Daniel's New Friend:
I may be a bit biased but I think Chrissie is a fabulous character. As someone who used crutches and wore braces as a little girl, I would have loved to see her on TV when I was growing up. I love how Chrissie asks for help when she needs it (and doesn't just expect people to do for her.) I also think it's really good that she's just as assertive about when she doesn't need help. I like that she goes to school, and makes a point to tell them she does. I like that she tells Daniel, and Miss Elena and Prince Wednesday about different ways she adapts while playing running games. And I really, really appreciate that the other characters asked and waited for permission before they touched her braces. My favorite part of this episode? Definitely when Chrissie was like, "Daniel, can I show you something? This is how you hold reins," because it had nothing to do with her disability, and it showed she's clearly knowledgeable about other things!
Same and Different:
What I liked about this one was that Chrissie was not the token "different character feeling different." She remains very well-adjusted. As such, I really liked that Daniel was featured as the one who realized a way he was different and felt marginalized. I loved when Chrissie identified with him, though, and said, "I use these crutches to walk and wear these braces. I'm different, and people see it," because it is so true. But it isn't necessarily a negative thing. The other thing I loved about this was the taped piece at the end about the twin boys (one of whom uses a walker) because that was SO me and my sister growing up. I'm so glad Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood actually sought out and found a child with a disability to feature, because it's so important. (Oh! Also! Chrissie's crutches and braces are super accurately portrayed, and the way she uses them is so spot on. It's clear the Daniel Tiger team did their research and I love it!)
If you have kids in your life between the ages of 2 and 8 and want to introduce them to people with disabilities, I think this is a great way to start that conversation. Likewise, if you have a kid in this age range that is disabled, this is a great way to show them they are not alone!