Oy, Elmo. I gotta agree with you there, I'm glad I watched the show -before- he dominated it. And the only reason he became popular in the first place was because of those Tickle-me-Elmo dolls they release practically every other year for $50. But why have one character dominate the show? One important thing the show did was show us all sorts of different characters, human or otherwise. Their personalities mixed and matched and they were used as needed. But now it just seems like everyone just interacts with Elmo.
I didn't know he glorified bad behavior though. That might really explain why everytime I go to the mall all the kids are acting so horribly, and with the parents not making any effort to do something about it.
I've never heard of this "Caillou" and really, I don't think I want to know more. Also that's a really stupid name, everytime I hear it I think of caribou.
I must admit, I've never actually sat down and watched Dora, but the few clips I've seen (waiting rooms where its not escapible) are really awful. I wasn't a genius kid or anything, but when I was little, I hated it whenever people talked down to me just because I was a kid. I don't think adults give kids nearly enough credit and that brings me to....
Barney. I have to name this because he personally offends me. Y'see, I was starting Kindergarden when this show started. And I hated it from day one. 12 year old "big kids" learning about shapes and colors? That didn't make any sense! Not to mention it was done in a dull and uncreative fashion. It generally isn't a good thing when the target audience thinks a show is dumb and hates it. How it's lasted so long is beyond me.
Everyday in Kindergarden before class, we had to watch Barney. It wasn't optional, like "Well kids you can play on the playground OR watch this," or "Well the weathers bad so you can't go out today. Sit and watch this." No, we had to sit around in front of the TV and watch Barney and I hated every second of it. Thankfully, however, the bus I would take was one of the later ones to arrive before class. Because it would be turned on as soon as the first bus (or maybe the first two buses?) arrived, I would only have to see about half of it instead of the whole thing, unlike the suckers who arrived before me.
It still was really lame though.