Thursday, November 4, 2010

Kitchen Pictures, Pt. 2

Thanks to the keen eyes and sharp memories of a few readers, one question has been answered regarding the pictures hanging in the kitchen. Looking back at the very first episode (one which I hadn't seen in quite some time), sure enough Mister Rogers goes to his "map" to show viewers the way to Mrs. Russelite's house.

Now if someone can just point me in the right direction with this third picture with the yellow border, we can put this curiosity to rest...

Kitchen Pictures

A few weeks ago, Neighbor Scott left a comment when we looked at Episode 1390. He asked about the two pictures that hang in Mister Rogers' kitchen on either side of the refrigerator. Scott's comment/question:
Ever notice the picture on the right side of the fridge in the kitchen? It changed to a picture of the "modern" neighborhood model (ushered in with blue walls). But it reverted back to the older picture very shortly--probably in 1979 when production resumed after a few years off. Anyone ever do a screen shot of that older picture and blow it up to figure out what neighborhood model it depicted (i.e. the b/w years, the early color years?) I wonder why that picture only changes for a short time.
There are a few things that we know for certain. The picture that most often hangs on the right side of the refrigerator goes all the way back to the earliest episodes. In Episode 0002, Mister Rogers shows this picture which depicts the Neighborhood of Make-Believe as it is arranged throughout a majority of the MRN episodes. In Episode 0002, the picture was hung in the kitchen to the right of the refrigerator.

At some point over the next few years, a second picture was added to the left side of the refrigerator -- possibly as part of an episode storyline. The picture is seen below in screenshots taken from Episode 1070 and Episode 1235.

As far as I can tell, these pictures stayed put for the next few years until Episode 1326. This is the point where Mister Rogers paints the walls of the house blue. As you can see below in the screenshot from Episode 1329, the NOM picture on the right side of the refrigerator has been moved to the left.

But the pictures didn't just swap locations. As can be seen in the screenshot from Episode 1446, the other picture was replaced.

Then in 1979, as the "modern" episodes of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood began, the first two pictures were back in their original locations (screenshot below from Episode 1461).

Curiously, these pictures continued to jump around as they can be seen in Episode 1758 in opposite locations, yet again.

So location questions aside, what are these pictures that Mister Rogers has hanging in his kitchen? Well the first, the picture from Episode 0002, is clearly the modern Neighborhood of Make-Believe. But the other two are a bit more difficult to recognize.

The other drawing/painting appears to be a landscape of some sort but not anything I immediately recongize from the Neighborhood program. The photograph with the yellow border, on the other hand, shows a street lined with buildings. Is this a shot of the Neighborhood model used during the show's opening and closing? Or maybe an arial image of an actual street?

As I continue to go back and document episodes of MRN (still a LONG way to go), I will definitely be looking out for any close-up shots of these pictures. In the meantime, if anybody has any details about these pictures, please chime in!