Episode info from trusted sources

minor muppetz

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Last night the wiki finished season 10 in terms of full episode rundowns.

One interesting-sounding episode is episode 1313, with Gregory and Maurice Hines hanging out on the street. For years the page for Mr. Snuffleupagus mentioned that Snuffy once danced with them (the info was provided by Michael Earl), I always assumed this was an insert (especially since the wiki had images from a few inserts with them for years), wasn't expecting it to be a street scene, but to be fair, I usually don't think about whether celebrities were featured in the plot of a single episode. And technically, I don't know that this scene wasn't repeated as an insert in future episodes. As I was reading that guide, I figured out early that it was in that episode.

One of the last episodes of the tenth season introduced a Muppet named Gloria. I wonder if she ever appeared again. Actually, I feel like I've recently been learning of a few Muppet characters who have appeared multiple times who I either hadn't heard of or been too aware of (like Richard), particularly as regular characters (like Mario, the boy from the Two-Headed Monster: Pencil segment, I feel that seems like the kind of character who would have been one-shot but I've seen he made a few appearances). My guess is that Gloria was performed by either Michael Earl, Brian Meehl, Kathy Mullen, or Bob Payne, but that's just a guess.

Many of Bruno's appearances in the episodes that have recently been guided have things that seem intriguing. Okay, so for the most part, it seems like in a number of these times he's seen not holding Oscar's can while Oscar is elsewhere, which means somebody else would have been wearing the character (but there have been scenes I've seen where somebody else would have definitely been performing Bruno). But it also seems like there's scenes that start with the usual configuration of Bruno with Oscar but then Bruno sits the trash can down, which means they'd have to stop tape, get Spinney out of the costume and get somebody else into the character. I know the show's always been pre-recorded, though the street scenes used to be done in one take (could that have changed by then?), but it does seem like that'd be time-consuming.

I looked at the guide for episode 1301, which has a scene with the cast complaining to Bruno that he hadn't taken their trash yet, only for Oscar to pop up and defend Bruno, making them apologize. Interesting that for once Oscar is defending somebody that the cast is mad at. I remember a long time ago, somewhere on the forum somebody talked about this scene and thought it was his debut. While we now know it wasn't, I feel like this scene would have been a good first appearance for the character, since it sounds like it wasn't known than Bruno was handling Oscar's can at the beginning. Then again, this was only the characters third appearance, coming weeks after his first two appearances, so it pretty much introduced the character and concept for those who missed/forgot about those episodes.

Aside from Bruno being one of my favorite obscure characters, a lot of his early episodes sound like episodes that I wish Sesame Workshop would put out (and am a little surprised they haven't yet). Like episode 1261, with Jerry Nelson as a director and Richard Hunt as an actor (and even without the novelty of Muppet performers acting on-screen, the plot of a movie being shot at Hooper's Store sounds like an exciting episode), or episode 1313, the aforementioned episode with the Hines brothers on the street (okay, maybe any episode with a celebrity visiting the street for more than one scene seems exciting, no matter how known they are now).

Hmm, season ten guides have been completed, I should check and see if the original television-obsessed Telly appeared past episode 1257 that season (I don't remember seeing him mentioned in any other guides, though there were many cases where I just skimmed through the guides, and I probably overlooked some guides that previously had incomplete info).
 

minor muppetz

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Every episode from season one now has a full guide.

Interestingly, there's one episode from the first season I've read about that I can't find in any of the guides. In Caroll Spinney's book, he says that there was a script in the first season where Big Bird wanted to go to day care, and made a fuss over not being included, which helped Spinney decide that Big Bird should be portrayed as a child instead of an adult.

I thought I looked through all the first season guides, yet I can't find it. Maybe I missed one without realizing it, or maybe the script never made it to air, or maybe Spinney was misremembering, perhaps it was actually from season two (though if it was I'd expect it to be one of the earliest episodes of the season, which Muppet Wiki has full guides for), or maybe Big Bird actually wanted to do something different than go to day care and Spinney misremembered the desire (though I don't recall any guides mentioning Big Bird throwing a fit over not doing something fun that the kids could do).

Some more observations regarding season one episodes:
  • I wondered if any of the three episodes featuring Henson #1 - episodes 86, 116, and 121 - featured more lessons on the number one, maybe during the street segments (the first season show content lists Henson #1 as the only segment about that number during the first season). It seems episode 116 is the only one to really teach the number in a street scene, with Gordon talking about body parts he has one of, though in one of those other two episodes, Henson #1 follows a street scene that ends with Big Bird saying that he can at least count to one.
  • I should have taken note long ago, but it seems like in the first season, Mr. Hooper often had his own inventions, often with terms like "Super Hooper" something in the title (like... I want to say "super Hooper two maker").
  • Rufus appears in a few street scenes, which I did know a little about, looks like Rufus talks here, like he did in Land of Tinkerdee, though a year earlier he had already become a silent character for Hey Cinderella. I wonder who performed him in these scenes. My guess is Caroll Spinney, since he's the performer who was on the show on a daily basis, but it could have been Jim Henson or Frank Oz. I can't remember if any of the scripts feature Rufus with Big Bird or Oscar. Or maybe it was a rare role for Daniel Segren.
  • Outside of the first episode, it looks like there's only one other episode in the season to feature Ernie in the main street story. Can't remember the episode number, but it has Oscar looking for a job. Of course the scene takes place in Ernie's apartment as opposed to outside on the street, but it is part of the plot and wasn't a segment meant to be repeated in other episodes.
  • It seems most of the episode scripts include scripts for the Muppet/cast inserts when they debut, I have a feeling they don't for the animation or live action skits (but I don't know that for sure... I've seen a handful of detailed information on sketches that don't have images on the wiki), but judging from the wiki guides, it looks like the script for episode 122 doesn't include info on the rare "Answer Lady #II". The Muppet Wiki page for that recurring insert does include descriptions for a few of them, with second season EKAs - hopefully it's one of those segments (the scripts would most likely list it under the same title - not to mention having the same "season code number" and/or episode number for first appearance).
 

hooperfan

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Every episode from season one now has a full guide.

Interestingly, there's one episode from the first season I've read about that I can't find in any of the guides. In Caroll Spinney's book, he says that there was a script in the first season where Big Bird wanted to go to day care, and made a fuss over not being included, which helped Spinney decide that Big Bird should be portrayed as a child instead of an adult.

I thought I looked through all the first season guides, yet I can't find it. Maybe I missed one without realizing it, or maybe the script never made it to air, or maybe Spinney was misremembering, perhaps it was actually from season two (though if it was I'd expect it to be one of the earliest episodes of the season, which Muppet Wiki has full guides for), or maybe Big Bird actually wanted to do something different than go to day care and Spinney misremembered the desire (though I don't recall any guides mentioning Big Bird throwing a fit over not doing something fun that the kids could do).

  • Rufus appears in a few street scenes, which I did know a little about, looks like Rufus talks here, like he did in Land of Tinkerdee, though a year earlier he had already become a silent character for Hey Cinderella. I wonder who performed him in these scenes. My guess is Caroll Spinney, since he's the performer who was on the show on a daily basis, but it could have been Jim Henson or Frank Oz. I can't remember if any of the scripts feature Rufus with Big Bird or Oscar. Or maybe it was a rare role for Daniel Segren.
If I recall, there's a brief moment in "I Am Big Bird" that shows Frank Oz talking to Will Lee with the Rufus puppet
 

Oscarfan

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Interestingly, there's one episode from the first season I've read about that I can't find in any of the guides. In Caroll Spinney's book, he says that there was a script in the first season where Big Bird wanted to go to day care, and made a fuss over not being included, which helped Spinney decide that Big Bird should be portrayed as a child instead of an adult.
Caroll also claimed to have performed the Elmo puppet as "Baby Monster" at some point. Given how long ago those shoots took place and how much they did during them, his memory on certain details would naturally be fuzzy. It might not have been from season 1, but it might have been from an early season nonetheless.
 

minor muppetz

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After I posted about the day care episode not actually being in season one I saw in the sandbox page for unidentified episodes that somebody added info that it's not in any of the wiki's first season guides that are now complete, also saw it point out that Spinney referred to Jeff Moss as the episodes writer but it notes that can't be the case because Moss wasn't head writer in season one, in this case I actually feel it'd be odd that he'd remember who wrote it but get the season wrong (and currently we don't know if he's right about the writer), but I think Moss was still a writer in the first season (I head an interview that he was originally just hired to be a writer before he decided to write songs for the show). I don't think the head writer was the only writer to write all the episode plots.
 

minor muppetz

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Although the first season guides have been completed, I've seen that the Muppet Wiki guides for episodes 43 and 83 still do not list where all the known Noggin edits occur in the episode (or any unknown cuts).

I know that the CTW Archives program guides note that those guides are printed before final edits and some segments listed might not be listed, but I've noticed a few that, as it turns out, weren't in the episodes after all.

Like episode 1277, which previously mentioned a scene with Telly Monster. It would have been great to have known of a season ten Telly Monster appearance besides his debut (and it was probably taped). In fact I didn't see Telly Monster mentioned in any season 10 guides past episode 1257. I guess that was the only broadcast appearance of Telly in his original form.

And episode 1319, where the guides listed "Miscellaneous: Song, Leslie Mostly", which seems to have been replaced with "Kermit News: The Invisible Man". I guess we won't know what that guide was referring to regarding Leslie Mostly (unless we find that there was a song involving the character).

I wonder if the wiki guides should note that these were noted in the program guides (I don't think they do often, I'm thinking the Telly one might be more worthy of noting since it seems it was meant to be a one-time street scene). I wonder if these should at least be noted in the sandbox page for script inconsistencies, which does note a few cases where the program guides list segments not in the scripts that Muppet Wiki references.
 

muppet maniac

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Interestingly, there's one episode from the first season I've read about that I can't find in any of the guides. In Caroll Spinney's book, he says that there was a script in the first season where Big Bird wanted to go to day care, and made a fuss over not being included, which helped Spinney decide that Big Bird should be portrayed as a child instead of an adult.

I thought I looked through all the first season guides, yet I can't find it. Maybe I missed one without realizing it, or maybe the script never made it to air, or maybe Spinney was misremembering, perhaps it was actually from season two (though if it was I'd expect it to be one of the earliest episodes of the season, which Muppet Wiki has full guides for), or maybe Big Bird actually wanted to do something different than go to day care and Spinney misremembered the desire (though I don't recall any guides mentioning Big Bird throwing a fit over not doing something fun that the kids could do).
I looked through the guides for season 1 as well, and there is an episode where Big Bird dreams of being able to attend kindergarten some day. He didn't make a fuss about not being included or being the right age to attend. In fact, there was no drama at all. I forget the episode number, and I'm too lazy to dig it up, but more importantly, this implies that Big Bird was already a child that first season.

After I posted about the day care episode not actually being in season one I saw in the sandbox page for unidentified episodes that somebody added info that it's not in any of the wiki's first season guides that are now complete, also saw it point out that Spinney referred to Jeff Moss as the episodes writer but it notes that can't be the case because Moss wasn't head writer in season one, in this case I actually feel it'd be odd that he'd remember who wrote it but get the season wrong (and currently we don't know if he's right about the writer), but I think Moss was still a writer in the first season (I head an interview that he was originally just hired to be a writer before he decided to write songs for the show). I don't think the head writer was the only writer to write all the episode plots.
Jeff was head writer in the early 70s, mostly for seasons 2 and 3 (he is credited as head writer up until season 5, but I remember reading an old article somewhere that he was going to pursue his own theater projects after season 3, meaning the third season would have been his last as head writer, but sure enough, he ended up staying for seasons 4 and 5. What made him change his mind, I have no idea, but he did).
 

minor muppetz

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Some great recent revelations/curiosities from recently-added info.

It turns out there's a season 9 episode involving an unnamed dog who might be Barkley. I would have thought if he were in season 9 he'd be called Woof-Woof, but it's possible he was unnamed then given a name, though it's kinda cutting it close if he goes from being unnamed to being named Woof-Woof to being renamed Barkley all in one year. Though I've seen a Facebook comment years ago from a fan who remembers an episode with the character where they try to figure out his name, being unable to see more than a W on his name tag, and eventually find out it's Woof-Woof (I would have thought that would be his first appearance).

Olivia's first appearance was fully guided. I saw the previous description mentioned her disliking Gordon treating her like a child, I assumed this one had the "I'm a Big Girl Now" song and thought maybe it was just one scene in her first appearance, but I see that's not the case and it's not in this episode. I was confused at first after reading that she and Gordon had different descriptions for each other based on not seeing each other for so long, when I remembered the old description I was confused, thinking this plot would have to come before that.

I like that Olivia mentions Gordon's afro, referencing the past actors (I think Hal Miller had an afro, not really sure about Matt Robinson), though it is odd that Luis and Mr. Hooper don't seem to think about how Gordon used to look (retconned already?).

I saw a few season 11 guides mentioning unnamed monster characters and wondered if it was Telly during his transitional period between television-obsessed and worrying Telly (since those likely wouldn't refer to him by name, more likely just needing a monster and the puppet just happened to be used). After reading the guides once and then the Telly page I see that the scripts do denote that it's the Telly puppet (I'll have to check past editing history to see if the info was there before the guides were expanded and it just wasn't noted). Interesting that during this transitional period, he mostly spoke in monster grumbles, similar to Elmo originally talking in mumbles. I guess they really wanted a monster character who didn't talk coherently (well, the Two-headed Monster had recently been added to the show).

And there is one sketch that notes a monster that I think is Telly, based on Scarecroe's "to do" list. There's a sketch where Suzanne Farrel supervises as Grover, Herry, and another monster stretch at a barre, and Scarecroe's "to do" list notes two different (later) episodes with a Suzanne Farell sketch listed as "At the Barre", with one saying it has Herry and Telly while another says it has Herry and Grover. I'm not sure if it's common for inserts to be given significantly different titles in later scripts (are any first season inserts where the title refers to Cookie Monster or Grover as simply "monster" "re-titled" in later scripts to use the names they eventually got?). I don't know what to make of a segment with only one unnamed character not being mentioned in a sketch listing where all the other featured characters are named (even just listing "monster" would make sense), it would make sense for later scripts to refer to him as Telly after he was established (assuming it is that character), but weird that a later script would leave Grover out of the character listing.

And I looked at another recently-completed season 11 guide today, where Oscar goes to the dump. It sounds both interesting and weird. So he plays a trick on others by singing "ta da dump" which sounds like "to the dump", but doesn't really want to go to the dump at the time, when he plays the trick on Bruno he believes him and ignores his insistence that it was a joke (seems a few early Bruno appearances have him mistaking tricks Oscar pulls, at Oscar's expense). And after returning (after having liked the place), he sings it again and Bruno again misunderstands. Also, this episode has Oscar transported both with Bruno carrying the can and using his traveling can, neat that an episode had both.
 
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