Monday, August 03, 2015

Muppet Monday

Here's a real character: Harvey Kneeslapper. If you're in the mood to watch 21 minutes of basically the same joke over and over again, then this is the video compilation for you. Enjoy your Monday lunch break!

Frank Oz started performing Harvey Kneeslapper in the second season of Sesame Street, but they only did the character for so long; his raucous laughter became hard on Frank's throat, and since he was a one-joke character, Harvey was retired. His segments were repeated on this show up through the 32nd season, though.

Harvey was the first character created by Sesame Street writer Norman Stiles. Stiles joined Children's Television Workshop in 1971, became Sesame Street's head writer in season 4, and continued to write there until 1995. He created, among others, Count Von Count and Forgetful Jones. (After leaving CTW, he and fellow Sesame alumni Michael K, Frith and Christopher Cerf produced children's show Between the Lions.)


Kelly Sedinger said...

So, this whole "Kermit and Miss Piggy have broken up" thing -- what the hell is THAT about? If it's meant to be some kind of meta-joke, I'm not seeing the humor in it. It's just...weird.

SamuraiFrog said...

I'm a little tired of this whole Kermit and Miss Piggy are together/aren't together thread. This goes back to The Muppets Take Manhattan, with the gag that Piggy hired a real priest to marry them at the climax of their Broadway show. Apparently, Jim Henson thought it was a good gag, but Frank Oz felt it meant Kermit and Piggy were "really" married, so it was a running joke in the pages of Muppet Magazine as to whether they were actually married or not.

Apparently the people in charge of The Muppets have decided their relationship status is integral, because it was one of the plots in the movie The Muppets, and they were at Comic-Con talking about how part of the premise of their sitcom is that they've broken up... so this is the Muppet equivalent of a publicity stunt, I suppose.

I miss the old days a little bit when the Muppets knew they were in a movie and would make jokes about it.