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Why are Elmo, Zoe, Rosita and Baby Bear so annoying to classic SS fans?

Discussion in 'Classic Sesame Street' started by mikealan, Feb 16, 2003.

  1. mikealan

    mikealan New Member

    Hello, when I remember going to the talks of Sesame Street on Jump the Shark and Yesterdayland, most of the SS fans think that Elmo, Zoe, Rosita and Baby Bear are so stupid and annoying! wockawocka thinks that Zoe is stupid and dcfboss thinks that Baby Bear is annoying.

    Why are Elmo, Zoe, Rosita and Baby Bear so annoying to many SS fans who love classic Sesame Street?
  2. CookieFan

    CookieFan New Member

    For me, personally, part of it is nostalgia.

    The other part for me is that these characters don't seem to have as much, well, CHARACTER as the older ones. They seem to be targeted to the under-three segment.

    The new ones don't seem to have the same level of sophistication with a sense of humor geared on another level to adults.

    Something like Monsterpiece Theater....the adults get the spoof, the kids just think it's funny.

    Bert & Ernie skits often work on an "adult" level. Like Bert talking on a banana to an elephant: "Oh, I'm about 6 feet, blond hair...no, I don't think we should meet." Had me cracking up.

    I don't see the newer characters having that sort of adult appeal. Either that, or they're just not given the good lines!

    IMO, anyway......
  3. I think the main reason the new characters annoy adults like us is that they aren't the ones we grew up with so we aren't used to them. (I was introduced to Elmo in the later days of my Sesame Street viewing as a kid, when he was just starting his rise to power.) Personally I think that Rosita is a wonderful addition to the show, Zoe isn't bad, and Baby Bear is okay as long as he has someone other than Hewo Guy to interact with. IMO, the most annoying new characters are the ones in the Monster Clubhouse segment, but even among them, I could learn to appreciate Mel in small doses.
  4. ssetta

    ssetta Active Member

    I agree. Elmo didn't used to be anything like he is now, and he was hardly ever on. Rosita was only a minor character as well. I remember Zoe used to get words mixed up when she first started. And I liked Baby Bear a lot better when he used to be followed around by that pesky Goldilocks, who would always be there and make his life a living ****.
  5. No offence to the current puppeters or creative staff but sinse the old blood left the show its lost its edge. Henson and Oz made kids shows for adults (the muppets, early sesame street etc and so forth). They were creative Geniuses (Geniui???). Look at characters like Oscar and Bert and Ernie and Guy Smiley - these were characters that weren't just for kids (my mum got as much of a kick out of them as I did). Elmo, Rossita et all are characters for children - they hold very little interest to adults.

    It was bound to happen. No matter how good the creative team are, they aren't Henson. In the end, it was his genius and ability to create on more than one level that made his work what it was (really, the only comparable artist is Matt Groening.......).
    Signed Lee
    (Sam Bald Eagles girlfriend)
  6. FellowWLover

    FellowWLover Member

    Not true.

    You just need to give the new characters a chance. Like any other relationship, it takes time to get to know them and appreciate their quirks. I watch it everyday, and am always amused.
  7. dcfboss

    dcfboss New Member

    i try to look at this in a non bias way.

    i can hardly say that i grew up on classic ss. but growing up in the 80's, to me it's classic. there are just certain simple things that have been removed from SS that takes away from what SS is all about. i posted in another thread how there are no real straight forward lesson orientated skits anymore that directly teach kids different fundamentals. instead, they try to subtley jam these things into the childrens' sub-concious through longer story lines and meaningless segments like when Big Bird says "My favorite food is birdseed cookies. what's yours?" To be honest no one really cares what the favorite food of 5 different kids are.

    the most under appreciated thing, i think, that makes SS special to the classic SS lovers, was the simple straightforward scenes that tought things. For example, the 2 headed monster by the brick wall trying to spell a word. C ar C ar Car CAR CAR CAR!!!!! That tought kids how to sound out words and learn to spell. Since when did that not become important for a educational children's show? For another example that I've usde before, was the fast/slow skit with Cookie and Telly (a much skinnier telly at that lol) Short little 4-5 minute sketches like that not only made for good educational programming, but they were entertaining as well.

    it's just that all the new characters (which some aren't bad) pushed the classic stuff out of the way like the 2 headed monsters. and it's a shame because SS is way past it's prime and it's getting worse and worse while at the same time staying great, like the simpsons. they're not as funny anymore, but it's still good tv. rosita, zoe and elmo are all fine, but they are used so much in the street scenes over ernie, bert and cookie. they seem to be shoving telly down our throats a lot too, probably becuase he's friends with that devil bear. the bear is terrible, i can't stand him and neither can my little 2 year old cousin. he sees him and makes nasty faces. lol. i just think that whoever writes the scripts isn't being loyal to the core group of characters.....Bert, Ernie, Cookie Monster, and the Count.

    Also, look at all the home videos that are being released. They're all something with elmo. and many of them you can tape yourself off the tv. they should release more dvd's/videos like that 25th anniversary dvd....ones that show more old footage for those who really love it.

    well that's it....gotta go out and shovel snow.
  8. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    You guys are tripping, Elmo, Rosita, Baby Bear and Zoe work great together on Sesame since they were introduced. Im an old school Sesame fan(well, more like mid 80's) ...and even though I havent been able to get in Sesame in years(the only new SS I get is the dvds)

    I love the colorful characters. I think Telly and Baby Bear work great together, as does Telly, Elmo, and Zoe. Elmo by himself is annoying as all get out, but when working with other Sesame or Muppet show characters hes great. I mean Elmopalooza is my fave Sesame thing ever.

    No, the only thing annoying to me all these years has been those freaking cartoons! Gah!
  9. ryhoyarbie

    ryhoyarbie Active Member

    whats's freaking annoying and pointless i might add is elmo's world...ughh...lame lame lame....elmo does nothing on that segment..i don't think talking to his pet goldfish is something....

    ryan
  10. Ernie101

    Ernie101 Active Member

    Yeah They dont reach out to everyone and arent that funny to everyone.Kinda take the fun out of it lol,like elmo asking what a firetruck is.
  11. CookieFan

    CookieFan New Member

    Like some folks mentioned before, the classic characters work on two levels, one for kids, one for adults. The newer characters seem geared strictly for kids....and really little ones, too!

    No doubt part of that was a conscious decision since the target audience keeps getting younger (my kid's only 18 mos), but I believe that it's freaking HARD to write on two levels and perhaps the current writers don't have the inclination to do so.
  12. Elmo makes me sick---literally. When I watched the SS biography on A&E, I got such a headache during the whole Elmo/Kevin segment, and I was anxiously strugglin' around, like, "Ugghhh, pleeeeeease move on to somethin' else!!"

    Ugh. :rolleyes:

    He's okay in an EX*TREME*LY small dose (like in MFC, where he didn't speak :D ), but otherwise, the Elmo fans can have him.

    No offense to those who love him, and I'm glad some can rully appreciate him, but I'm just not big on him.
  13. Hays

    Hays New Member

    It's not just nostalgia!

    Yes, I grew up in the 70s with the original muppeteers.

    I don't, however, hate the new muppeteers; I rather like Zoe and Rosita; Baby Bear, on the whole, bothers me only slightly. Yes, I don't like Elmo at all - even though my son does (though he seems to be growing out of it)

    As a former puppeteer, I have an idea of what current SS is up against, though - and a lot of what you adults are talking about is a sign of the times we live in. Most of that adult-oriented humor was very physical (Grover falling down, people having food fights) or spoofs of adult shows. Unfortunately, parents are extremely sensitive about what their kids watch nowadays, and I'm sure a lot of the "adult" humor has been removed because the producers don't like to be faced with phalanxes of complaining parents. Remember, Henson pretty much had carte blanche because the concept of the show was so new in the 70s.

    I remember doing a Hansel and Gretel show that had treating your siblings with kindness as its main moral lesson; achieved by Hansel calling Gretel "stupid," and then acknowledging her heroism and apologising at the end. We got complaints and letters for months about the use of that word (not even an expletive!) I can imagine that SS faces this kind of pressure exponentially, and that the parents don't bother going to them - they probably go to the funders directly. It's got to be difficult to manage dissatisfied parents when they can hit you in the pocketbook.

    Now that I'm a parent, I can say with certainty that if you TALK to your kid, you CAN expect your children to learn APPROPRIATE behavior from bad examples, and not the other way around!

    Also, having done re-mounts, I can testify to how awful it is to have to live up to other people's standards without giving your characters time to live and grow on their own. It takes time to round out a character; it's hard to develop one on the fly.

    I also do think, though, that with the huge losses that SS has faced over the years, they haven't really come up with strong leadership. Kevin Clash is certainly very talented, but I think he's working against type - his other characters, like Benny and Hoots, seem more well-rounded to me. Elmo's World is certainly educational, but it isn't the shared experience that SS used to be.
  14. CookieFan

    CookieFan New Member

    Interesting point about producers not wanting to face the wrath of angry parents!

    And it's probably too hard to write on two levels (kids & adults) without offending SOMEBODY.
  15. muppettheatre

    muppettheatre New Member

    For myself personally, it is not the characters themselves that I do not care for, it is the new format. Elmo should never have been given his own segment (Elmo's World), I must admit that Kevin Clash is a brilliant performer, however it seems that all Elmo's Worlds are primarily the same with the exception of the topic. Everyone knows that he's going to watch the whatever channel on tv and that he's going to talk to his goldfish Dorothy, and at some point he's going to ask a baby something. And then at the end he's going to sing the whatever song, which is just to the tune of "jingle bells". Journey to Ernie is another segment that I don't really care for. It's nice in that it gives some much needed attention to the classic characters, namely Big Bird and Ernie, however the computer graphics just get annoying. It's generally the same idea each time, Big Bird looks one or two places and then finds Ernie on the second or third try. The places that Big Bird looks are always the same! One nice thing about Journey to Ernie is that it is where they can throw in some classic sketches that just don't fit in with today's format. I was watching it one day and saw a Bert and Ernie sketch that took me back to my childhood. I feel that today's format is much to organized and predictable. What happened to when there was the story and the segments were more like commercial breaks?:confused:
  16. muppettheatre

    muppettheatre New Member

    Re: It's not just nostalgia!


    Zoe is a great character, but I always prefered Fran Brill's other character, Prairie Dawn, who seems to get very little air time now.
  17. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Actually, there is little adult appeal (it IS there, you just have to look) in some of the current episodes (I had to watch them all. The show's on before I leave on some morning, and there's nothing else on except Jerry Springer...ik). In one episode (Telly and Baby Bear break Zoe's car), Telly stalls Zoe by playing the tuba. Telly replies, "I bet you never heard Inna Gadda Da Vida played on a tuba before!"

    A real treat was the season closer, in which Oscar and Telly take a road trip.

    Telly goes to get Oscar's Lemon's Sardines and Fudge Sauce at Hooper's store, and Alan seems most concerned and leans over to Telly and says, "You're not on that new "Grouch Diet" are you?

    Classic!
  18. SillyRed

    SillyRed Member

    1. Elmo is funny
    2. Prairie is seen a lot on Noggin's "Play With Me Sesame"
    :)
  19. CookieFan

    CookieFan New Member

    I have to admit, when I heard that they were changing the format, I was disappointed. Then I watched the way my 18 mo old daughter watches the new SS versus the Classic SS.

    Since the viewing audience of SS has gotten younger (my guess is that there's too much other programming for the pre-school to K-3 audience) they producers had to respond to that change.

    When I was a kid, we only had 4 TV stations up until I was in 5th grade! Now we have 4 different PBS stations, Nick, Noggin, etc. So many more programs competing for those little eyes.

    Toddlers love predictability, so that's why JTE and EW (and well, the whole show) are so structured. My kid knows that she will get to scream BOX! DUCK! every time JTE is on.

    Also, toddlers can't follow a broken up story, so they kept it all together in the new eps. Although, my kid can't STAND the On The Street segment and usually gets up and leaves. (she's riveted to the screen for Number & Letter of the Day, JTE, and EW, tho. Pretty impressive keeping a toddler's attention for that long!)

    She doesn't "get" the Classic episodes, though. She watches them, but doesn't have that expression of delight that she does when she watches the new eps, even though a lot of the characters are the same.

    Just my rambling....
  20. Hays

    Hays New Member

    .
    I'd agree with that, though, since my boy is 2 1/2 (or three, as he likes to say) I should mention that this phase in development is pretty short-lived; he really doesn't like the repetition so much anymore and hasn't for several months. (though the American Society of Pediatrics or whatever says your kid shouldn't be watching ANY television until the age of two. This is apparently directed towards parents who have perfected the art of teleportation - Scott's been an SS fan since he could see across a room)

    He always loved the Cookie Monster segments, though, and is rapidly becoming as big a Cookie Monster fan as I am (and I guess others on this forum!) But his early fixation with Elmo has mostly passed; he gets up and leaves now when Elmo's World comes on unless it's one he hasn't seen 500 times.

    Really? I could argue that he's cute, polite, and a good example, but I don't see that he's funny, unless you're taking that all as sarcasm. Not meaning to be argumentative, I'm just curious what your take on him being funny is


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