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Episode 413: Dizzy Gillespie

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The Muppet Show
Guest Dizzy Gillespie
Production Oct 29 - Nov 1, 1979
Premiere UK: January 4, 1980
US: February 28, 1980

Statler is sick (of the show), so Waldorf brings his wife, Astoria, to the show. Meanwhile, Inspector LaBrea of the County Environmental Department arrives backstage to monitor the noise level of the show. LaBrea tells Kermit that to keep the noise down, he has to cut the trumpets for the show. Kermit tries to keep LaBrea busy while Dizzy performs. At last, things turn out all right, because LaBrea reveals that he's a big fan of the trumpetist, and he accompanies Dizzy and the Electric Mayhem on saxo in the closing number.



Picture Description
Cold Open: Scooter knocks on Gillespie's dressing room door and finds him playing with a marionette. He informs him that Kermit has one rule on the show: no puppets allowed. Gillespie says he'll just have to play the trumpet then.
Gonzo open 413
"The Muppet Show Theme": Gonzo blows his trumpet and plays a racing fanfare.
Kermit announces the guest and proclaims that tonight even Statler and Waldorf will have a good time. Waldorf pipes up to say that Statler isn't here tonight as he's sick... of the show. He assures Kermit that he won't get lonely since his wife is using Statler's ticket. She arrives after powdering her nose to a round of laughter at the fact that she looks just like Statler. When Waldorf says his wife's name is Astoria, Kermit frowns to the camera and says, "It figures", immediately alluding to the joke that the married couple shares a name with the famous hotel.
Astoria gets things started by counting off the beat for the opening number. Against a glittery background, a Fish Singer performs "Blue Fish Blues" with The Gills Brothers. She finishes the number in a collapse puncuated by the sound of splashing water.
Backstage, Kermit is confronted by Inspector LaBrea of the County Environmental Department regarding complaints about noise on the show. The inspector assures him that it's not from applause and laughter, but that music is a problem. Using a machine to monitor the sound levels, he demonstrates that strings are okay, but brass (especially the trumpet) is murder. Fozzie enters and says it's time to introduce Dizzy Gillespie, but Kermit (worried about the sound audit) tries to mask the identity of their guest by insisting that it's actually Izzie Gilleskie, one of the world's greatest violinists. After a swift kick to the leg, Fozzie gets it and takes the inspector down to the canteen.
Kermit introduces Dizzy as one of the living legends of jazz to perform "St. Louis Blues". A Bongo Player sits in with The Electric Mayhem for what would be his only performance with the band. Astoria thinks it wasn't too bad and asks Waldorf what they pay him, "Can you imagine some poor stupid turkey doing this for nothing?"
Zoot and Floyd play a "Muppet Jazz Riff" on a street bench. Slim Wilson (played here by Jim Henson) passes by and asks if they know how to get to Carnegie Hall. Floyd replies, "Practice, man. Practice." Laughing, Zoot adds, "The old ones are the best ones."
Backstage, Fozzie apologizes for almost tipping off the noise inspector, but warns Kermit that The Swedish Chef is mashing potatoes on his anvil. LaBrea runs away from the Chef in fear of the noise, as Kermit warns Floyd and Zoot not to make any more musician jokes because the show is being recorded. Zoot mistakes his meaning, "Groovy, maybe we'll make the charts." LaBrea, out of breath, thinks he's gotten away from the Chef, only to get knocked out by his frying pan.
Floyd, back on stage again, is woken up on the street bench by a police chase crash. He asks Zoot what it was, who replies, "B flat" and plays the note on his sax.
In Veterinarian's Hospital, a pig has returned to the operating table and proclaims to Miss Piggy, "I love you, I love you, I love you!" Piggy replies, "Only three times? Last week you loved me four times!" Dr. Bob and Nurse Janice arrive and suggest performing brain surgery on the pig, given his crush on Piggy. Dr. Bob says he had a brother, "Serious Dr. Bob", who was a comedian. He fell into a vat of molten optical glass. He made a spectacle of himself.
UK Spot: "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" by Geri and the Atrics.
Dizzy, Floyd, and Zoot perform "Little Bit of Dis". Astoria asks her husband, "Why do you come here and put up with this irritating, mindless, incessant nonsense when you can stay home with me?" Waldorf has no comment.
Backstage, LaBrea asks Kermit if he has a permit to keep livestock. Piggy asks Kermit if this is the guy he wants her to charm. She puts on her flirtatious routine prompting the inspector to add a sow to his list, "you know, rhymes with cow." Disgusted, she hauls off and whacks LaBrea so hard that the noise machine goes into alarm mode until Piggy tells it to shut up.
Back on the street bench, Zoot and Floyd are joined by Animal playing the trash can lids as drums in another "Muppet Jazz Riff" until Mary Louise shouts from her apartment window, "Do you know there's a little old lady sleeping up here?" Zoot replies, "No, but hum a few bars and we'll fake it."
For his act, Fozzie keeps getting interupted by Astoria, who delivers the punch line. Each jokes lands with a laugh, ending with Astoria showering him with accolades in the form of cheers from the audience. As he exits the stage, Astoria says she thought he'd never leave.
A Whatnot asks Floyd and Zoot on the street bench, "Cross-town buses run all night?" The hipsters reply with a line from "Camptown Races", "doo-dah, doo-dah!"
Backstage, Kermit comes clean with the sound inspector and discovers that Dizzy Gillespie is LaBrea's all-time favorite. Kermit says he'll let him sit in with him on te saxophone if he forgets about the noise audit.
LaBrea joins the final number as a "Swinging Civil Servant" in an Arabian themed rendition of "Swing Low Sweet Cadillac" with Janice, Animal, Floyd, several Whatnots, and Sopwith the Camel.
After the credits, Waldorf and Astoria let loose with a loud,"BOO!", and set the monitor off. LaBrea enters their box and says,"That's it! The show is cancelled!", and the two rejoice.



Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Scooter, Rowlf the Dog, Floyd Pepper, Zoot, Janice, Animal, Waldorf, The Swedish Chef, Geri and the Atrics, The Announcer, Fish Singer, Mary Louise, Astoria, Inspector LaBrea, Pigs, Slim Wilson

Background Muppets:

Dr. Teeth, Sopwith the Camel, Bongo Player


Jim Henson as Kermit the Frog, Waldorf, Rowlf, Dr. Teeth, the Swedish Chef, and Slim Wilson
Frank Oz as Fozzie Bear, Animal, Miss Piggy, and Atrics piano player
Jerry Nelson as Floyd Pepper, Geri, and the Announcer
Richard Hunt as Scooter and Janice
Dave Goelz as Inspector LaBrea, Zoot, and Atrics drummer
Steve Whitmire as Atrics tuba player
Louise Gold as Fish Singer and Atrics guitar player
Kathy Mullen as Atrics knitter and Mary Louise

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