Although most of the show's many Aesops are clearly presented and framed, some are shown rather than stated. For example, Rod and Nicky are proof that being great friends doesn't make two people good roommates.
The updated version of "For Now" which changed "George Bush is only for now!" to "George Bush was only for now!" actually reinforces the message that "Nothing lasts forever."
A subtle one is that there's a key difference between setting a goal and putting heavy emphasis on finding one's purpose. Brian wants to be a comedian and get paid for it, for example, and Kate longs to set up a monster school, but Princeton simply wants to find his purpose and wants it yesterday. The lesson being that this is an easy way to make yourself miserable—whereas if you have an actual dream, you might just get it.
Alternate Aesop Interpretation: "Everyone's a Little Bit Racist": Either, yes, everyone's a bit racist, and rather than being hypocrites by getting mad about "little things," we should let 'em slide and save our anger for the big kinds of racism, or everyone's a little bit racist, and being in denial about it rather than admitting it won't help us get over it. Also, "Bigotry has never been exclusively white" - every ethnic group has a prejudice against another ethnic group, and some of these have been ingrained for centuries of conflict. (Robert Lopez even explained to Time Magazine that this song took inspiration from his experiences growing up with a Filipino Racist Grandma.)
Alternative Character Interpretation: In the finale, some productions have Nicky tell Rod that he "knows [Rod's] type" after introducing a potential boyfriend who looks, acts and has nearly the same name as him (Ricky). This could be taken to mean either Nicky wasn't so Oblivious to Love after all or that he was Comically Missing the Point. He also constantly remarks ...but I'm not gay while (not so) subtly convincing Rod to come out in "If You Were Gay". Meaning he probably knows Rod would be interested if he mistook him for homosexual. Of course, that same line raises the question "is Nicky straight and genuinely trying to be supportive, or is he being just as defensive about his own sexuality?" Along these lines, some productions have an implied threesome between Rod, Nicky and Ricky.
Some of the overt "lessons" may be justified by the show's premise of being "Sesame Street for adults."
One of the overall messages in the show though, that isn't as lighthearted as the rest are presented, is that not everyone knows their purpose. Some people may never find out what their calling is. And that's okay.
The show's overall message is that there is no Sesame Street for adults. Big Bird won't hold your hand as you're figuring out adulthood. That's all up to you.
Fair for Its Day: According to the "Everyone's a Little Bit Racist" song, intentionally telling jokes designed to insult an ethnic group, and using an ethnic slur while doing so, is only a "little racist", like unintentionally using an outdated term to refer to an ethnic group. And to be clear, it was "Polack" jokes and the teller was Gary Coleman, so there were no N-Word Privileges. However, the message of the song: that we are all a little bit racist, is still true.
Family-Unfriendly Aesop: "Everyone's a Little Bit Racist", "You Can Be as Loud as the Hell You Want (When You're Making Love)"
Also "Schadenfreude", to a certain extent.
In general, the show's ultimate Aesop (that you're not necessarily going to be truly fulfilled by your life and you may not ever find your "purpose") maybe seem fairly family-unfriendly to some.
Fridge Brilliance: During the wedding scene, when Gary suggests that Rod's gay, the first one to voice surprise is Christmas Eve. Why? Because Rod had previously confided in her that his "friend" might be gay and in the closet—chances are, Eve put two and two together and realized he was actually talking about himself.
"Funny Aneurysm" Moment: In the song "Purpose" Gary fears he's fulfilled his purpose and "is on a long slow walk to the grave," Gary Coleman is now dead.
A Sesame Street parody with a song called "The Internet Is for Porn". Fast forward to 2011, when Sesame Street's official YouTube channel was hacked and pornographic videos were uploaded.
Nicky and Gary simultaneously listing, "watching actors never reach the ending of their Oscar speech" as a source of schadenfreude might have gained some hilarity after Robert Lopez won the Best Song Oscar for Coco, and successfully thwarted an attempt to cut short his speech.
Pick any anime character ever made ever, and there will be three different AMVs featuring them: 1. Them singing about their lack of underwear. 2. Them convincing their friend to come out of the closet, as well as a video of their friend trying to convince them. 3. How much they ruv someone, but also want to kill them in equal measure. There are no exceptions to this rule. Even applies to Bert and Ernie.
Signature Song: "The Internet Is for Porn", "It Sucks to Be Me", and "If You Were Gay" are the most iconic songs of the musical.
Wangst: Some people find Kate's part of "It Sucks to Be Me" this, since she claims her problems are worse than Brian's. To clarify, Brian just got laid off and doesn't have an income, while Kate's problem is... she doesn't have a boyfriend.
Probably intentional since the entire musical is populated by characters who thrive on making their problems seem worse than they really are. As an example, just after Kate's verse in "It Sucks To Be Me", Rod and Nicky then declare that their lives are the worst because...they don't like each other as flatmates. And Princeton is arguably a ball of Wangst in a felt covering.
The Woobie: Pretty much every character in the musical is deserving of sympathy, the only exceptions are the Bad Idea Bears and Lucy (who are the closest things to actual villains in the story). But then again, Lucy almost dies and literally loses her head twice, so even she might get some sympathy by the end.
The Hungarian production of the show is considered the best Hungarian localization of any work in recent years. The most significant change was the replacement of Gary Coleman with Michael Jackson; this was in part because Gary is all but unknown in the country, and mostly because Hungary has almost no black population and thus no one to play the role. In the original book, Jacko ended up on Avenue Q after two six-year-olds sued him for his entire estate; after the Pop King's death it was adjusted to say that he faked his own death to escape from his creditors.
Also a bit of Lucky Translation in the Hungarian production: Trekkie Monster is renamed Kuki Mumus. "Kuki" is a slang word for "penis", perfectly fitting his perverted personality, and it sounds exactly like "Cookie".