It has long been rumoured that the popular Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie are homosexuals. The pair live together in an apartment in the basement of 123 Sesame Street and sleep in separate beds in a shared bedroom.
Sesame Workshop (formerly The Children’s Television Workshop) has continually denied rumors about Bert and Ernie’s sexual orientation and one of of their often used statements reads:
“Bert and Ernie, who’ve been on Sesame Street for 25 years, do not portray a gay couple, and there are no plans for them to do so in the future. They are puppets, not humans. Like all the Muppets created for Sesame Street, they were designed to help educate preschoolers. Bert and Ernie are characters who help demonstrate to children that despite their differences, they can be good friends.”
Some of Bert’s interactions with female characters in fact, appear to show that he is attracted to women: he seranaded Connie Stevens in the Some Enchanted Evening segment of a first-season episode of The Muppet Show, and recorded a song about his girlfriend, I Want to Hold Your Ear, which was released on several albums.