Minor mentions of the Muppets, Jim Henson, and the like in documentaries (for film, television, home video, or other media). Does not include reality shows, talk shows, or general news programming. See also Category:Documentaries for documentaries focused primarily on the Muppets, Henson, and related topics.


Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope

2011 documentary directed by Morgan Spurlock about the San Diego Comic-Con. Holly Conrad, a designer of custom creatures and costumes, is one of the film's subjects.

Holly: Why can't we bring puppets and animatronics back?
Colleague: Because Jim Henson died.
Holly: Well, you know what? We need to be the next Jim Henson, and make people realize these things are what brings magic out into the real world.

Later, during the masquerade portion of the con for which Holly was preparing, each contestant is announced by their number while the audience responds saying "ah, ah, ah" à la Count von Count.

Connections

Helvetica

HelveticaFilm

A 2007 independent feature-length documentary film about typography and graphic design, centered around the typeface of the same name. During the montage of the usage of the Helvetica font for video media, a clip of Telly Monster talking about D words with the letter D is shown.

Also, when graphic designer Michael C. Place is introduced, and the camera goes to his company office, a Big Bird Kubrick is seen behind figurines of his own creation.

Koko: The Gorilla Who Talks

Koko Kermit

Koko: The Gorilla Who Talks is a documentary produced by BBC that aired on PBS in August 2016. It tells the story of Penny Patterson, an animal psychologist who, beginning in 1971, trained a gorilla named Koko to communicate using sign language. One photo in which Koko reads her popular children's book Koko's Kitten features a Kermit the Frog doll amongst her toys.

NOVA scienceNOW

Nova.cookie
  • The November 21, 2006 episode of the PBS documentary series NOVA scienceNOW featured a segment on the development of sociable robots. One robot in particular, "Leonardo" developed by Cynthia Breazeal, is used in an on-camera study of recognition behavior. The tools used are an Elmo doll and a Cookie Monster puppet, which are presented to Leonardo and vocally asked to find the character by name. After a simple demonstration, the technician holds up Cookie Monster and asks Leonardo to find Elmo, but the robot cannot be tricked. (video)
  • The June 25, 2008 episode featured a segment about dark matter. As experts study what dark matter is, host Neil deGrasse Tyson discusses the ambiguity surrounding what the scientific community uses to describe the material that makes up 85% of the universe. The term has been applied ambiguously because the material is unobservable with current methods. Because of this, the label could just as easily have been called Ernie and Bert. (video) (The episode also features Wikia founder Jimmy Wales in a segment about statistics).

Richard E. Grant's Hotel Secrets

Travel series hosted by actor Richard E. Grant, running for two seasons (2012 and 2014) looking at the history of specific hotels. In the episode "Ireland", Ashford Castle displays photos of its visitors, including Robin Williams and Mel Gibson. The host then notes it considers it most famous guest to be Caroll Spinney, playing the Sesame Street theme and showing stock photos.

Connections

The Secret Lives of Vampires

A 2005 documentary produced for television by NBC studios looks at vampire culture and the history of such characters as Dracula. Examples include Count Chocula cereal, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Sesame Street’s Count von Count. Video footage of the sketch with the Count counting his mail is featured, as well as a photo of a stage version of the character.

TV's Most Censored Moments

Censored

The 2002 program, produced for the now-defunct Trio Channel, briefly touches on the state-wide banning of Sesame Street from broadcast in the state of Mississippi for one month during 1970, due to its integrated neighborhood.

Waiting for Superman

2010 documentary about the American school system. In one scene, a Bear in the Big Blue House book is seen in a little girl's room.

Connections

What Would Jesus Buy?

2007 documentary produced by Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me) about American consumerism. Several Sesame Street toys are featured including various incarnations of Tickle Me Elmo.

Words

13-minute short film produced by the Writers Guild of America in 1987, compiling famous lines in film and television. A brief clip of Grover and John-John in a Muppet & Kid Moment on Sesame Street is used around the 7-minute mark. (YouTube)

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