Mystery of creepy 1970s Sesame Street clip solved

I didn't truly appreciate what a miracle is YouTube til I realized how many half-remembered Sesame Street sketches, songs and puppet shows from my grainy, nostalgic childhood could be found there. Some of them seem quite odd in retrospect, and there are folks out there dedicated to tracking down the oddest.

Jon Armond and friends had some lingering memories of a 1970s song-animation where the cracks on a girl's wall come to life and become her friends -- Crack Camel, Crack Monkey and Crack Hen.

It all goes a bit creepy when they meet Master Crack, a large, monstrous face-like cluster in a corner of the room, plaster crumbling from the maws of his eyes. Who thought this would be a good idea to show children?

To find the "Master Crack" clip, Armond went on a veritable quest, recorded in this audio documentary. If Serial was just about trying to find weird old children's show clips from the 70s I'd be so hooked.

Anyone remember an old Sesame clip that was just the stop-motion transmutation of a sandbox into a desert scene, accompanied by gentle music? I think two toy rhinos were placed into it at the end. If you know that one and can find it, Tweet me (@leighalexander)!

[h/t Laughingsquid]

The Muppet Show: The Bug Band play The Beatles

The Bug Band performs "She Loves You" on The Muppet Show in 1979. According to the Muppet Wiki, they were a nameless group until Kermit told them they needed a moniker. They suggested "The Grateful Dead" and "The Who." (via Experimental Music on Children's TV)

Sesame Street gang, The Roots, and Jimmy Fallon sing!

The Roots, Jimmy Fallon, and the Sesame Street gang sing a rousing rendition of "Can You Tell Me How to Get to Sesame Street?"

#SESAME-GATE: A flowchart for the Kevin Clash Elmo sex scandal

The Kevin Clash/Elmo scandal, and its many furry tentacles, all broken down in one handy flowchart by Hilary Sargent.

Click here for the full chart: JPEG, PDF.

Kevin Clash announces his departure from Sesame Street following sex scandal

Following last week's underage sex scandal, Elmo puppeteer Kevin Clash has decided to step down from his 28-year position at Sesame Street. A statement was released by Sesame Workshop on Clash's behalf:

"...Kevin Clash has helped us achieve [our] mission for 28 years, and none of us, especially Kevin, want anything to divert our attention from our focus on serving as a leading educational organization. Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding Kevin’s personal life has become a distraction that none of us want, and he has concluded that he can no longer be effective in his job and has resigned from Sesame Street. This is a sad day for Sesame Street."

A sad day indeed. Clash was recently the subject of allegations of an underage sexual relationships with two men. One of them, who claimed he'd been 16 at the time, later recanted and settled, saying he was 18, but regretted taking the claim back. TMZ is also saying that a second man claims a phone relationship began when he was 15 and Clash was 32. Bummer. (via The Wrap)

Previously: Child sexual abuse allegations against voice of Elmo withdrawn

Million Puppet March to support public broadcasting in America

The Million Puppet March (formerly Million Muppet March, renamed because PBS can't afford to be perceived as political) is on for today in DC.

Everyone's meeting at at Lincoln Park (East of the Capitol building), and the march begins as I publish this blog post, at 11am ET.

At 1pm, a rally at the Capitol Reflecting Pool, which goes through 230pm.

I hope to be there! There's a live webcast.

Jill Buzby contributed the photo below to the Million Puppet March Facebook page. "My middle child holding my childhood Grover and Kermit dolls," she explains. "They're nearly 40 years old!"


Ben Folds Five meets Fraggle Rock: a Nerdist music video

[Video Link] Chris Hardwick's NERDIST YouTube channel is full of awesome, but few things as awesome as this.

The Official Music Video for "Do It Anyway," the first track from Ben Folds Five's much anticipated album THE SOUND OF THE LIFE OF THE MIND...featuring the Fraggles from Jim Henson's "Fraggle Rock"! Also starring Rob Corddry, Anna Kendrick & Chris Hardwick.

Buy the album on iTunes. Directed by Phil Hodges. See the Behind-the-Scenes here.

Meanwhile, in space...

Maaaaaars?

MARS!

Marsmarsmarsmarsmarsmarsmarsmars ...

Thanks, Kate Davis!

Occupy Sesame Street


There's something inevitable about Tautr's "Occupy Sesame Street" set, but that doesn't mean I don't like it. After all, most of us learned how to think about concepts like "fairness" from these characters.

(Thanks, Fipi Lele!)

Cookie Monster performs Tom Waits's "God's Away on Business"

This YouTube mashup of Tom Waits's creepy polka "God's Away on Business" with Cookie Monster clips is just great -- Cookie Monster dances exactly the same way I do when Tom Waits is playing. Plus they have the same voice!

Tom Waits/Cookie Monster mashup - God's Away On Business (Thanks, Matt!)