In honor of Jim Henson’s birthday, I am re-blogging this piece I wrote about Sesame Street, my favorite of his creations. Though, Henson was not the voice of Cookie Monster (who is the focus of the analysis) the same type of analysis could be done for any of his muppets. There is so much any writers can learn from the muppets. Happy Birthday to a true master.

A. A. Rubin

Everything I
needed to know about characterization, I learned from Sesame Street. I just
didn’t know it at the time. Ok, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but watching
the show as an adult—and as a writer—I am consistently amazed by how well the
muppets are characterized.

Sesame Street celebrated
its 50th birthday last week, and with that milestone, this seems as
good of a time as any for me to write about what authors can learn from the
show. While there are, of course, many aspects of writing in which the show
excels, the one stands out most is the characterization of the beloved muppets,
which is orders of magnitude better than any other children’s program on tv
today.

Most other kids’
shows (and as a stay at home dad on childcare leave, I watch a lot of children’s’
television) feature flat, one-dimensional
characters who are…

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