Friday, August 13, 2010

Feel Good Friday: Growing up Sesame

For over 40 years, children have been growing up on Sesame Street. It is the only show that grandparents can tell their grandchildren they were watching it when they were babies (not counting something in reruns.) About half way through the run (so far) I became a fan when, as a baby, I would sit in my swing and watch it. By the time I was three, I carried a plushy Elmo everywhere I went. Now, 20 something years later, the Street is still a part of my life as I sit and watch it with Ms. Baby and she displays the memorization my parents tell me I used to have.

The great thing about Sesame Street is that episodes are filled with new story lines but also use some older material (there are also half hour versions of the show called Play With Me Sesame, which are all older sketches strung together with a central theme like dance) so I will be sitting there and all of a sudden find myself seeing stuff that I clearly remember from my childhood. Two such things that I want to point out are Cookie Monster’s “I left My Cookie at the Disco” and the Character of Barkley.

Cookie Monster:
If you have ever seen the show, you are well aware that Cookie Monster has a bit of an addiction to Cookies. He is constantly gobbling them down anytime they are in close proximity to the point where, when I was a little girl, I didn’t want my mother to put our cookies in our Cookie Monster cookie jar, for fear they may never come back out. In this sketch, Cookie finds himself in a particularly difficult situation where he seems to have lost his favorite thing and can’t find it anywhere.

If you are not smiling (and signing it for days) I honestly think you are dead on the inside.

Everyone knows Big Bird, Snuffy, Elmo, and Oscar the Grouch but do you remember Barkley?

I always thought he was some sort of giant Bishon with hair dye or an orange and white Labradoodle but either way, he is adorable so here’s a little bit about him

From Wikipedia

Barkley, originally named Woof-Woof, was a dog character on the children's television program Sesame Street.

Introduced in the less-than-successful A Special Sesame Street Christmas, its original actor Toby Towson notes that Barkley was originally intended to be an acrobatic ape.

Owned by deaf librarian Linda, the character made its formal television debut in the tenth season of the show. Its name was changed by popular vote from "Woof-Woof" to "Barkley" in the first episode of season ten. It is of note that producers and Towson spelt the original name "Woov-Woov".

Around this time, Towson's contract ran out, and Brian Muehl replaced him. Later, in 1985, when Muehl left the show, Fred "Garbo" Garver took over until ca. 1992. Since then, R. Bruce Connelly has performed the role.

Barkley was used in the show's closing credit sequence from 1980-1992, in which he and a group of children played in Central Park.[citation needed]

Also, in the Album "Hot Hot Hot Dance Songs", Barkley and Prairie Dawn sang a song called Do the Dog

Barkley remained a major recurring character on the show until the mid- to late-1990s, and rarely appears currently.


Barkley is a full-bodied Muppet dog who appears on Sesame Street. Barkley was originally called Woof-Woof when he first appeared in Season 9. In the 10th season premiere, the cast voted to rename him Barkley.

Barkley is energetic and playful, but is not anthropomorphized in the way that Rowlf and other characters are. While he may exhibit human-like emotions, he communicates only through barks, yelps, and physical contact. He was Linda's dog and understood the American Sign Language signs for "sit" and "stay." However, Barkley also had a close relationship with Big Bird. Indeed, in the 1997 book Big Bird Meets Santa Claus, the large bird refers to Barkley as his dog. Although Linda has since moved on from Sesame Street, Barkley has remained, presumably becoming a ward of the community as a whole. The book A Bird's Best Friend shows that Granny Bird brought Barkley as a puppy for a present for Big Bird.

Barkley's appearances in television specials include the 1978 A Special Sesame Street Christmas and the 1979 A Walking Tour of Sesame Street. More prominently, he accompanied Big Bird on his trips to China in 1982 and Japan in 1988. He also appeared with the Muppets en masse on Night of 100 Stars. Additionally, for many seasons (until 1992), the Sesame Street closing credits depicted Barkley running through a park with the Kids.

Barkley somewhat disappeared in the series after the start of the 21st century, but returned in Episode 4187, being walked (or run) by Bob.

Lastly, Here is Barkley in action:

I want that dog!!
In case I don't Blog, have a nice weekend everybody

1 comment:

  1. Where's my cookie? Also I've always loved Barkley, they need to bring him back! Lastly I think I like "the street" more then Ms. Baby does lol.



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