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When we interviewed Sesame Street head writer Joey Mazzarino (almost exactly one year ago!), he revealed to us that almost every episode of the 40th season of Sesame Street would feature a “Hidden Gem.” The Hidden Gems are inside jokes, references, and appearances that only the most obsessive fans would get. So basically, they’re put in just for ToughPigs readers. Don’t you feel special??

So far, the gang over at the Muppet Wiki have found at least one Hidden Gem in every episode of season 40 except one. And with their help, we’re happy to present the Gems right here on ToughPigs in two parts. Did you catch any of the Gems? If not, be sure to catch the reruns and keep your eyes peeled for the following in-jokes!

HiddenGem4187Episode 4187: When Big Bird packs to move to a new habitat (hey, that’s the Word on the Street!), his suitcase features stickers from places he’s actually been, like Montana, Puerto Rico, and Hawaii.

HiddenGem4189aEpisode 4189: Recognize that guy on Baby Bear’s crayon box? That’s the Alligator King! Or rather, the former Alligator King, now that his youngest son has taken the crown.

HiddenGem4190aEpisode 4190: Apparently Joan Ganz Cooney and Lloyd Morrisett got tired of being founders of Sesame Workshop and started their own gardening company. Their names appear on Leela’s watering can and basket.

HiddenGem4191Episode 4191: Just imagine Mr. Johnson’s surprise when he stopped by Hooper’s Store for a bowl of soup and someone pasted a picture of the Ladybug’s Picnic on his menu! Well, he probably wasn’t all that surprised afterall.

HiddenGem4192Episode 4192: Do you think that having a picture of Jim Henson on the window of the laundromat helps the clothes get clean? Eh, it couldn’t hurt.

HiddenGem4193Episode 4193: Extra! Extra! The big story is about the porridge shortage, but “Clash Unabashed by the Red Smash” doesn’t get nearly as much page space.

HiddenGem4194Episode 4194: If you were Caroll Spinney, wouldn’t you hang out at Hooper’s Store? And read magazines about Oscar the Grouch? And be totally awesome? Yeah you would.

HiddenGem4195Episode 4195: Unfortunately, Richard Hunt’s epic biography of Placido Flamingo is not for sale on Only in my dreams.

HiddenGem4195aEpisode 4195: Caroll Spinney isn’t the only guy to chill with a cup o’ joe at Hooper’s. Sesame Street cameraman Frank Biondo has been known to frequent the store he’s been looking at through a lens for the past 40 years. Plus, he gets to use his break to read a magazine featuring Sesame‘s executive producer Carol-Lynn Parente.

HiddenGem4196Episode 4196: One of my favorite moments of the entire season was when Luis pulled the Teeny Little Super Guy out of a broken washing machine. Not because of the Teeny Little Super guy, but because of that befuddled look on Luis’ face.

HiddenGem4197Episode 4197: In a flashback to simpler times, Maria and Luis (both sporting some amazing ’80s wigs), their old friend Forgetful Jones passes by. I’m pretty sure that soon afterward, he was unaware that such an event had ever occurred.

HiddenGem4198Episode 4198: Breaking News: “Baker Falls From Grace” is the headline on today’s newspaper! That’s right, the headline is the news, not the news itself.

HiddenGem4199Episode 4199: In the hardest-to-spot (pun intended) Gem in the batch, the music from the “Dot Bridge” segments from season 1 is heard while Abby Cadabby’s freckles are scattered around the Street.

HiddenGem4199bEpisode 4199: In the same episode, one of Abby’s freckles hides out on a box of Biondo’s brand cereal. If you’ve been paying attention so far, you should recognize that name. Thanks for playing!

HiddenGem4200Episode 4200: Jon Stone was known for always keeping a pencil in his beard while directing for quick rewrites to Sesame Street scripts. And now we know that he really had so many because he sold them wholesale.

HiddenGem4201Episode 4201: When puppeteer Marty Robinson needs to get his shoes shined, I hear he insists for a real Muppet to do the deed. What a diva!

One half of the season down, and one half to go! Click here for part two of our look at the Hidden Gems of season 40!

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by Joe Hennes –

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