Wednesday, September 10, 2014

I Is for Icky Gunk

Icky Gunk is the only Muppet I know whose name starts with the letter "I." And I don't really know much about him. No one seems to. He's one of the Sam and Friends characters who is now in the Smithsonian. He's snakelike, except that he has arms, and his design seems to have inspired the snake character in the Riverbottom Nightmare Band in Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas.

That's all I've got, but that's okay, because that means I get to play another Sam and Friends clip!

One of the few episodes that survives features Kermit, Hank and Frank, and Icky Gunk (in a wig) lipsynching to a Stan Freberg recording of Cole Porter's "I've Got You Under My Skin."

I'm not sure of the year of this episode, but since it's in color, I'm guessing it was a later one, 1960 maybe or 1961.

Here's another case of recycling a good bit, and making it even better. The song appeared again on a first season episode of The Muppet Show--the episode hosted by Vincent Price, which is one of the best episodes of the entire series--this time with Behemoth and Shakey Sanchez and a dark, silly twist. Showing off their twisted sense of humor, this is one of the Muppets' signature sketches.

Sorry there's not more to say about Icky Gunk, but he's just lost to the past. Still, those two clips are a lot of fun.

ABC Wednesday


Roger Owen Green said...

Henson/The Muppets were so ecologically sound. Early recyclers!

Keir said...

Deeply disturbing...

Joy said...

A well remembered I, and what a great name. I can't recall Icky Gunk but the second clip must have stuck in my mind because that definitely was familiar and funny.

Susan Moore said...

I don't recall a muppet named Icky Gunk - will have to go see him at the Smithsonian some day. My mom used to make us muppet-style puppets - they were always a hit.