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Feb 062010


Sesame Street has been a top PBS show for preschoolers since 1969 and is still going strong. However, the series has changed a lot since I was a kid. When Sesame Street – Old School, Vol. 1 (1969-1974) and Sesame Street: Vol. 2 – Old School (1974-1979) were released, it totally brought me back. Even if these particular seasons were from before I was born.

It’s mentioned in these box sets that these episodes are for grown-ups and may not suit the needs of today’s preschoolers. I don’t see why they wouldn’t. The entire series is based on the same level of educational purpose. Learning about things like letters, numbers, and Spanish isn’t exactly out of date.

Some of the classic Muppet characters looked so much different back in the day. For example, Big Bird has very short feathers at the top of his head. It’s like his face is bigger than his head. And believe it or not, Oscar used to have orange fur. Now that’s amazing.

Grover was one of my most favorite characters. He goes to great lengths to teach things to his younger viewers. Things like near & far, as well as over, under, & through. Grover tires out after awhile, but he keeps going. You’ve got to admire this little furry monster. Especially since he’s one of few monsters that doesn’t have a huge appetite like some monsters we know. That especially includes the ones who eat other Muppets.

What really brings me back about this show is some of the old Muppet characters that are no longer on the series. Like Don Music the songwriter, for example. Whenever he gets stumped on a lyric, he goes crazy and slams his head on the keyboard of his piano. Even after all these years, I still think it’s funny. There’s also Little Jerry and the Monotones. Sometimes their music is pretty catchy. And let’s not forget Biff and Sully the construction workers. Sully never speaks because Biff does a lot of the speaking for him. Not by Sully’s choice though.

The segments are very well setup with random skits, songs, and presentations by all sorts of characters that are human, Muppet, and animated, during the main story. It’s not exactly The Muppet Show, but works just as good.

Speaking of The Muppet Show, Kermit used to be a regular cast member on Sesame Street before leading his own Muppet troupe. However, Kermit never completely left the show. He still made many appearances over the years, mostly as a news reporter and in skits with Grover the door to door salesman, who sells earmuffs and nose warmers. In a way, it’s like remembering a character before having his or her own spin-off.

Here’s an interesting item. Sesame Street cast member Bob McGrath recorded an album of children’s songs back in the 80s called Sing-Along Favorites, which came with its own book to follow along. I used to listen to this all the time when I was a kid. The book was very helpful because I used to have trouble understanding these songs when I first learned them in music class. The pictures inside with the easy to follow lyrics made much more sense to me.

These are excellent compilations of Sesame Street nostalgia. It brings back a lot of memories. Now if only I can figure out when Snuffleupagus first became more than just Big Bird’s imaginary friend.

  2 Responses to “Sesame Street Old School”

  1. Great post! I loved Sesame Street and I still sing the numbers song to this day – honest, just ask Stacey!

  2. Thank you. Which numbers song are you referring to?

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