play video games. Way better for the brain.

Seek revenge on your children by forcing them to watch House of Cards series four ... That will bore and confuse the bejesus out of them.

Obviously I am not the first dad to not like what his kids like. When I was a child I loved The Dukes of Hazzard with a passion. My parents hated it. They kept pointing out annoyingly boring things like Bo and Luke's orange 1969 Dodge Charger had a confederate flag painted on the roof. A flag with historical associations with racism, slavery and white supremacy.

I just thought it was cool that Bo and Luke slid across the bonnet to get in and that they could jump over barns without a ramp. My parents may have hated it but at least it was easy to follow.

The voice-over by Waylon Jennings explained everything that happened in simple terms. "Now, Boss eats at the Boar's Nest 'cause his wife, Lulu, is a lousy cook. An' you can tell a lot about a man by what he eats for breakfast. Boss usually has coffee and raw liver. Well, at least he don't dunk it."

Of course Dukes of Hazzard was never really a kids' show. It was a really dumb adult show. I had a friend who was banned from watching TV for a year because of the super-revealing red bikini Daisy Duke wears in the opening titles. There is nothing sexy about Larva.

It isn't even the weirdest show on kids' TV. Try Uncle Grandpa. His best mate is a flying pizza slice wearing sunglasses called Pizza Steve. Two days ago I watched another show with space snails singing "we are going to space die in out of space".

In conclusion kids' shows are getting weirder and weirder. You will never understand them. So seek revenge on your children by forcing them to watch House of Cards series four when it comes out. That will bore and confuse the bejesus out of them. Unless of course Frank Underwood farts in Clare's face. Then the whole family will enjoy it.

- NZ Herald

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Matt Heath is a radio host on Radio Hauraki and Herald columnist

Matt Heath is a breakfast radio host on Radio Hauraki, and a television producer, writer and director. He made a name for himself with Back of The Y Masterpiece Television, Balls of Steel UK and the feature film The Devil Dared Me To. Matt was guitarist and singer for the band Deja Voodoo which released two top twenty albums. He is currently a producer on Best Bits, a cricket commentator for The Alternative Commentary Collective, and the director of Vinewood Motion Graphics. Matt is a father of two living in Auckland City.

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