The Sesame Street News Flash was a segment that featured Kermit the Frog reporting for "Sesame Street News." Reporter Kermit, wearing a trenchcoat and hat and holding a microphone, was seen interviewing characters from various fairy tales and nursery rhymes as well as other popular stories, even appearing at key moments in history. As with most such parodies, the stories often did not go according to tradition.
The sketches began appearing on the show in 1971, and lasted up until 1990. The skits were no longer produced after Jim Henson's death in 1990, but the skits continued to be rerun regularly on the show up until 2001, when Sesame Workshop lost the rights to Kermit the Frog. Currently, the show might air an occaisonal News Flash (once or twice a season), getting special permission from the Walt Disney Company.
Four sketches were included in their entirety on the video Big Bird's Story Time, although Kermit's pre-on camera comments were cut out, as well as the News Flash logos and references to it being a news broadcast. Pictures and scripts for many sketches were featured in the book Sesame Street Unpaved, while the "Rapunzel" sketch was included on Old School: Volume 1.
Some sketches are included here that may not have used the opening Sesame Street News Flash theme music and logo, but they are undoubtedly meant to be a part of the same series as evidenced by the presence of Kermit in his reporter garb, and the manner in which he goes along his duties. Outside of these interuptions to the "regularly scheduled programs," Kermit has appeared in his reporter persona for the recurring Galley-o-hoop-hoop sketch, in the television anniversary special Elmopalooza, and most recently from the red carpet of the 2006 TV Land Awards. See also Reporter Kermit.
Most of the sketches began with a logo of the words "NEWS FLASH" on a cloud with stars and a lightning bolt on a black background, along with a "generic" news theme with beeping Morse Code sounds and an announcer (voiced by Jerry Nelson) usually saying "We take you now to Kermit the Frog with another fast-breaking news story!" The colors on the logo occasionally varied (one version had it in black and white), though it usually had a basic color scheme, as pictured here. In the mid-80s News skits, the "NEWS FLASH" text would flash on and off.
A few of the sketches originally did not begin with a logo or announcer, although later prints would have the logo tacked onto the beginning. The opening did not appear on the Don Music sketches. One known early sketch had an alternate logo, too; they had a title card reading "news bulletin" in big white lowercase letters on top of a blue screen.
On Elmo Saves Christmas, a new News Flash logo was used, without the cloud and lightning, and with the background being a map of the world. The theme song remained the same. During the coverage of Slimey's moon trip, the broadcast started right at a news desk with a different logo on the wall: It had "NEWS" in big orange letters under the Sesame Street logo, and a different fanfare.
In Sesame Street: 20 and Still Counting, three new Sesame Street News segments were created, featuring Kermit on location to ask the question of the day, "Can you tell me how to get to Sesame Street?"
One segment featured a subsitute reporter, a brown wolf named Warren Wolf. Nonetheless, it was featured as part of the series and included the "News Flash" logo at the beginning.
In 1996, on Elmo Saves Christmas, Steve Whitmire played Kermit in a brand-new Sesame Street News Flash with the frog reporting on the Christmas shopping craze, eventually leading to a man trying to purchase his microphone.
|Picture||Summary||Earliest Known Appearance||Description|
|Frog on the Street||Episode 0536|| Kermit interviews a little girl about the sounds animals make. When he asks her what sound a frog makes, she replies "Wiggit! Wiggit!" which doesn't amuse Kermit.|
(This segment does not have the News Flash title card, and was more of a Muppet-Kid Moment.)
|Humpty Dumpty|| ||Humpty Dumpty has fallen off a wall, and Kermit interviews one of the king's horses. Humpty is put together again, but then Kermit gives him a congratulatory pat on the back, and he falls off the wall again.|
|The Six Dollar Man|| ||Kermit explores the lab of Professor Nucleus Von Fission, who has just built a robot called the Six Dollar Man, out of parts which cost him six dollars total. The robot destroys the lab, while Von Fission laughs. Kermit is horrified, but Von Fission explains, "What do you expect for six dollars?"|
|The Elves and the Shoemaker|| ||Kermit interviews the elves, who give the shoemaker various gifts that are not shoes, but rather things that rhyme with "shoe."|
|Peter Piper's Family|| ||Kermit goes to Peter Piper's Pickled Peppers Patch to interview Peter Piper, but he only gets to meet other members of his family, whose names all begin with a common letter.|
|The Old Woman who Lives in Shoe|| || Kermit looks for the Old Woman who Lives in a Shoe. At first he ends up visiting The Young Man who Lives in a Glove, and the Young Woman who Lives in a Hat. When he reaches the shoe, it turns out the old woman needs a babysitter for her kids, and what better candidate than Kermit? |
Inside joke: the old woman has kids named Heather, John, Brian, Lisa, Cheryl, Polly and Kate.
|Princess Chooses a Prince|| ||A princess claims that she will kiss anyone who has small ears and a funny voice, is green all over, and wears a trench-coat. Kermit is the only one who fits that description, so she kisses him and, in a puff of smoke, she turns into a frog. Kermit invites her to "the hop" and she accepts.|
|Mary and Her Little Lamb|| ||After an interview with Mary, the lamb follows Kermit the Frog.|
|London Fog||Episode 2485||In London, Kermit tries to talk about the London Fog, but is interrupted by the London Frog, a Grenadier Guardsman carrying "The Famous London Log," and a London Hog. By the time he's ready to talk, the Fog has evaporated, and the others gather around to dance the London Clog.|
|Hey Diddle Diddle||In a take on the "Hey Diddle Diddle" nursery rhyme, Kermit interviews Natalie the cow and her cat manager as she prepares to jump over the moon. After the cat plays a fanfare on his fiddle, she makes the jump and crash lands back to Earth.|
|Aladdin and His Lamp||Aladdin is distressed that his lamp won't work until Kermit informs hims that he needs to add a lightbulb, plug in the cord and turn the switch. All the while, the Genie wisecracks about his job and trying to get some sleep inside a lamp.|
|Holiday Mix-Up||Kermit interviews Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and a witch -- they are all confused about who they are and what holidays they belong in.|
|The Invisible Man||Kermit interviews the invisible man, who tap dances for him, and later introduces his family which crowds Kermit. All that is seen of the Invisible Man and his kin are their hats.|
|Jack Be Nimble||Jack can't figure out how to jump over the candle stick.|
|Mirror, Mirror||The Wicked Witch from the Snow White story plans to fool the mirror into saying that she is the fairest. But she hasn't counted on Kermit hiding behind a curtain. Features Jerry Nelson (in a cameo appearance) as the mirror.|
|Old King Cole||Kermit witnesses as Old King Cole calls for his pipe and bowl (both of which he rejects), followed by his fiddlers three (along with a drummer, a saxophone player, and a bass player).|
|Rapunzel|| Rapunzel has been locked in a tower by the wicked witch. Prince Charming comes to rescue her...until her hair falls off her head. This is known to have been the first sketch to feature the "News Flash" logo and feature Kermit in his trademark news reporter outfit.|
This sketch was released on Old School: Volume 1.
|Christopher Columbus||Kermit interviews Christopher Columbus before he goes 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 in tow with the ship.|
| ||Little Bo Peep|| Part 1: Kermit encounters a distressed Little Bo Peep, whose sheep is missing. They both observe every sheep that walks by - the first sheep has its tail in front (on its face); the second one has its tail in the middle (on its back), and the third one has no tail. The fourth one does have a tail where it should be: behind. However, this indignant sheep claims to be Mary's little lamb. Kermit tells us to stay tuned for updates on the search for the lost sheep.|
Part 2: Bo Peep has had no luck in finding her sheep; instead she encounters Gladys the Cow pretending to be a sheep, and Fred the Wonder Horse pretending to be a dog. Kermit decides to give up on the search, and returns us to our regularly scheduled program.
|Waiting in Line||Kermit talks to people waiting in line for a football game being held at the SuperGame Stadium|
|The Boston Tea Party||Kermit interviews some colonial American citizens who are participating in the Boston Tea Party. Rather than tea, they drop things that begin with the letter "T" in the water instead!|
|The Pied Piper||The Pied Piper has trouble luring mice with his music -- but Kermit doesn't!|
|Jack and Jill||Jack needs someone to go up the hill with him. First he chooses Mervin, then Francine and Gladys the Cow. Finally Jack chooses Jill, who refused go up the hill with him again, so he asks Kermit to fill in.|
|Hickory Dickory Dock||Kermit the Frog is standing by a clock that a mouse is to run up, but various other animals keep showing up instead. Finally, a horse comes in and explains that the mouse can't make it, so the horse runs through the clock.|
|George Washington's Father's Cherry Tree||Kermit interviews the father of George Washington, who is annoyed that George keeps chopping down his cherry trees and then telling the truth about it.|
|Alice in Wonderland||Kermit interviews Alice, from the Lewis Carroll tales. For this adventure, she eats something that makes her grow.|
|Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves||Kermit interviews Ali Baba, who can't seem to figure out the magic word starting with the letter S to open the door to the cave. When Kermit says goodbye to the viewers, he accidentally blurts out "open Sesame (Street News)," to which the rock opens and forty thieves come out, stealing Kermit's watch and all his clothes.|
|Pinocchio||Kermit interviews Pinocchio, who makes his nose grow by lying. He won't stop lying, and his nose spears Kermit's trench coat, pushing him through a wall.|
|What Makes People Angry?||Kermit tries to find out what makes people angry, but everyone he encounters is too busy to speak to him, which ultimately causes him to lose his temper and yell at the camera.|
|Man in Snowstorm|| Part 1: Kermit has gotten a phone call about there being a man who is standing out in a terrible snow storm, and Kermit wants to find that man and interview him. |
Part 2: Kermit is still looking for the man.
Part 3: Harvey Kneeslapper informs Kermit that he is the one who made the call, which was a prank call. As it turns out, Kermit was the man standing out in the storm.
|Rumpelstiltskin||The miller's daughter is in danger of losing her baby if she cannot guess the first name of Rumpelstiltskin. Kermit puts up a hotline, Sesame-Street-555, for people to call in and help her. The name ends up being Bruce Rumpelstiltskin, but unfortunately for Kermit, he picked the wrong place to hide: the baby's carriage!|
|The First Day of School in History||Kermit goes back in time to witness the very first day of school, taught by a caveman teacher (Mr. Moses) with caveman students (such as Oog, Argh, and Runk). Today the students learn about the letter N. The teacher presents a stone carved N to Kermit... which accidentally lands on his flipper.|
|Little Miss Muffet||Kermit meets Little Miss Muffet, who sits on her water bed, eats crunchy granola, and is not afraid of the spider, who ends up chasing Kermit away.|
|The First Day of School||Kermit reassures kindergarten student Cookie Monster that there's no need to be afraid on the first day of school. As he's about to leave, the teacher mistakes him for a student and tells him to sit down.|
|Jack and the Beanstalk||Kermit climbs the famous beanstalk and passes Jack on the way who warns him not to go up. He breaches the clouds and meets a giant (played by Jerry Nelson in a cameo).|
|Weather Report||Simon Soundman does a weather report using sounds for different kinds of weather. News anchorman Kermit fires him and calls for another weatherman, who has a more "visual" approach to reporting the weather. This did not use the News Flash logo, since it was more of a weather report skit.|
|J Mine||Kermit interviews the miners who work in a J mine.|
|Mumford's Big and Small Trick||The Amazing Mumford has a new trick, where he will make Thumbelina big and The Big Bad Wolf small. He makes Thumbelina big, but doesn't make the wolf smaller. The trick, however, works on Kermit.|
|Rainy Day||Kermit asks Telly and Juliet how they spend a rainy day. Telly enjoys practicing his bassoon, while Juliet loves to play pretend. Against his will, Kermit gets to play the part of the White Rabbit.|
|Seven Emotional Dwarves||Kermit meets the Seven Dwarves, seemingly from the Snow White story. However, in this version each is named after (and represents) an emotion. (Kermit ad-lib: "Hey Dulcy, we got the wrong dwarves again!") They are named Cheerful, Sad, Lovey, Angry, Proud, Surprised and Fearful.|
|Ideas for Games||Kermit interviews people who have invented their own games. Elmo plays "the reporter game", where he pretends to be a news reporter, and then fights with Kermit over his microphone.|
|They Live in Different Places, But They Both Love Me||Kermit interviews a bird who sings about how her parents still love her even though they don't live together anymore (though it is not directly stated whether her parents are divorced or seperated).|
|Cooperation||Kermit is sent to the park for a report on co-operation, except that there's nobody around to interview. At that moment, monster reporter Telly turns up to conduct the same interview. They end up cooperating by interviewing each other.|
|Favorite Animals||At a zoo, Kermit asks the patrons what their favorite animals are. He happens to be standing by a cage with three attention-craving pigs, who desperately assume the mannerisms of each animal mentioned. One pig finally calls the attention of a little boy who apparently loves every animal. As it turns out, the pigs' favorite animal is the frog.|
|What Monsters Want to Be When They Grow Up||Kermit asks monsters at a daycare what they want to be when they grow up. Cookie wants to be an orthodontist.|
|That is How We Look||Kermit is at the first day of school for monsters, where the monster teacher and his monster students sing a song about how different they look.|
|Santa Claus||Kermit witnesses how Santa Claus comes down the chimney, but not before a chimney sweep enters the chimney first.|
|Miami Mice||Although it didn't carry the Sesame Street New Flash logo, and was part of a separate series of segments, Kermit appeared in his reporter persona in a Miami Mice sketch. Kermit tries to interview the mice about adventure, but finds it difficult to do so when he's interrupted by a jet plane, an animal stampede, and a giant monster all making their way through the office.|
|Oogle Family||Although this sketch does not begin with the News Flash logo, Kermit is reporting from a theatre auditorium wearing a tux with his reporter's uniform slung over the seat next to him. In what is described as the musical event of the century, music lovers from around the world have gathered in tribute to the Oogle Family -- that is, words that rhyme with "oogle," such as bugle and googol. The featured piece of music was written by Sir Chrissy Von Koogle and played by Old McDoogle on the bugle, one of the world's foremost concert buglers, who is accompanied by Mr. Cookie Monster, one of the world's finest googlers.|
|Cinderella at the Ball||Kermit is interviewing Cinderella and Prince Charming, who are dancing at the ball. After Cinderella leaves at midnight, she leaves one glass slipper behind. The prince wants to find Cinderella.... so he can have the other glass slipper, because he broke it by accident.|
|In Search of Cinderella||Kermit interviews Prince Charming, who is looking for Cinderella. The prince tries to see whose foot matches the glass slipper. However, the shoe fits someone unexpected. (Kermit: "Boy, these fairy tales are starting to get me down.")|
|Cinderella Prepares for the Ball||Cinderella's Fairy Godmother tries to make a beautiful ball dress appear on Cinderella without success: the gown ends up on Kermit instead!|
|Whistle, Whistle, Little Bird||Don Music tries to rewrite "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star." He succeeds and is joined by a country-western band.|
|Mary Had a Bicycle||Kermit helps Don Music write a remake of "Mary's Lamb," with some back-up vocals from the Monotones.|
|Row, Row, Row Your Boat||"Life is but a... but a..." With Kermit's help, Don Music manages to rewrite the tune to "Drive, drive, drive your car."|
|The Alphabet Song||Don Music successfully "writes" the Alphabet Song, with help from his surroundings.|
|Can You Tell Me How To Get To Yellowstone Park||Don Music tries to rewrite the "Sesame Street Theme". He succeeds and is joined by Little Chrissy & The Alphabeats.|
|Yankee Doodle||Kermit helps Don Music finish the "Yankee Doodle" song, then because Don finds the idea of calling feathers macaroni ridiculous, they rewrite it to be a song in which Yankee Doodle stays at home cooking for his pony, puts "fat spaghetti" in a pot and calls it macaroni. Little Chrissy and the Alphabeats then come in and perform the song with Don.|
Dr. Nobel Price
|The Tinkle Table||Dr. Nobel Price wants to show off his latest invention, a piano, but it's already been invented. Kermit even knows how to play it!|
|The Great Poonga-Poonga||Dr. Nobel Price reveals his latest captured creature, which turns out to be a live rabbit.|
|Foot Snuggies||Dr. Nobel Price invents socks.|
|Herman the Hoppity-Hop||It's green, wears a trenchcoat, does news reports... and it even talks. Nobel Price "invented" an exact mechanic replica of Kermit!|
|Speaking Stick||Warren Wolf is the first newsperson to witness Nobel Price's latest invention, a stick that makes your voice sound louder. It bears a striking resemblance to Warren's microphone...|
|The Slushabouts|| Dr. Nobel Price invents galoshes.
Little Red Riding Hood
|Little Red Riding Hood: The Woodsman||Kermit witnesses how the mailman, the salesman and the woodsman knock at the door while the Wolf chases Red Riding Hood around the bed.|
|Directions for Little Red Riding Hood||Kermit, using a pull-down map, tries to give Little Red Riding Hood directions to her grandmother's house. But she seems preoccupied with brushing lint from her red cloak. In the end, Red joins her grandmother, the Big Bad Wolf, and a cab driver for a picnic.|
|Little Red Cookie Hood|| Cookie Monster portrays Little Red Riding Hood. He brings cookies for his sick grandmother, but Kermit tells him that sick people should have healthy foods.
|Spaceship on Old McDonald's Farm||Old MacDonald thinks a spaceship will land on his farm. A dog emerges with a frisbee in its mouth, and MacDonald mistakes it for a spaceship. But before long, a real spaceship lands on the farm, and out of it come the Yip Yip Martians! The scene ends in chaos.|
|Old MacDonald Had a Health Farm|| Old MacDonald opens a health resort for his animals.
The Princess and the Pea
|The Princess and the C||Instead of a pea, this princess sleeps on things beginning with C.|
|The Princess and the Cookie|| Kermit interviews a servant who tells him that the queen wants to test the maiden by placing a cookie under the mattresses to see if she can feel it. The "princess" (Cookie Monster) not only feels it, but also eats the cookie and the mattresses above it.
|Ballerina's Body||Kermit points out different parts of ballet dancer Suzanne Farrell's body, and watches her drink a glass of milk.|
|Counting Battements|| Kermit and Grover watch Suzanne do twenty grand battements.
|Sleeping Beauty||The prince kisses Sleeping Beauty, but turns her into a frog.|
|Sleeping Beauty's Kiss||The prince kisses Sleeping Beauty, but the prince falls asleep.|
Three Pigs, Big Bad Wolf
|The Count Counts the Three Little Pigs||Kermit's interview with the Three Little Pigs is interrupted by The Count, who wants to count them. When the Count's counting puts an end to the interview, Kermit goes to interview the residents of the next house... the Seven Dwarfs.|
|How the Three Little Pigs Feel|| ||The Big Bad Wolf has blown down the houses of the Three Little Pigs, so Kermit interviews them to know how they feel. The pig who made his house out of straw is angry, the pig who made a stick house is sad, but the one who made his house out of bricks is proud, because his house is still standing.|
|The Three Little Pigs||The Big Bad Wolf plays a game of "Three of These Things" with Kermit and the pigs. Since Kermit doesn't belong with the pigs, the wolf blows him out of the picture.|
|The Pig's Straw House||Kermit interviews one of the Three Little Pigs, the one who built a straw house. The Big Bad Wolf comes to blow it down, but the house is actually strong.|
|Five Little Pigs||Kermit realizes he's encountered the wrong group of pigs: one of them went to market, one stayed home, etc. As always, the wolf ends up blowing Kermit away again.|
|The Big Bad Wolf's School for Huffing and Puffing|| The wolf teaches Kermit how to huff and puff, and Kermit ends up blowing a monster couple's house down.
Tortoise and Hare
|The Tortoise and the Hare||Not an official "News Flash" segment, but the first sketch featuring Kermit as a reporter, the frog covers the race between the tortoise and the hare for a one-time Sesame Street Sports broadcast. When the race begins, the hare dawdles, since the tortoise is so slow he'll have time to win. Kermit rushes to the finish line so that he can see the results... and is crowned the winner.|
|The Tortoise and the Hare's Rematch||The hare challenges The Tortoise to a rematch: this time, the Tortoise comes equipped with a jet-pack! Unlike the first sketch, this was included in the Sesame Street News series.|
- Tough Pigs Anthology -- Sesame Street News Flash transcripts