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Added by Pumpkinate

on 29 Sep 2010 09:22

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Greatest Muppets

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People who added this item 3  Average listal rating (1 ratings) 10  IMDB Rating 8.1 
1. Sam and Friends (1955)

Name: Kermit the Frog
First Appearance: Sam and Friends (1955)

Description: Rowlf the Dog may have been the first muppet to become famous, but today few icons are as easily recognizable as the green frog. He debuted as a general lizard-like animal, though he evolved creatively into a frog. He has humble beginnings, having grown up in the swamp, but he was always meant for bigger and greater things.

Kermit is the leader of the muppets who they often look to for the next course of action, as he's one of the few straight characters. He's not overly silly or outrageous - instead, he prefers to engage in intellectual discussion and head a good production to entertain audiences. A side-effect of him being one of the few normal muppets is that he's often frustrated with the madness surrounding him.

Kermit's design includes green fabric, ping pong balls for eyes, an angular face, and a spiky collar slightly lighter green than the rest of him.


People who added this item 2  Average listal rating (0 ratings) 0  IMDB Rating 7.1 
2. The Jimmy Dean Show (1963)

Name: Rowlf the Dog
First Appearance: Purina Dog Chow commercials (1962)

Description: He may have been created for such an insincere purpose as advertising, but darn it if he isn't lovable! He's light-hearted and silly (but not to a fault), and can be found playing the piano most of the time. Rowlf spent a lot of time on The Jimmy Dean Show, being the first muppet to be considered famous.


People who added this item 791  Average listal rating (570 ratings) 6.8  IMDB Rating 8.3 
3. Sesame Street (1969)

Name: Big Bird
First Appearance: Sesame Street (1969)

Description: Long before Elmo, Big Bird was the character kids identified most with on Sesame Street. His original design could easily be considered awkward compared to today's. His personality has changed as well - back then he was a goofy big ol' bird who would dance and sing on a whim, whereas now he's a lot more mild-mannered and calmer. He lives in a like-sized nest on Sesame Street with his stuffed teddy bear Radar.

One of Big Bird's most important moments was his dealing with the death of Mr. Hooper. Death is something that children have such trouble understanding and dealing with, and this instance is the most famous in all of children's programming to address this issue.



* * * * *



Name: Grover
First Appearance: The Ed Sullivan Show (1967)

Description: One of the many muppets first used on The Ed Sullivan Show, Grover ended up being apart of the trio of blue monsters that consisted of him, Cookie Monster, and Harry Monster. Despite the fact he's an adult on the show, he appeals to children in many different ways. He speaks very formally, without the use of contractions, and gets into very fantastic adventures. He's silly and sweet in his interactions with children and guest stars. He is able to work a variety of jobs, often creating very basic and yet very fun situations for himself (but, in the case of Grover the Waiter, for example, not always others). When needed by others, he dons a red cape and helmet and becomes Super Grover, suddenly being able to fly. This just illustrates how helpful and caring he is about others.



* * * * *



Name: Cookie Monster
First Appearance: Unaired Wheels, Crowns and Flutes commercials (1966)

Description: He started life in an unaired General Foods tv spot advertising for Wheels, Crowns and Flutes. His name was the Wheel-Stealer, and he was accompanied by two other muppets that were named after the other two snacks, the three being hungry for their assigned products.

He would be used in more commercials over the course of the next three years until his debut on Sesame Street. When he finally did debut, he was a glutton of practically everything, eating things like letters of the day (not cookies with icing shaped like a letter - actual foam letters) and miscellaneous random objects. Causing great havoc and inconvenience for his neighbors on Sesame Street, Kermit especially. During the street's early years, Cookie Monster was like Guy Smiley in that his personality frightened children.

While he still eats foods of all kinds to this day, he has become most known for eating cookies. Making this especially apparent is his being the main character of the "Letter of the Day" segment of Sesame Street, where his job is to introduce the letter of the day - written on a cookie in icing - to children but not to eat the cookie. Being unable to control himself, he always succumbs.

Where Elmo refers to himself in the third person, Cookie Monster uses simple language and replaces first-person words of all kinds with "Me" - ie, "Cookie fill me tummy." He also goes "Ohm-nohm-nohm while he eats. Sesame Street has received criticism for Cookie Monster's promoting bad eating habits for children, leading many to think his personality would be changed and he'd become the "Veggie Monster". Cookie Monster actually acts as an example of what not to do, and he'll continue to eat cookies and other things until the show is canceled. Which will be when the world no longer has children or television.



* * * * *



Name: Oscar the Grouch
First Appearance: Sesame Street (1969)

Description: Though Oscar's always been grumpy and loved the disgusting, his color didn't originally complement this fact. It's hard to imagine the grouch as anything other than the green monster we all know and love - but even orange, the personality was all there. He lives in a trash can, which could lead to an underground home in the sewer considering all the possessions he's able to fit in it. He talks a big game, but has been caught on more than one occasion playing and laughing with children, immediately getting back into his trash can and closing the lid at the sound of passers-by who he wants to think of him as a mean sort of a muppet.



* * * * *



Name: Ernie
First Appearance: Sesame Street (1969)

Description: He sure loves his rubber ducky! With Bert and Ernie, a turnaround is made from Jim Henson playing the straight character (Kermit) and Frank Oz playing the one who's a little off (Fozzie or Piggy). Henson's Ernie is the silly character, but not in a way that bothers anyone besides his roommate, Oz's Bert. He's very happy, and seems mostly oblivious to Bert's agitation, finding whatever annoyance he notices amusing.


Name: Bert
First Appearance: Sesame Street (1969)

Description: Though Bert has his own silly points, he's generally the one at the brunt of Ernie's humor. Even with Ernie irking the ka-blammo out of Bert, the orange guy still knows he can come to his roommate when he's sad. Bert is very good at consoling Ernie. He loves pigeons, and has even created a little number called "Doin' the Pigeon" in honor of them, complete with pigeon coos. Bert and Ernie together are two of Sesame Street's most prominent adults.



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Name: Mr. Snuffleupagus
First Appearance: Sesame Street (1971)

Description: Snuffy debuted as a creature never seen before by any of its inhabitants, introducing himself to Big Bird. When Big Bird tried to tell the adults about him, they passed him off as Bird's imaginary friend. Over the years the adults kept on missing Snuffy, often coming very close to seeing him but missing him by sheer chance. Many of the other muppet characters saw Snuffy throughout this time, but never the human adults.

In 1985 the adults finally saw him and accepted his existence. This was partly done so as not to discourage children from telling their parents about things, especially sexual abuse. Since this happened, Snuffleupagus has stayed Big Bird's best friend and has appeared often in the episodes as an accepted visitor of the street.



* * * * *



Name: Elmo
First Appearance: Sesame Street (the early 1970's)

Description: Though Elmo existed as a muppet on the street for years, he wasn't of the forefront at the goings on there and went by the name "Baby Monster". After being given the name "Elmo", a character to go along with, and a bunch of puppeteer changes Kevin Clash took him to new heights, especially during the nineties. His now-prominent role on Sesame Street is the cause of much debate - the kids love him, as he embodies a child in the toddler years (without all the crying and temper tantrums), whereas adults think he doesn't add the same level of intelligence and humor to the show that the other muppets do.

Elmo is 3-and-a-half years old, making him the youngest main character on the show. He has gets curious whenever a question is raised, and his "Elmo's World" segment gives him an outlet for answering his fish, Dorothy's, questions. Along with Elmo have come a string of similarly-young characters like Zoe and Abby.


People who added this item 1025  Average listal rating (782 ratings) 7.2  IMDB Rating 8.6 
4. The Muppet Show (1976)

Name: Fozzie Bear
First Appearance: The Muppet Show (1976)

Description: Like Rowlf, Fozzie can be quite silly, but it's his passion more than just a subtle personality trait: he's a true comedian, though some (like Statler and Waldorf) will contest that point. Whereas Rowlf mostly minds his own business, Fozzie is very outgoing and likes to try to make people laugh. Kermit often gets frustrated with him, as his ideas aren't always realistic. Fozzie needs Kermit's practical perspective and Kermit needs Fozzie's spirit, and as such despite vastly different personalities they're best friends. Kermit always remains the leader, however, and thus Fozzie always has to run things by him before he incorporates them into the show.

Even though most of the muppets can be said to provide comedy relief, Fozzie Bear is one of the few who intends to do so - not out of jealousy, malice, or lack of social skills, but because he genuinely means to entertain.



* * * * *



Name: Miss Piggy
First Appearance: Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass (1974)

Description: Behind every great frog there's a great pig. Okay, so biological law disagrees with that fact, but so does Kermit - and what does he know? Miss Piggy is a self-appreciating star on the rise, but she also has the modest dream of settling down and starting a family. The thing is, Kermit doesn't feel the same way, or at least he thinks he doesn't. Deny as he may, every now and then there is a spark between the two or Kermit will act jealous of other men who also seek Miss Piggy's affection. All this inbetween a jealous Miss Piggy punching the poor frog in the gut for being too friendly with other women.

Miss Piggy was originally a typical blonde pig whose partner was another beady-eyed pig. When Frank Oz started messing around with the lesser-used muppets and began giving her a bit of his own personality, his co-workers couldn't help but see the potential for greatness, and further disaster.



* * * * *



Name: Gonzo the Great
First Appearance: The Great Santa Claus Switch (1970)

Description: Gonzo is out to entertain just like Fozzie Bear, if not in a much less conventional way. As his act he tries to perform marvelous feats and do things that the audience will praise as innovative and revolutionary. As such, he sees himself as an unappreciated artists who may not have a place in this world but is still going to try to find one. Not only does his personality not fit in with the others', his species is limited to just the one: himself. His finger-looking nose adorns the center of no one else's face, and his origin is thus a point of constant puzzlement and humor. He loves the species of the chicken, and even takes up with one named Camilla, finding one sort of a home in the chicken race.



* * * * *



Name: Animal
First Appearance: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)
Description: Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem are cool, but none have so prominent a disposition as Animal. Being a remnant of primitive man, Animal speaks in simple English. He can get quite into his drumming, banging violently in his many drum solos. He's not the brightest muppet, but he has as much spunk as any of them.



* * * * *



Name: Statler and Waldorf
Waldorf's First Appearance: The Muppet Introduction & Just a Few Announcements (1975)
Statler's First Appearance: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

Description: Statler and Waldorf are comic geniuses, even if at others' expense. They sit on the balcony together and heckle the performers - mostly Fozzie Bear - and sometimes one another. They add a much-needed derisive brand of humor to a show filled to the brim with punniness.



* * * * *



Name: Sam the Eagle
First Appearance: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

Description: Sam is a true patriot. He appears to be the other normal character on the show alongside Kermit, but his fixation with America and its traditional values make him a quite quirky. He and Kermit often butt heads, both trying to direct the show. Sam means well - he truly believes what he says. He just applies his teachings to a place that could never conform to them.



* * * * *



Name: Rizzo the Rat
First Appearance: The Muppet Show - Episode 418: Christopher Reeve (1980)

Description: Though not as much a latecomer as Pepe, Rizzo the Rat debuted fairly late on the Christopher Reeve episode of The Muppet Show, during Season Four. He didn't have a huge role at first, but would go on to be one of the more prominent muppets in the franchise. He has a New York accent and often makes wisecrack remarks - he's a little spitfire. He usually wears something new every time the audience sees him. His best friend and roommate is Gonzo.


People who added this item 595  Average listal rating (368 ratings) 7.2  IMDB Rating 7.2 
5. The Dark Crystal (1982)

People who added this item 1631  Average listal rating (1046 ratings) 7.2  IMDB Rating 7.4 
6. Labyrinth (1986)

People who added this item 4990  Average listal rating (3342 ratings) 8.1  IMDB Rating 8.8 
7. Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Ba... (1980)

Name: Yoda
First Appearance: Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

Description: Voiced by Frank Oz, the man behind many of the other puppets on this list, Yoda is a 900-year-old hermit who trains Luke Skywalker in the ways of the Jedi. He also trained many Jedi before him. His species is unknown, this done purposefully to add an air of mystery to the character. In anything he says, he uses the Object Subject Verb format. (ex: "Train you I shall.")

For the prequel Star Wars movies, Yoda was created using CGI. While it takes away much of the magic from his first two movies, it also allows him to show how truly strong and nimble he is. His ableness in combat is proven in the lightsaber frenzies he engages in.


People who added this item 1053  Average listal rating (795 ratings) 6  IMDB Rating 7.3 
8. ALF (1986)

Name: ALF (Alien Life Form)
First Appearance: ALF (1986)



People who added this item 100  Average listal rating (67 ratings) 6.3  IMDB Rating
9. Muppets Tonight (1996)

Name: Pepe the King Prawn
First Appearance: Muppets Tonight (1996)

Description: The most successful latecomer to the Muppet world. He debuted on Muppets Tonight, accompanied by Seymour the Elephant. They both worked near the muppet theater and aspired for an acting career. One was left behind, while the other made it. Pepe always aspired to go to Hollywood. He has the perfect star personality - he thinks quite highly of himself. He's a little out of it in that regard, but only in the most lovable way. He is of Spanish birth, mispronouncing the other muppets' names and tacking on "okay" at the end of his sentences.


People who added this item 38  Average listal rating (27 ratings) 6.7  IMDB Rating 7.9 
10. Zoboomafoo (1999)

Name: Zoboomafoo
First Appearance: Zoboomafoo (1999)

Description: Once he's been given a snack, this leaping lemur is full of energy. He helps the Kratt brothers interact with animals and poses questions that they proceed to answer about them, giving children extra insights on animals and nature where other children's shows primarily cover reading and counting. In addition to this, Zoboo has his own segment with all his friends from the claymation "Zobooland", where the occurrences between the creatures and the world teach children practical, everyday morals.



 

The Most Sensational, Inspirational, Celebrational, Muppetational!


Jim Henson created the Muppets franchise, creating puppets out of fabric and foam rubber with rods to move their arms with. He chose the name "Muppet" because he liked the way it sounded (he did say in an interview that the name was a mix of "puppet" and "marionette", but later went back and clarified that the explanation was made up for mentioned interview). The Muppets have since become some of the most loved and well-known puppet creations of all time.

With the images I'm trying to get as early a portrayal of whichever character it is as I can find in good quality (ie, shows the full muppet and isn't fuzzy). I know that "The Muppets" don't entail Sesame Street characters, but am including them because they were made by Jim Henson and Frank Oz as well. I've also included a few non-Jim Henson muppets and am open to requests of others' favorites which whomever would like me to include. So long as it's a puppet with significantly controllable body parts besides on the head, and if it's particularly important or creative, I'm likely to include it. Thanks!

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Comments

Posted: 4 years ago at Oct 12 14:49
+50,000 for mentioning Zoboomafoo!! Muppets woooo XD
Posted: 4 years ago at Oct 12 16:44
Yeah, Zoboo rocks. =D
Posted: 4 years ago at Oct 13 6:31
I wouldve thought elmo would be first? But great list anyway!
Posted: 4 years ago at Oct 13 19:30
Elmo wasn't featured prominently on Sesame Street till much later than the others, thus his being last on the list. I suppose it also complements how Elmo's World is the last segment of the show.

Thanks for the support you guys! =)
Posted: 3 years, 9 months ago at Jan 3 4:23
I never knew Oscar the Grouch was orange!
Posted: 3 years, 9 months ago at Jan 3 18:42
To begin with, yep he was! In Henson's original sketches for the monster he was even magenta. He's always been a curmudgeon though.
Avatar
Posted: 3 years, 1 month ago at Aug 29 16:29
Awesome list- only one thing. Yoda, Zaboo and Alf aren't true muppets. The characters from Sesame street, even though they aren't on "The Muppet Show" inhabit the same universe and have interacted with the Muppet Show Muppets... but Muppet is a brand name. But they are cool, puppet-y creatures and I love your list. Also, while not technically muppets, have you thought about adding "Howard the Duck", or the creatures from "Labyrinth" or "The Dark Crystal"? AGAIN, awesome list and I loved the comments! I really like the old school muppets much more. So charming. Thank you!!!!
Avatar
Posted: 3 years, 1 month ago at Aug 29 16:31
Posted: 3 years, 1 month ago at Aug 31 0:17
Yeah, I took a very inclusive approach to this list. I'll add those great suggestions - just the pictures and basic information until I can go back and familiarize myself with those movies a bit more. =]
Avatar
Posted: 3 years, 1 month ago at Aug 31 4:57
Cool! Thanks! Oh yeah, if you want more ideas for "muppets" you can check out my old school creatures list...some might interest you there. (I think E.T. should also be on if yoda is on!) I love this list though, so so awesome!
Posted: 2 years, 7 months ago at Feb 28 7:34
Kermit the frog is my favorite.
Posted: 2 years, 7 months ago at Mar 8 10:45


That's what I think of your list.

Ha, actually this list is super-awesome! Great work, as usual!

I worry though that if Telly finds out you didn't include him it might send him into one of his dangerous mood swings.
Posted: 2 years, 7 months ago at Mar 9 0:48
That's what I think of your list.

*pulls out his DVD of the episode where Fozzie learns to fight back effectively against the hecklers - you know, for research*
Ha, actually this list is super-awesome! Great work, as usual!

I worry though that if Telly finds out you didn't include him it might send him into one of his dangerous mood swings.

Thanks! I'd seriously consider including Teddy. Once he masters the relaxation techniques I sent him. ;]
Posted: 2 years, 6 months ago at Mar 30 11:27
MUPPETS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Mah Na Mah Na
Posted: 2 years, 4 months ago at Jun 7 1:52
Great list.I love the muppets.
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Posted: 2 years ago at Oct 5 8:57
Great list, but where are the Fraggles? Also sad to see that the Count wasn't in the Sesame Street section.

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