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First Middle Last (3 frogs)

Discussion in 'Classic Sesame Street' started by Ziffel, Apr 11, 2018.

  1. Ziffel

    Ziffel Well-Known Member

    Here's an obscure animated sketch I thought of. Saw it several times in the early 70's. Haven't seen it since. No videos of it and couldn't even find anything about it in this forum or a google search.

    A simple and short sketch, it had 3 animated frogs next to each other. The one on the left says, "First". The center frog says, "Middle". Then the frog on the right says, "Last." The "last" frog then hops over to the left of the other two frogs and is now "first", So he says, "First". Then the new middle one says, "Middle." Then the other one says, "Last." Then the new "last" one hops over the others and it continues like this.

    But eventually when the frog on the right attempts to hop over the other two, the frog in the "first' position raises a fist in the air and it knocks the frog right back to the "last" position. (That frog clearly wanted to be FIRST and did not wish to relinquish his position).

    Then the frog on the left once again says, "First". The center one again says, "Middle." But the decked frog on the right of them is lying on his back and says in a dazed way "Ribbit".

    One flaw of this I had detected as a young one - There were three different voices for the three frogs. But the same voice occurred for the "first", "middle", and "last" frogs every time. So if the frogs kept changing order how did the words keep sounding the same? Obviously they recorded three people speaking those 3 words one time and then just used the same recording after each frog leaped. (This was also kind of a literal version of leapfrog, I guess).

    Another observation: When the victim frog collided with the suddenly raised fist of the malevolent frog, he groaned for a couple of seconds rather intensely.

    Since this sketch was apparently discontinued by the late 70's, it's possible the reason was because they thought that fist scene was too violent for Sesame Street, even though it was just a cartoon.

    Also, I recall a very simple background. Possibly nothing at all other than the 3 frogs on a white screen. And the three frogs looked exactly the same. Same size and everything.

    There was a continuous sound effect of something like a swamp to give it a frog-like feel. But the whole sketch only lasted all of about 30 seconds anyway.

    So I'd be interested if any of the old original SS viewers from the early 70's might recall this pretty obscure one.
    MuppetsRule likes this.
  2. fuzzygobo

    fuzzygobo Well-Known Member

    Ziffel, is that really you????!!!
    Haven't heard from you in a year of Sundays!
    Now there is someone back on the forum older than me, no small feat!

    Pleasantries aside, I vaguely remember this one. Haven't seen this since Carter was president.
  3. Ziffel

    Ziffel Well-Known Member

    Hi fuzzygobo. Yes, I'm older than you but that's only because I was born first. (Got that line from All in the Family when Archie said that in response to Edith saying, "Well you're older than me").

    Well I'm happy you at least vaguely recall this sketch. I figured I couldn't be the only one in the world, despite the dearth of information about it anywhere, since it was played regularly in the early to mid 70's (until at least 1977, since that's when Carter became President).

    This is one of a dozen or so clips that would be nice to see again on Youtube some day. Ernie and Bert "Newspaper Expedition" and "Going to the Zoo" (what will we do tomorrow, Bert?) sketches are two other examples. (Both of those videos are in German but not English).

    I want to see just how that fist scene of the frog went again. As I said, I recall it as the frog sticking his fist straight up in the air and letting the leaping frog ram into it like a brick wall. I do not think the frog actually threw a punch at him. That would have been a little much for us kiddies, eh? And might have given the already rather short lived clip an even briefer duration.

    I realized I forgot to take my vitamins this morning, so that made me think of the 1970 clip: Vitamins! Zhoo (You) forgot to take your vitamins. Vitality! Vim! Veegor! (Vigor). Vitamins. V.

    Thank you for your reply, fuzzygobo. And for your "like", MuppetsRule.
  4. Katzi428

    Katzi428 Well-Known Member

    I'll be darned!! :excited: How've you been? I don't remember that frog sketch. But I DO remember the Ernie & Bert "What'll we do tomorrow" (it was in English) & the V-Vitamin sketch! Time sure flies huh?
    Great to see you again. :)
  5. Ziffel

    Ziffel Well-Known Member

    Thanks Kathy, same to you!

    Yeah the English version of "What will we do tomorrow, Bert" I remember pretty well from the 70's and, I think, early 80's. But on youtube there's only a German version available. So I guess I can't say I haven't SEEN it in over 30 years anymore, but rather, I haven't HEARD it since then, heh.

    It's still better than nothing when they have classic clips in other languages but, obviously, even sweeter when you get both the audio and video. Another such sketch that is still not available in English is the Grover and Oscar one where they take turns picking words through the alphabet. Grover picked all positive words and Oscar all negative ones. (Eg. Grover: "A is for apple", C is for cute". "E is for enjoy". Oscar: "D is for disgusting!", "H is for HORRIBLE!," "S is for SICKENING!"). Would love to someday get to hear the sound of Carroll Spinney and Frank Oz doing those letters and words again!

    Yes, time sure does fly by. Hard to believe that next year we'll be hearing about Sesame Street's 50TH anniversary!

    BTW, seeing as how so few people seem to even recall the frog sketch, I highly doubt that is one clip that I will EVER get to see again (whether in English or any language). But hey, if it does pop up some time in another language, at least I would then get to see just how that frog's fist scene hitting the other frog actually went, heh.
  6. Pig's Laundry

    Pig's Laundry Well-Known Member

    Well, a lot of rare and obscure gems have surfaced within the last few year, so you never know. :)
  7. Ziffel

    Ziffel Well-Known Member

    Yes that's right, there have been a few others over the last few years I doubted I'd get to see again. :)

    Maybe someone with some old VHS tapes of SS who hasn't yet put them on youtube will do so at some point. Or maybe we will get some more Old School SS dvds released at some point again.

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