Sweet, inadvertent Sesame Street PSA for gay marriage

Monsters and Rockets sez, "Sesame Street is 40 years old today! In this early clip, Grover and a little boy named Jesse define marriage. It's a cute bit, but the remarkable thing is that given recent headlines this actually plays a lot like a PSA about gay marriage. At no point do Grover and Jesse say that a married couple has to be a man and a woman, and the things they say make up a marriage - kissing, hugging, being friends, helping each other - would apply to any married couple, straight or gay."

Sesame Street: Grover discusses What Is Marriage? (Thanks, Monsters and Rockets!)



  1. Are you sure about that Cory? I mean, everything I’ve been seeing about gay marriage on television tells me that its only purpose is to destroy the sanctity of straight marriage.

    Perhaps this child simply didn’t watch enough television?


    1. How sweet! (Both the original clip and the “What is love?” clip.) Chris reminds me a lot of my nephew, especially with the enthusiastic “Oh yes!” when asked whether you can love little puppy dogs.

  2. I would like Grover to officiate at my gay wedding.

    Of course, we’ll have to do it twice: once here in Scotland for our “equal but not really” civil partnership and once in Canada for our “just like real folk” wedding.

  3. happy 40th, sesame street. you keep on rocking, and teaching us all what’s what. i’m a bit older than you, and i still value your teachings.

  4. As someone who is gay, married and has a kid, I was happy when I first found this clip earlier this year.

    We play it once in a while for our two year old son. :-) He likes the clips about factories, hammers, saws and steam rollers better.

    1. Actually, I’d rather call it “marriage equality.” That’s what we’re fighting for. And if the clip is as described (I can’t watch it at work), it’s more about the ability of marriage to be about any two people’s love, which is exactly what ‘equal marriage’ describes.

  5. This was even pretty radical for the early 70s, when a lot of material intended for children would still present marriage as “husband goes to work, wife stays home,” rather than two people living together and helping each other.

      1. …and was also considered somewhat radical. I was around at the same time as both of these, and had very progressive parents. It is surprising to see more mainstream examples of children’s lit from the 60s (a few years earlier, to be fair).

  6. I’m constantly sickened over what these commie-hippie kid’s TV people get away with. As if it weren’t bad enough that The Muppets encourage interspecies sex with that nasty little frog and his pig girlfriend–who you can totally tell is probably a lesbian anyway–now Grover is letting kids think unnatural same-sex marriage is O.K. And don’t even get me started on Mr. Rogers and his socialist, “it’s good to share” crap.

    My only comfort is that Grover will burn in hell, along with that gay Teletubby.

  7. When I saw the headline I was really expecting to see Bert and Ernie.

    Cute kid, and a cute bit. From the mouths of babes indeed.

  8. What a strange, discordant world we live in where the writers of childrens shows are more tolerant and enlightened than our legislators. I’m glad the muppets didn’t need to pander to bigots to stay on the air…

    1. >>You can always count on Grover to put things into perspective. He’s a good guy.

      Who tawks to chidlren and doesn’t afraid of anything?

      (Couldn’t resist, sorry.)

  9. There’s another great old sesame street skit that I think is great. It’s a rhyming song where one of the muppets sings the following:

    “See the red head bein’ fed bread on his sled made of lead as he sped to be wed but he fled instead out ahead up to Ted in his bed and he said…”

    Ted in his bed.

  10. Further in support of the marriage equality angle is Grover and Jesse’s omission of child-bearing. The clip is very specific in support of egalitarian companionate marriage and does not follow the compulsory narrative of “first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage.”

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