The Thoughts of Gunnar

Report Card For Sesame Street Characters
May 21, 2010, 8:11 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Report Card on Various Sesame Street  Characters (Muppet Show Coming Next)

Mr. Snuffaluffagus– Lame.  Totally lame.  At first, people thought he was just an imaginary friend of Bigbird, but at some point in the history of Sesame Street, others saw him…and that gave ‘Snuffy’ more airtime.  I think we’d all be better off if Snuffy got snuffed out.  He is always complaining, and brings nothing to this show to spice it up.  While I am guilty of having spent too much of my life complaining, complaining seems to just about be Snuff’s whole life. His voice should have a name of it’s own: The Perpetual Whine. Think about it: close your eyes, and when it comes to really weighing what Snuffy is saying, how is he different than Oscar the Grouch? At least Oscar comes out and says, “Hey, I’m a grouch.”  Snuff lacks the vulnerability to come out and say who/what he is.  Here is an example of video from Snuff…have fun with the boredom!

Bigbird-complete waste of space character.  Name one thing Bigbird has done that you can find remotely entertaining.  I dare you.  There isn’t any. Even as a kid, if Bigbird is on, you are left hanging, only staying tuned because perhaps in a few minutes, Bert and Ernie will make an appearance again.  Bigbird reminds me of an entrenched politician who has been in office way to long and desperately needs to get voted out, only serving by sitting in his office, smoking cigars, and making legislation thousands of pages long to bore its readers into tears and keep his stranglehold on the power-but when on camera, is as nice as can be.  As you can see in this video, this may be Big Bird’s funniest video yet, and not even Jimmy Kimmel can help make BigBird truly entertaining:

Grover–  I’d have to give Grover a C+.  This is based mostly on positive memories of him from childhood, as opposed to how I perceive him today.  Otherwise, he’d score a lower grade.  He operates in a bit of denial since he always screws things up and doesn’t quite grasp that, but, SuperGrover was just plain awesome back in the day.  And at least he tried to be helpful while being entertaining, whereas Bigbird and his close pals would have been effective viewing as a form of punishment.  Here is some classic Supergrover action:

Cookie Monster–  Solid ‘A.’ Seriously, who did not want to live like him for a moment, not care what anyone else thought of them, and just eat any cookie in sight?  He is a devastatingly bad influence on any child, in my opinion, but, that is kind of what makes him so entertaining.  Despite his complete lack of control, there is no pretention: Cookie Monster knows who he is, knows he needs help, but decided he doesn’t want it.  While dark, it is honest, and he lets it be seen for what it is.  And if he can try to win some redemption by teaching you to count while eating cookies, hey, at least there is that.  When he ends up in little skits where he wears costumes and whatnot, that is always awesome, and self depreciating.

The Count–  I’d give him a B-.  He is cool, just a bit too one dimensional. (Which still makes him more entertaining than any of those Twilight characters.)    His obsession does have some intrigue, but really, he needs to mix it up with other characters more often.  Him and Bert getting in a fight would be kind of cool.  I’d pay-per-view that. He could count successfully landed blows.  It be great to see him mix it up by bringing some spelling or manners training into the equation. In this video, the Count gets extra points from me by completely shafting Kermit the Frog.  Who, frankly, needs to get shafted.

Elmo-Elmo didn’t exist back in my Sesame Street prime, and I have mixed feelings for him now.  I think he is currently way too overused, and he does some sissy stuff.  He reminds me of Daniel LaRusso from the Karate Kid…just a complete whipped wimp, but occasionally he has that upset victory, as in this complete championship Sesame Street video: Is it just me, or does Elmo look like a hairy, overgrown zit?  He often gets the attention of guest stars, and gets hooked up with them for songs.  Why does Ernie not get this?  He would be so much better.  As a side note, Elmo’s dad is completely awesome.  Elmo must take after his mom, and she must be ultra-lame to water down the DNA Elmo’s dad contributed to the game.

The Grouch-Just like the Count, you know where he is coming from at all times.  I do like how his twisted and negative nature will force other characters to stay on their toes, and for that, I have to give him credit.  But otherwise, he is just lame.  And I can still hear my mom saying something like, “Don’t be an Oscar the Grouch” and me not wanting to listen to her about it.  Despite my lack of buy in concerning Oskar, I don’t want him to be cut from the show like Bigbird should be, because he brings balance.  It would be intriguing to see if he could win Elmo over to the dark side, along the lines of the emperor and Anakin Skywalker.  Here, The Grouch mixes it up with the very best of the best, Johnny Cash.  This made Grouch’s career:

Bert-B+.  Obviously, on his own, Bert would get an F-, but, since he provides the counterbalance for who I think the strongest Sesame Street character is, Ernie, Bert gets a record amount of extra credit points.  Bert is solid on oatmeal and pigeons, and other than that, being a party pooper.  Inside his predecessor to SNL’s Conehead’s dome, I honestly think he is consumed with first ignoring, and then trying to bamboozle Ernie’s epic adventures.  While there have been many, unfair, and unfounded, rumors about Bert on the internet, (we’ll leave it at that) I think one who thinks would realize that Bert has been roomates with Ernie and put up with the clashing personalities for a reason: Bert is highly motivated by saving money.  Think about Bert’s character for a second: do you think that Bert does not double audit his bank statements at the end of the month, and is not currently aware of what the S&P 500 are doing?  Bert is a saver, I tell you, and he is frugal.  And that is a primary motivator in his life.  Someone deny to me that you could not see Bert as an accountant or tax man.  Here, see Bert’s unadulterated passion for pigeons.

Ernie-A+.  The saving grace of the whole cast.  The one most people are willing to wait to see, wading through incredible depths of mediocrity and outright lameness, only to get a few moments of Ernie, doing the things he does. The only character gifted enough to carry his own sitcom.  If all of the sudden a crossover children’s show was created, and Bob The Builder, (the king of true, masculine, toddler cartoon stuff) had to choose one Sesame Street character to come over to his show, he’d choose Ernie, no doubt.  And that is not a claim on Ernie’s work ethic…that just shows how lame all the other characters are.  Because Ernie would be clowning it up on that construction project.  But Bob would have to choose Ernie just for his show not to get inundated with massive amounts of lameness, and while Cookie Monster is awesome, he’d just be taking a nonstop lunch break on the construction set. Here, Ernie spoils Bert’s day, (or in this case, night) once again:

Baby Bear-I don’t feel like battering baby bear, so I am going to set him up with a strong video for his support. (I can only handle so much disdain in one day.)  It gets really good at about the 3 minute mark.  Often, Baby Bear is paired with lame characters, it seems, but he also gets moments such as this:

I’d have to give Baby Bear a solid B.

I’ll be working on my Muppet Show grades shortly.  That will take some more time.