Tuesday, 22 September 2015

I is Big Bird

We've had the story of Elmo (and we know how well that turned out), so here's the story of the big yellow thing.

Caroll Spinney is the man in the bird suit, and this is the story of his life. While he had trouble with his father growing up, he seems to have had a decent childhood. He got into puppets early, and stuck with that. A bad incident on stage (bad spotlight placement) led to Jim Henson meeting him and offering him a job on the Muppets. He was given Big Bird pretty much straight away, but it took a while to settle into the character we have today. And Caroll is also Oscar the Grouch, so plenty of fun to be had all around. And he's still puppeting! (Although there is a stand in ready and waiting... as he has been for the last 15 years.)

Certainly the hardships of Caroll weren't like what Kevin had to go through, and so the documentary feels a lot less dramatic than Elmo's journey. Not saying that Caroll's was stress free, but there's a lot of work to make something out of smaller incidents. Caroll himself is quite nice, and we certainly get the feeling that he's happy with where he is in his life.

Who else shall we meet while we're walking down the street?


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