Throwback Thursday: A New Tiger in the Neighborhood

Nearly 45 years after Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood was created, a successor to the legendary show premiered last week on PBS: Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.

The title character doesn’t live in the “Land of Make Believe,” though. The 2012 incarnation of Daniel Tiger is supposed to be the 4-year-old animated son of Daniel Striped Tiger, who was Fred Rogers’ first hand puppet, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Rogers died in 2003 from stomach cancer, and episodes of his show are available online and continue to air on many PBS stations. But in 2010, the board of his Pittsburgh, Penn., based production company began soliciting ideas for new programming that would bear his name. They turned to Angela Santomero, known for co-creating another popular animal-hosted cartoon, Blues Clues, which ran for 10 years on Nickelodeon.

This isn’t exactly mom’s “neighborhood.” But the creators did include plenty of references to the beloved original, like the red sweater and sneakers that the title character wears, the trolley, some of the music — and the subject matter. Just like Rogers once did, Daniel Tiger tries to teach a new generation the same lessons of encouraging compassion and curiosity, and how to handle new emotions.

Are you missing the old days yet? It’s always a “beautiful day in the neighborhood” on YouTube! You can watch one of the old-school episodes below.


Join the Conversation

Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!