It’s hard to believe that Sesame Street will be celebrating its 50th anniversary this year but that just means we’re all old as hell. And since 50 years is long enough to keep a secret an executive behind the show is finally speaking out on whether or not titular characters Bert and Ernie are roommates or “roommates” (wink wink). Yes, we’re still talking about this.
A writer for the series named Mark Saltzman commented on this subject late last year but his words were met with side eyes and scoffs. However, in an exclusive 50th anniversary interview with The Hollywood Reporter, an executive VP named Brown Johnson (which is a totally inappropriate name for someone who works on a children’s television program) is ready to put those rumors to rest with a very finite explanation. Per Johnson “People can think whatever they want [about Bert and Ernie]. You want to think they’re gay? OK. You want to think they’re not gay? They’re not gay.”
Yeah, I’m going to keep picturing it the good way with Bert and Ernie surviving the odds and having a relationship that’s lasted longer than some of us have even been alive. Even Mark admitted that he based a lot of the scripts he wrote for Bert and Ernie on his relationship with his late partner Arnold Glassman. And why would it be so hard to believe there are gay characters on Sesame Street when the show has always broken barriers when it comes to explaining the power of diversity to kids? Sherrie Westin, president of global impact and philanthropy at Sesame Workshop, explains it best by saying “We do have a unique ability to tackle tough issues from a child’s perspective. If not Sesame, who?” Hopefully now this debate can go to bed now because it’s getting a little old. Who cares? Perhaps people should be more concerned with the scary muppet we’ve got in the White House as opposed to the ones on TV.