Aesop's Fables are a collection of stories credited to Aesop (620–560 BC), a slave and storyteller who lived in Ancient Greece. Aesop's Fables have become a blanket term for collections of brief fables, usually involving anthropomorphic animals. The fables remain popular in children's moral education and entertainment. Many of the stories included in Aesop's Fables are well-known throughout the world and have been adapted to other media.
Famous Aesop's Fables include "The Tortoise and the Hare", "The Boy Who Cried Wolf", "The Ant and The Grasshopper" and "The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse."
Adaptations & References
- In episode 212 of The Muppet Show, Sam the Eagle tells the fable of "The Ant and The Grasshopper". In Sam's version, the fun-loving grasshopper drives to Florida for the winter, and the hard-working ant gets stepped on.
- The fable of "The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing" was reenacted musically in episode 419 of The Muppet Show through "The Whiffenpoof Song". A group of Sheep sing and wag their tails, as the Wolf takes them out one by one -- until he's confronted by Super Sheep.
- Muppet Classic Theater featured a reenactment of "The Boy Who Cried Wolf" with Gonzo as the shepherd boy, Kermit as the mayor and, of course, a wolf.
- In the fourth season Bear in the Big Blue House episode "Appreciation Day", Shadow tells Aesop's fable "The Lion and the Mouse."
- Kermit the Frog interviewed the stars of the fable "The Tortoise and the Hare" in a Sesame Street Sports sketch. The Tortoise and the Hare are both preparing for the legendary race. As in the original tale, the Hare dawdles, believing that the Tortoise is so slow that he'll have plenty of time to win. He loses to Kermit, who's inadvertently crowned the winner after rushing to the finish line to catch the results.
- The fable of "The Tortoise and the Hare" was revisited by Kermit and Sesame Street News in Season 20. In the new sketch, the Hare challenged the Tortoise to a rematch -- but this time, the Tortoise was equipped with a jet-pack.
- Etienne Delessert animated a folk ballad retelling of "The Fox and the Crow" for Sesame Street in the 1970s.
- The Sesame Street album Big Bird's Birdtime Stories featured many retellings of Aesop's Fables - including "The Tortoise and the Hare" told by Big Bird; "The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse" told by Susan; and "The Lion and the Mouse" told by Olivia.
- The fable of "The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse" was retold with worms in the Sesame Street storybook The City Worm and the Country Worm.
- Sesame Street featured a somewhat modern adaptation of "The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse". In the sketch, as in the original fable, the Country Mouse lives peacefully on the farm when his cousin, the City Mouse, comes to visit. The City Mouse is appalled that his cousin lives in a haystack, eats acorns, and listens to birdsong. He invites his cousin to come visit him in the city. The Country Mouse visits the City Mouse's apartment, and finds that his cousin eats pizza, doesn't mind traffic sounds, and listens to groovy music on his stereo. The Country Mouse is startled when he hears a cat. The City Mouse sighs, "Oh, that's just the cat. That means he's hungry, and he wants to catch us and eat us for dinner." Horrified, the Country Mouse goes back to the country, where he's safe.
- Elmo's World: Fast and Slow featured the two star players from the fable "The Tortoise and the Hare" as they arrive on Elmo's doorstep to illustrate fast and slow. The episode concludes with Elmo taking on the role of Tortoise and Hare (in Dorothy's imagination) to finish the story.
- The Dog City episode "Doggy See, Doggy Do" features Bugsy Vile reading a twisted version of an Aesop's fable in "His Master's Choice Theater".
- The Dog City episode "No Pain, No Brain" featured Mr. Mookie in the tale of "The Tortoise and the Hare."
- The title of Farscape episode "Into the Lion's Den Part 2: Wolf in Sheep's Clothing" references the fable of "The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing."
- The Joy of Cookies starts with an indirect quote from Aesop, "In cookie, there is strength" (a play on "In unity...").
- Diahann Carroll voiced the Crow from The Fox and the Crow in the "Whodunnit Musical" episode from Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child.
- Dabney Coleman voiced the Fox from The Fox and the Crow, named Monsieur Fox, in the "Whodunnit Musical" episode from Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child.
- Crystal Gayle voiced Emily the Country Mouse in The Country Mouse and the City Mouse: A Christmas Tale (1993).
- Harvey Korman voiced the Lion from The Lion and the Mouse in the "Whodunnit Musical" episode from Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child.
- John Lithgow voiced Alexander the City Mouse in The Country Mouse and the City Mouse: A Christmas Tale (1993).
- Kevin Pollak voiced the Mouse from The Lion and the Mouse and the Grasshopper from The Ants and the Grasshopper in the "Whodunnit Musical" episode from Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child.