Edgar Bergen - Episode 31Taping Dates: Week of July 13, 1977
Original Airdates: October 10, 1977 (New York) and October 7, 1977 (LA)
DVD Release: Time-Life, 2002; Buena Vista Home Video, 2007
EDGAR BERGAN INTRO
Brian Henson: "Hi, I'm Brian Henson. Everyone remembers the read-through for this particular episode of The Muppet Show. Edgar Bergen entered carrying a little black suitcase and every person in the room knew what was in that suitcase: Charlie McCarthy. Charlie was a legendary character on stage and on radio and then on TV. Frankly he was like a puppet hero to The Muppets. For you real Muppet fans this is the episode where Fozzie tries to be a ventriloquist and Gonzo wrestles a brick. Here it is, The Muppet Show with Edgar Bergen."
Charlie McCarthy and Boppity are both amazed at each other.
The balcony: Waldorf says, "Maybe this week, they'll be funny." Statler replies, "Wanna bet?"Gonzo's horn: Gonzo is flown backwards from a huge shotgun blast emanating from his trumpet.
Even though Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy are the scheduled guests, Kermit confides to the audience that they'll try to coax shy country boy Mortimer Snerd into making an appearance and brings on a number to encourage that.
OPENING NUMBER - BABY FACE
T.R. Rooster conducts a flock of chickens singing (or rather clucking) "Baby Face".
[The song is followed by a shot of chickens in the audience applauding - footage already used for Gonzo's dancing chicken act in the Rich Little episode. Here it looks kind of odd cutting to it since T.R. is also in this audience shot. This song appeared on The Muppet Show 2 album. Miss Piggy would also sing "Baby Face" in the 1979 special, "The Muppets Go Hollywood".]
Kermit and Edgar Bergan try to describe the difference between frogs and toads to Charlie McCarthy.
After Charlie breeches some etiquette with inappropriate frog discussions, Kermit retaliates with some wooden jokes and the humor makes the pair feel at home, cueing The Muppets to serenade their guests with "Consider Yourself" and introduces them to some pigs, chickens, and monsters.
Gonzo wrestles a brick blindfolded. Even with his keen sense of smell giving him an advantage, the brick wins.
Fozzie frantically scrambles for craft supplies to prepare for his act and presents Kermit with a rather crude looking knock-off of Charlie McCarthy which he dubs Chuckie.
[Speaking of crude looking puppets, when Gonzo comes off stage beat-up, they break out the original season one puppet! The new version is so refined that the old one makes Gonzo look like he's truly been put through the wringer.]
PIGS IN SPACE
First Mate Piggy is the only one the rest of the crew deems fit to save them from a major catastrophe; to save the ship, she must operate the independent heating/unifying element across the horizontal equalizing plane.
UK SKIT: MUSICAL NUMBER - SHOW ME A ROSE
With a rose in vase atop his piano, Rowlf sings his favorite rose song.
Fozzie asks Edgar Bergen and Mortimer Snerd for tips on their act but mostly gets a bunch of misunderstandings from Mortimer.
After trying to decide if Fozzie is everyone's favorite semi-funny man or semi-favorite funny man, Kermit brings on Fozzie Bear and Friend.
FOZZIE'S COMEDY SPOT
Fozzie tries to tell a joke with Chuckie but is unaware that the ventriloquist is the one who makes the dummy talk. The act (and Chuckie) quickly falls apart from there.
MUSICAL NUMBER - TIME IN A BOTTLE
An elderly scientist sings as he mixes chemicals trying to come up with a fountain of youth formula. He initially succeeds but discovers one can only turn back the clock so far.
[The song was originally sung by Jim Croce and the Muppet version appeared on The Muppet Show 2 album.]
Not just content with being singers and getting their own coop outside, the chickens return to the stage hen-pecking out notes on a piano.
Kermit is thrilled to be bringing on Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy (in their first "on-stage" act).
The true ventriloquist and his dummy discuss the Muppet cast and meet Miss Piggy who doesn't take too well to Charlie's biting humor.
Charlie will only come out for his curtain call provided that the pig is gone.