Video: Mister Rogers’ Neighbourhood is something I recall as a feeling rather than a specific set of memories. Wikipedia claims there was a whole cast of characters — Mr McFeely, Pilot Ito, Officer Clemmons and a few dozen puppets — but I don’t remember them. With the passage of time, the show’s details have collapsed into a singular sense of comfort and safety, the sensation of laying on the carpet in front of grandma’s wood-panelled TV with the big, clicky knobs. Or, at least, that’s what I think it looked like.
Image: Screengrab via PBS Twitch
Fred Rogers instilled the value of imagination and conscientiousness in American children for nearly 40 years. While Australians may not have grown up under his guidance, chances are you’ve heard of his legendary kindness and red cardigan. Over the next 18 days, PBS is streaming every episode of his landmark show over Twitch without commercials as part of a fundraiser. If you’d like a glimpse at an iconic symbol of American childhood, feel free to revisit that place filled with ragtime and neighbours who like you just the way you are.