Brow Beat

Here Are Some Newsreels About Babies!

A baby crawling towards the camera, smiling.
This baby, seen here competing in a crawling competition in 2015, was born far too late to appear in any newsreels. Kazuhiro Nogi/Getty Images

Summer is here at last, and you know what that means: It’s time to stay indoors and binge-watch newsreels about babies! Here are five newsreels about babies to get you started.

“Bouncing Babies” (British Pathé, 1969)

An uncompromising portrait of the “Bouncing Baby of the New Year” contest in Swingin’ London. “Frank Sinatra has a cold” gets all the credit, but “They bounced and bounced until they could bounce no more,” is the greatest sentence in the history of journalism.

“The Baby Cage: A Penthouse for a Baby?” (British Pathé, 1953)

The answer to the question this newsreel poses is “no.”

“Baby Bouncer” (British Movietone, 1972)

Babies go “Down Under” (to Australia) in this exciting visit to the “Bankstown Central Shopping Centre” (the mall) in “Sydney” (Sydney). It’ll have you saying, “G’day, babies!”

“Gas Masks for Babies” (British Pathé, 1939)

Unlike “The Baby Cage: A Penthouse for a Baby?,” the title of this newsreel does not pose a question. Nevertheless, the answer is still “no.”

“Bounce, Baby, Bounce” (British Movietone, 1966)

Baby bouncers were not a new invention in 1966, so British Movietone’s reporting here, which claims that bouncers were “being tried out in Paris” and “once of the best ideas since the safety pin,” is misleading at best. It would be uncharitable, however, to assume that someone at British Movietone was looking for any excuse to shoehorn a bunch of baby footage into what was ostensibly a serious news operation.

Which newsreels about babies are keeping you cool this summer? Let us know by filming a newsreel about it!