Following the death of Jim Henson, the producers of Sesame Street had no intention of removing his characters, especially Ernie (despite rumors circulating of them killing the character off). The character continued to appear in library material and made non-speaking appearances in specials.
While Steve Whitmire had taken over the role of Kermit the Frog the Fall after Henson's death, he had not taken over the role of Ernie until three years later. His first televised performance was a brief line in the 1993 New Year's special, Sesame Street Stays Up Late. Whitmire's first taped "Ernie and Bert" sketch premiered on the February 17, 1994 broadcast in the show's 25th season.
In the sketch, Ernie and Bert go fishing, but Ernie seems to have all the luck...
- ↑ Sesame Street: A Celebration - 40 Years of Life on the Street, page 131, erroneously describing a different "fishing" sketch of the duo's