Don’t You Be His Neighbor.


Beloved as the Emmy Award-winning Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood has been for decades—my sis couldn’t get enough of the show when we were kids—and rightly honored as creator Fred Rogers, above, was in his lifetime—he died in 2003—ya gotta admit that there’s something just a little…odd about his persona.

I mean, think about it: Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood is a show where, ostensibly, kids, unaccompanied by adults, go to the house of a single, middle-aged man, who is there, alone, on his lunch hour.

A guy whose middle name is McFeely.

That Rogers’ intentions were, of course, so honorable only makes writer/scholar/media critic/co-sponsor of my recent Iowa lecture Kembrew McLeod‘s disassembly of the TV host’s airy monologues just that more wicked. By isolating Rogers’ trademark, singsong platitudes (“I’m glad you’re my friend…I like you very much”), and adhering them to droning drum tracks, a kind of loopy hypnosis takes over…certainly Rogers’ nefarious intent. It’s long (9:15), but worth staying with to the final utterance.

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#1 cz on 05.14.09 at 6:48 pm

you ought to be ashamed of yourself.

#2 KRZ on 05.15.09 at 4:55 pm


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