'Sesame Street' Pulls Controversial Katy Perry Duet

[deleted account] ( 18 moms have responded )

"Sesame Street" started previewing its 41st season on the Web this week, releasing teaser clips featuring stars like Jude Law, Will.i.am, Colin Farrell, and Run-DMC's Reverend Run. One of the shorts, however, got a lot more attention than the rest: a two-and-a-half minute video of pop star Katy Perry singing a reworked version of her 2008 hit "Hot N Cold" with Elmo. The issue: the perception that Perry's outfit wasn't appropriate for a show geared toward children ages one to six.

After the clip hit YouTube Monday, Gawker ran a story that called attention to the video and Katy's look. Parents checking out the video began leaving critical comments like, "Couldn't she wear something that was more. oh idk. APPROPRIATE" and "I DO NOT want my five year old lookin at [that]!" But, as TMZ notes, Perry wasn't actually half-naked -- her outfit featured a flesh-colored mesh top that went all the way up to her neck, like a figure-skating costume.

Sesame Workshop, the company that produces the show, responded to the controversy this morning by announcing that producers have decided to pull the song from the broadcast version of the program. The clip will remain online at KatyPerry.com, however, so the singer's more mature fans can watch it. "'Sesame Street' has always been written on two levels, for the child and adult," reads a statement from the show. "We use parodies and celebrity segments to interest adults in the show because we know that a child learns best when co-viewing with a parent or caregiver. We also value our viewers' opinions and particularly those of parents. In light of the feedback we've received on the Katy Perry music video, which was released on YouTube only, we have decided we will not air the segment on the television broadcast of 'Sesame Street,' which is aimed at preschoolers."

The original version of "Hot N Cold" depicts a less kid-friendly on-and-off romance, and includes words that wouldn't end up on network televsion, let alone a children's show. Perry cleaned up the song for "Sesame Street," singing instead about wanting to play dress-up with Elmo, who has decided to run off and play tag instead. As the singer chases the beloved puppet around a cartoon city, she sings, "You're up and you're down/You're running around/You're fast then you're slow/you stop then you go."

Perry tweeted about her visit to one of the world's most famous neighborhoods a day ago, writing: "I can totally tell you how to get to Sesame Street! I've been, Elmo & I hang out." When she taped the show back in March, Perry sent a Twitpic of herself, arm around the fuzzy red puppet, with the caption: "Sunny day today! I think I'm in lurv... Sorry @rustyrockets!!!" (Rustyrockets refers, of course, to her fiance, Russell Brand.)

Neither Perry nor her representatives have issued any statements about the video being pulled from the show.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Alison - posted on 09/24/2010

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I would have no issues with my kids watching that. I'll probably actually show it to them on Youtube. But it was pushing the limits and Sesame Street did what they had to do after the feedback they got.

I feel bad for Katy though. I don't think it is her fault at all.

[deleted account]

Children would not pick up on whether shes got a bra on..its adults seeing this stuff..children do not think in an adult way.Its sad to see that we as adults would think that.My 20mth old loves this song of hers and sings it all the time..its her party piece lol.i dont like the outfit but i know my kids and my oldest is 6 would not even comment on her boobs at all..all i can see is the boob part of the dress..a child wont even care.

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18 Comments

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Jayde - posted on 10/05/2010

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I totally agree with Jessica. I would let my daughter watch this but i wont by her a bratz doll. My breasts are far bigger than hers & have a lot more cleavage than her (even though i always try to dress respectively) When i watched this i thought what cleavage?- she's wearing a fun dress & it isn't sexual at all. People definitely need to focus on more important things.

[deleted account]

I was reading about this on a blog and someone brought up a good point about Katy Perry on Sesame Street in general. It was: Katy Perry has made it clear that she doesn't want to be a role model. If it was aired and a child really liked the song then the parent might go looking for more "cute" Katy Perry songs and be horrified with what they find...lol. She's pretty much naked in most of her videos (or she's shooting whipped cream out of her boobies) and the words of the rest of her songs are not appropriate for little ones. She was definitely an interesting choice.

Kate CP - posted on 09/24/2010

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...all I see are bouncing titties. This was supposed to be for little kids??

Kelina - posted on 09/24/2010

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I think if the mesh had been a darker color like green or purple then you wouldn't have had this issue as less would have been visible, but definitely borderline appropriate for a kids show.

Jessica - posted on 09/24/2010

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I think it's totally cute and agree that the kids aren't looking at her tits, they are singing, dancing and loving elmo. People need to chill, this is harmless, something like Brats on the other hand is trashy.

Amber - posted on 09/24/2010

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I didn't think it was that big of a deal. Could she have covered them up more, sure. And since they just announced that she's going to tape a different episode, I'm sure she will. But is it really that big of a deal? My goodness. People will pick a fight over anything these days.

Heather - posted on 09/24/2010

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It was bad at all! I loved it and showed my son, honestly some parents need to get the stick out of their butts! I feel bad for Katy Perry because she was just having fun and wanted to be on Sesmae Street!

Candi - posted on 09/24/2010

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I didn't see the big deal with it. Yes she could have used more cup coverage, but other than that little kids aren't going to say, "wow thats inappropriate!". My daughter saw it on the news and she said "look its Elmo!" Prior to filming, the directors/producers should have said "OK girl, cover your knockers. this is a kid show" Honestly I didn't even know who Katy Perry was til about a month ago. Maybe they were trying to get publicity? WHo knows

[deleted account]

It is just for dress up.. But there could have been a little more coverage. Not that big a deal though.

April - posted on 09/24/2010

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Dawn, I agree...I can't stand Katy either. I've disliked her ever since American Idol when she was a guest judge. She was rude and acted like she was so famous that she couldn't be bothered.

[deleted account]

Seriously what was the costumer thinking? If they had made the sheer part a solid neutral skin tone there would be no issue. It's the fact she is not wearing a bra and it's obvious when she chases after Elmo.
Would the kids noticed or cared? No.
It was a good video otherwise.

Dawn - posted on 09/23/2010

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I think it was cute but yeah, a better outfit could have been made. Let me state that I can't stand this girl anyways!!!

April - posted on 09/23/2010

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i do think they cannot put all the blame on Katy...it is well within Sesame Street's power to tell her what to wear. It's their show...if she doesn't want to wear what their costume designer picks out, then that's too bad. so...they should have told her what to wear!

[deleted account]

It almost looked like she was trying to make then jiggle. Love the running scene (not!). You would think someone at Sesame Street would've noticed her knockers bouncing all around during filming and they could've asked her to put something else on.

Starr - posted on 09/23/2010

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Yes she should have picked a better outfit. Clevage is not for a 5 yr old to see.

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