What made it even more awesome is that the entire scene was taped in one take. The genuine show of emotion by the adults, who gently explain to Big Bird why the beloved Mr. Hooper was not coming back, showed to children that even adults feel sad and cry when a loved one dies. (There have been rumors that the producers wanted to scrap this take so the adult characters would keep their emotions in check, to show their strength to the disconsolate Big Bird, etc. ... but it would have killed the impact.)
After their first attempt fell flat, the production team gave the subject of divorce another shot. Who better than Gordon to help Abby?
Big Bird: Gordon, this is nuts! You should never jump from a moving truck! Why, I shouldn't even be standing up.
Gordon: You have my permission! Just this once. Now come on!
The parody of the disaster-prone Broadway show Spider-Man. When Sesame Street is making fun of you, you've got problems.
Stevie Wonder performing a mind-blowing, nearly seven-minute version of "Superstition" during the peak of his artistic powers in 1973 is something any program of the time would have killed for...and he did it for "Sesame Street".
Not only was "Superstition" a major coup for Sesame Street, so was one of its signature songs from its early years becoming a huge hit for one of America's most popular duos. "Sing" was conceived and written as a children's song by Joe Raposo, a staff songwriter on the Children's Television Workshop staff; in late 1972, Richard Carpenter decided that he and his sister, Karen, should record the song (perhaps seeing an adult message in the song). With the Jimmy Joyce Children's Choir providing backing vocals, Sesame Street got its biggest mainstream hit ever — the children's song, "Sing", a No. 3 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 in the spring of 1973.
Sesame Street got its first mainstream hit three years earlier with "Rubber Duckie", performed by Ernie (the lovable Muppet performed by Jim Henson). The song reached No. 16 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the fall of 1970, largely due to novelty airplay. Less than a year after Sesame Street debuted, the show began having an impact on mainstream popular culture, thanks to "Rubber Duckie".
You want to know how powerful this show was from the very beginning? How about when the Mississippi state government initially refused to have it aired on their PBS stations on account of it having Blacks and Whites living together in harmony, various commercial broadcasters responded with "If you won't air it, we will!", and forced the state government to back down. The show began airing there a month later.
Bert gets sucked into playing Ernie's silly drum game, and you think it's going to be a typical "Ernie drives Bert crazy" sketch...and then Bert just keeps winning, getting every sequence right, and Ernie is so flabbergasted he gives up. "Well...I can't lose 'em all." *laughs*
Big Bird standing up to an Egyptian god in the special Don't Eat the Pictures.
Casey McPhee, played by Cookie Monster, conducts a trainload of cookies and sweets that gets stranded after an avalanche. Cookie contemplates eating the cookies, but he determines to get the train through by eating the snow because the kids would be unhappy without their cookies. Aw, he's got his priorities set.