Peppa Pig is not new to controversies. Over the past couple of months, there has been a flurry of media coverage focusing on the unlikely figure in the children’s cartoon. At recent a 2009 episode of the show has upset the London Fire Brigade with its use of the word, ‘firemen’. It did not go well to the firefighting agency who just launched its #Firefightingsexism campaign presumably to attract more female recruits to the industry. According to the London Fire Brigade, the British cartoon uses, “out of date stereotypical gender-specific wording [that] prevents young girls from becoming firefighters.” UK School Warns of Suicidal Content in Peppa Pig, Fortnite and YouTube Kids Videos.
The London Firefighters organisation on March 17 posted a tweet promoting firefighter Barbie doll. With the hashtag #Firefightingsexism, the tweet reads, “She’s coming to the rescue, helping girls & boys to imagine everything they can become by joining the Brigade.”
Barbie Joining the Brigade
Great to have another supporter in our #FirefightingSexism campaign. Welcome Barbie! She's coming to the rescue, helping girls & boys to imagine everything they can become by joining the Brigade, in our new gold kit too. pic.twitter.com/sR77H2N1tH
— London Fire Brigade (@LondonFire) March 16, 2019
In the replies, a Twitter user shared a clip from one of the Peppa Pig’s episodes titled, “The Fire Engine.” The episode in question features Peppa and little brother George join Miss Rabbit’s Mummies’ Fire Engine Service; with the narrator saying at one point that “Mummy Pig is dressed as fireman.”
Here's the Clip from the Episode in Question
— Jay (@JPWR_1984) March 17, 2019
LFB shared the clip saying, “Come on @peppapig, we’ve not been firemen for 30 years. You have a huge influence on kids & using out of date stereotypical gender-specific wording prevents young girls from becoming firefighters.”
Read LFB's Tweet
Come on @peppapig, we’ve not been firemen for 30 years. You have a huge influence on kids & using out of date stereotypical gender specific wording prevents young girls from becoming firefighters. Join our #Firefightingsexism campaign https://t.co/IRjLtqolEl
— London Fire Brigade (@LondonFire) March 17, 2019
While some agreed, many felt that the organisation was aiming at the wrong target. Going through various tweet responses, it turns out that the clip is ten years old and the infamous episode associated storybook features many women firefighters.
Firefighters in Peppa Pig Book Are Females
— Natasha (@karaokeloving) March 19, 2019
This is not the first time that the popular show; which airs on Nick Jr. and Channel 5 in the United Kingdom has caused a spot of bother. There have been many occasions when the British animated character left everyone a bit hot under the collar. Be it the parents’ concern in 2010 over Peppa Pig not wearing seat belts or China banning the character as it ended up featuring in gang-related rap videos and tattoos; Peppa Pig is not new to controversies.