It may seem like madness to get on a bus and pay for the privilege of watching Peppa Pig at the cinema, but “it may seem like madness” is the foundation on which this blog is built, hey? Tuesday mornings have become a bit of a barren spot in our week ever since the local playgroup pointedly became “under 20months old”. Very specific. And definitely no wriggle room for a (gasp) 43month old. Is that really right? Gosh darn he’s old. So when I noticed that the Ritzy Brixton was starting “Toddler Time” on a Tuesday morning, I thought we’d check it out.
We got the bus down there and on the way, gave Roo a quick lesson in South
London geography. We were going to Brixton, so we needed to go down Brixton Rd. “But this is Kennington Road!” said Roo. No Roo, that’s the road we take to get back home to Kennington. See how it works? Ah, if only navigating was always that simple. There’s a McGregor Rd in Notting Hill. Maybe it’ll lead me to Ewan McGregor?
For some reason, we got there half an hour early which almost never happens. The projectionist hadn’t turned up yet, so the box office wasn’t open (not that cinemas seem to have box offices anymore). Roo was hungry and so was I, so we went and sat in the cafe and had a second breakfast of croissants and apple juice. After a lot of pressure from Eva, I decided to relax my “no eating flaky pastry in the sling” rule and she joined in too. Roo and I played I-spy again and I got a small insight into what goes on in my little boy’s head.
I had spied a door beginning with d. He thought it might be a dog. I don’t think he knows any other words starting with d. I asked him what you use to get in and out of a building. His answer?
What goes on in there?!
The box office was open by now, so we joined the queue to buy tickets before finding out we could have bought them at the cafe bar. It was all a bit chaotic and running late, but the staff were very nice about it and they started the film a few minutes late (when the film is only 25 minutes long, every minute counts). That gave us time to check out the newly refurbished toilets:
Then we took our seats among the other over-excited toddlers. Roo was surprisingly calm – I think a year earlier he would have been bouncing on his seat and shouting. Instead, he just sat there with his kids popcorn and apple juice carton (£2 for the combo) and waited for Peppa to start.
On the other hand, Eva was wriggly and fretful and milk did nothing to calm her down. Maybe she was excited. Or maybe she’s turning into a terror. A toddler-in-waiting, if you will. Oh well, at least I’ll be able to do things With A Toddler again soon. We were sitting in the front row, so I put her down on the floor and she made a beeline for the next family along. Apparently she wants out. Can’t say I blame her.
I picked her up, put her down again and this time she went for Roo’s spilt popcorn. At least I hope it was Roo’s. First showing of the day you’d hope it was fairly fresh anyway. If it had been a 3pm showing, I would assume it had been there for a while and harrassed ushers had just tried to sweep it under the chairs rather than remove it. Oh yes, I remember those rapid-turnaround Saturdays at Warner Village Reading. Just get it under the seats! It’ll take too long to sweep it up. Go Go GO! There’s a queue of snotty 5-year-olds outside and one of them has drunk his XL drink already and is threatening to pee on the foyer carpet if we don’t let him in. GO!!!
Sorry, I think I had somewhat of a ‘Nam flashback there. What was I saying? Eva crawled about and ate some popcorn from the floor. Kept her happy anyway.
So anyway, Peppa Pig on the big screen! Looked a lot like Peppa Pig anywhere else, but let’s face it…this is just an excuse for parents to get out of the house and socialise isn’t it? Works for me. I couldn’t persuade any other parents to come with me, but we bumped into some people from playgroup there so it still felt like socialising. Roo enjoyed it and it wasn’t hugely expensive (£3 each for me and Roo, babies under a year were free). It did re-enforce my idea that Doctor Brown Bear isn’t actually medically qualified. Not only does he give Peppa the all-clear to have friends round when she was clearly infectious, he also thought one dose of cough medicine would clear up a highly contagious cough that Pedro Pony had. I’d like to see your credentials please Doctor!
Anyway, it was a little like going to a showing of “Sing-a-long Sound of Music”. Yes, you could watch it at home but the jokes are funnier and the songs are better when you watch it with a load of fellow fans. Similarly, small kids enjoy watching things with children of the same age. We show a “La Linea” cartoon every week at church and this moderately-amusing line person becomes the most hysterical thing ever when there are four 3-5 year-olds sitting in front of it on a big screen. Don’t ask me how. There’s a psychology thesis in there somewhere.
VERDICT: Not one we’ll do every week due to nursery timings, but a fun outing for a dull Tuesday.