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The Muppet Show Characters Names
The Muppet Show rocked. And still does. For me at least. As a child, tt was the highlight of my week and I never missed a show. I ate up every single moment of slapdash absurdity and always caught Kermit’s famous inept attempts to rid himself of Miss Piggy.
The best thing about the Muppets was the fact that I watched it with my dad – meaning that it appealed to him as much as it did to me. Despite the 20 year age gap, we both rolled around in mutual appreciation of this often very satirical parody of life in a musical hall.
The Muppet Show
The Muppet Show came into being in the late sixties, a product of the imaginative mind of Jim Henson. Two shows (pilots) were created but, at the time, the Muppets didn’t gain a foothold in the tricky, fast flowing waters of TV land.
It wasn’t until 1976 that the Muppets appeared again – only this time around, the Muppets found an audience. The show ran for five years, until 1981. However, it spawned a host of spin off movies, further embedding the show in the hearts and minds of its audience. Oddly, some 15 years after the original shows ended, in the mid-nineties – my daughter discovered a liking for the Muppets almost equal to that of mine and my dad.
That just evidences the Muppets timeless appeal.
The Muppet Show
The seven films that the Muppet Show generated were:
- The Muppet Movie
- Muppets From Space
- The Great Muppet Caper
- The Muppets Wizard Of Oz
- The Muppets Take Manhattan
- Muppet Treasure Island
The Muppets Christmas Carol
All were well received (again by young and old alike) and can now be bought on DVD. The shows were also packaged up and sold as ‘Season One’ etc, though initially via video release.
Muppet Show Venue
The premise of the Muppets was based around an old cabaret style theatre. Supposedly, the central theme was the ‘acts’ themselves.
However, the behind the scenes shenanigans were also a big part of the show – which created a second perspective for the viewing audience.
We got to watch the somewhat incompetent ministrations of the backstage director, Kermit the Frog – who, to be fair, had the best interests of the show at heart.
Unfortunately he was often hindered by the tomfoolery of his performers and his runner/go-fer, Scooter. Added to all this was Kermits’ sometime girlfriend and nemesis, Miss Piggy.
Kermits' reluctant association with Miss Piggy was the foundation for many an unfortunate accident (for Kermit) and of course generated many of the shows funnier, slapstick moments.
Statler & Waldork. Champion Hecklers
As the show established itself, several sketches began to appear on a regular basis. The Muppet News Flash, Pigs In Space and the Swedish Chef, to name but a few. Also highlighted in the shows were the comedy performances of the rather hapless Fozzie Bear.
Lacking in any real comic talent, Fozzie often found himself heckled by two old men in the balcony, the infamous Statler & Waldorf.
For me – the Statler & Waldorf double act was one of the highlights – though I suspect that the popularity of the two characters was probably incidental.
However, that didn't prevent the two miserable old hecklers from becoming among the most popular of the Muppet characters.
Muppet Show Guest Stars
During the five years that the show was on air, a whole range of stars appeared – though initially it was seemingly a tough job attracting famous folks to send themselves up and/or become involved in some of the more comedic scenes.
However, as the show gained in popularity, the stars were literally queuing up to put in an appearance. Some of the more famous names that appeared were:
· Elton John
· Diana Ross
· Sylvester Stallone
· Peter Sellers
· Bob Hope
· Vincent Price
· Johnny Cash
· And over 120 other various film, singing and dance stars
It’s quite hard to believe, thinking back, how much the show packed in within its 30 minute time slot. Or even how much work it must have involved. Although the Muppet Show wasn’t Jim Hensons’ only creation, it was certainly up there with the success he found after he established himself with Sesame Street.
For me, my childhood memories will always include the Muppet Show. I know all the characters - and remember some of the funnier, slap stick scenes like I’ve watched them yesterday. And before I go, I have to name my favourite Muppet.
Probably a surprising one due to the fact that he had such a small role in the grand Muppet scheme of things … Animal. The craziest, nuttiest and altogether most unpredictable percussionist since the late, great Keith Moon. And allegedly the guy that Animal was based on.