The Elmo’s World Takeover

When Elmo first struck it big and was hanging out on Rosie O’Donnell’s show, I really liked him, but these days I just wish I could see a little less of him.

Remember when Elmo was just a cute and cuddly muppet that sometimes participated in “Sesame Street” skits? Not so much anymore. Now at least 1/3 of each show is dedicated to Elmo.

That’s right, “Elmo’s World” now takes up approximately 20 minutes of the 60 minute show. I timed the live action plot segment of the show and it was only 15 minutes. “Elmo’s World” takes up more of “Sesame Street’s” time than the plot. That’s just wrong.

Elmo’s role on “Sesame Street” isn’t just restricted to “Elmo’s World”. He often plays an integral part of the plot and makes frequent appearances in the muppet comedy/educational skits. Instead of “Sesame Street” these days the whole show should just become “Elmo’s World”. The other major characters rarely get the chance to shine when Elmo is almost always on the screen.

I know Elmo is adorable and his merchandise sells like mad, but this is definitely a case of too much of a good thing. I don’t understand why “Elmo’s World” needs to take up 1/3 of the show. Twenty minutes is nearly long enough for it to be its own independent show separate from “Sesame Street”. If Elmo needs more screen time (and I really don’t think he does), make “Elmo’s World” its own independent show.

I know I’m not the only one who feels that Elmo gets far too much screen time. In fact, Elmo’s Wikipedia page makes reference to Elmo being called “The Little Red Menace” by Sesame Street traditionalists.

What’s worse is that it seems like “Elmo’s World” paved the way for the heavily segmented show “Sesame Street” is playing today. I think it was a gateway drug for “Abby’s Flying Fairy School” and “Bert and Ernie’s Great Adventures”. The show was so much better before they started dividing it up into big chunks like this. It’s lost itself along the way. If more of the show is devoted to “Elmo’s World” than the plot, how on earth are kids supposed to care about any of the characters? They barely see them.

For now, we’ll just do most of our “Sesame Street” watching in the form of “Play with Me Sesame” on Sprout, where Cookie Monster, Ernie, Bert and Prairie Dawn still rule the show in those old school skits we adore.

(How on earth could Elmo ever compete with greatness like that? Exactly. He can’t.)

And that concludes “Sesame Street” week. Regular Kids Play stuff returns Monday.

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3 Comments

Filed under Sesame Street, TV Tuesdays

3 Responses to The Elmo’s World Takeover

  1. Susan

    So true. Elmo sucks. Bring back Old School Sesame!

  2. Jane

    Since I didn’t grow up in the States, I never watched Sesame Street as a kid. (And the first kid show I was introduced to was Barney because my little cousin, who was 3 when we first came to America and lived at his house for three weeks, would watch it incessantly.) In any case, I wanted to ask if you know about Shalom Sesame, the Jewish take on Sesame Street. There’s also Rehov Sumsum, which is the Hebrew show inspired by Sesame Street.

    • I do know about the Israeli Sesame Street, though I only watched a small segment of it in college Hebrew class. I think there are versions of Sesame Street in many countries, but they use completely different muppets than what we see in the US.

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