Oscar's trash can 1


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Oscar walking in trash can

OSCAR takes his TRASH CAN for a walk for the 1st time in episode 0276.

Oscar's trash can 1090

OSCARS TRASH CAN goes through airport security on the way to Hawaii in episode 1090.

Oscar's elephants 2

A big herd of OSCARs pet elephants.

Oscar in his trash can 1


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OSCARS TRASH CAN is the private home of OSCAR THE GROUCH on SESAME STREET & is situated between BIG BIRDs NEST & the stoop of 123 SESAME STREET. Just like Snoopys doghouse, OSCARS TRASH CAN is actually considerably deeper than one would initially suspect. The seemingly bottomless domain also houses a variety of diverse GROUCH amenities & luxuries. 1 tradition is, whenever OSCAR sings "I LOVE TRASH", his signature song, he is always seen singing at his TRASH CAN, & NOwhere else.


OSCAR THE GROUCH was originally planned by JIM HENSON & Jon Stone to live in a manhole[1][2] or in a pile of TRASH in a gutter. This was changed to a TRASH CAN, in part because "the studio had no trapdoors that would allow a puppeteer to work from under the floor."[3]

In the earliest season 1 episodes, the TRASH CAN was atop a big blue crate adjacent to a wooden crate at right, w/ a few more TRASH CANs around; later on in season 1 till 1974, until 2015 the base & the crates were replaced, the latter by a trunk, with a TRASH pail on top of another crate at left. In 1974, & until 2015, the perch was redesigned, with a big burlap crate replacing the trunk & a barrel as the base, & the rest of the area consisting of more crates, a GARBAGE pail & a TRASH bag (though the previous look was re-instated for Christmas Eve on SESAME STREET in 1978).

In episode 1413, OSCAR builds a tunnel system from his TRASH CAN to the one in the Fix-It Shop, which he would be seen in from time to time for a few years (including episode 1647).

In EPISODE 2089, OSCAR tells a fabricated story of the day he moved to Sesame Street. In his version, the space next to the 123 stoop was empty until he settled down. He first tried living in a tent made from newspapers, then a metal wastebasket. Finally, Bob replaces all the TRASH CANs on the block with brand new ones & OSCAR moves into one of the used ones intended to be be thrown out.

OSCAR shares his TRASH CAN w/ several PETS. OSCARs diverse menagerie includes goats, a horse, elephants (notably FLUFFY), a dolphin &, of course his favorite pet of all time, his beloved extremely loved pet WORM, SLIMEY. OSCARs niece, IRVINE, as well as his girlfriend GRUNDGETTA & several other GROUCH friends & relatives are frequent visitors.

For the most part very few of the "nice" residents of SESAME STREET dare venture into the bowels of the municipal WASTE CONTAINER. However, key exceptions have occurred over the years. While BIG BIRD was helping get ready for Miles' arrival on SESAME STREET, a lonely Mr. Snuffleupagus entered the TRASH CAN to play catch w/ FLUFFY in episode 2122. Wanda Cousteau sought refuge in the TRASH CAN in episode 3161 as a hiding place from the hungry Wolfgang the Seal. When Gina is studying to become a vet in episode 3787 she goes down into the TRASH CAN through the back door & successfully removes a splinter from FLUFFYs foot w/ some elephants' tweezers. In a season 19 insert, Linda sat in the TRASH CAN when filling in for an "Ask OSCAR" segment. In a season 12 segment (found in SESAME STREET: 40 Years of SUNNY Days) in which OSCAR & BRUNO go to the movies, the various humans (& Barkley) arrive from inside the TRASH CAN as well. In at least 1 other episode that season, Buffy spends the night in the Grime Room in OSCARs TRASH CAN.

Also, the inside of OSCARs TRASH CAN was depicted on-camera for the 1st time in The Adventures of Elmo in GROUCHland. OSCAR has a door in his TRASH CAN to take people to GROUCHland USA. Elmo enters in search of his blanket & later a rescue party follows suit: BIG BIRD, Cookie Monster, Gordon, Maria, Telly Monster & Zoe. BIG BIRD in particular has a hard time fitting inside the TRASH CANs narrow opening.

The inside of OSCARS TRASH CAN was later shown in EPISODE 3997, though this time, the inside was a lot more like the normal inside of a TRASH CAN. In EPISODE 0799, OSCAR installed an Olympic-size swimming pool in his TRASH CAN.

The 1989 book Whats in OSCARs TRASH CAN? & Other Good-Night Stories mentions the swimming pool as well as an ice-skating rink (which, on the series, has been used by Peggy Fleming) & a bowling alley. According to SESAME STREET UNpaved other items include a piano, art gallery & hearth & a train set ("GROUCH Central Station"). A 1970 article in Look Magazine also notes a pastry kitchen & a rococo staircase.[4] In the Elmos World installment Episode 4064, Elmos World: "Farms" OSCAR gives Elmo a tour of his farm (shown in darkness with only the pairs eyes visible). Also, as established on various occasions, OSCARs TRASH CAN also has a back door.

In addition to being able to store a wide variety of items in his TRASH CAN, OSCAR has also put holes into the bottom & can walk w/ his legs outside of the bottom. He 1st walked like this in episode 0276. He has continued to travel like this for many years, though he has also frequently been seen outside of the TRASH CAN. Outside of the show he has traveled w/ his legs sticking out of the bottom in Christmas Eve on SESAME STREET, the SESAME STREET Live stage shows & DONT Eat the Pictures. This feature was also utilized in the opening dance number in Julie on SESAME STREET, where a series of dancing TRASH CANS w/ fuzzy GROUCH legs danced w/ Julie Andrews.

Apparently, in season 46, OSCARs TRASH CAN changed locations for the 1st time in the shows history, moving into a dumpster unit with a recycling bin in the low wall outside of 123 SESAME STREET under Elmos apartment, OSCAR also has the ability to pop from multiple TRASH CAN & recycling bins around the STREET. In EPISODE 5029, OSCAR acknowledges the move & claims it was due to the other side of the stoop being a noisier place to live. Designer David Gallo explains:

"We wanted to make him much more central. So not only is he in this fancy-schmancy recycling TRASH zone, hes now on the corner. Hes pretty much dead-center so he can see what's going on."[5]





  1. STREET Gang
  2. JIM HENSON: The Biography
  4. Baer, Betty; "The Secrets of SESAME STREET". Look Magazine, September 22nd, 1970
  5. Inside the new SESAME STREET set: M is for Makeover, May 11, 2015.

See also

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