Sesame Street: The National Bird

NARRATOR: The American
Revolution, a miniseries starring all your friends from
Sesame Street telling the story of how the United
States of America was born, more or less. [INTERPOSING VOICES] JUDGE: [HITTING MALLET] Come to order. Come to order. Oh, come on, guys. Come to order. ELMO: Is it lunch yet? THOMAS JEFFERSON: I’m
sorry, excuse me. JUDGE: Now, because the United
States of America is about to become a new country, we’ve got
to pick our national bird. [INTERPOSING VOICES] JOHN ADAMS: OK, whatever
that means. OSCAR: Who cares? ELMO: A good idea, but what’s
a national bird? JUDGE: The national bird is the
bird who gets to have his picture on our new coins and
stamps, and other neat things like government letters. OSCAR: Whoa. JUDGE: OK, so does anybody
have any idea what our national bird should be? [INTERPOSING VOICES] JUDGE: [HITTING MALLET] Order, order. We will do this the
democratic way. JOHN ADAMS: What’s that mean? JUDGE: Which means everybody
gets to have their turn. BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: Oh
OK, can I go first? JUDGE: Yes, yes. Mr. Franklin. BENJAMIN FRANKLIN:
Oh me, me, me. Thank you. Thank you, Sir. Well, maybe you won’t agree, and
who knows, but I think our national bird should
be the turkey. OSCAR: Oh no, not the turkey. BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: That’s right,
the turkey, and I’ll tell you why. The turkey was here to welcome
our pilgrim forefathers when they first got here, but the
most important, well, I think turkeys are nice. THOMAS JEFFERSON:
I like turkeys, but I like the drumstick. OSCAR: We don’t want any
turkey, you turkey. JUDGE: [HITTING MALLET] Order, order. Yes, Mr. Thomas Jefferson. THOMAS JEFFERSON: Thank
you, Mr. Speaker. [CLEARS THROAT] I think our national bird
yes, yes, yes. Well, listen to my
argument please. Pigeons love all the simple
things that are going to make America great, things like
statues, and curbs, and, well, let’s not forget windowsills. So that is why I say, let
our national bird please be the pigeon. JOHN ADAMS: Well,
wait a minute. It’s not a very colorful
bird, you know. OSCAR: I say phooey
on pigeons. THOMAS JEFFERSON: What? OSCAR: Yes. I say let’s make the national
bird the cockatoo. THOMAS JEFFERSON:
The cockatoo? Are you putting me on? JUDGE: OK, come on. Order, order, order. There are no cockatoos
in this country. OSCAR: Well, then let’s
bring them in. Why, we could teach them to say
neat things like “scram” and “beat it,” and they’ll
make enough noise so the British will just
want to go home. [INTERPOSING VOICES] JUDGE: Order, order. All right. Any other birds? Yes, Mr. John Adams? JOHN ADAMS: Yes, yes. Thank you. Thank you. Gee, I would like to see the
bald eagle, the bald eagle become our national bird. The bald eagle. OSCAR: Some bird
with a toupee? JOHN ADAMS: Let me tell you
about the bald eagle. The eagle is a handsome bird. It can fly higher than any
other, and glide way up in the sky watching peacefully
over town and prairie. So let’s give, let’s give– folks, let’s give the
eagle a chance, huh? What do you say? The eagle. [INTERPOSING VOICES] JUDGE: Order, order. All right. I think we’re ready to pick
our national bird. So let’s take a vote. [INTERPOSING VOICES] ELMO: Excuse me,
excuse me, sir. A vote is a great idea,
but what is a vote? JUDGE: A good question. ELMO: Thank you. JUDGE: When I mention the bird
of your choice, so signify by saying “aye.” That is your vote,
and the bird with the most votes wins. All right. First of all, all those in favor
of the turkey, say aye. BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: Aye, aye,
aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, me, me, aye. JUDGE: All those in favor
of the pigeon, say aye. THOMAS JEFFERSON: Aye. yes. JOHN ADAMS: I’m sorry, Bert. JUDGE: All those in favor of
the cockatoo, say aye. OSCAR: The cockatoo, yeah. Aye. Huh, huh? Oh. JUDGE: All those in favor
of the eagle, say aye. ALL: Aye. JOHN ADAMS: Wonderful, Thank
you all for your votes. JUDGE: The eagle
is the winner. JOHN ADAMS: Wonderful. NARRATOR: And so our national
bird became the American eagle. [INTERPOSING VOICES] BIG BIRD: Wait, wait, wait. You chose the eagle? Well, thank you very much.

44 thoughts on “Sesame Street: The National Bird

  1. I've always loved this skit (I'm a BG history buf.) And I totally forgot about the ending-a classid piece of Sesame Street humor. Looks like Big Bird really got his feathers ruffled. *rimshot*

  2. It was designed to be something educational to kids, but also interesting enough that their parents would stop on the channel- True story!

  3. Simple… He came to the meeting wanting to be the national bird…

    But he got in late.

    But honestly… Can you imagine Big Bird as the US Bird. HE wasn't even around in 1789

  4. does any one know who the grl is from sesame street with glasses, plaid dress, and play's a brass instrument? If you do click reply!

  5. "What's a vote?" And you call yourself a Patriot, Elmo?!

    Quite a cast- Herry as John Hancock, Bert as Jefferson (but he wanted the DOVE, not the pigeon) Ernie as Adams (but I think he's too cheerful to be Adams) and a surprise ending!:)

  6. Fun Fact: Benjamin "Telly" Franklin pick is based on an urban legend that attributes Franklin seriously considering the Turkey as our National Bird when in reality he was criticizing something else.

  7. Oscar is so funny here:
    "We don't any turkey, you turkey!"
    "Phooey on pigeons…Let's bring [cockatoos] in. We can teach 'em to say neat things like 'Scram' and Beat it.' And they'll make enough noise so the British will just wanna go home!"
    "Some bird with a toupee…"

    ROTFL 😀

  8. That is very interesting! I thought that Benjamin Franklin really did suggest the turkey to be our National Bird!

  9. In a letter to his daughter Sarah Bache, he was criticizing the actions of the Society of the Cincinnati, which used the Bald Eagle as part of their symbols. He never publicly voiced opposition to the Bald Eagle as a national symbol.

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