Not Even Elmo Has Been Spared by Known Potty-Mouth Julia Louis-Dreyfus
What happens when you bring a foul-mouthed comedy icon like Julia Louis-Dreyfus onto a kids’ show as sanitary as Sesame Street? Elmo finally buys Oscar the Grouch a house with the proceeds from the swear jar, that’s what.
In 1994, during the filming of Sesame Street’s 25th anniversary special, guest star Elaine Benes fumbled one of her lines, causing her to curse herself with the dreaded S-word, which prompted her co-stars Elmo and Zoe to reprimand the sitcom legend for her less than family-friendly vocabulary.
The clip of the episode first went viral back in 2018, occasionally gracing the front page of Reddit and numerous “recommended” pages on YouTube since it was first leaked. Lost in the legend are the strange circumstances surrounding the scene and the viral blooper, which are worth revisiting in wake of last week’s midterm elections — i.e., the episode was one giant takedown of then-developer Donald Trump.
In the episode, titled “Sesame Street All-Star 25th Birthday: Stars and Street Forever!,” the denizens of Sesame Street are assisted by celebrity guest stars Danny DeVito, Rhea Perlman, John Goodman, Susan Sarandon, Rosie O’Donnell and a handful of other 1990s superstars in saving their beloved block from destruction at the hands of a ruthless and humorless real-estate tycoon named Ronald Grump, played by My Cousin Vinny star Joe Pesci.
Louis-Dreyfus played Kathie Lee Kathie, a local reporter covering the story of Grump’s attempted takeover of the neighborhood. Interestingly, though Louis-Dreyfus struggled to stay in character during the popular blooper, Elmo and Zoe remained perfect professionals as they chastised their foul-mouthed friend and demanded a $5 contribution to the swear jar.
Thankfully, Grump’s evil plan failed in the end, and Sesame Street stayed in the furry hands of its felt inhabitants — no thanks to the dirty mouth of one local reporter.