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The Muppet Show – Connie Stevens

   

The Muppet Show season 1, with guest stars Connie Stevens, and Sesame Street’s Bert and Ernie

The Muppet Show season 1 – the very first episode (the first filmed episode, anyway) starring Connie Stevens. Kermit the frog sings Lydia the Tattooed Lady. This was Jim Henson’s favorite song – it was even performed at his funeral.

The running subplot for this episode is Gonzo’s old teddy bear … ‘That bear is the most beat-up thing I’ve ever seen – get rid of it!” Which leads Fozzie to think that they want to get rid of him.

This episode introduces the Swedish Chef. He makes rubber meatballs for this first dish. Connie Stevens sings Teenager in Love.

The ‘At the Dance’ sequence (where different characters are on the dance floor) is really an excuse for the characters to pun around.

Connie Stevens, Kermit the Frog and Fozzie Bear sing Close to You. Zoot & his sax.

And Ernie & Bert from Sesame Street make an appearance as well. After Ernie picks on Bert’s nose, Bert dresses up in a tuxedo, and with Connie Stevens performs Some Enchanted Evening.

Songs

  • Lydia, The Tattooed Lady, by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg. Performed by Kermit (Jim Henson) with Lydia, The Tattooed Lady
  • The Muppet Show Theme, Music by Sam Pottle, Lyrics by Jim Henson. Performed by The Muppets
  • Teenager In Love, Written by Doc Pomus & Mort Shuman. Performed by Connie Stevens & The Mutations
  • Ain’t Misbehavin’, Composed by Fats Waller & Harry Brooks, Lyrics by Andy Razaf. Performed by Sgt. Floyd Pepper (Jerry Nelson), with Zoot (Dave Goelz) & Janice (Eren Ozker)
  • (They Long To Be) Close To You, Music by Burt Bacharach, Lyrics by Hal David. Performed by Connie Stevens, Kermit (Jim Henson) & Fozzie (Frank Oz)
  • Sax & Violence, Written by Jim Henson, Performed by Zoot (Dave Goelz) & Mahna Mahna (Jim Henson)
  • Some Enchanted Evening, Music by Richard Rodgers, Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. Published by Williamson Music Co. 1949. Performed by Bert (Frank Oz), with Connie Stevens

Trivia

  • Lydia, The Tattooed Lady” was one of Jim Henson’s favorite songs. It was even performed at his memorial service in 1990 by Kevin Clash in the voice of Elmo.
  • The punch at the end of the Lydia number was the first time Miss Piggy hit Kermit. This punch would later change into a karate chop.
  • This episode was the debut of the Swedish Chef, who makes bouncing meatballs.
  • It also introduces the Muppet News Man.
  • Wayne and Wanda are also introduced in this episode, but they won’t sing until the next episode The Muppet Show: Joel Grey

Funny quotes

Statler and Waldorf

[guest star Connie Stevens has just finished singing “Close to You”]
Waldorf: I’d like to get close to Connie Stevens. But I’m already close to something else.
Statler: What’s that?
Waldorf: Ninety.

Statler: [after Connie Stevens sings ‘Teenager In Love’] How poignant, I remember being a teenager in love.
Waldorf: Yeah, but Queen Victoria wouldn’t have you.

Statler: You think this show is educational?
Waldorf: Yes, it will drive people to read books.

Statler: I love it! I love it!
Waldorf: Of course he loves it; he’s the kind of guy who plants poison ivy.

Fozzie’s stand up

Fozzie: Hey, that Gonzo is SO dumb, he just heard that we’re running short of water, so he wants us to dilute it!

Teddy Bear subplot

Hilda: Gonzo I categorically, absolutely refuse to repair that teddy bear!
The Great Gonzo: Can I take that to mean maybe? Come on, Hilda, what do you say?
Hilda: I say that bear is the worst thing I have ever seen in this theatre. Why not get rid of him?
Fozzie: The bear is the worst thing she’s ever seen in this theatre? My whole life is flashing before my eyes.

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