After LOTR nudity scandal, VeggieTales to stop child-vegetable nudity

The new Lord of the Rings TV show isn’t the only franchise getting flack for alleged nudity. 

The Tolkien-inspired Amazon Prime show, The Rings of Power, was highly criticized for allegedly hiring an “intimacy coordinator” normally reserved for nudity and sexually explicit scenes. Outraged fans responded with boycotts and petitions that launched the controversy into the national media, especially in religious outlets such as Catholic News Agency

Now other studios are taking notice, including Big Idea Entertainment. Their hit show, VeggieTales, has featured gratuitous vegetable nudity for years, including full frontal nudity of underage vegetables. 

“The recent social media controversy [about The Rings of Power] proves to us its time to end child-vegetable nudity on screen,” executives at Big Idea Entertainment Tweeted. “That is why we are immediately pulling such characters as Larry the Cucumber, Bob the Tomato, and especially Junior Asparagus until we can update them with clothing.” 

VeggieTales’ producers reportedly fired their vegetable-intimacy coach to initiate the transition. The change was applauded by many concerned parents and news outlets, which the hashtag #CoverThePickle spreading across much of Twitter. Reverend Greens, a collared-minister associated with the show, said his congregation was “overjoyed” to find their prayers answered.

“It’s really encouraging to know justice is being done!” he said in a text message. 

Other groups were less enthusiastic, seeing the move as a prudish attempt to impose Christian values on our children. Several advocacy groups including the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA) vowed to seek corrective action, which was subsequently followed up on by the American Civil Liberties Association (ACLU). 

“Such an imposition of dress code standards represents and intolerable intrusion of Christian values into the secular sphere,” ACLU spokeswoman Ava Cado told us. “VeggieTales is, and always should be, a safe entertainment space for our children to witness the beauty of the bare vegetable body, regardless of age.” 

Originally published Feb 14, 2021