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Gonzo behavior in the Leslie Uggams ep

Discussion in 'Classic Muppets' started by Alpha Centauri, Jun 24, 2009.

  1. Did anyone else, but me find Gonzo behavior towards Big Bird in the Leslie Uggams episode a little bit disturbing? I know Gonzo has a thing for for birds, but given the fact that Big Bird is supposed to be a six year old boy, it just made Gonzo seem really, really creepy.
  2. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    Lol, well that's the risk you take with comedy sometimes, especially with an uninhibited character like Gonzo. :concern:
  3. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Big Bird was still widely seen as an abstract back then. The age assignment was more of a creative note that had evolved behind the scenes in development of the character to make him relatable to the intended Sesame audience.

    Back then there were many viewers who where still confused over whether Big Bird was male of female so I wouldn't read much into this. Heck, there are still people out there now who would swear Big Bird is a girl, even though we know better. Still, even I found this portion of the show to be a little creepy. But humorously so. That same joke wouldn't likely be made today (even if the Henson Company owned both characters). :wisdom:
  4. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    I just watched it again to familiarize myself better, hehe. I mean, as Frogboy said, I don't think Big Bird was as clearly defined as a 6 year old. He was just a familiar character here. And Gonzo's just being his odd self. I mean this is a guy who also seems to be dating a cheese!
  5. That's true my mom thought Big Bird was girl she also thought Big Bird's performer was a little old lady!
  6. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    ...but it is still really freaky. That episode always makes me laugh uncomfortably. :concern:

    I temped at a workplace for a brief while and showed my portfolio that included the Palisades Sweetums among other items. The woman who interviewed me said that she liked "that big furry monster guy okay" but Big Bird scared her as a kid and still does now. It wasn't the first generation kind of gawky Big Bird either. It's the one we know and love. I knew that office wasn't the place for me and was happy to leave when the job was over. I can tolerate many things. Hating on Big Bird will never be one of them. Miss Mousey...that's different. She knows what she did! :o
  7. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    When I think about it, it's not so much Gonzo that's disturbing, but rather Big Bird's oblivious reaction. I mean it's one thing when he didn't understand the Swedish Chef wanted to cook him. It's another when...OK I'll stop now. Lol
  8. Yeah that bothered me too. And Speaking of AMFC I'm glad they didn't carry the Gonzo "liking" Big Bird over to that.
  9. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    I mean The Muppet Show was intended to be more adult than Sesame Street. So I don't think Big Bird should be viewed in the same way when he crosses universes like that.

    I remember Carroll Spinney saying he played Big Bird more like a 12 year old when he appeared on Hollywood Squares, so to allow him to do jokes that wouldn't have worked for a 6 year old. So I don't look at Big Bird on The Muppet Show and think 6 year old, or even child. Obviously that would not have been appropriate. I do want to make that clear.
  10. Beauregard

    Beauregard Well-Known Member

    Also, you've got to remember that Gonzo probably had no idea that Big Bird was 6, or male for that matter. This is the first time they've met, I'm assuming, and Big Bird is HUGE. If you met a person of your own species the size of Big Bird, you'd never automatically assume that they were 6 years old.

    Gonzo was pretty oblivious when it came to love interests back then. And always quite risqué. Check out the episode where he takes Julie Andrew's cow on a date...
  11. True, but that skit still seems wrong to me.
  12. LamangoNumber2

    LamangoNumber2 Active Member

    Gonzo didn't flirt with him at the end of the episode, and they all watched Camilla lay the smack down.
  13. JJandJanice

    JJandJanice Active Member

    People have mention this before on this thread, but it's always an interesting thing to discuss.

    Yeah I always found this episode a bit creepy, but I always made myself feel better but thinking, as Beau mention, I don't think Gonzo had any idea on Big Bird's sex nor his age. To be honest, it's easy to see why some people would think Big Bird is a girl, :).

    Plus this was just a one time joke, they didn't have Gonzo all over Big Bird in other Muppet show Muppets/Sesame Street Muppet crossovers.

    So there is real need to think to much into it...

    :wisdom::concern:
  14. Baby Gonzo

    Baby Gonzo Member

    This is something that I feel is "early Gonzo" sort of material. Gonzo had grown as a character by leaps and bounds from the first season to the second season to the third season, but he still had some awkward moments like this.

    Gonzo is written as an adult, but especially in the first season and the second season, he seems a lot younger and naive. This has changed over time. I could never see him making a joke like this now a days. Reason one being, it's a very taboo joke. Reason two being, he's grown and he's not as naive. He's probably one of the more mature Muppets out there now.


    I really don't think he would have hit on Big Bird if he knew his age and gender. It really looked to me like he JUST met him. Remember, he wouldn't dance with a male cheese. That would have been weird.
  15. mikebennidict

    mikebennidict New Member

    What exactly did Gonzo say or do?
  16. LamangoNumber2

    LamangoNumber2 Active Member

  17. RedPiggy

    RedPiggy Well-Known Member

    God, that was hilarious.
  18. Elmo, you pimp!
  19. JJandJanice

    JJandJanice Active Member

    You know if we're talking about Muppets displaying certain behavior, than I'm going to have to bring up Miss. Piggy.

    What I'm talking about is in those "Studio DC" specials, does anyone else find it just a little odd that Miss. Piggy keeps looking for Zac Efron or she calls him Zacky Efron?

    I mean that has the feel of a 40 year old woman hanging out by the local high school and wait until class is out. Than hits on the more good looking teenagers.

    I'm just saying.
  20. RedPiggy

    RedPiggy Well-Known Member

    And has the audacity to get angry at Kermit when she assumes he's hitting on teen girls.


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