Electric and Carson, Again

Grover and Vi on "The Electric Company"

Grover and Vi on “The Electric Company”

Today, I’m looking at two brief Muppet guest appearances from 1975. In the first, which aired March 10, 1975, Grover visits The Electric Company (the fourth and finale Sesame Street character to appear on that show), or rather, like Big Bird did in his appearance, wanders away from home, gets lost, and winds up on this show accidentally.


The scene opens with Crank, who we previously saw singing a song with Oscar the Grouch, and who doesn’t seem nearly as bad-tempered as his name and description of himself would suggest (This guy has nothing on Oscar. He even seems genuinely concerned for Grover. Amateur.), taking a seat at Vi’s Diner and chatting with the eponymous

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Our Place, Ads, & More

Rowlf on "Our Place"

Rowlf on “Our Place”

In the summer of 1967, Rowlf was enlisted by Ed Sullivan (again underlining in what high esteem Sullivan held Jim and the Muppets) for yet his next big assignment, as the emcee to a new variety show produced by Sullivan’s production company to air just that one summer–from July 2nd till September 3rd–while most of the rest of TV was on hiatus/in reruns. Along with Rowlf, Our Place also featured an adorably square musical group, The Doodletown Pipers–who would sing overly earnest covers of pop hits–along with the comedy team of Burns and Schreiber, namely Jack Burns and Avery Schreiber, the first of whom would go on to be the head writer on the first season of The Muppet Show, and the second of whom would appear in an episode that first year.

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More Ads & Tinkerdee

Before we reach the next major milestone in Jim Henson’s career there are again a bunch of smaller projects to cover. The first one is actually one of the most interesting we’ve seen yet, featuring the robot puppet with moving gears and smoke that we first caught a fuzzy, black-and-white glimpse of in the Food Fair footage from Hamburg, Germany, although in color and with full detail visible, it looks a bit less steampunk than I had first thought.


Anyway, what’s fascinating about this is that AT&T–which was then the Bell Company–actually hired Jim in 1963 to make the following short film as part of a presentation to air at a seminar for business owners on the new subject of Data Communications, the point of the film being to comment on the continual evolution of the relationship between man and machine, and as you can see below, Jim captured the subject with a wicked sense of humor:


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