chapter  8
22 Pages

Media, Consumer, and Material Culture

If a cartoon is a ridiculous oversimplification of reality, then Nickelodeon’sseven-year-old Dora Marquez succeeds in the absurdity of her representation. Simplistically sketched, Dora and the other characters demarcate a sharp, if not jarring, two-dimensional existence against a vivid three-dimensional acrylic backdrop. The narrow, slavish, adherence to a palette of mostly primary colors disturbs me (Dennis) deeply. Inexplicably, Dora’s chief physical feature is her gargantuan football-shaped head and equally massive half-circle eyes that are almost entirely filled by her giant brown irises. Dora is chronically chipper and has lots of friends, but few are human: she prefers to spend most of her time with her best friend, an acrobatic monkey named Boots, and a loud-talking, gender-equivocal backpack.