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YMMV / Caillou

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  • Alternate Character Interpretation:
    • So many on the Internet love to reinterpret Caillou's baldness as being from chemotherapy. r/CaillouHate believes he deserves it.
    • Others like to interpret Caillou as a weed-smoking, rapping gangster.
    • And then there's GoAnimate, which either interprets Caillou as a flanderized version of himself who constantly has tantrums (or commits increasingly over-the-top crimes or acts of violence up to and including murder) or interprets his parents as Abusive Parents who secretly (or not-so-secretly) hate Caillou's guts and constantly want him dead. Usually both.
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    • Caillou isn't the only one with far fetched ACIs, there's also Mr. Hinkle.
  • Accidental Innuendo: There is, of course, the infamous "OH YES, DADDY!"; which was a perfectly innocent line at the time the episode it's from came out but became an Accidental Innuendo when the phrase "daddy" became a sexual meme on the internet. Overlaps with Have a Gay Old Time, except that this example is far more modern than most.
    • And if that wasn't enough, the narration afterwards, which could lead to some Unfortunate Implications if taken out of context:
    Narrator: Caillou loves spending time with his daddy like this. Just the two of them together.
  • Author's Saving Throw: Subverted. After many complaints from parents about Caillou's bratty behavior in the first few seasons, Season 4 completely changed Caillou's character by removing all his brattiness and flaws and making him into a Nice Guy who imagines in every episode. However, this change was rather divisive among parents and fans. See Base-Breaking Character below.
  • Base-Breaking Character: Caillou is quite polarizing. His gentle, Mr. Imagination era from Season 4. makes him either charming or wimpy and flat at the eyes of the audience. Meanwhile, his bratty demeanor from the first three seasons either make them see him either as a realistic boy or a terrible influence for children. It doesn't help in the latter case that Caillou rarely is scolded after being mean. The bratty part has alienated a few parents.
    • Caillou's parents are also rather divisive among parents and fans. They are either Good Parents who are very patient and caring to Caillou or considered terrible parents for constantly giving into Caillou's bratty behavior without any kind of discipline and spoiling him.
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  • Crossover Ship: Likely thanks to a certain video making site, the titular character tends to get this with Dora the Explorer.
  • Designated Hero:
    • Caillou himself. He is always shown to be right, but he frequently misbehaves and is bratty and spoiled. Even if something bad happens to him, things will always come out on top for him.
    • Caillou's parents. They frequently don't discipline their bratty son and let him have his way all the time, and one episode even had Caillou's mom leave him alone with a man they didn't know too well, and is depicted as being right despite that being an extremely irresponsible thing to do.
  • Do Not Do This Cool Thing: "Caillou's Crossword" was intended to discourage people from calling others "stupid", but it is shown to be fun and sincerely gives the desire to say stupid as a funny word.
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  • Ensemble Dark Horse: The puppet segments. Although they were discontinued after the third season and used as filler, they are looked back on fondly and are generally considered the best part of the show, even by people who don’t like it.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: Parents frequently bash the show for teaching that whining to get your way is good.
    • One infamous episode had Caillou being afraid of a man just because he doesn't know the guy. His mother then leaves him alone with said man to teach him to get over his fears. While this is apparently intended to be a subversion of the Stranger Danger specials of the 1980s-1990s, it remains that Caillou's mother leaving him alone with someone who's a complete stranger to her as well as irresponsible for being a statistically slight but potentially very terrible risk to take with her child.
  • Fountain of Memes: "Caillou Joins the Circus" has sprouted many memes. Here are some memorable quotes from that episode:
    • "Look, I got dressed all by myself!"
    • "Silly old car! Silly, silly, silly! WAAAAH!"
    • "Caillou was in a very bad mood, because he wasn't going to the circus."
    • "Let's make toast! We can cut it into duckies like Grandma does."
    • "NO! I don't wanna make duckies, that's for babies!"
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: For reasons unknown, Caillou is extremely popular in Turkey. Yumurcak TV, the Turkish children's TV channel that carries the show, airs a one-hour two-episode back-to-back slot at 7:00 AM and three additional half-hour slots through the day, seven days a week. To drive the message home, Caillou toys are abundant in Turkey.
  • Growing the Beard: The seasons featuring the puppet segments are generally more remembered and well-received by most viewers.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: As stated above, people seem to care more for the puppet segments than the Caillou stories.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • There are Caillou YouTube Poops out there. Many of which are ones of Caillou's tantrum from the circus episode. A notable series of poops come from MrPoopMeister, whose poops often include rampant F-bombs, child abuse, and one episode pooping "Train Trip" was removed because of a joke at the end portraying Caillou as Osama bin Laden, the mastermind of 9/11, complete with George W. Bush addressing the nation about the attacks, Barack Obama announcing his death, celebrations in the street, and even John Cena's announcement at the end of Extreme Rules 2011.
    • YA BOY CAILLOU, a Twitter about gangsta Caillou, and the Caillou rap (explicit).
    • Of course, there's Evil Twin Caillou on Twitter.
    • And last but not least, let us not forget the fact that Caillou (or rather, "Kaylew") has become more or less the unofficial Series Mascot of grounded videos.
    • Then a scratcher named CaillouFanatic created some projects featuring Caillou, for example. His voice is Voiceforge David like GoAnimate.
      • Boris and Doris share the same thing, Their voices are Eric (for Boris) and Julie (for Doris)
      • In fact, CaillouFanatic made a project of Caillou playing piano, which he, well you know, plays his piano
        Caillou (from CaillouFanatic's Caillou playing piano project): Time for me to play my very own piano
    • The anime One-Punch Man has a protagonist that looks remarkably like a grown-up Caillou, so people are calling it Caillou Shippuden.
    • Generally hating the show—especially if you're a parent—has become popular on the Internet. Moms and dads have written lengthy pieces about how annoying/irritating Caillou is, and how moronic his parents are.
    • The fan theory that Caillou has cancer because he's bald is very popular.
  • Memetic Molester: Mr. Hinkle, due to his debut appearance having Caillou's mom leaving Caillou alone with Mr. Hinkle even though she didn't know him very well either. Needless to say, even though Mr. Hinkle turned out to be nice, viewers still thought of him as a pedophile.
  • Memetic Psychopath: The eponymous character and his dad, thanks to GoAnimate.
  • Most Annoying Sound:
    • The "WAAAAAAH!" sound from "Caillou Joins the Circus". It doesn't help that there's a few other episodes that use this exact same sound effect.
    • Caillou's voice in the first few seasons. As of Season 4, his voice is much more tolerable.
    • Rosie's crying. She does it even more than Caillou, unfortunately.
    • Caillou when he whines about something.
  • Never Live It Down: In "Caillou Joins the Circus", Caillou throwing a temper tantrum over the fact that he isn't going to the circus until the very next day.
    • Good luck finding anyone who forgives him for pinching Rosie.
    • People will also never let go of the fact that his mother has no qualms against leaving him alone with a total stranger. Granted, the stranger turned out to be harmless, but it's still highly irresponsible to do something like that and how the show treats this as in the right.
    • Caillou's parents are often remembered for letting Caillou have his way all the time despite his bratty attitude and constant whining without any kind of discipline.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • Caillou pinching Rosie in "Big Brother Caillou". It comes out of nowhere, and it's just plain unexpected. Rosie's shriek afterward does not help matters at all.
      • The book version of "Big Brother Caillou" is even worse, as Caillou bites Rosie.
    • In "Caillou is Getting Older", we get a shot of a dead bird, onscreen. note  It doesn't help that the rest of the episode features Caillou being afraid of getting old and dying.
  • Periphery Demographic: Mostly parents who monitor their children's TV viewing. But others came naturally.
  • The Problem with Licensed Games: The iPhone apps. The audiobook app pretty much ripped the audio from the TV series and shoehorn it into some mediocrely animated storybook, while the new edutainment app is cited to be repetitive and limited in interaction. One of them is even an Allegedly Free Game.
  • Ron the Death Eater: Using GoAnimate or Plotagon, many people make "grounded videos" out of Caillou, which portray him as a psychopath rather than just a nice kid who can be a Bratty Half-Pint at times.
    • Boris could also fall under this trope. He is a very sweet and caring father, yet in the grounded videos he is portrayed as a grounding obsessed child abuser.
    • Doris also goes from a caring Mom to an apathetic bitch who enables Boris.
    • Miss Martin is a friendly teacher in canon, in Grounded videos, she's a Sadist Teacher who literally punishes Caillou for everything.
    • Leo, Clementine and Sarah are all nice and friendly children in canon, in Grounded videos, they are all bullies who treat Caillou with contempt. In Leo's case, it's downplayed due to the fact that he's a reformed bully.
    • Even Rosie is not immune to this trope, as there are users who make grounded videos out of her, where she is portrayed to be just as troublesome as, if not worse than, Caillou.
    • Putting aside the interpretation of him being a pedophile, Paul Hinkle goes from being a nice old man to being a Cranky Neighbor who is extremely annoyed by Caillou's bad behavior.
  • Seasonal Rot: Obviously many would agree the show was terrible from the beginning, but while Caillou constantly being a Bratty Half-Pint in the first season, note  seasons, by the third he had calmed down noticeably and a bit more nicer. By the fourth, he had lost all brattiness, and to make matters worse, was constantly imagining things instead, the previous lack of which had been one of the show's few saving graces. On top of that, the animation became much worse. Thankfully, season 5 has dropped the Imagine Spot gimmick and restored some of Caillou's signature brattiness without turning him back into a Bratty Half-Pint like before.
  • Snark Bait: Thanks mainly to GoAnimate, the show has essentially become a laughing stock.
    • Almost every user review this show has on Common Sense Media gives it one or two stars.
  • Tear Jerker: Caillou getting increasingly worried about death in "Caillou Is Getting Older". The scene where he tearfully admits to his parents that he does not want to die is sad too.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Caillou himself, thanks to his near-constant Aesop Amnesia and Bratty Half-Pint behavior.

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