“I asked The Wiggles about representation, getting caught with a beer, and the one thing they’d do differently.”

The Wiggles have been a source of joy and comfort for children around the world for 30 years now, and while the band has evolved since its inception in 1991, the four original members will forever hold a special place in people’s hearts.

That’s why, Prime Video’s documentary Hot Potato: The Story of The Wiggles is all anyone can talk about right now on social media. Videos of grown adults crying while watching the documentary is dominating our TikTok FYP, and we get why.

Watch: the Hot Potato: The Story of The Wiggles trailer. Post continues below video. 

Video via Prime Video

Nostalgia helps to heal our inner child. It takes us back to a simpler time, when dancing to Fruit Salad and singing along to Rock-a-By Your Bear was the highlight of our day. Now, many of us have our own children, glued to the TV screen like we were, except their Wiggles look different to ours.

But this documentary doesn’t just help us travel back in time. It also gives us a deeper understanding of the men we grew up with. You see, while Greg Page, Anthony Field, Murray Cook and Jeff Fatt were working hard to put a smile on our faces, singing songs about cold spaghetti and Dorothy the Dinosaur, what we didn’t realise was there was a science behind every move they made.


Before they were The Wiggles, the four band members went to Macquarie University to study Early Childhood. At the time, none of them knew they would end up applying their learnings to music, resulting in them becoming one of the biggest children bands of all time.

“I put a lot of our success down to our tertiary education where we learned about the developmental needs and stages of children, and that had real implications on our songwriting,” Blue Wiggle, Anthony, told Mamamia.

“So we did action songs, challenge songs, and even still today, The Wiggles still think about their audience — what age and stage they are. And I think that’s made [the children] feel like we’re singing to them.”

The documentary not only gives viewers a special insight into their musical process, but also the tragedies and challenges they were confronted with during their time in the band. Greg’s illness, Anthony’s depression, and the tragic death of Anthony’s niece were all addressed.

And while each of those moments will leave you an emotional mess in more ways than one, it was their impact after 9/11 that will truly stay with you. 

Making an appearance in the documentary is Jackie Cannizzaro-Harkins, a New Yorker who lost her firefighter husband, Brian, during the 9/11 attack, shortly after giving birth to their son Christopher.

In a time of immense pain, it was The Wiggles that acted as a source of comfort for not only her son, but for her as well. Years later, Jackie still remembers the impact The Wiggles had, especially after her and Christopher were invited backstage during their US tour. Their kindness and generosity was something she has always carried with her, and while her son may not remember that moment, she will never forget.


“I’m immensely proud of the impact we had,” said Red Wiggle, Murray. 

“Because we started in such a small way, we never had any grand intentions, it’s just one of those things that after a while you realise that what you do means a lot to other people. 

“I’m really proud that so many children — especially children with special needs, sick children and the families that were grieving after 9/11 — that they did get some comfort from what we were doing. That was very special to us, but also something we never dreamed would happen.”

Yellow Wiggle Greg agreed, saying that upon reflection, it was one of the best parts of their job.


“It’s such a blessing too, because we genuinely enjoy what we do. So to be able to give that consolation to people in tough times, it’s just so incredible. It is very powerful. Watching that back in the doco for us was quite moving,” he said. 

During the ‘90s, The Wiggles were powerful in more ways than one. While the impact they had on families was evident, they were also one of the first people to champion representation — even if at the time, they didn’t know they were doing it.

For many children of the ‘90s, Purple Wiggle, Jeff Fatt, was the first Asian representation that they saw on mainstream television. His endearing personality was and still is his best-known trait, and now that the kids who yelled, “WAKE UP JEFF!” are older, they’re telling him how grateful they are that he chose to pursue a career in media.

“I never paid any mind to it back in the day, but quite often I’d be approached by my relatives overseas and they would tell me how much it meant to them that I was actually on TV flying the flag for them, so it’s been really fantastic that I’ve been able to do that,” said Jeff.

Murray added: “The new Wiggles are gender-diverse and racially-diverse, and the way The Wiggles started was almost an accident. We didn’t really plan for 30 years down the track that we’d still be going, so this is something we would have done right from the start had we realised how long it would go on for. So, I’m really proud that we now reflect the society we live in much better.”


The Wiggles very quickly became a cultural phenomenon during a time where there was no social media or smartphones to document your every move. While three out of four have hung up their skivvies (Anthony is the only OG member still performing for The Wiggles), they’re all still wholesome and family-friendly. 

It’s easy to forget however, that this children’s band was made up of adults, who do adult things in their spare time like get tattoos and share a pint. 

“It’s funny because during my time in The Wiggles, I was out at a gig one night and I was having a beer, and the next day The Daily Telegraph reported: ‘The Wiggles member caught having a beer’, and that was a shock. I am an adult!” laughed Murray. 

The release of The Wiggles documentary has solidified just how important these four men are to Aussie kids and the adults who grew up with them. 

Their genuine love and passion for what they do even three decades later is evident, so BRB while I go dance to Hot Potato.

Hot Potato: The Story of The Wiggles is streaming on Prime Video.

Feature image: Instagram @TheWiggles.

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