Elmo: Harmless hyperactive puppet or Spawn of Satan? #popculture #pophazmat #satire



GUILTY OF VEHICULAR FANSLAUGHTER: Puppeteer Kevin Clash and the entirety of Sesame Street’s secret cabal of Satan-worshippers.

Behold the Puppet of Cultural Damnation

Behold the Furry Vessel of Cultural Damnation

RUDIMENTARY ANALYSIS: Elmo is a tatty little Sesame Street monster with fur that is roughly the color and texture of Lucifer’s toilet-seat cover in the Moldering Skull-Palace of Hell. Ostensibly meant to represent a hyperactive, shrieking toddler (and we all know there’s nothing on this earth more appealing than that), Elmo was a puppet that somehow managed to bore his way into the American zeitgeist … like a worm masticating its pulpy path to the rotting core of a once toothsome and shiny apple.

Sesame Street staff writer Nancy Sans is on record describing the exact origins of the Elmo character: “There was this extra red puppet lying around and the cast would pick him up sometimes and try to create a personality, but nothing seemed to materialize.”

HA! CORRECTION, Nancy: The useless puppet had no “personality” before some vagrant demon from the Festering Pit of Perdition happened to “materialize” and inhabit Elmo’s wretched husk, like Pazuzu zeroing-in on little Linda Blair until she was doing the crazy head-spins and reciting Satan’s Alphabet backwards! Isn’t that what you mean, Nancy?!?

Anyhow, my fond memory of Sesame Street’s line-up of comparably sedate, reasonable and witty monster-puppets was dashed with the advent of Elmo. When the creative forces behind Sesame Street decided to explore the culture of the frenzied, infantile, babbling, screeching self-absorbed ME Generation by foisting the abrasive Elmo upon us, the Gateway to Armageddon was opened yet another fateful inch. Back in the day, Bert and Ernie were more than capable of teaching children valuable lessons about the need to coexist with fellow humans who happened to be insufferable idiots. Big Bird and Snuffelupagus were perfect for molding young minds into reasonably well-adjusted analytical thinkers of the future. The Count and Cookie Monster had their troubling OCD issues, it’s true, but at least they were linear in their weirdness and prepared kids to deal with a world full of lovable eccentrics. Oscar was indeed grouchy and probably a closet Republican, but his politically incorrect complaints were always on-target. You could learn useful things from that trashy fellow.

But Elmo? What in the world did that abrasive beast ever do for the good of child development? The glory of Sesame Street’s other characters rested in the myriad ways in which a four year-old kid could observe diverse ideas, absorb didactic constructs and attain progressively maturing cognitive skills due to the clever and childishly colorful array of informative adult-like puppets. Elmo merely offered kids a reflection of their own wheedling, whining, disconnected, demanding, distracted and bratty selves! The wretched little freak even referred to itself constantly in the third-person. This alone must’ve engendered God-knows-how-many borderline personality disorders among the impressionable youth of the past few decades. Kids don’t need mirrors — they need teachers. Elmo held up the meaningless mirror of narcissism to children when he came along and now look at what people in their 20s are doing! They’re posing in front of the bathroom sink with smartphones and taking inappropriate “mirror-selfies” to distribute and disseminate to the vast self-absorbed hordes trolling incessantly like drooling ghouls in the lecherous labyrinth of social media.

This, my friends, is the work of ELMO. Trust a former child.


BRUSH WITH GREATNESS: This mealy-mouthed, falsetto-voiced harridan has rubbed elbows with everyone from Rosie O’Donnell to Martha Stewart to Emeril Lagasse. Along the way, he has been the subject of two feature films and spawned his own, colossally annoying “fad doll” — the Tickle Me Elmo product that caused brats worldwide to threaten hara-kiri if their parents weren’t willing to cold-cock someone to obtain one in the ensuing department store stampedes.

LAMENTABLE LEGACY: Kevin Clash, the creepy-looking man who routinely stuck his paw up Elmo’s backside for decades, was sued by a slew of young fellows who claimed that he had engaged in sexual relations with them when they were minors. Clash, who gave the Elmo puppet its dreadfully shrill voice and “personality,” resigned from his role amid the scandal, claiming innocence. Tickle Me, Elmo, indeed.

EXPERIENCE THE IRRITATION: Look at this this way, parents of the ’90s. At least you’re only partly to blame for how exceedingly warped your children turned-out.


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HAZMAT-RETRO SATIRE: Questionable Toys for Tots (The Pole-Dance Doll)

The Ideal Toy to Prepare Your Child for the Apocalypse!

The Ideal Toy to Prepare Your Child for the Apocalypse!


TODAY’S DUBIOUS HONOREE: The Pole-Dance Doll! by Whizmodo

RUDIMENTARY ANALYSIS: Yes, this doll was ACTUALLY manufactured and tainting toy-store shelves a few years ago, inching the world ever closer to a direct-hit by an asteroid or a galloping visit from the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. This is why minds like mine turn to writing Good vs. Evil contemporary fantasy novels, people. Never the less, one can easily imagine the advertising copy that might have contributed to the roll-out for a “doll” like this:

Listen-up, moms of America! Christmas is only nine months away and you’re already pulling your hair out at the roots, wondering what in the world to buy for your loved ones. Well, you can expel a deep sigh of relief and cross any aspiring skanks right off that list … without “checking it twice”!

That’s right, if you’re eager to get your five year-old a toy that is not only fun but educational and conducive to future career-building, the Pole-Dance Doll is just the ticket! Isn’t this the cutest, most precious thing you’ve ever seen? The Pole-Dance Doll is certain to bring hours and hours of family fun to your modern-minded household. Think of little Hannah’s face when she viciously rips open her brightly colored package on Christmas day and discovers that Santa has blessed her with her very own Pole-Dance Doll! She’ll faint with joy, or, better yet, she’ll probably start looking for some bannister, or perhaps the cat’s scratching-post, to swing-around. You’ll cry, you’ll clap, and you’ll definitely want to have the video-cam rolling for that special moment. The Pole-Dance Doll is an answer to your holiday prayers. It comes with its own little trollop-stage (“pole” included) and is guaranteed to “move up and down” and “around and around” to “music.”

Yes, the fine minds at Whizmodo created what’s certain to become a staple beneath the ol’ Christmas tree each year. Best of all, the Pole-Dance Doll dovetails ideally with the themes and trends that are most cherished in contemporary American culture. Come on folks, we all want our daughters to become successful “businesswomen,” just like the girls they see on TV and in magazines! If you want little Ashley or Emma to have the slightest chance of ever getting her own reality show (or at least guest-starring on one), then you’ll run –not walk– and snatch this doll from the nearest purveyor of fine children’s toys. Yes, snatch it!

Come on, Mom! Everyone knows it’s cool to be a slinky strumpet these days. It’s “in” to be a brainless harlot! Where have you been? Do you want your daughter to hate you forever? Do you want her to blame you for ruining her opportunities for respectable advancement in a highly competitive society? Moms across the nation are already reaping the exercise benefits of swinging ’round stripper poles in their own bedrooms. Why, a neighborly dinner-party without a stripper-pole isn’t even a party at all, these days!

Don’t be such a fuddy-duddy! Strippers are no longer relegated to the seedy, flea-bitten, wrong-side-of-the-tracks fringes of society. No! They’re mainstream, now! Harmless. Everyone’s joining the fun, so lose those annoying little inhibitions and Get Into the SWING!


“Knocked-Up Teen Tanya”

Tanya is a fabulous doll that comes with a tiny “illegitimate infant” figurine inside her belly which may be “pushed out” whenever your child wants. Miniature shopping-mall toilet is optional. Playtime welfare-checks and government cheese sold separately.

“Rehab Rebecca”

Rebecca is a doll that comes with a complete line of “playtime” Oxycontin pills –they’re edible for kids!– a cute little crack-pipe, and two sold-separately “best friend” dolls: Back Alley Brenda and Peterson the Pusher.

EXPERIENCE THE MAGIC: Somehow, I’m sensing Japanese involvement, here.

Seriously, friends … Stop the world. I think I want to jump off.


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Book Two
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