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Published:October 8th, 2012 16:59 EST

Honey Boo Boo Child: The Most Influential Person In America?

By Robert Paul Reyes

Shirley Temple began her film career in 1932 at the tender age of three, Little Miss Curly Top was the top box-office draw four years in a row (1935-38).

Alana Jackson (Honey Boo Boo Child) began her TV career in 2011 at the age of 6, she was featured in TLC`s "Toddlers & Tiaras", and in 2012 she starred in her own reality show " Here Comes Honey Boo Boo Child." The reality show featuring Honey and her redneck clan received phenomenal ratings, and has been renewed for next year.


Shirley Temple`s image was sugar and spice and everything that`s nice, she was like a porcelain doll come to life. During the Great Depression Americans flocked to musicals and any movie featuring Shirley Temple, they were seeking escapist fare that helped them forget about the drudgery and misery of their everyday lives.

Honey Boo Boo is a little bit rounder and rougher around the edges, she`s like a Cabbage Patch doll, or some would say a Chucky Doll, come to life. During Obama`s Great Recession, Honey Boo Boo`s cornball tomfoolery helps us forget about economic devastation that has rendered the American Dream an American Nightmare.

Some folks think that movie merchandizing is a fairly recent concept, but Shirley Temple`s movies generated millions in toys and gifts geared for young girls including dishes, cutout books, sheet music, mirrors, and of course Shirley Temple Dolls.

TLC needs to get with the program and ramp up their merchandizing around the Honey Boo Boo phenomenon. How about a Honey Boo Boo doll that burps, farts and sneezes, and an Uncle Poodle action doll, clad in purple hot pants, who skips and does cartwheels?

Shirley Temple looked nothing at all like the children of the 1930`s, many of whom worked in deplorable conditions in sweat shops to bring home a few pennies.

Honey Boo Boo Child does represent the average child of today: Obese, crude, and making a mockery of the notion that children should be seen and not heard. In fact, the precocious child star represents the average infantile adult as well.

Shirley Temple`s legacy is secure, she is one of the brightest stars in Hollywood, and she helped America survive the Great Depression.

The sky is the limit for Honey Boo Boo Child, but I`m not sure if she is a harbinger of the Apocalypse or an angel who descended from redneck heaven to help us cope with the Great Recession.

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