In this last but one episode of ‘The Plano Adventures’, Professor Plano, Zed and Zee are called to Lord Myopic’s dream world: Machiville, where robots are indispensable, and people communicate via their Bottle-Bottle screens. As sad as it sounds, I think we are headed in a similar direction, unless we all make a conscious effort to put our gadgets away, especially when we are at home.
A robot from Machiville sends a distress signal to Professor Plano, and our heroes discover that the robot is actually one of Lord Myopic’s robot-butlers. The robots are overworked, as they have been programmed by Lord Myopic to work around the clock, and are slowly crashing. They’ve taken over almost all possible duties of humans, including looking after children, as the adults are too busy tapping away on their Bottle-Bottle screens.
Sounds familiar? I’m sure many, if not all, of us have outsourced childcare to YouTube and Cartoon Network at least once, especially when we are too tired to interact with our kids. (Actually, I thought Wilkie’s complaint about how his parents left his robot to look after him sounded a bit like how the nannies here in Indonesia look after the children instead, but at least it’s a person rather than a gadget, right?)
Some of us have also forgotten how to interact with people in real life, and are more comfortable communicating with others via our phones and/or social media. ‘Out of Order’ makes us acknowledge this uncomfortable truth, and to think about whether we really want this for our children.
Out of Order
N usually enjoys reading the battle scenes between Lord Myopic and Professor Plano, but as there wasn’t a big battle scene in ‘Out of Order’, he decided to draw his own version of it. He liked how the robot tricked Lord Myopic, and drew all the other robots shouting “My power!” at him.
‘Out of Order’ gently reminds us to be more mindful about how much we choose to use devices at home. Children should be encouraged to play outdoors, rather than sit in front of the TV, and if they are indoors, books should always be the first choice. Ultimately, Professor Plano’s Clear Vision recipe is not just about having good eyesight, but about being in control, rather than becoming slaves to technology.
We can’t wait to read the final instalment of ‘The Plano Adventures’, and to find out if Professor Plano manages to defeat Lord Myopic for good! I sure hope so, but I have a feeling that it’s going to be an ongoing battle, and that we all have to play our parts to help vanquish Lord Myopic.
BUY THE BOOK Plano Adventures: Out of Order is available at Kinokuniya, Times Bookstores, as well as Popular bookstores.
We have one copy of ‘Plano Adventures: Out of Order’ to be given away to one reader of Growing with the Tans! To participate, please visit our Instagram page. Terms and conditions apply.
Terms and Conditions: This giveaway will end on Friday, 10th May 2019, at 2359h, and is open to readers with a Singapore mailing address only. The winner will be contacted via the particulars provided when entering this giveaway, and will have 24 hours to respond, failing which a new winner will be selected. All incomplete entries will be disqualified, and all entries will be verified before the winners are announced. To be fair to our sponsor, please note that all fake Instagram accounts (accounts set up purely to take part in contests, with no or very few real posts), will be disqualified.