The Cookie Monster, a beloved figure of the popular children’s program Sesame Street, is much more than just a blue furry Muppet with a sweet tooth. Here are five intriguing facts about this iconic character that might surprise even the most dedicated fans.
1. A Sweet Illusion
Believe it or not, the cookies you see Cookie Monster indulging in aren’t cookies at all – they’re painted rice cakes. Real cookies contain grease that would damage the puppet, necessitating this clever, albeit less decadent, substitution.
2. From Munchos to Cookies
Before he found fame on Sesame Street, Cookie Monster made his debut in a different role. He appeared in three commercials for Lay’s Munchos Potato Crisps in 1969 under the name “Arnold, the Munching Monster”. Little did we know then, his munching days were far from over!
3. A Blast from the Past
Cookie Monster’s voracious appetite for cookies didn’t define him from the beginning. In a 2004 Sesame Street episode, he revealed that his original name was Sid, before he developed his infamous cookie obsession.
4. Meet Zobi, Nigeria’s Yam Monster
Sesame Street’s global influence has led to unique adaptations around the world. In Nigeria, they have their version of Cookie Monster named Zobi the Yam Monster. Since many Nigerian children don’t have access to cookies, producers gave Zobi a taste for a local staple: yams. His catchphrase? “Me eat yam!”
5. From Screen to Cyberspace
Cookie Monster’s influence extended beyond television and into the realm of cyber security. In the 1995 film Hackers, a virus named “Cookie Monster” made an appearance. This was a nod to a real-life malware program that would only halt its activities when the user typed “Oreo”.