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Your Thoughts: Sesame Street Documentary "Sesame Street: 50 Years of Sunny Days"

D'Snowth

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Yeah, it wasn't so much the 50th anniversary retrospective two years too late D'snowth jokingly called it that I agreed with we expected it to be. It was more promoting what we'll be getting next season with the additions of Elijah and Wes to the cast. And of course, the talk about the current events shaping Sesame's outreach across the globe and history of racial/cultural diversity/inclusion.
Perhaps 50 YEARS OF SUNNY DAYS wasn't exactly the most accurate title to give this special as a whole, since, again, the history of SS was more or less used to set up context for how they were never afraid to tackle such serious issues, and how that continues and ties into their curriculum and outreach to this day.
 

The Count

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Yeah... Then again, the same thing happened as I remember it when the premiere episode of Season 35 was hyped with the Elmo's World episode focusing on the history of Sesame and all we got was :laugh: as a passenger in :super:'s taxi-based version of Doc Brown's DeLorean into various clippage moments.
 

minor muppetz

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Perhaps 50 YEARS OF SUNNY DAYS wasn't exactly the most accurate title to give this special as a whole, since, again, the history of SS was more or less used to set up context for how they were never afraid to tackle such serious issues, and how that continues and ties into their curriculum and outreach to this day.
I agree, though I don’t know what the right title would be. “A History of Sesame Street’s Diversity” has a nice ring to it, but doesn’t feel entirely accurate to me (I can’t decide if that would reflect the divorce episode, but don’t think it reflects things like Mr. Hooper’s death, and we do get a few fun portions focusing on the Muppets and music in general).

When watching the special, I was surprised that they didn’t get into the fact that the show had an episode dealing with racism in season 25, and that the coverage of Snuffy’s parents divorce did not lead to them talking about Abby Cadabby’s parents getting divorced recently (and making it to the public). Going in, I was not expecting them to get into the controversy surrounding Kevin Clash resigning, but halfway through the special, I felt that I would not be surprised if they did.

There wasn’t a whole lot of focus on the Muppet performers (not even an obligatory Jim Henson section), but it was cool to see Martin Robinson and Carmen Oshbar interviewed, they don’t seem to get highlighted very often.
 

D'Snowth

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The E&B part was an interesting inclusion. Seeing this now, I think I do agree that their past statements about their relationship weren't right, and I think that's partly because what they were responding to wasn't actually serious. It was things like jokes on FRIENDS or Family Guy calling the two gay rather than any actual LGBTQ+ people believing it, so their response was naturally making a joke right back at it.
Maybe, but at the same time, I feel like in years past, they probably couldn't have offered a more serious response, let alone give us the "they are if you want them to be" option without it severely hurting them as a brand, when you consider that even as recently as, say, fifteen years ago, you still couldn't have gotten away with including openly LGBTQIA characters in children's media - even stuff that was aimed at slightly older age brackets like 8-13. It was still too taboo compared to today.
 
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antsamthompson9

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This was very enjoyable. I'm looking forward to the Martin Luther King Day episode that we saw behind the scenes footage of.
 

Oscarfan

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Maybe, but at the same time, I feel like in years past, they probably couldn't have offered a more serious response, let alone give us the "they are if you want them to be" option without it severely hurting them as a brand, when you consider that even as recently as, say, fifteen years ago, you still couldn't have gotten away with including openly LGBTQIA characters in children's media - even stuff that was aimed at slightly older age brackets like 8-13. It was still too taboo compared to today.
That's probably true. It's certainly more acceptable now, if there's still bigotry out there (see the foreign censorship of Steve Universe).

I wonder if maybe they are also more comfortable accepting the ambiguous stance because E&B aren't really around as much as they used to be.
 

ssetta

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I'm gonna say I liked some of it, but not the whole thing. It was cool to see the clips of the episode where Snuffy's parents divorced that got cancelled, among many other rare old clips, a lot of which I had never seen before and have never surfaced anywhere. But it appears that only like the first half hour or so was about the classic show, and the rest of it was all modern, and about the stuff they've been doing within the last 2 years or so. But I'm still not surprised at all. Sesame Street seems to be the best in tackling different issues that kids have a hard time understanding.
 

Muppet Master

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Wasn't really the biggest fan of this. Like some said earlier, I was hoping for more old-school Sesame Street content. Some of it just felt like empty virtue-signaling too. How can you mention the BLM movement while continuing to erase Northen Calloway's legacy from the show? I get he had his struggles and controversy but he was on the show for 20 years and deserves at least a mention for his work. They mentioned Bert & Ernie supposedly being LGBT but Richard Hunt, an actual gay man, received no mention for his contributions to the show. Just wish there was more than just surface-level discussion.

Complaints aside though, it was nice to see some old footage, I'm guessing Street Gang will dive deeper into the actual series.
 
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minor muppetz

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The promos made it seem like it'd be more of a look back at the show in general than it's focus on more important topics that the show has been addressing. Makes me wonder if the network was worried about turning off certain viewers. The second half felt more like I was watching an ABC news special. I am interesting in seeing what the ratings were like, if they dropped significantly in the second hour or remained pretty much steady (I think school-aged kids normally go to bed around 9).

I had expected most of the stuff they actually talk about to focus on the more recent years.

Even if the special was more of a fun look back at the show with loads of sections on various characters and people involved and favorite moments and subjects that seem obligatory to talk about in every Sesame Street biography, they'd probably still leave out certain things people would want them to talk about.
 

D'Snowth

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It does feel kind of sad though that Jim's original intentions of having the Muppets be these various different colors to make them adaptable to any kind of race without them obviously representing any specific races has become sort of a moot point in our contemporary times where racial injustices have become prominent in our culture again.
 
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