A new cartoon character on Nickelodeon is enough to get most kids excited. But the rest of the world is also paying attention to this week’s episode of ‘The Loud House’, as it will be the first Nickelodeon show to feature a family with same-sex parents.
Meet the McBrides; biracial gay couple Harold and Howard, and their son, Clyde, who is a friend of main character Lincoln Loud. The McBrides make their debut in an episode entitled “Overnight Success,” in which doting dads Harold and Howard drop off Clyde for a sleepover.
Time to make history indeed! First married gay couple on a Nickelodeon cartoon!https://t.co/CI5NPmd7JU
— ㅤ (@Ieodavinci) July 16, 2016
What’s the big deal?
While the McBrides are by no means the lead characters in ‘The Loud House,’ their presence is important. Multi-racial families are rare enough on mainstream TV, and especially in children’s programming. So many of the characters are white by default, and since the rumoured cancellation of ‘Doc McStuffins’, a new African-American cartoon character has been sorely needed. A multi-racial family with two dads, though, is genuine new ground.
Nickelodeon has shied away from such overt LGBT representation in the past, choosing to broadcast the ‘Legend of Korra’ finale (in which two female characters kiss) online, rather than on TV. ‘The Loud House’ marks the first time the network has officially nailed its rainbow colours to the mast.
While ABC sitcom ‘Modern Family’ has been depicting diverse households for years now, the McBrides in ‘The Loud House’ are likely to be the first nuclear family with same-sex parents that young viewers will ever see. That Harold and Howard are presented without fanfare, simply as Clyde’s dads, will almost certainly shape how kids perceive LGBT families in real life.