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StoryTeller subcat?

User:Henson Hour Historian added the StoryTeller category here. Andrew switched it back, so it says "See also Category:StoryTeller Characters" at the top. I think it's neater to just have it as a subcat. It's not perfect -- as Andrew says, the two categories don't overlap exactly -- but I think it's good enough. What do other folks think? -- Danny@fandom (talk) 16:46, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

I don't see why the see also is a problem. It makes it just as easy for visitors to find the category *without* making any claims for the StoryTeller folks being Jim Henson Hour characters (apart from the Thought Lion, and if Dog isn't already in there, that makes sense too, and really both could just as easily go in with the MuppeTelevision folks since they appeared both within and outside of those segments), since The StoryTeller predates The Jim Henson Hour and not all of the characters we have pages for appeared on that show. In this case, I feel accuracy is more important than neatness. I have similar concerns about some of the changes made to Category:Jim Henson Hour Episodes, adding in specials which were *part* of whole episodes (and one which almost was but wasn't, Sesame Street: 20 and Still Counting) but that's another discussion. My own inclination there would be to put them in "Category:Jim Henson Hour Specials," which would make it easy to then slip most of the flotsam here right now (Dog (dinosaur), Fred (Lighthouse Island), etc.) into "Category:Jim Henson Hour Specials Characters" or some such, a change which would be both neater *and* accurate. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 17:26, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't see why the sub-cat is a problem. Yes it's not 100% perfect, but I think it works. A lot of the characters in there (or potentially in there) did appear in episodes of the Jim Henson Hour and thus they would be considered "Jim Henson Hour characters". So sure there are some characters (such as the Pond Sprite) that did not appear in any episode of the JHH, but others (such as the Trollop) did. It seems pointless to double categorize the Heartless Giant (and other characters) as both "StoryTeller" and "Jim Henson Hour" characters to cover them in the category system and avoid any imperfect overlap.
And I'll also admit, when I'm just browsing categories, I rarely stop to read the text up there and would (and did) completely miss the "see also". I'm sure other more casual readers would skim right past it too.
I agree with Danny, it's not perfect, but it's good enough. -- Brad D. (talk) 04:14, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't see a need for either double catting *or* subcatting. Unlike the items which are subcats, The StoryTeller was produced independently, premiered prior to The Jim Henson Hour (nearly all episodes had already aired in the UK at that point), and some episodes aired as part of it, but weren't designed specifically *for* the series (which in general seems to have been the case, from my research and No Strings Attached, with the other items like Dog City, Song of the Cloud Forest, and of course MuppeTelevision). Just as it didn't make sense to include The StoryTeller under Category:Jim Henson Hour Sketches (which was subsequently deleted anyway), I don't think this subcat makes sense either. No discussion was raised before the item was suddenly subcategorized by Jim Henson Hour Historian. I only added the "see also" as a compromise, but in all honesty, I doubt very many folks would go to Category:Jim Henson Hour Characters and go "Hey, where's The StoryTeller folks?" That's generally the main reason for making something a subcat. That logic makes sense with Category:Song of the Cloud Forest Characters, and including them isn't inaccurate. If people are hunting for StoryTeller characters, they're already linked to from The StoryTeller directly, in Category:StoryTeller, and Category:Creature Shop TV Shows Characters, which I wager is how most users would find it, and for those who do look up at the text, there's now a simple "see also." If it's inaccurate and doesn't seem like something the average browser would use, I don't see the point. I'm a little surprised this has turned into such a big thing. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 05:27, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
Well, "The Jim Henson Hour" is a somewhat overlooked portion of the wiki, so discussions don't often come up on issues until someone comes in, shakes things up and brings the area back to our attention.
As I said in an earlier debate on this subject, although The StoryTeller episodes may have been produced and aired separate from their inclusion in the Jim Henson Hour, those select episodes/characters were still segments/characters that were featured in/on "The Jim Henson Hour". I consider anything that appeared on the show (from any of the 12 episode; at any point in the hour) to be part of the show (regardless of its life outside the series) and thus should be treated equal with any other part of the show. I feel if one week Jim decided to simply air Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas as part of the Jim Henson Hour, I would argue that those characters should also be listed as JHH characters too - as they would have been characters that appeared on the television show the Jim Henson Hour. I guess this is one of the complications of treating the categorization of an anthology series the same way we treat a more traditional series like Fraggle Rock or Dinosaurs - but that's the way we're doing it.
Also, sub-categorizing the storyteller characters here doesn't just help drive people from this category to that category, but it also guides people from the Storyteller characters to here. In my eye, the categorization of characters from the StoryTeller (which was a big part of the JHH) as Jim Henson Hour Characters helps show the total diversity and delpth of the Jim Henson Hour to someone browsing in here. -- Brad D. (talk) 06:12, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
You've lost me completely with the whole Emmett Otter comparison, Brad; it would be like creating a Category:Wonderful World of Disney to include the specials which either aired or were debuted on that (true, we wouldn't cover it in that kind of depth anyway here, but it's a similar situation). A closer parallel would be to have Superman or The Pink Panther counted as Category:Sesame Street Characters because they appeared in cartoon segments. And the diversity and depth argument doesn't make sense either. That's the purpose of an *article* to make that claim, not a category. It can be fun to see what diverse items are in any given category, sure, but a category is primarily a navigational tool. As such, the question over just about any item in a category centers primarily on 1) whether the item belongs in the category to begin with (whether its presence is misleading, downright inaccurate, or unnecessary and repetitive, as when we decided not to include Kermit and the rest in the movie character categories) and 2) whether it's something which one can reasonably argue casual visitors would go to that specific category in order to find. Almost invariably in past discussions, the first concern overrides the second, since as an encyclopedic database one of our foremost concerns is accuracy. On several pages (category and otherwise), where something is logically *related* but doesn't belong within that category itself, a see also is employed. Can anyone else weigh in on this? -- Andrew Leal (talk) 07:06, 28 April 2008 (UTC)
Maybe I should stay out of this, but I kind of know what Brad's saying. When I saw the Jim Henson Hour in its original run, I thought that the whole show was created as one show. I didn't know until I came on here that the StoryTeller stuff is treated separately, and aired separately on other occasions. So if I didn't see StoryTeller stuff listed as part of the Jim Henson Hour, I would get confused. However, having said that, since it's part of the JHH episode guide, then I can find what I need to find that way, so I guess the way it is now works for me. I have to admit that I never find things through category pages anyway, so I'll leave it up to others to figure out how to organize all of that. -- Ken (talk) 07:19, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

My basic point is that these characters appeared in a part of "The Jim Henson Hour" (reguardless of life outside the series), and so they should be included in our coverage of characters that appeared in "The Jim Henson Hour". Even if "Song of the Cloud Forest" was produced, aired and well-established as a stand-alone special decades before being shown as part of "The Jim Henson Hour", I would want to have the Song of the Cloud Forest characters in here (as they were featured on "The Jim Henson Hour". We include Kermit, Rowlf and Fozzie as "Jim Henson Hour" characters, and I think it makes just as much sense to include the Trollop, Storyteller and Heartless Giant under the "Jim Henson Hour" umbrella as well. We do include Superman and the Pink Panther under the umbrella of "Sesame Street" (albeit as "guest stars" due to the nature of their appearances and the fact they they were already well-established outside characters). The StoryTeller is part of "The Jim Henson Hour", and so I think that should be equally included in our coverage and organization of the show. -- Brad D. (talk) 07:57, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

I was waiting to reply until Danny had weighed in again, since he started this discussion, but he hasn't gotten around to it yet, so two brief comments. One, Fozzie, Kermit, and Rowlf all appeared in *new* material made specifically for The Jim Henson Hour, as did the Thought Lion and the Storyteller's Dog, and I have no quarrel with including any of those characters here. (It was decided way back that it was a useful navigational tool for users to see at a glance which Muppet characters appeared in the three main "Muppet Show universe" shows, Muppet Show, Jim Henson Hour, and Muppets Tonight, but not guest spots, web interstitials, direct to videos, movies, and so on unless the character debuted there). Secondly, I'm not denying The StoryTeller its relevance to the series, and that's something the articles on both shows should include (several reviews of The Jim Henson Hour praised The StoryTeller as the best part of the show). But I still feel its inaccurate to imply (which is what items in a category do, since one can't annotate and explain the way one can in an article) that the characters or The StoryTeller originated on The Jim Henson Hour. Moreover, this doesn't affect just characters. I disagree, but if strong consensus is to categorize StoryTeller items in with Jim Henson Hour, that's fine. But to be fair and logical, the same adjustments would have to be made to Category:The StoryTeller Episodes and The StoryTeller itself, lumping them all in the Jim Henson Hour category. I still don't think that's accurate and rather than adding density or diversity or whatever, it would make it seem like The StoryTeller was a stepchild or spinoff or only a component element of The Jim Henson Hour and that everything pertaining to it aired and originated solely in that context. I still think a "See also" and expanded coverage in the respective *articles* of how The StoryTeller intertwines with The Jim Henson Hour makes the most sense (most of the episodes were produced, filmed, and often aired long beforehand, but if any were made concurrently, it would be worth noting). But if a category decision is made, then it's only fair to apply it to everything and not single out characters. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 20:31, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
I didn't realize that this would be so controversial or have so much potential knock-off impact. I'm fine leaving it the way it is. -- Danny@fandom (talk) 20:42, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
According to the articles we've created on the 5 StoryTeller episodes that aired as part of the JHH, those episodes (and thus characters) originated on the JHH. I know episodes 1-4 of the StoryTeller were produced (and shown) before JHH, and the others may have been produced prior to the JHH too, but (as for as I can tell from the info collected here) they were first seen as part of the JHH. Not only is the JHH the debut date of those episodes, but we've even based our episode numbering of the show it. From the audiences' point-of-view (as far as I can tell), they were as original and new as the MuppeTelevision, DogCity or MonsterMaker segments (despite when/where they were produced). The characters in theose 5 episodes (such as The Heartless Giant) debuted on The Jim Henson Hour.
As for treating all StoryTeller topics equally, I agree. As I said on category talk:Jim Henson Hour Episodes, I think the 5 episodes of the StoryTeller should be categorized right alongside Dog City, Monster Maker, LightHouse Island, Living with Dinosaurs, and Song of the Cloud Forest. We don't take production into account for classifying episode ordering; we go by audience point-of-view and when the episode debuted. I don't think we should take production into account for the specials, we should go by audience point-of-view and where/when they debuted too.
Now if these 5 episodes shown on the JHH had already been broadcast prior their JHH showings, then I think we need to clean up those individual episodes articles to make it clear when the content debuted. If they did in fact debut as part of the JHH, I think we should treat them as JHH content (reguardless of when/why they were originally produced). However if the episodes were simply re-run as part of the JHH, I think we can treat them as is. -- Brad D. (talk) 13:32, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
The articles don't say anything about their "originating* on the Jim Henson Hour and the debut dates are generally US only (or in the case of The Three Ravens, only the UK packaging of the episode). In the UK, they had all been produced between 1986 and 1988 and already aired, according to No Strings Attached and other sources. I wish Danny hadn't brought this up at all. The numbering is the best I could come up with at the time and can and in fact *should* be changed when a full list of UK airdates is found (IMDb has a bunch which seem reliable in this case but I'd rather not go strictly by them), but it was decided to use the US dates for convenience and since that info is more easily verifiable. Brad, can we just let this drop? -- Andrew Leal (talk) 17:20, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

separate categories

As brought up in Talk:The StoryTeller, I think characters from Lighthouse Island, Monster Maker, Song of the Cloud Forest and Living with Dinosaurs should remain here, and start a new category for MuppeTelevision characters. Andrew seemed to agree... thoughts? -- Scott (talk) 15:36, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

Since nobody has responded in a week, I'll just repeat myself, and say I'm in favor of this recategorization scheme. On Wheels. Andrew Leal (talk) 23:57, 18 July 2006 (UTC)
Well, now that you say that, I disagree. If you asked me to name five Jim Henson Hour characters, I'd say Digit, Bean, Vicki, Clifford and Waldo, or some other combination of MuppeTelevision characters. It would never occur to me to say Dog, Milton the Golden Toad and that scary witch lady from Lighthouse Island.
Accurate or not, when fans think Jim Henson Hour, they think MuppeTelevision. I think taking those characters out of this section is silly. I'd rather move the Lighthouse Island and Monster Maker people into Crappy Creature Shop Specials Characters. -- Danny (talk) 01:48, 19 July 2006 (UTC)
Heh. Well, it's related to discussion which sprang up on Talk:The StoryTeller, about the category Category:Jim Henson Hour Sketches. I disagreed with Michael classifying StoryTeller as a "sketch," and Scott proposed renaming that category to MuppeTelevision sketches. And nothing was done with that either. So that was the reason for the proposal, to have those two categories in synch and leave the one-shots and so forth in a seperate category. Andrew Leal (talk) 01:53, 19 July 2006 (UTC)
"What fans think" is a really bad argument for the justification of encyclopedic information in my opinion. We have more of a responsibility than that. I point you to Slim Wilson and Boppity as shining examples.
As I'm watching JHH, it becomes very clear to me that MuppeTelevision was very seperate from everything else that was going on. Everything outside of MuppeTelevision is scattered and varied, but everything happening inside the confines of MuppeTelevision is very much its own show. Jim even states somewhere (either in his intros, or the pilot/pitch) that MuppeTelevision is a stand-alone update of The Muppet Show meant as it's own show.
I think placing the MuppeTelevision characters in their own category apart from all the other mixed up JHH stuff would be very tidy. And there's nothing stopping us from including a note in both categories to also see the other one.-- Scott (talk) 01:56, 19 July 2006 (UTC)
What I mean by "what fans think" is "what readers will expect". A category is a navigation tool. I think that readers who look at JHH Characters will expect to see the MuppeTelevision characters there, more than the others. MuppeTelevision may be its own separate whatever, but it also happens to be a terrible title which nobody even remembers except for the diehards. Ask most of our readers what "MuppeTelevision" is, and they'll probably think it's another name for Muppets Tonight.
We already have a StoryTeller Characters category, which is almost entirely characters from the JHH episodes. I think JHH Characters could easily include MuppeTelevision and the other Muppet segments -- Cloud Forest, Dog City and Miss Piggy's Hollywood.
Then that only leaves Monster Maker, Lighthouse Island and Living with Dinosaurs, and I think it's silly to give up good "real estate" like the JHH Characters category for three unloved Creature Shop specials. -- Danny (talk) 02:16, 19 July 2006 (UTC)
It just seems messy to have them all in the same spot when they could easily be separated. -- Scott (talk) 15:54, 20 July 2006 (UTC)
I agree with that, I think they should be separated. We're just trying to figure out how to separate them. Right now, the only non-MuppeTelevision characters listed in this category are Dog and Ultragorgon. (Thought Lion is a MuppeTelevision character, because he appeared with the Nylons in a musical number.) What I'm suggesting is creating a Creature Shop Specials Characters category, and put Dog and Ultragorgon there. (Although Dog is currently categorized as a Muppet Character, which I'm not sure about.)
Then Jim Henson Hour Characters gets to be what it currently is, which is a category of MuppeTelevision characters. We can put a description at the top saying that these are the MuppeTelevision characters, and a "See also" for StoryTeller Characters and Creature Shop Specials Characters. -- Danny (talk) 16:10, 20 July 2006 (UTC)
That's a lot of work to get around making the MuppeTelevision characters MuppeTelevision characters. It's easier and makes more sense to call their category what they are. -- Scott (talk) 16:46, 20 July 2006 (UTC)
It's not a lot of work at all; it's moving two characters into a new category. It would be more work to change all the characters in here to MuppeTelevision characters. -- Danny (talk) 16:49, 20 July 2006 (UTC)
What I mean is, it sounds like you're going out of your way to explain what the category is when the former is much easier: MuppeTelevision characters go in MuppeTelevision Characters and Jim Henson Hour characters go in Jim Henson Hour Characters.
Another thing to consider is, MuppeTelevision now airs by itself (in Canada and Australia). Anyone seeing it now is going to do so without any attachment to JHH. -- Scott (talk) 21:50, 20 July 2006 (UTC)
I think you and I aren't going to agree on this, and I think you care more about it than I do. So go ahead; separate the category. I don't feel like arguing over it anymore. -- Danny (talk) 03:40, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
You know, no one else chimes in on these discussions probably because it looks like Andrew, you and I are having lovers' quarrels over these decisions. -- Scott (talk) 03:44, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
You cad! After all the years I've given you! I'm going home to mother! More seriously, I suspect that we're just probably more concerned (and more opinionated) with category organization and definition than most. Andrew Leal (talk) 04:28, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
... Does that mean we're not having lovers' quarrels? -- Danny (talk) 04:33, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
Jeeze, no one's called me a cad since the 1940s. -- Scott (talk) 04:59, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
And even then, they were probably talking to the guy behind you. -- Danny (talk) 05:12, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

I know this conversation is a month old, but I thought I'd weigh in. I agree with Scott and Andrew. Over the past 15-years or so the fan community has latched onto the MuppeTelevision segments as the heart of the Jim Henson Hour. So now if you asked them to name five Jim Henson Hour characters, they'd say Digit, Bean, Vicki, Clifford and Waldo; and it would never occur to them to say Dog, Milton the Golden Toad or "that scary witch lady from Lighthouse Island". However, regardless, they are all characters from The Jim Henson Hour (yes, even the Dog City and MonsterMaker characters). The show was the whole hour (not just 8 half-hour segments – 30% of the total show). And those "specials" and non-MuppeTelevision segements (with the possible exception of The StoryTeller) were produced especially for the Jim Henson Hour (it was only afterwards that they were detached and repackaged as standalones). If we want this to be a MuppeTelevision Characters then let's rename the category (if it's a problem of "too much work", I'll gladly retag the 45 articles in here). But for us to say who is and who isn't a Jim Henson Hour Character should be easy (were they or were they not in the Jim Henson Hour?). We don't discriminate Sesame Street characters who don’t appear on the street (or aren't even Muppets/humans), nor do we debate if Doc (or his international counterparts) are characters on Fraggle Rock. I think "Song of the Cloud Forest" and "Living with Dinosaurs" are as much "The Jim Henson Hour" as "MuppeTelevision". So if we want to make this MuppeTelevision Characters we can do that. If we want to make this Jim Henson Hour Characters (and add in "the others" for the other parts of the show) we can. If we want to do both, we can. I just don't see the point in us redefining what the show was. The show, weather you want to admit it or not, was more than just MuppeTelevision (even if that was the only "good" part, the only memorable part, or the only lasting part). I think we should either create "MuppeTelevision Characters" or expand this category to allow all the Jim Henson Hour characters... or do both. -- Brad D. (talk) 22:55, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

That's a very good argument, and now that time has passed on this, I'll switch sides and agree with you. -- Danny (talk) 23:18, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

Kermit, Gonzo, et al

Based on what we've decided for the movie characters, should Kermit, Gonzo, Link, Miss Piggy, etc., be removed from this category, as JHH wasn't their first appearance? -Ryan R PrawnRR 02:47, 13 February 2006 (UTC)

I think there's a difference re the movies, as that would mean sticking them in dozens of categories. Technically, Kermit appeared on Sesame Street before The Muppet Show, but it would be silly to remove him here, and Clifford premiered on The Jim Henson Hour, but starred on Muppets Tonight. Brad asked the same question during the movie character debate, and I think the decision on TV shows was that, as long as it was a major appearance, they fit in (of course, the Muppets Tonight page also has a ton of cameos listed, but still). --Andrew, Aleal 02:56, 13 February 2006 (UTC)


Should this category be "The Jim Henson Hour Characters"? That way it would match (and be listed with) the other JHH categories? --- BradFraggle 03:57, 20 January 2006 (UTC)

Well, with the Muppet Show categories, we've got "The Muppet Show" as the main category, but then "Muppet Show Episodes" and "Muppet Show Characters". I actually prefer it that way; I think "The Muppet Show Episodes" sounds weird, for some reason. We also have "Dark Crystal" as a category, instead of "The Dark Crystal". My personal preference would be to take "The" out of everything; I think it looks better. -- Danny Toughpigs 17:21, 20 January 2006 (UTC)