To Teach Kids That Incest Is Fine As Long As It’s Consensual And There’s No Reproduction?
Sesame Street has been a beloved children’s show for decades, but unfortunately, a recent episode has some fans wondering if the show crossed a line: Did Sesame Street go too far when they revealed Big Bird has been dating his brother for 400 years to teach kids that incest is fine as long as it’s consensual and there’s no reproduction?
Yikes. While parents revere Sesame Street for its ability to entertain their kids while teaching them important life lessons, it seems like this might be a lesson parents don’t want their kids to learn.
The recent controversial episode began with Big Bird announcing that he had someone he wanted the kids to meet, before a large bird who looks exactly like Big Bird, only with a mustache and beret instead, walked out and gave Big Bird a kiss on the cheek. “This is my beautiful and supportive brother, Tobias!” explained Big Bird as he gave his brother a slap on his rotund, feathered backside. “Does anyone know what today’s lesson will be about?” asked Big Bird, to which a child guessed, “Brothers?” “Even better,” responded Big Bird. “It’s about when brothers aren’t just brothers—they’re lovers too!”
“Dating is difficult because in order to do it, you have to go out and meet someone,” continued Big Bird. “Dating your sibling is a great solution to that problem, but there are some ground rules.” Big Bird was then joined by Elmo as they proceeded to describe the “ABCs of Incest,” which are “Avoid reproduction,” “Bring you joy,” and “Constantly confirm consent!” As Big Bird explained, without following these ABCs, you can’t expect your incestuous relationship to last 400 years like his has.
Wow. While consensual incestuous relationships certainly do happen in the world, perhaps it is best that no one learns that while they’re also learning how to spell.
Although angry parents have flooded HBO’s social media with tweets calling out the scene in which Big Bird and his brother Tobias show the kids dozens of photo albums cataloging their hundreds of romantic summers spent vacationing at a cottage on Martha’s Vineyard, HBO has defended it, saying that it proves how fulfilling an incestuous relationship can be. That particular scene ends as Big Bird shows a child a photo of him and his brother shucking clams together and says, “How can someone look at a relationship this positive and say that it’s wrong?”
The episode then cuts to a shot of Big Bird walking hand-in-hand with his brother down Sesame Street at sunset, with the street lamps emitting a soft, gentle light. He and his brother share a tender kiss, and Big Bird turns to the camera and says, “Remember kids, you can’t take the relationship with your sibling to the next level unless there’s consent.” Big Bird then looks at his brother and adds, “Plus—with incest, you never have to deal with a dreaded monster-in-law!” before snickering into Tobias’s shoulder, as though what he just said was somehow an inside joke for them.
What do you think? Should HBO reconsider their stance and take down this episode? Sound off in the comments about whether or not you think it’s appropriate for Sesame Street to address incest!