Cast member Sonia Manzano remembers the importance of “plaza Sésamo” como “a kids show where adults didn’t run for the door,” characterized by the sophistication of its music and the boldness, relative to what else was on TV, of its themes. That included acknowledging the death of Will Lee, the actor who played Mr. Hooper, in a segment with Big Bird that taught children about dealing with grief and loss.
“Street Gang” chronicles those early days in ways that — much like “plaza Sésamo” — prove alternately interesting, funny and touching. Muhammad Ali and Orson Welles are shown singing the show’s praises, and a real treat involves outtakes of the puppeteers, including the banter between Henson and Frank Oz when one of them messes up, prompting Oz to observe wryly, “We are unrelenting in our cruelty to each other.”
” birth as
“a magic moment
” y “an idea bigger than ourselves.
” The ABC special
(which fudges on the anniversary
, but never mind
) essentially commemorates that legacy
, using interviews with a vast assortment of celebrities
— including First Lady Jill Biden
— to address the show’s impact
, including its willingness to deal with issues like race
(with the introduction of an HIV-positive Muppet in Africa
) and most recently the pandemia de coronavirus
“plaza Sésamo” estaba “made exactly for this moment,” Biden dice, while Whoopi Goldberg notes that the program’s secret sauce resides in its attitude of respecting toward children, treating them “like equal humans on the planet.”
Some of the star testimonials can feel a trifle gratuitous, especially compared with the interviews of those directly associated with the series. The special fares better with its historical material, such as a never-aired episode tackling the issue of divorce.
Todavía, the broader message from both projects illustrates the importance of all those sunny days, to children then and now. In the process, they add to an appreciation of what the “Street Gang” construido, and the way that decades-old vision has evolved to suit the times.
“Street Gang: How We Got to Sesame Street” premieres April 23 in theaters and May 7 on demand.
“plaza Sésamo: 50 Years of Sunny Days” premieres April 26 a 8 pm. ET on ABC and will subsequently be available on Hulu.