Mr. Noodle

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For the food product, see Mr. Noodles.
Mr. Noodle
Sesame Street character
First appearance November 16, 1998
Portrayed by Bill Irwin
Information
Gender Male
Mr. Noodle's brother Mister Noodle
Sesame Street character
First appearance January 3, 2000
Last appearance 2003 (before his death)
Portrayed by Michael Jeter
Information
Gender Male
Ms. Noodle
Sesame Street character
First appearance 2002 (videos)
April 15, 2003 (series)
Portrayed by Kristin Chenoweth
Information
Gender Female
Mr. Noodle's Other Sister, Miss Noodle
Sesame Street character
First appearance 2007 (videos)
October 16, 2007 (series)
Portrayed by Sarah Jones
Information
Gender Female

Mr. Noodle and his siblings—Mr. Noodle's brother Mr. Noodle, Ms. Noodle, and Miss Noodle—are characters who appear in the "Elmo's World" segments during the educational children's television program Sesame Street.

Mr. Noodle was played by Broadway actor Bill Irwin, who had previously worked with Arlene Sherman, executive producer of Sesame Street and co-creator of "Elmo's World", in short films for the program.[1] When he became unavailable, Sherman asked her friend Michael Jeter to replace Irwin as Mr. Noodle's brother Mr. Noodle, which he accepted enthusiastically,[2] calling it his favorite role in 20 years.[3] Jeter was in the role beginning in 2000, until his death in 2003.[4] Kristin Chenoweth played Mr. Noodle's sister Ms. Noodle,[4] and Sarah Jones played Mr. Noodle's other sister Miss Noodle. All four actors playing members of the Noodle family have won Tonys.

Michael Jeter (left) played Mr. Noodle's brother Mr. Noodle. Kristin Chenoweth (middle) played Ms. Noodle. Sarah Jones (right) played Mr. Noodle's other sister Miss Noodle.

Writer Louise A. Gikow calls the Noodles "a dynasty of mimes,...in the tradition of great silent film comedians like Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, and Harold Lloyd".[4] They made mistakes, but solved them with the help of "enthusiastic kid voice-overs",[4] which empowered children and helped them feel smarter than the adults. They were silent in order to allow Elmo to do all the talking, and to give children the opportunity to respond to what they saw on the screen. They would physically and humorously act out their replies to Elmo's questions.[4][5] According to writer and "Elmo's World" co-creator Judy Freudberg, "Mr. Noodle, who never speaks, is all about trial and error. When you throw him a hat, he acts like he's never seen one before. Kids feel empowered watching him because they can do what he can't".[6] According to Sesame Street research Lewis Bernstein, the characters, whom he called "bungling", gave young viewers "the opportunity to figure it out" before the adults did.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Herman, Karen (2004-07-20). Archive of American Television., event occurs at 3:31
  2. ^ Herman, Karen (2004-07-20). Archive of American Television., event occurs at 5:10
  3. ^ Oliver, Myrna (2003-04-01). "Michael Jeter, 50; 'Mr. Noodle' on Sesame Street". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f Gikow, Louise A. (2009). Sesame Street: A Celebration— Forty Years of Life on the Street. New York: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, p. 169. ISBN 978-1-57912-638-4
  5. ^ Clash, Kevin, Gary Brozek, and Louis Henry Mitchell (2006). My Life as a Furry Red Monster: What Being Elmo has Taught Me About Life, Love and Laughing Out Loud. New York: Random House, p. 77. ISBN 0-7679-2375-8
  6. ^ Davis, Michael (2008). Street Gang: The Complete History of Sesame Street. New York: Viking Penguin, p. 339. ISBN 978-0-670-01996-0