For over eleven years, Horrible Histories have been serving up TV treats for kids, offering accurate history lessons with a side serving of fart and poo jokes. What better way to get the little nippers into history than making it gross?
They’re not interested in the boring, World War Weary stuff they teach in schools. Instead, they tell us the fun facts that teachers shy away from, like how Egyptian Pharaohs and Kings had personal bum wipers, and that whilst Anne Boleyn was getting her head lopped off, Henry VIII was off playing a spot of tennis. And they’ve swapped out the greying, wrinkled, lecturing teacher for a bunch of British banterists – comedians sing and dance through history in some cracking costumes, where no sketch is too silly. And a special mention needs to go to the songs – they’ve got a reputation of their own. A quick google and you will find dozens of lists where people get in heated debates over which is the best bop from the series. If you ask us, it’s Charles Dickens, Miserable, which sounds so much like The Smiths we’re surprised Morrissey hasn’t sued, or at least gone on a Twitter rant about it. A testament to Horrible Histories being a right load of laughs is the fact that the author is completely against either the books or the show being taught in schools, saying the thought alone makes him shudder. So, schools out! And Horrible Histories are very much in. Even Dan Snow says so.
The fact that the series has been on our kids’ screens for over ten years is probably a strong enough indicator of its success to persuade you to check it out. But if not, what about the fact it’s won five BAFTA Children’s Awards?
First shown April 2009.