Friends, we here at RideApart have stumbled upon what might be the best new thing on TV. Forget those chopper-building shows, stop with the Sons of Anarchy reruns, and nevermind Ewan and Charley for a moment. We are here for Ricky Zoom.
Now, yes, we know it’s a tv show for preschoolers, and yes, it made its debut on Nick Jr. earlier this month (September 9 to be exact). This cartoon—in the style of Disney’s “Cars” franchise or, for those of you with younger kids, the style of The Adventures of Chuck and Friends—is, you guessed it, all motorcycles all the time. The bikes themselves are adorable animated characters, and the best part is, they’re all different.
The star of the show, Ricky, is described as a “rescue bike” but he’s really a cute little red sportbike. His parents are sport tourers. His friends the “Bike Buddies” are a scooter named “Scootio,” a trike named “DJ,” and a dirtbike named “Loop.” In town there are cruisers, police motorcycles, supermotos, supersports, and adventure bikes. Heck, the kids’ teacher, Mrs. Bikely, is a purple, high-piped scrambler! The whole town is populated with anthropomorphized motorcycles. The keen eye will even catch the occasional sidecar hack.
The motorcycle industry as a whole has been struggling to attract younger riders. Shows like this can do a lot to help turn that around. You might scoff, but the media we consume does influence our thoughts toward, and feelings about, a ton of things. This is why advertising works. An adorable cartoon full of friendly, helpful motorcycles can help inspire warm fuzzy feelings around motorcycles instead of fear or revulsion. It’s way past time we all make an effort to shed that “scary biker” image. It does us all a disservice on the road, since people care inherently less when a “bad guy” gets injured or worse in a crash.
This adorable show is brought to us by Entertainment One, the same company that brought Peppa Pig to the United States. With any luck, this British show will take off such that even the kids whose parents do not ride, will come to love Ricky Zoom, demand themed birthday parties, own all the toys, etc. Imagine riding your sporty red motorcycle around town and being approached by a kid wanting an autograph? We motorcyclists could be heroes instead of scary.
National motorcycle organizations ought to help popularize this show; it is the very best promotion for motorcycles any of us have seen in a long time. Imagine being saved from a crash by a kid in a car seat screaming “Don’t hit Ricky Zoom!” at her dad while he’s texting and driving!