- The Deep Dive
- November 29, 2023: Did Elmo Ruin Sesame Street?
November 29, 2023: Did Elmo Ruin Sesame Street?
This week on The Deep Dive: the story of IKEA’s airheaded mistake, Jennifer’s Body was criminally underrated and so was its costume design, Elmo may be cute but he also kicked all the adults off of Sesame Street, there’s a reason why it’s so cringe when your boss talks about Pride initiatives, and how did EPCOT go from being a city to an academic institute to yet another theme park in the Disney universe?
How This Couch Broke IKEA by fern (7:22)
When it comes to customer convenience, there’s a lot that IKEA gets right. But in this video, fern tells the story about a time when it was wrong about an innovative couch design – very, very wrong. How could a piece of furniture that used 85 percent fewer materials and had 90 percent less transport volume possibly have been such a flop among customers? And why was IKEA so confident about this new product with barely any testing? They may not have seen the disaster this couch would ultimately bring, but every Y2K kid who remembers the decade’s trendiest furniture could’ve spotted it from a mile away.
the criminally underrated costume design of Jennifer's Body by artatmidnight (19:44)
Spooky season may be long gone, but anyone who is aware of the cult classic horror flick that is Jennifer’s Body probably knows about how criminally misunderstood it was as a result of bad marketing to a misogynistic late-2000s audience. But have you ever stopped to think about its genius costume design? Luckily, in this video, artatmidnight breaks down Jennifer and Needy’s contrasting outfits and how they communicate innocence, sensuality, teenage status, mood, and control in a toxic relationship. What inspired the film’s costume designers to model Jennifer’s wardrobe after Japanese streetwear? Why do the film’s two main characters dress so differently and in what subtle ways does their clothing mirror each other?
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The Day Sesame Street Died by Entertain The Elk (21:22)
If you watched Sesame Street growing up, think back to your favorite character. Was it Big Bird? Oscar the Grouch? Cookie Monster? If you’re an Elmo fan, though, you might want to look away. In this video, Entertain The Elk takes a look back at the iconic TV show that taught children of all ages and walks of life how to read, connect with one another, and process some of life’s most difficult moments. But somewhere along the way, Sesame Street lost the plot, and that moment can be traced back to the introduction of one red furry little muppet. What was Sesame Street before Elmo and what did it become after? How did the show end up sanitizing its city street backdrop? And where did all the adults go?
The Hidden Tactics of Rainbow Capitalism by Rowan Ellis (53:25)
Every year, corporations proudly flaunt their performative politics by adopting a rainbow version of their logos for the month of June – before promptly switching back to business as usual by the time the clock strikes midnight on July 1. In this video, Rowan Ellis explores the wild, hypocritical world of rainbow capitalism and corporate activism so loosely held, that it’s completely abandoned at the first sign of right-wing backlash. When and why did brands start embracing their LGBTQ+ audiences? Which companies were first on the bandwagon and which were painfully inaccurate in their representation? And why does rainbow capitalism always feel so uncomfortable in office culture settings?
Journey to EPCOT Center: A Symphonic History by Defunctland (1:09:35)
As a devoted fan of Defunctland, I have to say even I had my reservations about this new experimental format (which seems to be an emerging trend in the video essay world but don’t quote me on that…yet). In this video, Defunctland brilliantly tells the story of Disney's development of EPCOT from Walt Disney’s death in 1966 to the theme park’s opening in Walt Disney World in 1982. How did EPCOT end up straying so far away from Walt Disney’s original vision of…a fully functioning city? And how did plans for its development go from an institute of the world’s brightest minds to a theme park where visitors can drink around the world? As Kevin calls out at the beginning of the video, I highly recommend watching it alongside this historical companion.
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Rabbits need breaks too…
Give yourself a breather with The Deep Dive’s non-video essay of the week!
OK, this might technically be considered cheating because this is a video essay disguised as an “I tried” video, but bear with me here. I fully went into this as a comfort guilty watch and came out of it absolutely shocked at the sheer amount of fraudulent brands that are plaguing TikTok and Instagram ads these days. However bad you think the problem is, I promise you it’s worse. And if you really want to buy this dress, just get the House of CB one.
Thanks for reading and happy watching! See you next Wednesday 💭
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The Deep Dive's Random Question of the Week
Cats or Dogs?
Curious about last week’s results? Here’s how your fellow rabbits voted:
What’s your ideal video essay length?
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