Tuesday, March 13, 2007

It's Time to Light the Lights

One of my favorite shows growing up was 'The Muppet Show'. I was around 10 or 11 and figured I was too old for puppets, but even my parents enjoyed it so our entire family wound up watching it together. Basically, I graduated from watching furry creatures teach me the ABCs to watching furry creatures try to put on a variety show. And they pulled it off.

My favorites were the band members, even if they were a small part of the show. Animal on the drums was the best. THE BEST! I still remember him dueling with Buddy Rich. Yeah, that same Buddy Rich! Don't know how they managed to get the celebrities they did, but take a look at some of these names:

Sylvester Stallone
Gene Kelly
Brook Shields (back when she was actually famous)
Carol Burnett
Roger Moore
Paul Simon
Johnny Cash (wonder if he thought he was hallucinating at any point)
Alan Arkin (sorry, Academy Award Winning Alan Arkin)
Dudley Moore
Wonder Woman oh...uh...Lynda Carter..yeah that's it
Diana Ross (couldn't have been Michael Jackson back then as he was only on his 4th nose)
Alice Cooper (wonder if the Muppets thought they were hallucinating at any point)
Harry Belafonte
Cheryl Ladd (the sexiest Angel ever)
Gilda Radner
Raquel Welch
Milton Berle
George Burns
Peter Sellers
Julie Andrews (before she flashed us in 'S.O.B.')
Bob Hope
Elton John
Steve Martin (back when he was funny)
And of course, Charles Aznavour. No, I don't know who he is either.

And I'm not even including some of the lesser stars like Liberace, Elke Sommer, Jean Stapleton, Danny Kaye, Liza Minnelli, Roy Rogers, Anne Murray (who I met - very nice), and Dyan Cannon.

They even had the living dead on twice. Carol Channing and Phyllis George both were guests during season four. Maybe back then they were only partly mummified. Too bad Joan Rivers didn't host at some point. They would have hit the triple.

How did Jim Henson do it? Think about a show like that happening now. Would any A-List celeb agree to it? You're working with puppets. Mark Hammill played Luke Skywalker in a 'Pigs in Space' skit. Luke Skywalker! And this was at the height of 'Star Wars' popularity. It would be like Tom Cruise guest starring on 'SpongeBob SquarePants'. Something I would actually like to see.

So did the show pay well? Did Henson have compromising photos? Were there massive amounts of drugs backstage? It was the 70's after all. Maybe after the shoot it was a massive orgy with Kermit and Fozzie tag teaming Miss Piggy while Gonzo was pulling a Scarface in a massive pile of coke. He had the nose for it. Plus, it would explain his bizarre experiments and stunts he would always try to pull, too. He was obviously on something to even consider half the shit he attempted.

Wonder if Beaker managed to get laid. I hope so. Poor dude was totally strung out.

Today's distraction: Help Gonzo properly calculate one of his crazy stunts. In this case getting shot out of a cannon.



French said...

Animal is the reason I started playing the drums..not sure if you've ever watched some of the Buddy Rich DVD's, but if you haven't, they're fucking incredible. That guy is a goddamn genius.

BeachBum said...

I had a friend that played and played well. When I asked him about Buddy Rich he said the following:

"I am so glad both he and Bonham (Led Zep drummer) are dead. Just so they could stop inventing shit I could never do."