Word has just been released that Kevin Clash, the creator and puppeteer of the worlds most beloved character, Elmo, has resigned amid accusations of a sexual affair with an under-aged individual.
The execs at Sesame Workshop released the following statement today:
Sesame Workshop’s mission is to harness the educational power of media to help all children the world over reach their highest potential. Kevin Clash has helped us achieve that mission for 28 years, and none of us, especially Kevin, want anything to divert our attention from our focus on serving as a leading educational organization. Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding Kevin’s personal life has become a distraction that none of us want, and he has concluded that he can no longer be effective in his job and has resigned from Sesame Street. This is a sad day for Sesame Street.
What will Clash’s resignation mean to the future of Elmo?
While Sesame Street is taking measures to replace Clash and the voice and puppeteer for Elmo, it is this blogger’s opinion that no one will be able to do it like Clash. And what will this mean for future sales of Elmo merchandise like Tickle Me Elmo and Elmo Costumes? With the man who gave birth to Elmo officially out of the picture, will Kevin Clash/Elmo merchandise be more collectible, or will it be the new stuff that people seek to own. Will shoppers be less inclined to dress up their child in Elmo costumes for Halloween or buy licensed toys because of the reason behind the resignation. What do you think?
I am sure that there are extremists out there that will want to ban Elmo but I certainly hope that doesn’t happen. I hope that Elmo products continue to bring joy to young children because kids are too young and innocent to know about the circumstances behind the scene. Clash managed for 28 years to keep his personal life separate from his work. He has not admitted to the allegations against him. Regardless of the outcome, people should not deprive their child of enjoying the most wonderful character ever to grace Sesame Street.
What do you think? Would you still by an Elmo Costume or toy for your child knowing that Kevin Clash has been accused of having a sexual relationship with a 16 year old? Share your comments with us.