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How Sesame Street is Killing It Online

sesame street characters, funny youtube videos

Did Sesame Street see this controversy coming?

After 41 years, it’s kind of surprising that Sesame Street continues to be so clever. And fresh. And fun to watch. What’s also interesting is that the show is so social-media savvy. Sesame Street parodies dominate Twitter feeds, whether it’s for low-cut dresses, Sookie Stackhouse references or hilarious spoofs on spoofs of commericals for low-end men’s aftershave.

So how has this children’s show, which is still day-in-day-out focused on its actual kid-aged audience, such a hit among grown-ups on computers? How has Sesame Street become such a viral video stand-out?

NY Magazine‘s Vulture interviews Sesame Street head writer Joseph Mazzarino to discuss the secrets of the show’s success (parents), where the ideas come from (TV) and whether they saw the Katy Perry “Hot and Cold” controversy coming (answer: no!). We also find out which celebrity wouldn’t come on.

As for Katy, the video was shot in LA, far away from the Sesame Street costume wardrobe. Perry was also wearing a mesh thing over the dress (sorry, folks, there was no chance of it slipping off), so Mazzarino said he didn’t anticipate any controversy at all. He also told Vulture that the show likes “co-viewing,” which is what all good parents claim to do but (guilty confession) few of us actually do: sit and watch TV with the kids. It’s just so boring! But not Sesame Street, not the whole thing. Relevant entertainers spoofing shows like Mad Men, The Closer and True Blood — they make Mom and Dad check in.

Last year’s Grover as Old Spice Man was an instant viral hit, even though it didn’t appear on the show. Last week’s I Love My Hair was nearly as popular as Willow Smith’s Whip My Hair.

Here’s a round-up of the Sesame Street videos. Favorites? The True Mud one was lost on me, but the Guy E. Smiley muppet as Don Draper? Dreamy.

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