Slimey the Worm (also simply known as Slimey) is a light and dark orange striped worm that is the pet and friend of Oscar the Grouch on Jim Henson's Muppet show Sesame Street. Introduced in Season 13 (1981-1982), he is played by Jerry Nelson and is the smallest of all characters on Sesame Street, being only 7 cm (2¾in) His small size does not affect his attitude of being one not to wince at the sight of extreme activities. As Lou Berger, head writer for Sesame Street, put it, "Slimey shows viewers that even the smallest creature can be the most heroic, and that's an important thing for kids to see." Slimey has done many extreme things, including winning a gold medal in the Worm Olympics, parachuted from a plane, been shot out of a cannon whilst kissing girlfriend Glo and become the first worm in space. At first Slimey and his family did not talk, communicating by squeaking and wriggling, Slimey would be held up to Oscar's ear to talk to him. He and his family now, however, have digitally enhanced squeaky voices. Slimey's voice is done by Martin P. Robinson. Slimey's birthday is on February 18
In season 29 (1997-1998), Slimey undertook a 6-week journey into space. With his landing on the moon, Sesame Street changed directions from teaching children about basic literacy and numeracy, adding basic science. Slimey was accepted by WASA, or the Worm's Air and Space Agency (a parody of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, or NASA), as part of the lunar program. He then trained rigorously to become an astroworm and was finally chosen as part of the mission's international crew, showing viewers that practice makes perfect. The rocket was launched using Snuffleupagus' trunk. The journey went through many troubles including the international crew's crisis but eventually landed on the moon, which was televised live by Kermit the Frog. The rocket ship landed in dramatic fashion, splashing into the water. Fortunately nobody was hurt. Slimey was the first to get out of the rocket ship and therefore became the first worm on the moon. The separation of Slimey and Oscar showed the rarely-seen soft side to Oscar. The journey explored concepts such as the distance to the moon and the difference between heavy and light, as well as how scientific exploration occurs, with Slimey and the crew performing experiments and collecting samples. The mission included the song "Slimey to the Moon" sung by the famous Jazz singer Tony Bennett to the tune of "Fly Me to the Moon" by Bart Howard.
Slimey has many friends, both worm and not worm, and also a worm family. Listed here are Slimey's main friends and his family.
Slimey is not only the pet of Oscar the Grouch, but also the only character with whom Oscar admits being friends and liking. Slimey is said to bring out the best in Oscar. The friendship between the two is understood, where they do not express their feelings for each other but act in a manner which shows their strong relationship. Oscar likes Slimey because they share common interests like the love of rain, mud, and soil, and the fact that Slimey doesn't talk to him when he is trying to sleep. The two do many things together, including taking mud baths and just hanging out. In Season 36, Oscar sang the "Worm Workout Song," a parody of the song "YMCA", while Slimey and his worm friends stretched and wiggled. Each night, or at the end of each episode (from season 35 onward) Oscar reads to Slimey chapters from the book Trash Gordon, a parody of the Flash Gordon comic strip. The book involves Gordon fighting many creatures and ends with a review of the letter and number of the day. When Slimey went into space, Oscar was distraught and could not mask missing Slimey, showing a side of Oscar not seen before. Oscar's friendship with Slimey demonstrates the difficulties some children find in making friends.
On February 14, 2000 (episode #3882), Valentine's Day, Glo Worm, a volunteer fire fighter, entered Sesame Street and became the larva love of Slimey. They both announce their affection for each other but Glo is called away to fight a fire and Baby Bear is put in charge of distracting Slimey as he waits anxiously for his beloved to return. The pair hit it off so well due to their shared fondness of extreme activities, which is illustrated in a scene where they get shot out of a cannon while kissing. Another moment that featured the duo showed the couple dancing to salsa music.
Dusty and Eartha are the parents of Slimey and Sloppy. Dusty, the father, is a dark and light striped worm that is personified by the circular black glasses and brown overcoat that he wears. Eartha, the mother, has the same light and dark orange skin as her son, Slimey. She is personified by the long curled eyelashes and country hairstyle commonly sported by women of the 1960s.
Sloppy, which is short for "Sloppy Jalopy", Oscar's car on which she was born, is the yellow and brown striped baby sister of Slimey. She was born in Season 26 (1994-1995) to Dusty and Eartha to demonstrate the pressures that come with becoming an elder sibling and how to cope with it through Slimey's actions to his new younger sister. This action by Jim Henson has periodically dealt with the theme of becoming an elder sibling as many of the young viewers watching Sesame Street would be going through that change. The most recent version of this is the birth of Curly Bear, the younger sister of Baby Bear in 2003.
Squirmy is a light blue and dark blue striped worm who personifies a person from the country and is cousin to Slimey. She has only ever been introduced in the book The City Worm and the Country Worm by Linda Hayward, in which Slimey and Squirmy exchange visits, with Slimey going to the country and Squirmy going to the city, or more specifically Sesame Street. In the end both decide that their own environment is best for themselves.
Here are listed all episodes which revolved around Slimey: