Sweeping the Clouds Away

Sunny days! The earliest episodes of “Sesame Street” are available on digital video! Break out some Keebler products, fire up the DVD player and prepare for the exquisite pleasure-pain of top-shelf nostalgia.

Just don’t bring the children. According to an earnest warning on Volumes 1 and 2, “Sesame Street: Old School” is adults-only: “These early ‘Sesame Street’ episodes are intended for grown-ups, and may not suit the needs of today’s preschool child.”

Say what? At a recent all-ages home screening, a hush fell over the room. “What did they do to us?” asked one Gen-X mother of two, finally. The show rolled, and the sweet trauma came flooding back. What they did to us was hard-core. Man, was that scene rough. The masonry on the dingy brownstone at 123 Sesame Street, where the closeted Ernie and Bert shared a dismal basement apartment, was deteriorating. Cookie Monster was on a fast track to diabetes. Oscar’s depression was untreated. Prozacky Elmo didn’t exist.

The old “Sesame Street” is not for the faint of heart, and certainly not for softies born since 1998, when the chipper “Elmo’s World” started. Anyone who considers bull markets normal, extracurricular activities sacrosanct and New York a tidy, governable place — well, the original “Sesame Street” might hurt your feelings.

And on and on. What a list of horrors the kids of decades ago were subjected to! No wonder they are all slacker, self-centered losers! If we had only known that Big Bird and others like Mr. Rogers were destroying our kids…

  1. Improbus says:

    Fear the future proletariat comrade.

  2. KindAndThoughtful says:

    This is a very interesting story. It tells a lot about today’s society. Thank you for posting it.

  3. Smartalix says:

    The social satire in “Demolition Man” was sadly dead-on.

  4. soundwash says:

    what a sad state of affairs we’ve evolved to.

    whoever came up with this assessment of the old sesame street should be sent to the gulag for being self serving and extremely clueless.

    the whole government/system needs a hard reset back to around 1900. or earlier. -before the Fed amongst others, stole what America was meant to be and tore up the constitution.


  5. John Paradox says:

    Imagine what the old Mr. Wizard shows would be rated. Don Herbert taught us things that would have us declared ‘terrorists’ today.

    And there was the Wired Science episode that JCD mentioned on a TWiTcast about ‘chemistry sets’.


  6. Uncle Ben says:

    Aye, as a I tell my kids, we had it hard back in my day…..

    … we used to have to get up just to change the TV channel….

    …. and back then we only 150 channels… not like today…..

  7. grog says:

    god forbid our children be exposed to reality, we surely wouldn’t want them to be able to deal with it or anything.

    good grief charlie brown.

  8. JFStan says:

    I’ve recently been on a quest to find clips and whole shows from 70’s public television.. We used to watch them in grade school, and they really bring back the memories. Shows like Inside Out, Thinkabout, The Letter People, All About You, Sing Along with Tony Saletan.. Any bells ringing here??

  9. sadtruth says:

    @ #9
    Would “High Feather” get included in those?

    what about Electric Company?

  10. McCullough says:

    Que the music, Chicka chica bow, chica chica bow.

    And lets be honest, Mr. Rogers was a tad strange.

  11. Thomas says:

    At the time I grew up, shows like Sesame Street and Mr Rogers were supposedly the popular kids shows. Frankly, I thought they sucked in comparison to Kroft Superstars and cartoons. I distinctly remember having this very conversation with a buddy of mine at the time and neither of us could figure out who would watch either. And yes, even at the time as a kid, Mr Rogers seemed creepy.

  12. Sean says:

    others like Mr. Rogers were destroying our kids…

    Funny enough, 60 Minutes did a story last week on the millennials, and they did point an accusing finger at Mr. Rogers for starting the “I’m the most special person in the world! Me! Me! Me!” attitude found in the newer generations.

  13. James Hill says:

    Kids are fucked up, film at 11.

    This story never gets old, apparently.

  14. The Monster's Lawyer says:

    They still ain’t got a thing on Islamic Children’s shows of today.

  15. jlm says:

    “accusing finger at Mr. Rogers for starting the I’m the most special person in the world! Me! Me! Me! attitude found in the newer generations.”

    yeah I saw that too, funny how every generation seems to look down on the new generations in some way and try to say how much better they were. Superiority complex with age or are they right and every single generation gets worse and worse?

  16. RBG says:

    15. TML: As opposed to all that fine children’s educational programming made by selfless groups of organized atheists?


  17. BubbaRay says:

    #16, jlm, Superiority complex with age or are they right and every single generation gets worse and worse?

    Amazing how memory becomes colored with age, isn’t it?

    We had a glimpse of the future in “Leave It To Beaver.” Instead of Wally and the Beav taking over, we wound up with Eddie Haskell.

  18. the answer says:

    I’d still raise my kids on it. FCUK the pussification of America

  19. McCullough says:

    18. Eddie Haskell was my favorite MILF hunting character.

  20. hhopper says:

    I worked at an educational TV station when Sesame Street started and we couldn’t wait for each new episode. They were hilarious!

  21. god says:

    Erica Hill stays in touch with the old Tech TV crowd/blogs, I guess. She was talking about this on CNN, today.

  22. doug says:

    I almost hate to mention it, but Zoom made me a meth addict. It’s a damn shame.

  23. jimmo says:

    Yes, and that Children’s Workshop crowd of Commies was also responsible for getting rid of just-plain-fun local & national kids TV shows that featured commercial products and prizes for kids won on the respective shows’ contest segments.

    Such local shows in Boston, where I was raised, included “Major Mudd,” Rex Trailer’s “Boomtown,” “Captain Bob,” and the local franchises of “Bozo the Clown” and “Romper Room.” In fact, CTW specifically lobbied against our “Romper Room”” teacher, “Miss Jean,” pitching for the franchise’s products–“Romper Room” toys, records, etc.

    And CTW made national headlines in their drive to limit and restrict the hours of network programming which may advertise to kids, thus killing fun cartoons which were largely sponsored by cereal companies and toy manufacturers.

    Having won their battles against capitalism, the public television Commies managed to kill fun kids shows and cartoons. Now we’re left with all these lousy, multi-cultural-bent, sensitivity-training propaganda shows that are making weenies of kids.


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