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  • Writer's pictureEric Presser

Babe is a Thoughtful Win that Stands the Test of Time

We’re excited to welcome Bill Childs, from Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child an independent radio program that plays indie music for kids.


Bill Childs, joins us to review the beloved children’s movie, Babe. Babe tells the delightful tale of a talking pig raised amongst sheep dogs who learns to herd and teaches the value of kindness. George Miller of Mad Max franchise fame produces. You can catch Babe on most streaming platforms.

The Positives

Babe teaches viewers not to judge a book by its cover and tackles prejudice in a way that is developmentally appropriate.

You catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar, and Babe is a fitting example of the benefits of kindness. This inspiring message leads to a conversation about one of Bill’s favorite shows, Ted Lasso, which is filled with the same humble and positive energy.

Bill loved the deliberate pace and that the movie was smart and honest about what happens on animal farms and didn’t treat Farmer Hoggett as a black and white “bad guy.”

Great voice acting, especially from legend Christine Cavanaugh as Babe and James Cromwell as Farmer Hoggett, who finishes up with the classic line, “That’ll do pig. That’ll do.” Fun Fact: Inspired by his time on the farm, Cromwell became vegan and animal advocate.

Animatronics were the decided approach to bringing real animals to life. At a time were CGI rules the screen, it was nice to revisit a special effect that isn’t used as often.

Fun fact: The 48 Yorkshire pigs that played Babe were adopted out to owners under a contract that did not allow them to slaughter the pigs.

Fluffy or Educational

A little of both. There was plenty of fun with some great messages for kids mixed in.

Potentially Problematic

The audio dialogue replacement was distractingly bad for Kara.

The movie begins in a slaughterhouse, and with several mentions of where Babe came from combined with a fear of becoming the farmer’s next meal, your kids might have questions about how most people get their meat.

There is body shaming of the farmer’s wife.

The dog, Rex, perpetrates an act of violence against his female partner. He also shows initial hostility towards Babe. We later learn why he behaves this way, and during opportunities of redemption, he rises to the occasion. It might be worth a conversation with children about abusive behavior.

Should They Watch It?

Kara: Yes

Laura: Yes

Bill: Yes

We had an excellent time with Bill and we know you’ll have a great time listening to this episode. You can listen to his station here and check him out on twitter and facebook where he shares interviews and music live in-studio from some of your favorite indie artists.

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