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Episode 219: Peter Sellers

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The Muppet Show
Guest Starring Peter Sellers
Production Dates December 1977
Home Video Season Two
Best of the Muppet Show
The Muppet Show Sampler
Sellers02a

Kermit goes crazy with the madness of the show, made even worse with Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and Beaker inventing a teleportation device which they use to pop in and out around him and teleporting things such as a lit bomb into Peter Sellers' dressing room. After trying to calm himself down by singing "Bein' Green" onstage, he confronts Bunsen on the teleporter, but gets whisked to Africa where he and Beaker are attacked by a gorilla.

Songs/Sketches

Notes

  • Three of the songs featured in this episode were written by the same person, entertainment personality and parodist Abe Burrows. They are: the opening number, A Gypsy's Violin, the second number, Rowlf's rendition of When, and the UK Spot, Memory Lane.
  • One of Peter Sellers' most famous quotes can be attributed to this episode: "There is no me, I do not exist. There used to be a me... but I had it surgically removed."
  • Unusual for a second season episode, Miss Piggy doesn't make an appearance.
  • The talk spot from this episode can be seen in The Muppets.

Episode

Picture Description
219 cold open
Cold Open: Scooter calls for guest star Peter Sellers. "Fifteen seconds to curtain, Mister Sellers." He finds Gonzo hurling knives at Sellers - in his Inspector Clouseau garb - while aiming with a mirror!

Sellers: "Fifteen seconds? I should live so long!"

219 trumpet
"The Muppet Show Theme": Statler coughs and Waldorf blows his nose to the theme music.

Gonzo is nearly blown out of the "O" when Beautiful Day Monster comes up behind with a competing trumpet.

219 gypsy
Peter Sellers plays Boris, a demented gypsy violinist, for the song "A Gypsy's Violin". At the Whatnot gypsies request to "play, play, play," Peter briefly takes on a Groucho Marx persona:

Peter (as Groucho): "Listen, anymore talk like that and I will play!"

219 bunsen kermit
Backstage, Kermit the Frog calls for quiet - a request that goes unfulfilled as gypsies chatter and Gonzo crashes a motorcycle. Kermit is further frustrated by the sudden appearance (and subsequent disappearance) of Dr. Bunsen Honeydew.
219 when
Rowlf the Dog sings "When," a nice, quiet, lovely song that ends with a punchline.
219 kermit beaker
Backstage, Kermit scolds Rowlf for the punchline just before Beaker appears out of nowhere, carrying scientific equipment. It shocks Kermit to see him, and Kermit's reaction shocks Beaker, causing him to drop the scientific equipment before disappearing again.
219 surgically removed

219 tuned chickens
Guest Star's Dressing Room: Kermit finds Peter Sellers dressed in a Viking's helmet, corset, wig and boxing glove - a grand impersonation of her late majesty, Queen Victoria... but he'd forgotten what she looked like.

Kermit: "Ya know, I just love all your wild characters, Peter. But backstage here, you can just relax and be yourself."

Peter: "But that, you see, my dear Kermit, would be all together impossible. I could never be myself. ... You see, there is no me, I do not exist. ... There used to be a me - but I had it surgically removed."

Peter then tells Kermit about a new act he has recently perfected, where he recites the soliloquy from Shakespeare's Richard the Third, whilst -- and at the same time -- playing tuned chickens. When through, Kermit informs that he can't do the act -- Gonzo did it last week on the show.

Gonzo: "And it died, Peter!"

Gonzo is there just long enough to disappear, the same as Bunsen and Beaker had earlier. Kermit tells Peter that if objects should randomly appear or disappear to try and ignore them. And then a bomb appears in the dressing room. Peter disappears before it explodes, but Kermit is not so lucky.

219 memory lane
UK Spot: Rowlf accompanies Gonzo on "Memory Lane."
219 link knot
Peter plays Doctor Merkwürdigliebe (German translation - Strangelove), a crazed German masseur who tries to help Link Hogthrob relax by first rolling his arms and legs up and then tying him in a knot. At the end, the "good" doctor leaves Link for the night.
219 kermit link

219 fozzie kermit
Link comes backstage.

Link: "Kermit, that was the best massage I've ever had. That Peter O'Toole is good."

The comment is followed by another disaster with Beaker appearing and disappearing and by Fozzie Bear coming to inform Kermit that the next act has cancelled. It was to have been Prunella and Her Prancing Poultry except that "yesterday, duck hunting season began."

219 bein green
Kermit goes onstage to announce that the next act can't make it, that they're otherwise engaged with orange sauce. Kermit laments the difficulty of the situation and the troubles of the evening, then proceeds to sing "Bein' Green". The stage gradually fills with a swamp setting.
219 labs
Muppet Labs: Dr. Honeydew presents his teleporter, which can transport people from one location to another. This makes Kermit furious, learning what has been happening on the show, so Bunsen transports him away. Meanwhile, the scientist attempts to retrieve Beaker, previously teleported to the jungles of Africa, and inadvertently brings back a friend, Quongo the Wild Mountain Gorilla in his debut. Bunsen sends them both back to Africa and tries to bring back just Beaker, but he only succeeds in bringing back Quongo and Kermit.
219 short
Fozzie comes onstage to introduce Peter Sellers, but he is interrupted by Peter Sellers, still trying to perform his Shakespearean soliloquy. Fozzie reminds Peter that the show is running a little long, so "try to be short." Peter complies by getting on his knees.
219 cigarettes
"Cigarettes and Whiskey": Peter plays a bass-drum beating temperance preacher, backed by members of Lubbock Lou and his Jughuggers, Dr. Julius Strangepork, and George the Janitor.
219 closing
At the closing, Peter Sellers is teleported in behind Kermit. He disappears briefly and reappears wearing a German helmet. Finally, several Muppets teleport in.
219 statler
Statler: "Well, what did you think?"

Waldorf disappears.

Statler: "Yeah, I know what ya--"

Statler disappears.

Edits

Sellers04
Sellers03
  • Nickelodeon: The second backstage scene, Kermit's reaction to the exploding bomb, most of Kermit's introduction to the UK Spot, "Memory Lane", part of the last backstage scene (with Link walking backstage and Beaker suddenly appearing), and the last part of Fozzie's introduction to the closing number.

Cast

Muppets:

Kermit the Frog, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo, Scooter, Rowlf the Dog, Statler and Waldorf, Whatnots, Dr. Bunsen Honeydew, Beaker, Link Hogthrob, Dr. Julius Strangepork, Quongo the Wild Mountain Gorilla, Gramps

Background Muppets:

Lubbock Lou, Lou, Bubba, George the Janitor, Slim Wilson, Chickens, Muppy

Performers

Jim Henson as Kermit the Frog, Rowlf, Link Hogthtrob, and Gypsy
Frank Oz as Fozzie Bear and player of Tambourine
Dave Goelz as Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and Gonzo
Richard Hunt as Beaker, Scooter, Statler, Whatnot Gypsies, Gramps, and a Chicken
Jerry Nelson as Whatnot Gypsy, Dr. Julius Strangepork, Quongo the Gorilla, and a Chicken
Louise Gold as Whatnot Gypsy (uncredited)


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