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I Dont like Big Bird, But I Sure Like Special Letters Unit: Long Live the Parody!

It’s not a popular thing to state. I don’t even think Governor Romney said it.  Ok. But, I’m going to admit it..I hate Big Bird. Maybe HATE is too strong a term to use.  How about this? I really don’t like Big Bird.  He’s whiny and mopey.  He’s cumbersome. He’s annoying and more  annoying. Seriously. Who likes him? I don’t. My toddler son doesn’t.  Elmo? He is just as irritating. Ouch, I said it. Don’t hate me because I’m being truthful. Yeah yeah they are world icons. Babies love them-especially Elmo. But I keep thinking when will Elmo grow up? Abby..omg- I can’t even talk about her and her magic fairy school.


So, yup I am not the biggest Sesame Street fan. Growing up, I kind of favored the Electric Company. Although, again I must admit looking back now at those old segments, I don’t really get that show either.  Although I still love its opening. Speaking of things I love.


I do have a fondness for the Sesame Street parodies.  Have you caught the segment called Pre-School Musical which is a parody of Disney’s  High School Musical movie.  It shows two preschoolers wanting to play with their friends in different corners.  The segment ends with the musical cast continuing their song, while the announcer promotes sequels, spin-offs, concerts, tours, and even ice tours based on the musical.  It is completely silly.


But my all-time favorite parody is the Sesame Street Special Letters Unit which riffs on Law & Order’s Special Victim’s Unit (SVU).  The tag line for the parody is: “No letters can get past the elite squad known as the Special Letters Unit.”  The Muppets are so well created –one completely looks like the character of Munch-that you as an adult actually get’s caught up in the segment. It’s totally awesome, and if you think about it- just a little bit creepy. Who are the writers for those segments? Brilliant!


I must also admit there is one skit that I absolutely loved which wasn’t a parody: that was Wild Nature Survivor Guy with Jimmy Fallon. Elmo and Rosita learn that nature is all around them from Wild Nature Survivor Guy.  To this day, I use that phrase everywhere-even at work. Speaking about work and inappropriateness…. What about cookie monster song “I did it all for the cookie” – a parody of Limp Bizkit’s “Nookie” song? If you haven’t heard it, the Cookie Monster exclaims

I did it all for the cookie. MMM the cookie MMM the cookie MMM and you can take that cookie and stick it in my yum stick it in my yum.

It is a fantastic song to sing at a team work meeting. Give it a try sometime. I far preferred this children’s song to my son’s predilection to watching Shakira’s She Wolf video over and over again. [On a side note, Did I mention I breastfed till 16 months despite all my business travel-yeah yeah I was super mom]. Anyway, I was totally happy with the cookie monster’s riff.

Yesterday, my son came home from pre-school with a gift from a Julia whose note stated “thanks”.  I have asked him repeatedly who is Julia and he keeps answering “Julia. Oh. Hmm. I don’t know.” I tried a different tactic. I asked him “what ya do at school?” Hmm. He just stared at me, smirked and said “nothing”. There is something more to it. I know. I feel it. The situation reminds me of Fight Club. The first rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club. The second rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club.  It seems Pre-School operates on the same principle.   There is no talking about what goes on at Pre-School. I even asked his pre-school friends and all I get is a smirk and a twinkle in their eye.  Some could imagine a Sesame Street version of Fight Club where Bert and Ernie beating each other silly.  But the overall premise of Fight Club is that an unnamed protagonist grows angrier  at the current state of  consumerism and changes in the state of masculinity in American culture. Thus, he creates an underground fighting club that provides a session of physical catharsis.  I imagine the Sesame Street writers could come up with a parody on that theme that doesn’t entail Bert and Ernie wailing on each other (Elmo and Big Bird, maybe?) but instead addresses the needs of kids to get all the latest toys as seen on TV.


So, this is a plea to the possible powers that be (..ahem Romney). Don’t cut funding for Sesame Street. Honestly, Big Bird– I can do without. But those Limp Bizkit riffs and Law & Order riffs- keep ‘em coming. Forget about the children. Think of us breastfeeding mothers who are sleepwalking with a baby attached to the chest. The only thing keeping us sane at three in the morning are those brilliant segments thrown in for us adults in the guise of wholesome fun. Don’t take away our irony and few moments of lucidity. Let’s make Sesame Street preschool consumerism fight club a reality.


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