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The Muppet Show is a timeless US TV show that first aired in the 1970s, and featured puppets created by Jim Henson. It was a variety show with the puppets as the presenters as stars of the show, and Henson's characters have remained famous to this day. Perhaps the best known of the Muppets is Kermit the Frog, featured in the picture shown at the top. He is the light green humanoid frog at the front. Kermit is the main host of the Muppet Show, and is a long-suffering boyfriend to Miss Piggy, a 'glamorous' puppet pig, complete with over the top make up and la-di-da attitude, but also with a mean bit of martial arts when she wants. The two of them are accompanied throughout the show by a number of their Muppet friends, such as Gonzo, Fuzzy Bear, and Animal, the mad drummer! There are also two old men (also puppets) who complain about how bad everything is, but to comic effect. All the characters are timeless, and the show was such a hit in the US that celebrities clamboured over each other to appear as a special guest star on the show. The show has had a few spin-offs, too, with a number of feature films with the characters and also the cartoon Muppet Babies, which had all the characters but in cartoon form, telling of their adventures when they were al babies in the nursery together. There are rumours abound that the Muppet Show is due to make a welcome return to our screens with some new material. Sadly, creator Jim Henson has passed away, but his work continues, run by others but still in his name. If the show does come back, I highly recommend it. Every now and then, you can still catch reruns of the original shows, and the films are shown on a regular basis as well. No doubt with Xmas fast approaching we will have A Muppet Christmas Carol on our screens within the next couple of months or so! A highly recommended show. Worth catching the reruns, worth owning the spinoff films on DVD, and will hopefully be a huge success once more if indeed the show does make a comeback. I'll certainly be watching it with my son.
It might well be time to play the music again as The Muppets are likely to be making a comeback despite the passing of their creator Jim Hensen the Muppets will soon be appearing in another movie and the plot apparently naturally leaves the way open for a new series. The hand puppets are something I remember watching when I was very young and I lived them, Kermit the host of the variety show and his troublesome leading lady Mis Piggy who was in love with him but also liable to karate chop anyone who offended her. This was a variety show with a fantastic cast of puppets and it had a really good combination of jokes and songs, amongst my favourite character were Animal the mad drummer and also the two old blokes who sat up in one of the boxes and hurled insults at the performers after saying that everything was rubbish. The show always attracted a lot of famous American stars who apparently were desperate to appear on the show, a bit like appearing on the Simpsons or some American sitcom as a special guest star. I do hope this show makes a comeback it is good family entertainment as kids will love the puppets and adults can enjoy some of the satire and the way the famous celebs are sometimes treated.
Jim Henson never thought that he would make a name for himself in puppetry, which when you think about it most people would agree. Yet he did and he, and the Muppets, are known thoughout the world to children and adults alike. I still have fond memories of watching Miss Piggy flirt and flutter her eyelashes at Kermit the frog and he then squirm with embarrasement. How I used to laugh out loud, in fact i'm giggling now! The love for the Muppets is clearly seen by the amount of products still available today. I was walking past my local Ethel Austin when a T-shirt caught my eye, it had Miss Piggy on it. On further investigation there was also T-shirts of Animal, Kermit and Fozzy Bear. There have been numerous films, as well as the TV series, but I personally prefer the earlier films, I must be showing my age. Some of the characters have also appeared on other programmes, where they have been interviewed as actual people. I even enjoy watching these interviews as it takes me back to my childhood.
God, if there is a programme that we need to end all wars, stop globalization, bring peace and harmony to the nations, stop abuse, calm storms and keep Ant and Dec at home and quiet, then its... The Muppet Show. It was the very first reality tv show but better than the rest due to the fact that it had real muppets in it rather than humans behaving like them. The show starts with the familiar back stage scene where Kermit, that lovable green frog (you see, before Henson you would not have put the words 'lovable' and 'green frog' in the same sentence) who is trying to hold the whole show together with a script in one hand and fighting off the charms of Miss Piggy with the other. The thing that has one reaching for the Who's Who book is the fact that they have the most incredible guest stars on! Hollywood queued up to get on this show! Fom the wackiest of American comedians (whatever happend to Billy Crystal?) to the straightest of politicians. I do believe they had Nixon on????? Who could forget Pigs in Space, a sort of a mickey take of Star Trek, 'tune in next week when you'll hear Dr Bob say....' they would every week turn heads up to the ceiling wondering where that voice was coming from! The Swedish chef with his unique way of making doughnuts of launching the dough into the air then taking a shot gun to it so then it would fall to the plate with a perfect hole through the middle of it..... The cast, the script, the show within a show, it was perfect, funny for all and I mean ALL of the family, topical, witty and even the musical numbers weren't bad. Rubbish?......It certainly was not!
IT?S TIME TO PLAY THE MUSIC If I was to write my top ten of childhood television programs there could only be one candidate for number one. It would have to be that kooky, crazy mixture of frogs, bears, pigs, penguins and talking vegetables. Yes I have adored the Muppets since as long as I cam remember. One of my fondest memories of Saturday afternoons was watching the Muppets after an afternoon of my dad watching the wrestling. I am sure I had a Fozzie puppet as a child. My sister definitely had a Kermit puppet. Nowadays I will go and see any new Muppet movies and make a note of watching them when they are on TV. I also like collecting merchandise especially the funky Palisades action figures. Most girls get jewelry and perfume for their birthdays Duskman buys me Muppets. I have a little Muppet scene on my windowsill and my 10 inch mega Gonzo is my absolute pride and joy. My other pride and joy is my box set of videos which contains 36 episodes on six video cassettes. This box set is exclusive to HMV and costs thirty pounds. . IT?S TIME TO DRESS UP BRIGHT For those of you too young to remember it, the Muppet Show originally ran for five seasons from 1976to 1980. 120 episodes were made of the Muppet Show. It was created by that genius of a man Jim Henson who also was the brain behind such classics as Sesame Street, Fragile Rock, The Labyrinth and the Dark Crystal. The show is set in the Muppet Theatre and is based loosely around the old style variety theatesr containing a motley crew of acts including a bear who is a hopeless comedian, a pig for a diva singe r and a mad Swedish Chef. Oh and they were all puppets! They were voiced by the talented Henson himself (RIP) Frank Oz, Dave Goelz and Richard Hunt. As well as the regular acts there is the guest star. They would normally be one of your top stars of the 1970s and would have some solo numbers as well as scenes where they interacted with the regulars In between acts there would be scenes backstage and in the dressing rooms of both the puppets and the star guests. It may sound strange but it was really good viewing. So why do I have such a special place in my heart for the Muppet Show IT?S TIME TO MEET THE MUPPETS ON THE MUPPET SHOW TONIGHT The first thing I should mention is the regular cast of characters. I am sure just about everyone (well apart from the really tiny tots) has heard of Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy. They are the Posh and Becks of the puppet world. To say that they have a love hate-relationship is an under statement Although Piggy can be funny when karate chopping everyone and generally acting the diva, she is probably one of my least favourite characters on the Muppet Show. I prefer Kermit?s personality. He is less manic and can be the only stable thing in the whole show when everything is going mad. He is the character the others look up to and want to emulate. I especially adore his Being Green song. My other main frog is his little nephew Robin. He is such a cutie and if he ever grows up will be just as good as his Uncle Kermit My favourite Muppet has to be Gonzo. He is one screwed up creature due to his freakish hooked nose and his da redevil antics. You can find Gonzo being shot from cannons, climbing; high poles and doing loads of mad stunts. He also has a true passion for chickens (I do not mind Muppet chickens) and all he wants to do is settle down with Camilla his lovely bird perhaps in a landmine infested war zone. That would suit him nicely. My other main man is Animal. This crazy dude sure is the ideal rock star, loud, womanising and a bit of a Neanderthal. He just needs to raise his eyebtows, shout and bash out the drums and he will get a laugh form me. Apparently he is based on Keith Moon whilst his hippy chick band mate Janice is based on the original rock chick Janice Joplin. (They play in the Electric Mayhem Band along with DR Teeth, Sergeant Floyd Pepper and Zoot). The other musician is Rowlf the dog. People think Kermit was the original popular Muppet but Rowlf was a favourite on the Jimmy Dean show in the 1960s. I like Rowlf?s tinkling on the piano and his very dry subtle wit. Rowlf?s major friend is Fozzie. I love this bear for his vulnerability and his perseverance. He just wants people to like him and for people to laugh at his very corny jokes. The people he wants to impress most are the two old hecklers Staler and Waldorf who sit up in the balcony and just annoy all the Muppets with their sarcastic comments and jokes which are just as bad as Fozzies. I have just mentioned most of the Muppets everyone knows but there are others that I adore. The monsters are pretty cool and not too scary. I particularly love Sweetums the big shaggy brown one with the big teeth and huge eyes and Thog the massive blue one. Sam the Bald Eagle always cracks me up with his search for taste, decency and normality!! There is Scooter the theatre ow ner?s nephew who is so eager to please. Plus there is the large cast of singing and talking penguins, fruit and vegetables and chickens. What a mad wonderful show. It?S TIME TO PUT ON MAKE UP The Muppet Show had regular mini skits with well known characters such as the Swedish Chef and Bunsen and Beaker. I got to know these mini adventures and looked forward to them just as much as the things happening on stage and back stage. PIIIIGS IN SPAAAAAACE! Who could forget the Muppets satirical take on Star Trek? I used to love saying Pigs in space in that exaggerated voice the announcer used. The skit was basically Piggy and two other male pigs (Julius Strange Pork and Link Hogthrob telling corny jokes and meeting strange creatures in their space ship the Swinetrek. MEEEP MEEEEE MEEEE Yes I know I have missed out the wacky scientists Bunsen Honeydew and his unwilling, tall skinny, flame haired assistant Beaker The Muppet Labs sketch was a hoot. Each time DR Bunsen Honeydew demonstrated an implausible invention whilst trying to do as much grievous bodily harm to poor old Beaker as possible. Beaker was known for his strange mouth and even stranger language that consists of the word meep!! HURDY GURDY BORK BORK The other cult Muppet I have missed out is the Swedish Chef. He is far more interesting to watch than Delia or Nigella and much crazier than Ainsley. He spent his whole career chasing live animals r ound the kitchen and talking in made up Swedish!! HERE IS A MUPPET NEWSFLASH Some people may not remember the Muppet Newsman. He looked so seventies in his brown and yellow checked jacket and spent most of his time trying to avoid falling objects. IT?S TIME TO DRESS UP BRIGHT The really good thing about the Muppet Show is that it is a program that the whole family can sit down and watch together. The humour works on many different levels so there is something for everyone to laugh at. A lot of the humour is slapstick with a heck of a lot of bad puns. Maybe that is part of the charm of the Muppet Show. The corny jokes and just mad stuff happening on stage will surely please the kids. However The Muppets like the Simpsons after them, works on a more sophisticated level due to the use of parody and pastiche. This is evident in the short sketches such as Pigs in Space, a take off of Star Trek and the Swedish Chef?s answer to most cooking programs at the time. The Muppets do not stoop to toilet humour or sexual innuendo for cheap laughs as they are funny enough without them. In fact one of the pilots was entitled The Muppets Show Sex and Violence, as an ironic reference to the lack of sex in the show. However there is plenty of cartoon style violence in the show but I would not worry too much about it although in today?s PC world this might just be cut out which would be such a shame! Yes Crazy Harry does like to play with dynamite and bombs as does Gonzo. Yes Piggy likes karate chopping everything in sight that displeases her. However I do not think it is harmful merely funny. 4;ust watching one of the Muppets flying through the studio really makes me chortle. It might not be suitable for children who can not tell the difference between real and pretend violence but I doubt there are very few children like that. IT?S TIME TO GET THINGS STAERTED The guest star is a major part of the Muppet Show. Certainly once it got established the Muppet Show got all the big names of the 1970s from all areas of show business including dancers, comedians, actors and singers.. One week you might have old musical stars such as Ethel Merman or Gene Kelly whilst the next you might have movie stars such as Brooke Shields or the cast of Star Wars whilst another week you might have pop stars or stand up comedians. The fun of it was seeing familiar faces singing and dancing with Miss Piggy, telling jokes with Fozzie and chatting away to Gonzo or Kermit back stage or in the dressing rooms. The guest stars were often asked if they wanted to do something special or work with a particular favourite Muppet. - When I look at my box set the best guest stars are one who do not trade on their name but really contribute to the show. I adore the John Cleese one as he helped write it. The Paul Simon one stands out for me because of all of his songs and his willingness to let the Muppet murder the sublime Scarborough Fair. I also love the Harry Belaonte one with his African puppets and his version of the Banana Boat Song (one my dad used to and I think still does murder all the time). Some of the episodes had themes. A particularly good one was the Muppets doing Alice in Wonderland with Brooke Shields. I think this paved the way for & #77;uppet movies such as a Muppet Christmas Carol. I found that the guest stars I was not so fend of were ones I had not really heard of or people of limited flexibility such as Sly Stallone. I feel the Muppet Show might not work nowadays. In the 1990s there was a new style Muppet Show called Muppets Tonight and it flopped rather badly. I feel there are many reasons for this. The days of the variety theatre have all but vanished and apart from the Royal Variety Performance there are no live shows with random strange acts. Secondly a lot of the guest stars that made the Muppet Show what it was are all dead and I feel the stars of today might not do as good a job as they are not a flexible as some of the older guest that they had on in the 70s. . I also feel they might want to promote their new film, album, book etc which would not give them a timeless feel. . If they did make a new updated show as there are always rumours on www.muppetcentral.com I would like to see guests who are not too much flavour of the month and who could act, sing and dance. People who I would like to see in a new Muppet Show would include Renee Zwelliger, Ewan McGregor, Hugh Grant, Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, Rowan Atkinson, John Travolta an maybe even Michael Flattely ( I just want to see the Muppets River Dancing) WHY DON?T YOU GET THINGS STARTED Part of what made the Muppets great was their musical numbers. The Muppets turned their furry hands to a wide variety of songs from old music hall standards to more recent pop hits. I especially liked the weird and wonderful Muppet only songs. The main one that come s to mind is MANAMINA a curious song with a rock star style Muppet and two pink trumpet snouted monsters. The catchy song goes ?manamina Doo Dooo, Manamina Dooodoo doo? the only problem with this song is that once heard you will be singing it to yourself all day long. The Videos The video box set is smartly presented in a cardboard sleeve. What I like most about the videos is that they are thematically linked such as comedians, singers etc. Video 1 Film Heroes Roger Moore Lynda Carter Christopher Reeve Mark Hamill Sylvester Stallone Peter Sellers 2 Singers Paul Simon Johnny Cash Debbie Harry Shirley Bassey Andy Williams Harry Bellafonte 3 Comedians Steve Martin Bob Hope John Cleese Bruce Forsyth Danny Kaye Victor Borge 4 Film Stars Brooke Shields Dudley Moore Raquel Welch Peter Ustinov Vincent Price Gene Kelly 5 Musicians Elton John Petula Clark Liberace John Denver Kenny Rogers Alice Cooper 6 Leading Ladies Juliet Prowse Ethel Merman Liza Minelli Twiggy Glenda Jackson Julie Andrews For those of you who are not so much Muppet freaks as me there are three best of DVDS that feature a compilation of clips. HMV last Christmas released my box set on DVD which I was a bit miffed at as DVDs would make it easier to find individual episodes. However th is DVD box set only contains 28 episodes. ON THE MOST SENSATIONAL, INSPERATIONAL, CELEBRATIONAL MUPPIYATIONAL I love the Muppets. I could go on about them all night but I am not going to. I really do not want to bore you stupid. The Muppet Show was a really unique show. It may now be seen as a kids show but I feel it is great as all generations love and adore this show. The characters are weird, wonderful and wacky but they are also well round end loveable. You truly care about the Muppets. The comedy is stupid but not puerile or offensive and the guests were real stars. I really doubt there will be a show to beat the Muppet Show. All I want now is a full box set with all 120 episodes plus the two pilots THIS IS WHAT WE CALL THE MUPPET SHOW
Being a jubilee baby (a proper silver one, none of this golden jubilee nonsense), I remember children?s TV when it was actually quite good. Forget the Hoobs, the Fimbles and especially the bloody Pokemon and go back to the days of Bod, Trumpton and my all time favourite show The Muppets. Yes it was silly, yes it was childish and yes, maybe it had too many song and dance numbers but it is still brilliant, the characters are still loveable and best of all, it's even better when you watch it again as an adult and understand everything that you did not as a child. For those who are too young, were generally otherwise engaged or just continually out of it during the early 1980?s, The Muppet Show is (or was) the creation of the late Jim Henson. It was born in the USA but the Americans being Americans did not really get it. Instead, Jim sold his ideas to an English production company and made his shows over here for many years, using a mix of English and American writers, musicians and puppeteers. He then sold it back to the Americans and made himself a fortune. The show was basically a very bad, weekly theatre variety show like the types you used to go and see before TV had more than one channel. The characters were singers, actors and musicians as well as the backstage crew, audience members and the weekly human special guest. Each week had someone famous such as Mark Hamill, Elton John, Glenda Jackson and Tom Jones. If you were a performer in the 1970?s and early 1980?s and had not appeared on the Muppet Show, you were nobody. The main characters were:- Kermit the Frog who ran the theatre and did the occasional sketch, song or dance. He is also a chart success with songs like ?It?s not easy being green? and ?The Rainbow Connection?. Kermit is the main man around the show and the one who everyone turns to when things go wrong. Miss Piggy is the Prima-Donna. She is pink, plump and completely gorgeous. She loves Kermit and hopes to marry him and have crosses between frogs and pigs. Rowlf once referred to them as ?Figs?. She spends her time grooming herself in her dressing room, flirting with Kermit and various human male guests and complaining about her shortage of stage time, obviously as she is the star! Fozzie is almost my favourite character. First and foremost he is a bear in a hat and bow-tie and tells very bad jokes followed by ?Wocka Wocka?. He would refer to himself as a comedian but the audience would usually disagree. Gonzo is the one most eager to please. He is a cross between a turkey, a chicken and a thingy but officially he is an alien. He is blue with a long bent nose and he spends his time being shot out of cannons or driving his motorcycle off ramps. His best friend is a chicken called Camilla. Gonzo seems to have a chicken-obsession but we won?t go into that here and now. There are dozens (maybe hundreds) of other characters such as Scooter the Gofer, The Swedish Chef who has a regular cookery slot and Kermit?s nephew Robin. The resident band consists of Animal on drums, Janice on Lead Guitar, Floyd on Bass, Zoot on Sax and Dr Teeth on Synths. They are called The Electric Mayhem and are sometimes accompanied by Rowlf, a dog with Richard Clayderman-like piano playing skills and the instinct to scratch himself and sniff other Muppets. The audience is made up of lots of different Muppets but the two regular hecklers are two old men - Statler and Waldorf - who complain loudly each week but still come back next time. A typical Muppet song and dance number would consist of the special guest singing their own song with the Muppets acting out the lyrics or just being a bit mental. On the Elton John episode, he sang Crocodile Rock surrounded by muppet-crocodiles who sang along while other Muppet characters danced in the background. You either get this sort of thing or you don?t. In short, The Muppet Show was weekly half-ho ur of mayhem, elaborate song and dance numbers, sketches such as ?Pigs in Space? and ?Muppet Lab? with Dr Bunsen Honeydew and Beaker, a special guest to either humiliate or to join in the fun and a lot of jokes thrown in. I loved the Muppet show. The Muppet phenomenon has grown massively over the years and they have made at least seven movies, most of which I am proud / ashamed / loathed to admit I have on video or DVD. The show has not dated very much considering it is over 30 years old. The human guests look a bit funny with their haircuts and clothes but the Muppets themselves are timeless. My three year old niece loves them and will sit still for half an hour for nothing else that TV can produce these days. To finish off, my favourite Muppet is??usually Animal, although I love Beaker too. No, sometimes it?s Fozzie. I just can?t decide. Can you?