Grouchland USA

Grouchland USA.

Grizzy Grouchland alley

Grizzy sitting in a Grouchland alley way .

Grouchland USA, " the land of a thousand stenches " , is the hometown of Oscar the Grouch in The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland. Prior to the film, in Sesame Street episode 2648 ( & then repeated as episode 2899), Bob visited Grouchland , a neighborhood which was the opposite of Sesame Street, although it was called Grouchytown. In the film, however , the only known way to get to Grouchland , despite apparently being in America, is through a swirling door portal in Oscar's trash can on Sesame Street. Visitors are then deposited, through a pipe, onto a pile of trash bags, the gateway to Grouchland . Grouchland is ostensibly run by the Grouch Mayor.

Grouch Architecture

Grouchland is a teeming metropolis , populated solely by Grouches, littered with trash, ranging from small , messy piles to huge mounds . Trash is not just on the streets as trash, however . A living embodiment of the saying "1 man's trash is another man's treasure " , Grouch land incorporates trash of all kinds into the very fabric of the city's architecture & economy . Trash is prized as better than " good " stuff . The buildings are tall but lopsided , resembling stylized versions of the worst urban tenements . Though many Grouches still appear to live in trash cans, many of the buildings also serve as homes , sporting tilted jigsaw - like windows , crooked doors , & a teetering floor placed on top of another . The entire city skyline is angular & juts in odd directions . Cars & garbage trucks drive to & fro , adding to the smog , & the occasional Grouch Dog wanders the street (while a Grouch parrot is on display in the marketplace ) . Oscar also nostalgically mentions the old septic tank .

Grouch Commerce

Grouchland Shops

The Grouch marketplace

Grouchland 's business district is a thriving marketplace of shops & services , most of them centered around trash or just much general Grouch surliness .

Storefronts include the Book Dumpster , the Wilting Rose florists , the Car Mess , the Tone Deaf music shop , Bad Humor Man's ice cream cart & a restaurant called The Rotten Egg . Patrons can buy a quart of muck or a glass of Icky Yuckee at the Inconvenience Store .[1] The bank of Grouchland is the 1st Savings & Leave Us Alone , while female Grouches can receive a make-over at the Ugly Parlor. For entertainment the local cinema plays such movies as Basically It Stinks starring the Grouch celebrity Sharon Groan. Although , most of the Sesame Street visitors find accommodation at the Grouch land Jail.

Outside of the city itself , surrounding environs include a forest teeming with very grouchy animals & such locales as the steep Mount Pickanose, Huxley's castle , & Da Dump, the domain of the Queen of Trash & a kingdom all to itsel .

Oscar has referenced the Rusty Bucket , a Grouch jazz club . " Can't wait for the sound of 12 broken trombones playing different tunes at the same time ! "[2]

Behind the Scenes

Grouchland Cinema

A Grouchland movieplex & Sharon Groan.

Design Team:
Val Strazovec • (conceptual designer)
Alan Cassie • (production designer)

Grouchland , like many other Muppet sets , relies heavily on forced perspective, creating an enormous landscape , vast in relation to the Grouches & other Muppets, but still able to accommodate human visitors . Wide camera angles & other techniques made the space seem more open .

Design consultant Val Strazovec was largely responsible for the essential design & look of Grouchland, & he discussed his approach in the film's production notes: "At 1st, they thought I had gone too far with Grouchland. They envisioned a real town with the trash being the trash, but I said 'no , no , no , this is such an opportunity to show something that isn't tradition . The whole thing should be as grouchy as those who live there . ' Grouchland is about crankiness & fun . I thought , let's make it look silly, make it look funny. Almost like a child would draw , with crazy angles . It was crooked . The foundations were real but we twisted them ."

In addition to specially fabricated Grouch houses & props , real actual trash was a vital ingredient . The props department visited flea markets & other places , collecting 10 truckloads of suitable trash.


  1. Allen , Constance. Unwelcome to Grouchland, Random House, 1999.



See also

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