Sesame Street
Building the USS Terrific
Air date March 22, 1999
Season Season 30 (1998-1999)
Written by Tony Geiss
Sponsors B, 19
Syndication 123 Sesame Street
PBS Sprout


Picture Segment Description
SCENE 1 Big Bird introduces the letter of the day, B, and shows off the new boat kit he got from his Granny Bird. Gordon, Telly, Elizabeth, Barkley, and two children gather around to help build the boat. The boat they're going to build is called the USS Terrific.
Elizabeth is confused when the box is opened and they see nothing but parts. Gordon begins to read the directions, which tell the customer to take the pieces of the kit out of the box and put them together according to the diagrams. Everyone marvels at the amazing-looking parts, including the unusually loud foghorn. Telly and Big Bird loooooooove this boat!
Muppets Ernie & Bert — On the deck of The Love Boat, a uniformed Ernie expresses how much he loves this boat. "Ernest" shares his love with Amanda, a grumpy patron, a fish, and soon several passengers who join them in their love for this boat. (The opening song is cut.)
(First: Episode 1958)
Cartoon B for bathtub, ball, boat, boot, boomerang, brush and bison
(First: Episode 3154)
Film Alphaquest: B
(First: Episode 2706)
Film William Wegman's dogs form the letter B, and Fay Ray balances a boat on her head.
(First: Episode 3536)
cut from the Noggin version

SCENE 2 Gordon continues reading the instructions. They count and name the parts of the boat, some of which Gordon explains. Telly then becomes worried that the boat could sink, since lifeboats come with the accessories.
They are just about to start building the boat, when Barkley grabs the directions and runs away. They all chase after him.
Muppets Sesame Street News Flash: Kermit interviews Christopher Columbus before he begins his voyage to discover America. Kermit tries to tell him that the third ship is tied to the dock, but it's too late -- the dock breaks free, and takes Kermit along with the ship.
(First: Episode 0578)
Animation Wooden shapes group themselves by color, then regroup by shape, then assemble themselves into a rocket ship.
(First: Episode 3229)
cut from the Noggin version
SCENE 3 The team continues to chase after Barkley, who still has the directions.
Muppets Ernie & BertBert is preparing to give his nephew Brad a bath, but Ernie chastises him for not providing any bath toys. He brings so many toys that Bert feels there is no longer room for Brad. So as not to waste the water, Ernie hops into the tub.
(First: Episode 1134)
Animation Which legs belong on the tiger?
(First: Episode 3786)

SCENE 4 Barkley is finally found sleeping on the directions. Gordon manages to gently pull them out, and the crew assembles the parts of the boat.
When they prepare to put the boat into the tub, they realize that the tub has no water ...
Song Jerry Nelson sings "Don't Waste Water."
(First: Episode 2804)
cut from the Noggin version
Cartoon The word AGUA is shown, followed by a river.
(First: Episode 3280)

SCENE 5 The team brainstorms on how to fill the tub with water. Telly asks Alan for a glass of water and pours it into the tub, but it is clear that more than just a glass of water will suffice. They get a hose from Alan, but the hose is too short. Elizabeth suggests they move the tub closer, and finally the tub is filled. While they are occupied filling the tub, Oscar fills the boat with marbles - "She'll be the prettiest submarine on Sesame Street!"
Fido's birthday
Song "It's Fido's Birthday" - a song about a birthday party for a goldfish.
(First: Episode 3609)
Animation Number creatures #19
(First: Episode 2718)
Film Growing Numbers #19
(First: Episode 2937)
Cartoon 19 popcorn kernels appear and then pop to display the number 19.
(First: Episode 2855)

SCENE 6 When the team puts the boat in the water, it quickly sinks to the bottom of the tub. Gordon fishes it out, and discovers that it has marbles at the bottom. They think they know who did it ...
Cartoon Suzie Kabloozie reads about pirates.
(First: Episode 3460)
Muppets The Oinker Sisters sing "Where Can You Be B?"
(First: Episode 3381)
Film B for ball, bat, base and baseball
(First: Episode 3266)
Animation B / b candles
(First: Episode 3111)
SCENE 7 The team asks Oscar why he put marbles in the boat, and Oscar says that he did it because, according to a grouch, toy boats are supposed to sink. Eventually they agree to disagree - Grouches like boats that sink, but everyone else likes boats that float, and since this is Big Bird's boat, they want it to float. They return his marbles and he puts them back in his boat, the Queen Muddy.
It's the ocean
Cartoon Cap'n Feenie asks, "What is it?" It's the ocean.
Artist: ArtistMike
(First: Episode 2710)
Celebrity Little Richard sings "Rubber Duckie."
(First: Episode 3263)
cut from the Noggin version
Cartoon Two camels (voiced by David Rudman and Joey Mazzarino) at a watering hole learn to share.
(First: Episode 3528)
Muppets Muppet & Kid MomentMorgan sings the alphabet for Grover.
(First: Episode 3133)
Song Joe Raposo sings "Little Things".
re-filmed version
(First: Episode 2485)
cut from the Noggin version
SCENE 8 Elizabeth plays a kazoo fanfare as the boat is launched again. It successfully floats, and everyone agrees that they Love This Boat!
Muppets Elmo's World: Water
SCENE 9 Big Bird announces the sponsors, and that Sesame Street is a production of the Children's Television Boat Shop -- or Workshop.

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