Bert and Ernie might sleep in separate twin beds, but it turns out they know everything about STDs and they want to help you protect yourself.
The sad fact is that this wasn’t a sanctioned Sesame Street PSA. It was an advertisement from Mately, an HIV/AIDS testing company, that has now received a cease and desist letter from the muppet owners, according to TMZ.
A spokesperson for Sesame Street Workshop told TMZ, “The Mately ad is an unauthorized, unlicensed use of our characters. We will be contacting Mately and the appropriate parties with a cease and desist letter instructing them to take this down.”
Mately got the message loud and clear — it’s removed all Bert and Ernie images from its site and says there was no intent to “tarnish the Sesame Street brand.”
Bert and Ernie already have had to contend with questions about their relationship, why they sleep in the same bedroom and, after 40 years of living together, why they’re not married. The Sesame Street Workshop clarified that because the two are muppets they don’t have sexual organs, and thus no sexual orientation.