New School Sesame Street: Or How I Learned to Love Elmo.

I’ll admit, I never liked Elmo. I thought he was a bad nineties addition to my beloved Sesame Street. And I freaking LOVED Sesame Street. One of my first purchases when I found out I was pregnant was the classic Sesame Street DVDs. I thought Elmo was the most annoying little red headed idiot out there. He didn’t have the humble charm of Grover, the over the top dull witted sugar rush hilarity of the Cookie Monster, the elusive eyelashed wonder of Snuffaluffagus or the insouciant whimsy of Gonzo. No, Elmo was an annoying high pitched whiner who couldn’t even get it together enough to understand the proper use of I. Sheesh.

I mean, can it ever get better than freaking STEVIE WONDER and GROVER?

But then the Peach spied him on some random video on You Tube that popped up after the Ladybug Picnic—no more than five seconds of Elmo and drat it if she wasn’t hooked. And she wanted more. More. MORE.

Well, OK. Maybe. Just on my phone. A little video. Let’s check it out.  And I did check it out.  Clever Sesame Street.  Very clever.  Bring in some amazing musicians and pair them with clever takes on their most songs. How could I not enjoy it? And those bite-size bits of Elmo made me begin to actually kinda like him.

Here are my favorite videos that might even turn the most sour Elmo hater into a possible fan.

I love this Katy Perry video of Elmo. She is so charming and bubbly and such a good foil for the Elmo.

Weirdly enough Georgia likes opera music, so she totally digged this version of Bocelli’s most popular aria. And I adore that it is about not wanting to go to bed. I think this one is my favorite actually. Oh, if I could only sing this to her at night… And hearing him talk to Elmo in his dreaming Italian accent, “You have the bear-ah, and you need-ah to sleep-ah…”

I love Feist and her most popular song was a shoe in for a Sesame Street Elmo piece.

And Elmo gained some serious bonus points from me for this video with Elvis Costello. The glasses look good on you, Elmo…

Oh, but I dare you not to sigh with happiness after hearing india.arie sing the Alphabet song to Elmo.


Well, I’m officially won over, Elmo. And I tried to resist you so hard, but then you won me over with my old musical friends!

Are you a fan of Elmo?  What is your relationship with this red furry friend from Sesame Street?


20 thoughts on “New School Sesame Street: Or How I Learned to Love Elmo.

  1. Ha – I’m kind of an anti-Elmo gal myself! I much prefer Ernie and Bert (y’see, we both love the pigeons!) and good ol’ Big Bird too – I was so angry when they gave Elmo his own portion of time from the Street (Elmo’s World…wha-waaaht?!)! But kids do seem to love him – a LOT. And I’m sure my little Dot will become enamored with the furry redhead too. I’ll still be rooting for the classic characters, though…

  2. For the longest time, Eliza begged to watch the Feist video. Like EVERY. MINUTE. She called it “oh-oh-oh.”

    You must also watch the Ricky Gervais and Jack Black videos with Elmo. High-larious! I still find him annoying, but who doesn’t love Mr. Noodle?

  3. Wolfie never got into Elmo, but he *was* into Diego (which is like a MEELLION times worse…..the shrill voice over! and that camera Click.Rosie Perez did the voice and ahhhh! *shudder*)

    The thing is, we might not love Elmo, but our kiddos do. And I would be willing to bet OUR parents weren’t as enamored of Sesame Street as we were. I kind of remember my mom telling me she thought back then it was a little bit of a “frantic” show (compared to the soothing cardigan of say, Mr. Rodgers). This is kind of what being a parent is all about….nudging them in the right direction, but trying to let them make their own decisions. When I finally sat down and paid attention to elmo through Wolfie’s eyes, i had to admit…..he’s kinda sweet!! Go Peach!

    Oh, and that Katie Perry video! She’s totally cute in it….but I think that was the one that parents got all in a tizzy over because you can see her boobs and they thought the cleavage was “inappropriate”!!! hah!

    1. AH! I meant to discuss the Katy Perry scandal. It was the first thing I thought about when I watched it, but I totally forgot about it all. She was so much fun!

      And I agree. You gotta let kiddos like what they like!

  4. Elmo! I have always found him annoying but not as annoying as Abbey… I think they’re both just examples of Sesame Street staying fresh and “with the times” to contend with Dora, Deigo and all the other interactive kid’s shows.

    I did like the Elmo and Ricky Gervais song, though. Have you seen it? Elmos gets a taste of his own annoying medicine!

  5. Oh Ladybug Picnic! I saw a clip of India Arie talking about her favorite memories of Sesame Street from childhood and that was one of hers. I love that song and little movie. We still sing it every day!

    I wasn’t sure how to feel about Elmo, and completely hesitated showing Cleo any videos, but my sister gave Cleo a set of Elmo books, and that was enough to make her a fan. Now she just loves him, even with her very limited exposure. I do like the music clips, especially india.arie one, I think that got her on a path of wanting to sing the ABCs (ABPPPPPP).
    I’m also a big fan of Adam Sandler’s “Song About Elmo”

  6. I wasn’t much of an Elmo fan until I watched the documentary “Being Elmo” about Elmo’s Muppeteer Kevin Clash. Incredibly heartwarming and inspiring. Even my husband, who is not much of a crier, got “ferklempt” several times during the film! Definitely check it out (it’s currently on Netflix Instant)!

  7. The Adam Sandler one with Elmo… haunts my dreams!!! That song gets stuck in my head more than any other song on the planet. I wake up in the middle of the night hearing it. It is on constant repeat in my head. In fact, I found myself singing it out loud just this morning when I was in the shower. And this has been going on for months!!!
    Oh, the joys of having a two year old!

  8. I was a tad anti-Elmo after the Tickle Me Elmo came out, and that was WAY before kids! Luckily my mother-in-law accidentally scared Sydney with this loud, Elmo-shaped vibrating chair that giggles, so she’s definitely a Bert and Ernie fan. 🙂


    Oh my goodness. I think Andrea Bocelli could use ANY lyrics in that song and it WILL make me cry. Seriously. Even the Will Ferrell version!

  9. Up until a couple months ago, I had the same preconceptions about Elmo. I think I made up my mind during the “Tickle Me Elmo” phase before I had kids of my own. But every time my 3YO laughs out loud, or starts bouncing up and down w/ excitement is when Elmo is on Sesame Street. So I was starting to give him a chance, and THEN I watched the “Being Elmo” documentary others have referenced, and I fell in love with him myself. Especially when they described the process of Kevin himself realizing how “big” Elmo was becoming. Tear! Definitely worth watching, esp if you’re a new “fan” as well. Great post!

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