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Is Dinosaurs Really Muppet Worlds?

Discussion in 'Family Worlds' started by beaker, Mar 22, 2009.

  1. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    I always wondered what people consider "Dinosaurs".
    Phil has them listed as under Muppet Worlds:

    ...I always just assumed it was more "Creature Shop/Fantasy Worlds" category.

    Even though most the performers are Muppet alumni, and the whole thing is a Henson facilitation; it doesn't have Jim Henson's name in the title and was advertised more as Disney's Dinousaurs on ABC.
  2. Redsonga

    Redsonga Well-Known Member

    I never thought of it as a muppet world ether, it seemed too a world of its own for that...
  3. RedPiggy

    RedPiggy Well-Known Member

    It takes place around 60,000,000BC. Even if it WAS supposed to be in the Muppetverse (which, for anyone who knows me, knows my preference as Yes), there obviously won't be a lot of crossover ... since they're all dead before any muppet is born. Let us not forget that Gunge had at least 3 cameos (not specifically named or voiced, but I've noticed he is NEVER eaten when caught ... the running gag is that he's always spit out). Plus, there are homages to the various SS, TMS, and FR properties, even if not specifically named. In short, I consider it a part of the Muppetverse, albeit set at a time WAAAAAY before most properties also considered a part of the Muppetverse.
  4. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    I consider it a creature shop production, and not Muppets. Muppet Wiki once allowed fans to vote for whether Dinosuars should be listed there as a Muppets production or a creature shop production, and most votes listed them as creatures.
  5. RedPiggy

    RedPiggy Well-Known Member

    I'm not saying they're Muppets. They are clearly creatures (the dinosaurs, anyway ... Gunge is still a muppet). However, I consider them in the Muppetverse, unlike say Dark Crystal or Farscape.
  6. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    Well there really is no "set" canon. I don't believe it's official Gonzo is an "alien" outside of MFS. In fact when interviewed, the Muppets say they are just actors. So most of what you would see in a film or tv show is acting; and it is when you see them interviewed that is "real"(Piggy and Kermit admit they arent married in real life)

    This is what makes Muppetdom unique, in that there is no set canon. No Muppet film's universe carries into the next. The Muppets in Muppets Take Manhattan did not experience that which took place in MTI, TMM, GMC, and so forth.

    I mean Land of Gorch takes place in a far off land, but in reality they too were just actors...who by the last episode make a plea to stay on Saturday Night Live.

    And whoah...the puppet of Gunge was in Dinosaurs several times? No way! whoah. I remember Jerry Nelson said Fizgig had a cameo in an episode of Fraggle Rock.

    People try to say that Puppet Up isnt Muppets. Come on...they literally use many of the same puppets that are in Animal Jam,
    From the Balcony, Mopatop, Kermit Swamp Years, etc. To me just because "legally" the Muppets as a tm is Disney, we all know that any Jim Henson puppet production usually falls under the category of Muppets.
  7. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    Aw, but this brings up another interesting question...what happens, when the line between "creature shop/fantasy" and Muppets blurs?

    I say that because you look at the Jim Henson Hour, and a lot of the designs of the Muppet half hour definitely seem like a cross breed of creature shop and Muppetty. Also, the Sprocket portion of the behind the scenes of Jim Henson Creature Shop *and* Rowlf the dog's kennel visit in 1990 Muppets @WDW definitely feature creature shop dogs.

    If a character used in Dinosaurs/Dark Crystal/Labyrinth/etc made a cameo in a Muppet production, does that make it a Muppet?

    Also, what if there was to be a Muppet special or film, where the bad guys were Skeksis/Labyrinth looking creatures...as in total ornate grotesque creature shop designs...would that make them Muppets or Creature Shop/Fantasy?
  8. RedPiggy

    RedPiggy Well-Known Member

    I agree that they all act like actors. This is also implied in Dinosaurs, "A New Leaf" where after the "ending" of the drug episode, they cut and Robbie acts like they're all acting as the Sinclair family for television purposes. Also, I remember a commercial where Robbie and Earl are watching apparently "our" TV, because they gripe about how all the shows are about humans and theirs is the only one about dinosaurs. In my fic-verse, what we see as the show is based off of Robbie's old videotapes about his family.

    Gunge is nearly eaten by Roy in "The Howling". He's also eaten by Robbie (nearly), but I can't remember the name of the episode. I think it's Fran Live, since Fran bought him as a takeout dinner. He's also been swallowed by the Swamp Monster along with Robbie, and later Earl, when Robbie tries to go vegetarian. That's the only three times I can think of.
    Duke Remington likes this.
  9. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    They broke the 4th wall on Dinosaurs? I don't even remember! I really haven't seen the episodes since their original airing though. That's amazing about the Gunge cameos though. Um, do you remember specifically the references to Muppets/Sesame/Fraggle Rock?
  10. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member


    Found a really nice animated still of Philo and Gunge:

    Their muppet wiki entrie says that Gunge cameos numerous times on Dinosaurs, as well as on the Jim Henson Hour and the UK Muppet show Mopatop. Interesting! That little guy sure got around. I wonder when the last time the puppet was used in a production?

    It's also so cool seeing Gunge featured in his own Fraggle Rock episode, where he's accepted into the Doozer world:
  11. RedPiggy

    RedPiggy Well-Known Member

    That drup episode isn't the only time they broke the 4th wall. Earl and Baby would frequently comment to the camera in multiple episodes. Also, during the A New Leaf episode, Robbie, high as a kite, starts wondering if they're being watched "in a parallel universe, somewhere" and points at the camera, which then follows his finger movements.

    References weren't easy to spot unless you practically live, breathe, and eat the Muppets. ;)

    Off-hand, the most overt reference is Ethyl's brother Elmo. Most of the time, though, they just make off-hand comments, like when Earl suggests to BP Richfield at some point that they should make something educational, and BP gripes that this isn't "public television". "Nuts to War" introduces a hole in the wall, where a "cookie creature" harasses Baby Sinclair and looks like (to me, anyway) a common ancestor to gorgs and fraggles (in that it resembles a balder gorg of doozer height and comes from an independently lighted tunnel from under the house), though it is a creature, not a muppet. That episode also repeats many themes to be found in Fraggle Rock. An episode where Baby and Earl are watching a show of sock puppets leads to references that the Muppets were thought to be just a kid's show (Fran dislikes kid's shows), to which Earl protests by breaking the 4th wall and commenting that the writing is clearly skewed to adults. So, yeah, the references are usually just in-jokes or thematic repetitions.
  12. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    There was also a reference in Georgie Must Die. On the se tof Georgie's show,there are a number of street signs, one of which is "Says Me Street".
  13. Redsonga

    Redsonga Well-Known Member

    I don't see any of the shows as them being just actors, except with Dinosaurs (Which had such a depressing ending it was best they were just actors I think).

    It takes all the fun out of things for me think that what they did isn't 'real' even if there isn't 'one canon to rule them all'. That could be why I see each muppet movie as their own connected AUs where everything in them really happened...

    This could be why, to, I never cared for 'The Fraggles Look For Jobs' since it implies that some place magical like Fraggle Rock was just a set to them to :\.
    I mean it's fine and dandy when it is just a show in the real world but when a stories characters start say it is all just an act, magic and all, it is really disheartening to the story they 'lived' and the place they lived in IMHO:(. Since FR wasn't just characters, it was a whole world to...

    And yes, I am the type of viewer that doesn't like blooper reels..I know, I know, everyone else loves them *lol* :)
  14. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    Well I didn't always think that. It's just, the more I thought about it...everytime Kermit, Piggy, Gonzo, Pepe, etc were interviewed they would say that what happened in the movies was just part of the script.

    Personally I don't think it takes away at all any part of the magic or message of the Muppet Show, Fraggle Rock, Sesame, Bear in the Big Blue House, etc to think they're actors on sets within the canon. I literally cry every time I see the final episode of Fraggle Rock, I well up with goosebumps and awe whenever Cantus sings a song.

    With the Muppets Remember Jim Henson from 1990, I always cry when Fozzie reads the letters and realizes JH is no more.

    The chemistry, sadness and heartfelt emotion in The Muppets Take Manhattan could not be any more stronger now than when I saw it in theaters as a child.

    Now I guess there is a loose basic canon within the three franchises. In TMTM we see Sesame Street and Fraggle Rock represented at the end. And in Muppets Family Christmas its both a Muppets and Sesame special equally, with Fraggle Rock too(who, within Muppet canon live in fraggle caves that stretch out to under Fozzie's moms place)

    So you are right, that there is a sort of loose Muppet canon. Where Fraggles live in caves, and Kermit came from a swamp.
    I do acknowledge Fraggles Look For Jobs as part of Muppet canon, however Fraggles even as actors I would wager really do come from such magical caves...as Kermit comes from a swamp.

    On another thread, someone was trying to tell me that Sesame Street, Fraggle Rock, etc. were no longer considered Muppets legally.

    To that I answer with: http://www.sesamestreet.org/muppet
    Sesame Street, Fraggle Rock, and any non creature shop Jim Henson company puppets(Puppet Up, Animal Jam, Pajanimals), etc will forever always be Muppets.
    Duke Remington likes this.
  15. Redsonga

    Redsonga Well-Known Member

    I dunno, it just takes away something when I think their emotions are just acted by the characters themselves. I see it more as an in joke from the performers than actual canon that the fraggles, or any of them, are just playing parts :).
    Most of all I think 'Fraggles look for jobs' was meant as a joke, not a serious take on the fraggles acting :)...
  16. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Oh yeah... I swear I saw him in the fridge several times. I want to say that the puppet was used in "Refrigerator Day" when Earl was trying to get something from the Fridge and Fran said they were fasting for the holiday... and the little furry animal he was holding was Gunge, who said "A couple days fasting wouldn't exactly kill you there, Slim!" I want to, but I don't think it's 100 percent correct now that I think of it.

    I also seem to remember Gunge being in "I Never Ate for my Father" in the mouth of the dinosaur that ate Robbie... the little creature that kept saying "INCOMING!"
  17. Redsonga

    Redsonga Well-Known Member

    I remember him in the fridge!o.o But I never connected him with FR for some reason...
  18. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    We I think it could be both, or at least we see Fraggles interact with Muppets and Sesame Street(MTM, MFC, Remembering Jim Henson, etc) I like the idea of "outer space", I think it bridges the gap.

    Within canon, perhaps the Fraggle main group were in Fraggle Rock but then had to get jobs. There was going to be a new Fraggle Rock short for the dvd, and we see Red visiting the San Diego Comic Con last year

    Youre right, it would be strange for JHC to create this fantastic world with deep resonating culture and story only to render it all just set pieces and such.

    I remember in 1993 Uncle Matt and some Doozers appearing on Good Morning America to promote the Disney vhs release, so I take it Fraggle characters take quite a liberty with outer space(and time travel, since we see Sprocket in Muppet Treasure Island)
  19. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    Maybe there's a portal from Fraggle Rock world to 60 some odd million years BC:)
  20. RedPiggy

    RedPiggy Well-Known Member

    Well, considering he's never named Gunge either through dialogue or in the credits (you're just supposed to recognize him, that's all) ... and he obviously isn't voiced by Hunt (or by the same person at all, really) ... I just took it as either an ancestor of Philo/Gunge's species or Gunge (just inconsistently voiced) was acting on their show like the dinosaurs were.

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