Thanks for the great summary. This is one of the few older episodes that I recall seeing as a boy. I suppose just the fact of seeing a pet die made it memorable. I also admire Fred's "teaching by example" in this episode. This one is similar to the episode years later with the dead bird. It deals with the subject in a straightforward way, but also touches on the feelings involved & how to deal with them.
I remember seeing this as a kid too, and even watching highlights of it as an adult, it's really hard for me to remember that it was all scripted. The stillness and quiet of the whole thing makes it seem so real. As a kid I'm sure I thought it was all happening for real, and that Fred had no idea his fish was dead until he saw it floating there. But his reactions are so genuine, and appropriate. It's interesting to compare this episode to the Sesame Street where Mr. Hooper dies. While that too is a very touching episode, it's clearly very scripted, with each cast member delivering carefully crafted lines to make the point and teach the lesson. I don't get that feeling from this Neighborhood episode. There's not a lesson to be learned, only a situation to be presented and tools given so that the situation can be properly dealt with.
I too remember this one from childhood! What a great memory! Thanks so much for this site.
I too remember this episode which has not been seen in nearly 21 yrs nationwide. The Paley Center For Media Arts in LA & NY do have the episode available to view. The ENR in pittsburgh & Fred Rogers Center have them as well. I hope they plan to make available some of pre-1979 material to general public outside of Pittsburgh.
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