When I was a little girl. One of my favorite westerns to watch was The Lone Ranger. It appeared on channel 11, WPIX, after school. It never bothered me that half of the shows were in black and white-it was just great fun. Another one of my favorites was The Big Valley, as I thought Audra was so pretty. That was one that I would watch on the weekend, when it was on. My brother preferred The Rifleman reruns, as it had many strong characters in it.
The Lone Ranger was just one of dozens of western themed television programs that were produced in the 1950’s and 1960’s. These shows targeted family audiences, as they taught many moral values without the blood and gore that one finds on television today. Most of these kinds of westerns are not meant for the eyes of children.
Disney Junior has to continually grow it’s brand, as it’s audience eventually ages out and three needs to be something new to promote. The network, hot off the heels of 2013’s mega successes Sofia the First and Henry Hugglemonster, are debuting the first western aimed at it’s target audience-preschoolers. It is called Sheriff Callie’s Wild West.
The star of the show is a calico cat name Callie. She is the sheriff in this computer generated animated show that teaches lesson to children in the guise of music and humor.
The Cast of the Show
There is never a shortage of talent when it comes to casting a program for Disney, whether it is for a live action show or for a cartoon for children. The best talent is recruited for these enterprises, and Sheriff Callie is no different. For the voices of the people in Nice and Friendly Corners, Disney has attracted some popular names from its own stable of talent.
Callie is voiced by the incredibly talented Mandy Moore, who achieved her first taste of fame in 1999 with her hit single “Candy”. She has also appeared in many movies, most notably as the voice of Rapunzel in the hit animated Disney movie Tangled. Callie uses her magical lasso to help the townsfolk when they get into trouble. She can make it a hand, a star,a heart-anything she needs to get the job done or her point across.
Sheriff Callie Coloring Book With Stickers from Amazon
Supporting the sheriff is her sidekick, Deputy Peck, a woodpecker who comes to the rescue a day late and a dollar short. He is voiced by Lucas Grabee, who rose to fame as Ryan in the Disney High School Musical trilogy.
Toby is another sidekick who is actually a cactus. His vocals are provided by Jessica DiCicico, who is also the voice behind Mabel on the Disney Channel’s Gravity Falls.
There are a host of other characters who also appear in town, among them a trio of singing chipmunks who narrated the story. They break into a short song when trouble is brewing as well as when the episode ends-like an epilogue.
Sheriff Callie’s Wild West is a gentle way of teaching children about the old west. Phrases such as “Sweet Buttermilk” and “What in Whiskers” is sprinkled throughout each episode, and townsfolk helping each other is the way things are done. This is a fantastic way to teach children a bit of American history without them even realizing it.
Here is the official costume from Disney:
Sheriff Callie’s Wild West Dress Up Dress from Amazon
Sheriff Callie’s Wild West Games and Printables
Presently, the Disney Junior website only has a few things on it pertaining to the show. You can print out a sheriff’s badge and even watch episodes on your computer before it actually airs on television.
You can find the games on the Disney Junior website.
There are also lots of printables for your child to color, such as:
Callie and Sparky
Sheriff Callie, Peck and Toby
There are also projects for your child to do, such as:
Create your own Wanted Poster
Make Sheriff Callie’s Guitar
Make a mini cowboy hat
You can find these printable pages on Disney Junior, right here.
What the Show Wants to Achieve
Sheriff Callie CD from Amazon
Sheriff Callie wants to keep the reputation of Nice and Friendly Corners intact; it is the friendliest place around. Being mindful of the feelings of others is one of the centerpieces of many episodes. For example, in one episode, Peck lamented over the fact that he was not good at anything. Callie prodded him to keep trying, and when he tried his hand at horseshoes, he was a natural! This went to his head, and he became such a bad sport that no one wanted to play with him. Callie gently taught him a lesson, and in the end all was well.
In another episode, Toby wanted to earn money so he could buy a brand new milkshake at the store. He earned it, and then took on more responsibility that he could handle and did a very poor job. The lesson was that you should not forget your promises, as that is as bad as breaking them.
Another show had a bunch of corn bandits stealing corn from Farmer Stinky. It turned out that a pair of crows had no corn crop and were hungry. Sheriff Callie taught them that instead of stealing, they should ask for help if they have a problem.
Every episode features a lesson, along with music and humor. Even adults can watch this show and enjoy it.
Featured image from pixabay.com altered by the author in picmonkey.com