Michael Wermuth, Jr. – Silly Storytime is the latest Sesame Street DVD. Themed around fairy tales, it includes three street stories, four Sesame Street News segments, and two additional segments. Like many of the Sesame Street DVD releases comprised primarily of street stories, this one does not have any linking footage, unless you count the animated title sequences and transitions between segments.
The three street stories are “The Tale of Rapunzoe,” “Sleeping Grouchy,” and “Jack and the Green and Growing Beanstalk.” “The Tale of Rapunzoe” involves Zoe wishing for her hair to be longer like Rapunzel’s, and then getting her wish from her Hairy Godperson. “Sleeping Grouchy” involves Oscar reading the story of Sleeping Grouchy (portrayed by Grundgetta). And “Jack and the Green and Growing Beanstalk” involves Telly and Leela helping Jack of “Jack and the Beanstalk” fame figure out how to grow a beanstalk. Of these three stories, my favorite is Sleeping Grouchy. My least favorite of the three is “The Tale of Rapunzoe.”
Two other stories represented are a “Musical Fairy Tale” segment on Little Red Riding Hood, and an animated segment with two kids telling the story of the Frog Prince, while various drawings are made in the sand. I don’t know if there were any additional “Musical Fairy Tales” segments, but the title card is omitted from this release.
But if you’re like me and a big fan of classic Sesame Street clips, “Sesame Street News,” and/or Kermit the Frog’s Sesame Street appearances, then I’m sure you’re most interested in this release for its inclusion of four Sesame Street News segments. I sure was excited about this, so much that I recently wrote an article on the Top 15 Sesame Street News Sketches. A news segment follows each story except for The Frog Prince. Each segment included has to do with the fairy tale it follows, meaning it includes Kermit’s reports concerning Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty, Jack and the Beanstalk, and Little Red Riding Hood. Two out of four of those have previously been released commercially.
Finally, this DVD includes one bonus feature, “A Wish for Grover.” “A Wish for Grover” is a storybook video, much like the Golden Book Video releases from the 1980s. The story is told from Grover’s perspective, with Eric Jacobson providing the voice. The story involves Grover wishing on a star to live in the jungle, and then imagining living a life in the jungle. The story isn’t bad, and the animation is better than it was in those Golden Book Video releases, but I would have preferred they use the extra space to have included some additional Sesame Street News segments.
So whether you’re a fan of classic Sesame Street, Kermit the Frog, fairy tales, or even just Sesame Street in general, I highly recommend this release.
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