Depending on who you talk to, either HBO is throwing Sesame Workshop a lifeline that’s saving America’s most beloved children’s program, or a greedy developer is converting the working-class tenement buildings on Sesame Street into luxury lofts.
Either way, it’s clear that HBO’s 5-year deal to bring new episodes of the signature PBS children’s show to premium cable cuts to the very core of public television’s identity.
On this week’s episode of The Pub, I offer my thoughts on the Sesame Street news. We also revisit an old conversation with PBS Vice President for Children’s Programming Linda Simensky about the thus-far futile search for the next Fred Rogers, Sesame Street’s role as an emblem for all of public media, and the new kids’ shows on PBS that are trying to honor the legacy and values of the classic programs.
Also on the show:
- In another encore segment, Deanna Garcia of WESA in Pittsburgh takes us to an exhibit of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood set pieces on display at the Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh.
- We revisit my guide for how to pick theme music for your show, and how not to.
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Adam Ragusea hosts Current’s weekly podcast The Pub and is a journalist in residence and visiting assistant professor at Mercer University’s Center for Collaborative Journalism.