In what counts as major news mostly to TV households with minor dependents, Nickelodeon’s spinoff channels Noggin (commercial TV for toddlers in the daytime) and The N (tween and teen shows by night), which now share a channel, will become separate channels at the end of the year. (It’s the TV equivalent of finally getting your own room away from your little brother.) The New York Times’s article mainly focuses on The N, which, it says, will now be positioned as a bigger competitor to Disney and ABC Family. But it also noted that a 24-hour Noggin will compete with PBS’s 24-hour preschool channel, PBS Kids Sprout.
Which reminds me of a question that’s long nagged at me: Who out there is watching PBS Kids’ Sprout in the middle of the night, anyway? All the scenarios I can spin out are depressing: small children needing to be entertained during hospital visits or family crises; parents nursing kids with stomach flu through sleepless nights; tiny little insomniacs with their own TVs way too early in life.
But I’m sure there’s something I’m missing: maybe running programming through the night just means there’s a better chance your DVR can pick up that elusive Backyardigans rerun. Or is there a hidden cult out there of rave kids partying all night to the sounds of toddlers’ TV? That, at least, would explain Yo Gabba Gabba!