26
Jan
08

Saturday Throwback: Remember When…

Sesame Street was made of teh awesome? I mean…really, REALLY made of the awesome? Take this classic clip for example:

*sings along*

C is for cookie…that’s good enough for me!

Yeah. At least, it used to be.

Ok, I admit it, I’m one of the many adults who loves to watch Sesame Street. It’s just something about Big Bird and Elmo that put me in a state of happiness. But Cookie Monster? Man. I LOVED him. But with the makeover that SS has gone through the last few months/years, it just isn’t as much fun as it used to be.

So you can imagine my excitement when I found out that Sesame Street is putting it’s first couple of seasons on DVD. I was so excited! My nephew can see the Sesame Street I grew up with! (Ok, well, I’m too young to know seasons 1 and 2, but Noggin used to air the older episodes. And I’d stay up till 2 and 3 in the morning to watch.)

Except there’s a warning on there. The old school Sesame Street (complete with Kermit the Frog!) is not acceptable for younger viewers.

Why? Yep, you guessed it. Good old Cookie Monster. But it’s not JUST because he eats nothing more than cookies (and for serious, y’all, why the hell are these producers making him eat fruits and veggies? He is a COOKIE MONSTER, and as such, that’s all he should need to live. Monsters that eat all kinds of foods are named Telly, and Elmo, and…well, you get the idea.) Remember Alistair Cookie of Monsterpiece Theater? He smoked. And then he ate the pipe. And if little kids watch him, they’ll smoke. Then eat the pipe.

Srsly.

But you know, apparently the whole lot is revolutionary. Carol-Lynn Parente, the executive producer of Sesame Street, says:

She told me about Alistair Cookie and the parody “Monsterpiece Theater.” Alistair Cookie, played by Cookie Monster, used to appear with a pipe, which he later gobbled. According to Parente, “That modeled the wrong behavior” — smoking, eating pipes — “so we reshot those scenes without the pipe, and then we dropped the parody altogether.”

Which brought Parente to a feature of “Sesame Street” that had not been reconstructed: the chronically mood-disordered Oscar the Grouch. On the first episode, Oscar seems irredeemably miserable — hypersensitive, sarcastic, misanthropic. (Bert, too, is described as grouchy; none of the characters, in fact, is especially sunshiney except maybe Ernie, who also seems slow.) “We might not be able to create a character like Oscar now,” she said.

*sigh* But if you take away Oscar, there’s no more Slimey the Worm. And Slimey was (and continues to be) the only worm I ever wanted to pet and love and possibly rename George. But I digress.

I think that folks grossly underestimate how much sense children have. Some may have questionable judgment, sure, but they have a whole lot of sense. I grew up with Monsterpiece Theater, and I never had a desire to either smoke a pipe or eat the pipe. I mean, my grandmother smoked for a time, and it stank. I wasn’t about to eat that. If anything, I was gonna throw it away, ’cause stuff that smelled rotten always made it to the garbage in my house. But that’s just me. And I also wasn’t gonna eat my weight in cookies. I’d rather BAKE the cookies, and watch other people eat them. I actually wanted to bake Cookie Monster some cookies and listen to him om nom nom nom (and I would have giggled, just as I did when I found that clip up yonder). Damn, even the Muppets can’t enjoy a treat without the food police swooping in.

Man. It’s good to remember when people weren’t scared to make quality tv. I can say that my other guilty pleasure, The Backyardigans, does help fill the void. But it sure isn’t Cookie Monster.

What’s some of y’alls favorite children’s shows (or Sesame Street songs?) Don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone you watch them. 😀

Addendum:

Hah! My favorite Rubber Duckie song!

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4 Responses to “Saturday Throwback: Remember When…”


  1. 1 Ozy
    January 27, 2008 at 1:44 am

    Well, there was this one time that SS was improved by censorship, but I’m pretty sure that’s the only time that has been the case.

  2. January 27, 2008 at 9:58 am

    Heh. I laughed way too hard at that one!

  3. January 27, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    Do you remember Fraggle Rock? I was too old for Sesame Street, but my son watched it, and my grandkids (the youngest is 9 now and thinks she’s too old for it). If I remember correctly, Fraggle Rock was a spin-off of SS. I watched it with my son, he liked it a lot, more so than SS (SS bored him).

  4. January 27, 2008 at 1:45 pm

    Fraggle Rock was awesome, although I didn’t get to watch it as often. I’m thinking that maybe it was on a cable channel we didn’t get? Or something.

    And y’know, I wish I thought I was too old for some of the programs I watch. But I dig music and bright colors.

    Heh. That’s kinda weird. 😆


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