The Disney+ series, Bluey is unquestionably a favorite among parents and kids, teaching life lessons through fun and games with the Heelers and all of their friends. Even though the show is truly a beloved series, a new episode, entitled “Exercise,” has sparked a bit of controversy and debate among the adult watchers.


Before we get into the controversy and debate, let’s take a look at the action of the 39th episode of season three according to Romper.com.

“Exercise” opens with Bandit getting ready in the bathroom. As he brushes his teeth, he steps on the scale and quickly sighs “Aw man…” prompting a heretofore unseen Bluey to pop out of the bathtub and ask “What? Why did you say ‘aw man?’” “I just need to do some exercise,” Bandit replies dejectedly, at which point Chilli and Bingo walk in. “Tell me about it,” Chili replies. Bandit goes on to explain to his daughters that a job and kids make it hard to fit exercise into his routine, all while scrutinizing his body in a mirror and squeezing his midsection. The scene concludes with Bandit and Bluey cheerfully discussing making exercise a priority as Chili steps onto the scale and dejectedly intones “Aw man…”

Although the episode, like all Bluey episodes is sweet in nature, parents are upset with “Exercise” because the episode is linking physical appearance almost exclusively to starting an exercise routine, when everyone should be exercising to be healthy and feel good. Not, just look good.

“I adore @OfficialBlueyTV & the messages it sends,” @psychocinematic began in a tweet. “Except in the latest episode ‘Exercise,’ where weight becomes a trigger for exercise. Watching Bandit stand on scale& squeeze his belly, frowning, sends a msg to kids that fat = bad & exercise = weight loss. V upsetting.”

Another social media user posted, “Listen, if you as a parent hate on your body or your kids body in front of them, they 1000 percent take that s**t in. I did,” @samanthakgreen posted. “So I get the Bluey blacklash and also, weight loss isn’t the only reason to exercise.”

Just as there were individuals against the episode presentation/content, there were those who thought that there was nothing wrong with the episode at all.

“This is ridiculous. Being overweight is unhealthy, if you won’t listen to a Bluey then ask your doc,” tweeted @CentristRambler.

@Boundsy1 thought that those viewers who were opposed to the episode totally missed the mark.

“I think some viewers are missing the point [of ‘Exercise’]. How about look at the positive message around monitoring your health and doing something proactive about it.”

In a 2021 BMC Public Health study, researchers found that weight stigma, in actuality, discourages individuals from exercising. An article published by the University of Washington School of Medicine is right in line with what @psychocinematic said in her tweet.

“Oftentimes people frame weight loss and exercise as two things that go together. It’s really important to get exercise for mental health, overall health, and sleep, but whether your weight changes in response to your exercise routine is something that is not really under your control, despite the pervasive cultural messages we receive that suggest the opposite, commented Dr. Mansi Shah, a primary care provider at UW Medicine.

He continued, “We should disconnect the idea of being healthy from the idea or goal of losing weight. We make a lot of assumptions about our health and the health of others based on weight, and we should unpack these assumptions. A higher number on the scale is not an automatic indicator of poor health.”

Did they miss the boat with this episode or hit a bullseye? There are very compelling arguments on both sides.


Photo Credit(s)/Featured Image: Official Bluey Instagram/Disney+/Bluey

Tiffany Silva

Tiffany Silva

Writer and Editor

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