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Andrew and Shane put Sandbox:Episodic actors on Sesame together a couple years ago, and we've since made some progress on identifying some of these people. This thread is for the purposes of discussing specific items. β€”Scott latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 18:50, 8 November 2021 (UTC)

Dr. Marzullo


I could have sworn we talked about this at the time, but I looked at Special:WhatLinksHere/Episode_0343 and couldn't find what I was looking for. I may be thinking about a Facebook messenger conversation or a social media post.

Anyway, concerning the identity of Dr. Marzullo, a couple names have come up on social media for consideration. One suggested Lynne Thigpen, but I'm pretty sure that's incorrect. Episode 0343 was taped on December 15, 1971 and Thigpen was in Los Angeles at that time appearing on stage in Godspell.

Another suggestion was Madge Sinclair, who I think makes more sense. She was 34 at the time, which seems accurate for the age Dr. Marzullo appears to be. Also, she was in New York playing Clytemnestra in The Wedding of Iphigenia at the Public Theatre on Lafayette Street. December 15 fell on a Wednesday that year, and taping a bit part on an episode of Sesame Street is just the kind of work an actor like her would have been looking for during the week.

The voice sounds very close to Sinclair, but I'm not entirely sold on a physical match. Unfortunately, we don't get a perfect close-up, front-view shot of Mazullo's face. The accompanying screenshot is the best angle, but she's looking down and you don't get the best features to compare with other footage. The majority of her appearance (her close-ups anyway) is here if anyone needs a better look. The same year this episode came out (1972), she was in a short film called The Witches of Salem: The Horror & the Hope (YouTube). Again, the Sesame source isn't the best for comparing. I can't tell if there's a difference in the nose and face shape, or if it's just lighting. Also that year, she was in an episode of Madigan with Charles Durning. The series was released on DVD, but used copies are over 50 bucks (more than I'm willing to pay) and I can't find a torrent or legit streaming source.

In conclusion, Sinclair seems likely, but I'm not sure. Also (I should have said this up top), Dr. Marzullo is not credited in the script and I've been in touch with Sesame Workshop who has no other record of actors in that episode. β€”Scott latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 18:50, 8 November 2021 (UTC)

Okay, so in an off-wiki discussion, Andrew pointed out that Sinclair was in a season 3 episode of The Waltons called "The Visitor". It's from 1974, so I had overlooked it in favor of trying to find something as close to the 1972 Sesame episode as possible. However, The Waltons file I got my hands on is a beautiful HD transfer (man, imagine if Sesame Street had been filmed, not taped?) and we get some terrific close-ups of what Sinclair looked like only two years later (in contrast to most high resolution photos of her which are several years further along in her career).
The teeth may be the smoking gun here. On her bottom set, Sinclair has one tooth just right of center that's shorter than the others. It's hard to see in the Sesame screenshot because this is an old tape in standard definition, but Dr. Marzullo appears to have the same tooth structure (may be easier to catch in motion; I can post better video if necessary). β€”Scott latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 21:53, 8 November 2021 (UTC)
Certainly seems plausible (nose looks very much the same as well). - Shane latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 00:18, 9 November 2021 (UTC)
I'm convinced too, although I put out some feelers with old TV buffs as well. I rewatched her first scene in Witches of Salem, this time focusing on her voice rather than visuals, and while she's far softer spoken on Sesame, it's a strong match, and the profile (I checked a scene from Roots in 1977) matches. The Waltons grab is really helpful though. Taken all together, it's not as instantaneous "That's them" as we sometimes have, but I'd vote for being the same person (she also has traces of a Jamaican accent at this point in her career which likewise match; she moved from there to New York in 1966). -- Andrew Emoji-drool.gifAdminsig.png 01:27, 9 November 2021 (UTC)
Given the evidence (especially Scott's two images above and comparing the teeth), I'm also confident that this is Madge Sinclair. -- Tony (talk) 01:33, 9 November 2021 (UTC)