Jim Henson’s family variety show ran from 1976 and 1981 and was guest hosted by some of the biggest stars of the time.
Disney+ began streaming the programme this Friday with a warning that reads: “These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now. Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together.”
The platform has not gone into detail on why a warning has been added to 18 of the episodes but, in one, from season five in 1980, Johnny Cash performs while standing in front of a Confederate flag, which has a longstanding association with white supremacy. In another, from season three, Spike Milligan appears in a multitude of caricatured national costumes as part of a performance of It’s a Small World After All.
Disney+ has applied the same disclaimer to other 20th-century content it has been streaming to contemporary audiences, like Lady and the Tramp, The Jungle Book, The Aristocats, Dumbo and Peter Pan, as part of its “Stories Matter” initiative, which was launched to improve representation in its output. #news