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Edutainment Show

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"Well, Itchy & Scratchy are gone, but here's a cartoon that tries to make learning fun! ...Sorry about this, kids, but stay tuned; we've got some real good toy commercials coming right up, I swear".
Krusty the Clown, The Simpsons

As the trope's title implies, the Edutainment Show combines educational content with entertainment. As such, most shows in this genre are aimed at children; of course, some more mature fare may fit this definition, such as MythBusters. Cooking Shows, Science Shows, Nature Shows, and other TV Documentary formats (especially Docudrama programs) may also count, if they are entertaining enough. Additionally, the definition has become somewhat blurred - these days networks often pass children's programs in particular as "edutainment," when their only actual educational content is pro-social themes, such as "work together as a team", "Reading Is Cool", or "be a good friend to others."


Many Edutainment Shows appear on PBS, the most famous example being Sesame Street. Nickelodeon also has had quite a few in their Nick Jr. block, such as Blue's Clues and Dora the Explorer, as do specialized fact-oriented cable networks such as the many Discovery channels, the History Channel, and Animal Planet. At least until Network Decay sets in.

In the United States, since 1990, networks are required to air at least 3 hours of educational material a week; the tag "E/I" (for "Educational/Informative") was created to denote such shows (though in the case of stations carrying Saved by the Bell, the rules are susceptible to Loophole Abuse if An Aesop is fit into the show in just the right way, and they can count as E/I). Now you know what the And Knowing Is Half the Battle is referring to.

Religious Edutainment is a subgenre designed to teach and promote the values of a certain faith. For the Video Game counterpart, see Edutainment Game. See also Propaganda Piece.


Other examples:

Statler: Say, Waldorf, do you think this show counts as edutainment?
Waldorf: Don't see why not. After all, it encourages people to quit watching and read books!
Both: Doh-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho!

Alternative Title(s): Edu Tainment


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