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Noel_S_Leitmotiv's avatar

Should Snuffleupagus have remained visible only to Big Bird? Why or why not?

Asked by Noel_S_Leitmotiv (2719points) August 24th, 2009


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12 Answers

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

Wait, other people can see him now? That’s just wrong, you don’t fuck with classic sesame street!

grumpyfish's avatar

My understanding is that in their research, they discovered that Snuffy was becoming an analog for child abuse. (E.g., nobody belived Big Bird that snuffy existed).

They made him visible to help resolve that. —Sesame Street is awesome in that they revise the show based on their group feedback. This is why Elmo’s world exists, as painful as it is to watch.

deni's avatar

Snuffleupagus is the number one cutest thing in the world.

cheebdragon's avatar

I’m sorry, but you have way too much time on your hands….

Jeruba's avatar

He became visible a very long time ago, back when my children, now grown, were watching the show. I remember the episode, the onscreen suspense leading up to it, and the characters’ reactions afterwards. I was unhappy about it as a viewer and as a parent because
(a) it messed with the one of the running themes,
(b) it seemed to say you shouldn’t talk about imaginary things after all—you have to be able to prove they’re real,
(c) for that reason it seemed to turn prior messages on their head, and
(d) the critter himself was the dumbest-looking and most unattractive character on Sesame Street.

Likeradar's avatar

OMG. I was obsessed with Sesame St as a kid, and I watched it again fairly recently for my job. It never occurred to me that other characters couldn’t see Snuffy. Please tell me I’m not the only one…

Edit: @jeruba So was he visible to others in the early ‘80’s?

MrMeltedCrayon's avatar

@jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities – Except this change was made back in the eighties if I recall correctly.

And as for what @grumpyfish said, it makes sense. Snuffie was always fucking something up, and when the adults would come around they’d blame Big Bird and refuse to acknowledge that this massive elephant creature existed on Sesame Street. I don’t think it’s much of a stretch for children to see a group of adults on television and apply what they see to their own very real lives and the adults in it.

@Jeruba – I suppose it’s just a matter of perspective, but I didn’t see the message having anything to do with imagination and proof.

Supacase's avatar

If Big Bird was getting blamed for things Snuffy did, I can see where it could lead kids to the “not me” answer when asked who did something wrong and, eventually, parents not believing their children over something true and very important.

On the other hand, I am disappointed because I find imaginary friends to be a great way to express creativity and develop imagination. Maybe they should have simply reformed Snuffy’s behavior.

Jeruba's avatar

Not early eighties, @Likeradar. My children were born in the mid-eighties. So I’d say late eighties at the earliest. An exact date is probably findable through Google and/or on a Sesame Street history page.

grumpyfish's avatar

FYI, Snuffy became visible to everyone November 18, 1985.

And his first name is Aloysius :-)

hiphiphopflipflapflop's avatar

Off-topic, I find it disturbing how much Robert Plant is starting to resemble Snuffleupagus.

Jeruba's avatar

Thanks for checking, @grumpyfish. (Are you someone we know, wearing a disguise?) I guess my older boy must have been just a little guy when it happened. That makes sense because I watched the show with him consistently only in the early days while making sure it was something I was comfortable letting him see.

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