Mr. Bates' work appeared on Sesame Street beginning in the first season. His name was mentioned in episode 0261 when Oscar and the kids watched him write an E, and in episode 0300, when Susan spotted him making a Q. He was also mentioned by David in Episode 0536, during a game of "follow the leader".
The actual skywriting in the original segments was done by Cecil Coffrin of Sky Advertising Corporation. Alphabet Bates made a rare visual appearance in the book Everyone Makes Mistakes. On Sesame Street, he was played in a live action sequence by Brian Muehl in a cameo role.