Leonardo is being heavily promoted, and few kids who watch children's TV will have missed seeing the series trailer. The website describes it as a "drama following the adventures of the teenage Leonardo da Vinci and his friends." The opening title sequence of every episode broadcast so far sets the story in Florence in 1467.
Nowhere are kids cautioned that Leonardo is makebelieve. It is a false and misleading account of the teenage years of Leonardo da Vinci.
The fifth episode 'It Must Be Love' portrays Leonardo as head-over-heels in love with a girl called Valentina, and apparently it's love at first sight. Chatting to a friend, Leonardo exclaims - "She is so beautiful. When I look at her I can barely breathe."
The series fails children on multiple levels. One of the many issues with Leonardo is that, in reality, the eponymous superhero would have been more likely to be head-over-heels in love with one of his male friends (blog 13 April 2011)
Since my earlier blogs on this topic, I've found out more about the Kidscreen Summit Heroes And Superheroes session, and it seems the issue of LGBT heroes was not raised by any of the panel. This was particularly unfortunate because the reality of the My Hero project is so much at variance with its founding principles. For example there is currently no information about LGBT History Month on their website. I have raised this with them.
Despite CBBC's profoundly misleading account of the life of Leonardo da Vinci, it seems that Joe Godwin has, for years, been telling LGBT rights and support groups that CBBC inclusiveness will improve. On 12 March 2011 he spoke to Families Together London (FTL)
CBBC's Leonardo series is contrary to everything LGBT History Month stands for, quite apart from also being at odds with the BBC's Mission, Values and Public Purposes.
Leonardo is broadcast on Mondays on the CBBC Channel at 5.15pm.
Episode 5 - 'It Must Be Love' is repeated tomorrow at 10am on the CBBC Channel. The series is also presently available online in the UK.