Vol. 2, Issue 39, November 23, 2004
Eisner Accused of War Crimes For Creation of "Higglytown Heroes"
An international war crimes tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands, has indicted embattled Disney CEO Michael Eisner for his role in supporting the creation and distribution of a children's show allegedly designed for use as a torture device.
American forces have come under sharp criticism before for using children's songs, such as the theme song to "Sesame Street," to coerce cooperation from prisoners of war and suspected terrorists, many of whom find the music unbearable. However, this is the first instance where a children's entertainment product has allegedly been created specifically as a potential instrument of coercion.
"Our intelligence suggests that the "Higglytown Heroes" show was crafted to cause actual neural damage to adults with repeated exposure," said Jim Landale, spokesman for the tribunal. "We have documented evidence that American forces used this show indiscriminately on prisoners in Iraq and at Guantanamo Bay, often causing irreparable harm. Mister Eisner, you shall be called to account for unleashing this horror upon the world."
"Higglytown Heroes" airs as part of the Disney channel's preschool programming block. The series centers on a small CGI town and four tots named Eubie, Kip, and siblings Wayne and Twinkle, who resemble Russian nesting dolls. They face challenges such as letting Grandpa out of the bathroom or finding a book in the library, and are invariably assisted by "heroes" such as mail carriers and farmers voiced by celebrities such as Kathie Lee Gifford.
"Her presence alone was a clear warning sign," said Landale. "When we realized that Cyndi Lauper had also contributed to the show, we understood that we had to take action."
The children have no problem-solving abilities whatsoever and the plots are so formulaic that they vary by fewer than six words per episode. The treacly song announcing the solicitation of "help," which was played at the press conference, is the most dangerous portion of the program:
Someone special, who could it be?
"Dear God, make it stop!" screamed a reporter from the BBC. "Oh, the humanity!"
Eisner could not be located for comment. His office released a statement noting that "All Disney programming is prepared with the best interests of American children and troops in mind, and is educationally sound. We are confident that we are making the world a better place, one way or another."