Listen: Jimmy Rees talks to Sam Robinson on Hope Breakfast about viral videos and bedtime books
Australian entertainer Jimmy Rees is pouring out content – from viral social media posts, to his first picture book for kids.
After spending more than 10 years entertaining kids as Jimmy Giggle on ABC’s Giggle & Hoot, actor Jimmy Rees has pivoted to creating videos on social media that capture the time in which we are living through.
Speaking to Hope Breakfast, Jimmy shared why creating such videos as Meanwhile in Australia… that provide a laugh at some of the restrictions we’re living under, are so important at a time like a global pandemic.
“Because we’ve been relatively safe [in Australia] then I think we can have a little laugh about it and poke fun at the snap-border closures,” Jimmy said.
“It was blatantly obvious making a couple of them at the start, that people needed a laugh.
“Abide by all the rules, but when you look at them sometimes in contrast to what else is happening, or what other states are doing, it can seem a bit bizarre. At one point there was 25,000 people allowed to go and watch the cricket but then you weren’t allowed to have eight people in your home.
“One of the comments I made in the videos was you can go to a stadium with 20,000 other people to watch 22 people play cricket on a field, but you can’t have eight people in your backyard playing backyard cricket!”
Jimmy has also been getting creative in writing his first picture book, Bedtime Sorted. It depicts a father, very much like Jimmy, struggling to convince his three kids to sleep.
“It’s one of those anti-bedtime stories, because it’s about those excuses you hear at bedtime – ‘I’m too hot’, ‘Can you sleep with me?’, ‘It’s too dark’ – it’s about all those excuses that you hear, which is real parenting.
“It’s about a Dad who thinks he’s got bedtime sorted, completely does not, and it dissolves into ‘let’s just try anything to get them to sleep’.”
The book is beautifully illustrated by Briony Stewart, who created pictures that Jimmy said he’s delighted with. When asked about other bedtime stories that have proven popular in the Rees household, Jimmy said the fun stories are the best.
“A result of me being silly and wanting silly books, David Walliams has one called Boogie Bear. There’s also one called This is a Ball. It’s designed basically to annoy kids and create a dialogue between parents and kids.
“It’s fun and we always have a laugh reading that one. Though it’s not the best thing to [read] before bedtime because it does wind them up a bit,” Jimmy laughed.
You can hear more of Jimmy Rees talking about Bedtime Sorted, his viral videos, as well as retiring from his role as Jimmy Giggle, in the player above.