Watching the entire epic shebang of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, Fred Rogers’ classic kids’ television series, isn’t easy. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be done. And you don’t even need to go to the Kingdom of Make-Believe to make it happen: It’s all online!
In the old days (1968–75), most seasons of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood had about 65 episodes, not all of which have made it online. It wasn’t until the ’80s that a more manageable 15-episode season became the norm. So, can you watch Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood online? Yes, you can watch most of it. Here are the easiest, cheapest, and best ways to easily watch and stream full episodes of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. We’re starting with the ideal (PBS!) and then working our way down to the streaming options that are a little tricky or unwieldy. Ding ding! Hop on your streaming trolley. It’s a beautiful day.
PBS Kids.org and the PBS Kids app
The purest way to watch Mister Rogers online is to just go straight to the source. PBSKids.org has a permanent player which airs vintage episodes of the series on a rotating basis. This means that they swap out new episodes from the “early years” (the late ’60s and early ’70s) on the first Monday of every month. So, over time, you could conceivably watch everything from 1968 to 1975. There are also some great clips like this interview with illustrator Eric Carle.
Okay, so you can get the ’60s and ’70s stuff from PBS, but what about the ’80s? Prime!
Perhaps the best way to watch Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood is on Amazon Prime. The organization here is fairly intuitive: Prime groups the various eras of Mister Rogers by “volume.” Technically, these are not complete seasons, because all of this falls under the umbrella of “The Best of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.” These episodes are curated, because, honestly, it would be super-overwhelming to just have everything up there. Still, if you want the show in its heyday, probably start with “Season 3” as Amazon defines it, episodes that originally aired starting in 1982. (The earlier volumes have stuff from the ’60s and ’70s, just like PBS does).
But, the Prime action isn’t just limited to the regular Prime videos. There’s also the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel. Essentially, this is a streaming channel that airs entire seasons of Mister Rogers. Currently, 105 episodes from the first year of the show, 1968, are available for streaming. You can try out the service free for a week before the $4.99 monthly fee kicks in.
Watching Mister Rogers on YouTube is possible, but if you go this route you certainly won’t be in the safe confines of the friendly digital neighborhood you seek. Yes, there are a ton of great clips and some complete episodes of Mister Rogers on YouTube, but you’ve got to be careful. The quality is all-over-the-place, and sometimes weird parodies will pop up on a playlist. Your best bet here is to search YouTube for something you want specifically like his famous trip to the Crayola Factory.
Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood is available on iTunes, but it’s probably not your best option. Apple has a smattering of episodes organized loosely by year, starting in 1981. These episodes are $1.99 each. So, unless you absolutely need the 1981 episode about divorce stored on your iPhone, this isn’t the easiest or most cost-effective way to watch Mister Rogers.