Photo by Atv
In January 29 1976, was released one of the most iconic tv shows of all time, ‘The Muppet Show’. The series is about Kermit the Frog, who is the manager of a cabaret-style theatre house, which invariably has more drama behind the stage than on it. He has to contend with wannabe-comedian bears, the smothering advances of Miss Piggy, crabby regular theatre patrons, homicidal chefs, livestock, not to mention making the weekly guest star feel welcome.
Stars: Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Richard Hunt
Creators: Jim Henson
To celebrate the 40th birthday, here are some of the curiosities about this show.
- The Swedish Chef was a favorite of Jim Henson and Frank Oz, as they both got to perform him. Henson was the head and voice, while Oz provided the hands. Frequently, one of the two would ad lib a line or bit of business, forcing the other one to keep up.
- Jim Henson wanted the show to end during the peak of its popularity and creativity – and it did. The final year featured the highest Nielsen ratings of its existence.
- Guest stars were allowed to appear on the show only once and never appeared a second time.
- An episode was usually filmed in three days.
- Animal, the Muppet drummer, was inspired by Keith Moon of The Who.
- Kermit and Waldorf are the only characters to appear in all 120 episodes.
- Three guest stars lived to be 100 years old. George Burns died March 9, 1996 at the age of 100. Señor Wences died on April 20, 1999 at the age of 103. Bob Hope died on July 27, 2003 at the age of 100.
- Many of the characters were redesigned early in the show’s run. Miss Piggy’s long hair and nose were replaced with shorter, curly hair and a shorter nose. Gonzo’s nose was resized, and Fozzie had his wagging ears and drooping mouth removed because Frank Oz felt they were unnecessary to bring the character to life.
- Besides the theme song, very few songs were actually written for the show. Most of the songs came from old comedy albums, vaudeville standards, and British music hall routines.
- The “Mahna-Mahna” number was originally performed on “Toast of the Town” (1948) (aka “The Ed Sullivan Show”).