If you haven’t experienced the sweetest and wholesome video of the week yet, then you must stop what you are doing and watch it down below now!
Alright. Now that you have witnessed the now-viral message from an endearing old pal warm up the hearts of nearly all of the millennial generation, we can talk. After almost 20 years since Steve Burns introduced the world to Blue’s Clues, ultimately departing the show abruptly in 2002, spoke to the world again about his departure, it made the realization that everyone needed a good cathartic cry.
Although the series moved on with another human friend named Joe, portrayed by actor Donovan Patton, that same year, many viewers felt the void of Steve leaving off on the felt bus to go to college. The show went on with Patton until 2006 and wasn’t revived until 13 years later, in 2019, with the newest leading character behind Blue known as Josh, portrayed by actor Joshua Dela Cruz.
Now. I must preface that I was not pre-school age at the introduction or height of Blue’s Clues mania. However, it was one of those famous references from the 90s that is synonymous with the culture. Blue’s Clues was everywhere, from party decorations, plush toys, Halloween costumes, and even live-action tours. Plus, you can’t honestly say that singing the spirited “We just got a letter” song wasn’t infectious! By the time the series took a turn, I was well into Jr. High. Still, chances are you got the opportunity to catch a glimpse of morning tv and definitely on the weekends to see Blue’s Clues. You transported yourself into the inner child-like world of solving the clues with your handy dandy notebook.
Well, after the video was posted on the Nick Jr Twitter Account, it quickly went viral. Despite the jokes and memes regarding the departure of the show’s actor and the nearly 20-year gap between the viewers’ ages since he left, if Nick Jr didn’t know, they quickly realized that everyone, both young and old, during the height of Blue’s Clues needed to see their old friend again.
Yes, the video was only two minutes long. But think about it. For two whole minutes, you got a chance to listen to a familiar soothing voice that affirmed that yes, things have been challenging and changed so much since we last talked. Still, we are making it, and we’ve accomplished the very mantra that the show sang the most. “We can do anything that we wanna do.”
Earlier this week, a generation was allowed to go back to their childhood moment, settle into nostalgia and feel uplifted by the fact that someone they have never met personally told them they were going to make it. On the surface, it appeared that everyone was immediately touched by the parasocial moment. However, I like to look at the implications of events and how they shape or reveal essential lessons to us.
Since 2002, the world has, in my opinion, evolved, devolved, and revolved into many variations. Numerous national and international events have shaped my late childhood and teenage years into early adulthood as a millennial. Most of those events have been linked to trauma from the terrorist attacks of 9/11, which is as I write this article two days away from the 20th Anniversary Memorial. Gun violence and school shootings have dominated the nation as political parties have argued for decades whether new laws should be enacted to protect the country.
I experienced the great economic recession of 2008 as a college graduate that left college with all aspirations of going far only to spend almost a year and a half on my parent’s couch because of lack of job opportunities. Student loans and other economic decisions that have been enacted that influenced my home buying and savings have also been the backdrop of almost every adult decision I’ve had. But on the other end of the spectrum, my generation changed the face of history by electing the first black president of the United States.
In addition, I have witnessed many opportunities for women and people of color have sprung forth due to women empowerment movements and diversity initiatives across all sectors of society. But, despite the glimmers of hope and resolution, the world has been impacted by the death tolls from COVID-19. Given the day of modern medicine that we currently reside in, no one even imagined that our world would still be suffering from the pandemic and all of the economic upheavals it would bring. And to make matters worse, younger generations have had to witness the political pandering and misappropriation of their elders who make decisions that will likely affect several generations to come.
With all of that said, the viral video of the week proved that a generation needed a healthy release. Having had the ethic of “grind culture” imprinted into our psyche, attending to our feelings and having healthy modes of release were viewed as selfish and self-centered acts. In turn, most of our lives have focused on shifting or suppressing our issues and concerns. It’s only so much you can avoid yourself before you have to address yourself. With September being National Self-Improvement Month, among other designations, millennials and everyone needs to reset back to their personal forms of healing and restoration. The past year and a half have felt so isolating and overwhelming in many circumstances. However, it doesn’t have to be.
Although I’m sure Steve wasn’t aware how much of an effect he would have on his old pal’s this week, I’m sure he’s happy he spoke with us and provided the closure that many of us didn’t know we needed. Even though the video touched on a juvenile subject, it was the virtual group hug we’ve longed for since we were children, especially this past year. When the actor left the show, he was unsure if he’d made an impact or if he was the right fit. Well, Steve, I’d say 34.3 million views in 48 hours (at the time of this article being written) says what you contributed to the show, and our childhood was perfect. Thank you Steve for taking the time to spread some much needed warmth and child-like cheer this week!