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Fraggle Rock (UK)

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Fraggle Rock
A Fraggle Rock co-production
Country UK
First aired January 7, 1984
Last aired August 22, 1990
Network ITV
Seasons 7
Doc UK1

The Captain building a model in 'The Garden Plot'

Fraggle Rock UK open01:26

Fraggle Rock UK open

UK opening sequence for Seasons 2-3

Fraggle Rock's first produced international co-production was the English UK version, though the French and German versions began airing sooner. The segments within the Muppet world of Fraggle Rock are identical to the American version, however the segments from outer space (i.e. the Doc & Sprocket and Traveling Matt segments) were changed to fit the UK audience.

Fraggle Rock was located on a rock headland or island at a sea coast (actually called Fraggle Rock in the show). There is a lighthouse on the island. The lighthouse was the home of the Captain, a retired sailor and the UK version of the Doc character, played by Fulton MacKay. Sprocket was still his companion, however.

Due to MacKay's death in 1987, the Captain was replaced in the fourth UK season by a younger character known as P.K. (Principal Keeper, the Captain's nephew), played by John Gordon Sinclair. In the sixth UK season, P.K. was replaced by B.J. (Bertwhistle Jr.), played by Simon O'Brien.

The episode order and story-lines were different than the original North American version. The characterisation of the Captain and Sprocket is also different. One particular difference is that the Captain is slightly more harsh towards Sprocket than Doc is.

The UK co-production was the only one to take the series through to the end. France and Germany ended before episode 96.

A selection of episodes was released on VHS. A petition to have Fraggle Rock released on DVD was run on the web for many years; until 2004 the only DVD release had been in the UK, a "best of" collection of 12 episodes in a grainy transfer from the VHS release. TVS, the original broadcasters, has passed through several owners since 1992 and of the 96 episodes, only 12 master copies were known to still be in existence. HIT Entertainment has tried unsuccessfully to locate the missing episodes, including extensive enquiries with The Jim Henson Company both in the UK and the US. (For a detailed list of UK video and DVD releases, see Fraggle Rock UK Videography.)

An effort by fan Alex Taylor to track down the episodes in whatever format is available has confirmed that at least 29 episodes exist in broadcast quality, with 87 episodes existing in some form. Nine episodes are unaccounted for in any format. [1]

When UK television channels wish to broadcast the show, they are forced to use US versions; such was the case with Cartoon Network in 2004.

During March 1985 Uncle Travelling Matt did one month of live presentation for CITV, the children's afternoon programming block on ITV. A Live-Hand Muppet version of Matt, performed by Dave Goelz, was used for these appearances, which were broadcast from Central House, the home of Central Independent Television, the successor to ATV, in Birmingham. Matt would announce all the children's programming, except Fraggle Rock itself. Each Wednesday afternoon just before the show was broadcast, Matt would somehow be distracted and remain unaware his fellow Fraggles were on TV.

Cast

Assistant: Mike Quinn (season 1-4), Geoff Felix (season 4-5)

Episode Guide

Picture Episode Summary
Beginnings
Episode 101: Beginnings The plot is similar to the US version. The Captain and Sprocket move into the lighthouse, and Sprocket discovers the Fraggles for the first time. A clip from this episode is shown on the "Down at Fraggle Rock" documentary.
Fraggle Rock
Episode 107: The Prechification Of Convincing John The Captain puts Sprocket on a diet. Uncle Matt's Postcard is the same as the US version
TheTerribleTunnel
Episode 109: The Terrible Tunnel Sprocket returns from the beach with a horseshoe, which the Captain assumes will bring good luck. Uncle Matt's postcard is the same as in the US version.
DontCryOverSpiltMilk
Episode 110: Don't Cry Over Spilt Milk Like the U.S. version, Gobo is accidentally trapped in Outer Space when the Captain decides to board up the Fraggle hole. Meanwhile, Uncle Matt comes across a big red postbox, which he assumes to be a "paper-eater". He then proceeds to "feed" it with his postcard to Gobo.
WeLoveYouWembleyUK
Episode 113: We Love You, Wembley The Captain worries that Mrs Wiggit is going to propose to him.
TheBellsOfFraggleRock
The Bells of Fraggle Rock (Christmas special) Sprocket and the Captain anxiously wait for the arrival of their special Christmas dinner during a storm on Christmas Eve.
CaptureTheMoon

Postcards.i12
Episode 201: Capture the Moon Sprocket has insomnia and cannot stop howling at the full moon. Meanwhile, Matt thinks tea drinking is the Silly Creatures' way of bathing their upper-lips.
Marooned

MattUK6
Episode 202: Marooned The Captain and Sprocket are snowed in, and Sprocket refuses to let Fluffinella into the lighthouse for shelter. Meanwhile, Uncle Matt encounters the "lair of the long red giants" (double decker buses).
TheMinstrels

Postcards.i07
Episode 203: The Minstrels Sprocket thinks he has musical talent, but the Captain begs to differ. Uncle Traveling Matt is horrified at the sight of a Scotsman playing a bagpipe, thinking the bagpipe is a monster which the Silly Creature is strangling. The Captain is the one to read out Uncle Traveling Matt's postcard.
TheGreatRadishFamine
Episode 204: The Great Radish Famine Sprocket has fleas, and the Captain gets rid of them using a concoction of stale radishes and kipper oil.
GardenPlotUK

SprocketWithHammer

GardenPlotUK2
Episode 205: The Garden Plot Fraggle Rock is in danger as Junior Gorg tries to make his way in. Sprocket also tries to do this by hammering his way in. While Sprocket does this, the Captain is building a model lighthouse which Sprocket keeps breaking making the Captain loose his cool with Sprocket. Uncle Matt's postcard is the same as the US version
GobosDiscovery
Episode 207: Gobo's Discovery Gobo is scared by the lighthouse cannon and decides to give up exploring. The Captain also contemplates buying a dinghy, describing how it moves up and down, which makes Sprocket feel sick. The Captain then cheers for a fellow voyager returning from his journey on the sea. Uncle Matt's postcard is the same as in the US version.
MokeysFuneral

Matt radishes
Episode 208: Mokey's Funeral Sprocket is upset when the Captain accuses him of eating the bread that he left out for the seagulls. The dog decides to run away at first, until the Captain realizes he forgot to put the bread out and apologizes. Uncle Matt "gathers" radishes from a produce stand, and is pursued by "Gorgs" (angry Silly Creatures, actually).
TheBeastOfBluerock
Episode 209: The Beast of Blue Rock Sprocket is afraid to see the vet when he gets sick.
WembleysEgg
Episode 210: Wembley's Egg The Captain brings home a pet bird in a cage. After some consideration, he takes it to the top of the Lighthouse and sets it free.
Booberock
Episode 211: Booberock Like Doc in the US version, the Captain puts out his washing to dry, but gets frustrated as Sprocket keeps getting in his way. He notices that Sprocket has chewed up his favourite book, which infuriates him. The Captain divides the lighthouse in two, and stops Sprocket from crossing onto his side. However, it begins raining, and the Captain can't reach the washing outside, because the door is on Sprocket's side of the lighthouse. The Captain decides to take down the boundary line, as he realizes it wasn't such a good idea.
BoobersDream
Episode 215: Boober's Dream The Captain has a dream about Mr Bertwhistle and small furry creatures, which Sprocket thinks is the Fraggles. The Captain later receives a letter from Mr Bertwhistle asking him to look after his pet gerbils, which makes The Captain realize that was what he was dreaming about.
207
Episode 216: Mokey and the Minstrels The Captain receives some belongings from his late uncle, which is a Scottish Highland dress and bagpipes. Sprocket gets scared at the sight of the bagpipes and dislikes the sound they make when The Captain plays them.
AFriendInNeed

Captain

Matt sale
Episode 219: A Friend in Need Like the U.S. version, Sprocket gets stuck in the Fraggle hole and Gobo tries to help free him, while the Captain tries to remove a tight ring from his finger. Meanwhile, Uncle Matt visits a great race (actually a Selfridges department store sale).
TheDoozerContest
Episode 221: The Doozer Contest Sprocket becomes jealous when the Captain decides to start bee-keeping.
RedsClub
Episode 222: Red's Club The Captain tries to form a birdwatchers' club, but only Sprocket will join. Uncle Traveling Matt discovers a way to control a species of big yellow creatures: just yell "Taxi!" and they'll stop.
BornToWander
Episode 401: Born to Wander Sprocket meets his new owner, P.K., the Captain's nephew, but the two don't seem to get along.
DarkAndStormyNightUK
Episode 405: A Dark And Stormy Night When P.K. and Sprocket read a scary book, P.K. drags Sprocket along to explore a nearby castle at night.
BattleOfLeakingRoofUK
Episode 408: The Battle Of Leaking Roof P.K. wins a surprise gift in the butcher's raffle.
PebblePoxBlues
Episode 411: Pebble Pox Blues P.K. makes fun of Sprocket for catching a cold, boasting that his exercising prevents him from getting sick. In the end, Sprocket recovers, but P.K. ends up with the flu. Uncle Matt's postcard is the same as in the US version.
WembleyAndTheMeanGenie
Episode 511: Wembley and the Mean Genie P.K. practices magic tricks with Sprocket for a Christmas party. Uncle Matt's postcard is the same as in the US version.
GoneButNotForgotten
Episode 601: Gone, But Not Forgotten Sprocket has a hard time adjusting to change when his new owner, B.J., arrives at the lighthouse.
SprocketsBigAdventureUK

SprocketsBigAdventureUK2

SprocketsBigAdventureUK3
Episode 701: Sprocket's Big Adventure B.J. is making some plumbing repairs on the lighthouse, which requires him to remove some of the floor. When B.J. isn't paying attention, Sprocket sees his chance and goes through the hole in the floor and manages to get into Fraggle Rock. After his adventure in Fraggle Rock he returns back to the lighthouse, surprising B.J. when he comes out of the hole. B.J. then accidentally causes a big water leak.
HonkOfHonksUK

HonkOfHonksUK2

BJ Meets Gobo

HonkOfHonksUK3
Episode 711: The Honk Of Honks B.J. is making preparations for him and Sprocket to leave the lighthouse, when Gobo emerges to see what's going on. Sprocket sees Gobo and tries to make B.J. notice the Fraggle, however it's revealed that B.J. can't actually see or hear Gobo at all. B.J. thinks Sprocket is being silly and walks away to carry on packing his things. When Gobo comes out again, B.J. is explaining that he's upset that they have to leave the lighthouse. Gobo, feeling sorry for him, touches him. This makes B.J. able to see him and shocks him at first. Then B.J. gives Gobo a party blower, which is used to complete the honk. After Gobo leaves, B.J. and Sprocket are sitting near the fraggle hole when they hear "The Honk Of Honks".
Vlcsnap-82738

Vlcsnap-85433

Vlcsnap-92094

Vlcsnap-86469
Episode 712: Change of Address The plot is nearly the same as the original U.S. version, except that the lighthouse is being automated by electronic machines, which means that there is no longer a need for a keeper. After B.J. and Sprocket leave, Gobo leads his friends to the lighthouse where the other Fraggle four unsuccessfully try to communicate with the new machines. Gobo then finds a note from B.J. simply saying his last goodbye. Meanwhile, B.J. takes up a job as caretaker at a castle, which is where he and Sprocket discover the second Fraggle hole.

Openings

Unlike the French and German co-productions, this international co-production of Fraggle Rock has a longer opening, mostly involving the shot of the lighthouse. Because of the change in actor, there were three different opening titles produced. The first three seasons had two different openings with the Captain, while the rest of the show's run had one opening per keeper. There were also two alternate openings, including one with Sprocket alone in the lighthouse, as seen in "Born to Wander". In addition, the theme tune was also edited with additional sound effects. The first half of the opening from the second and third series (ending after the Fraggles' first verse) was included at the end of the Fraggle Rock Season Two DVD Interviews segment titled "Docs And Sprockets".

Credits

IMG 4441

Fraggle Rock UK Crew Shirt

UK airdates

Captain2

The Doozer ring from 'A Friend In Need'

Season 1

Christmas Special

Season 2

Season 3

Season 4

Season 5

Season 6

Season 7

References

  1. http://www.nightshade.org.uk/fraggleuk.html

External links

Start a Discussion Discussions about Fraggle Rock (UK)

  • Fraggle Rock Reboot

    3 messages
    • i would like to see John Cleese :)
    • I've now had to give individual names to each version of Sprocket. American Sprocket-Sprocket The 1st German Sprocket-Sprocket The 2nd ...
  • Fraggle Rock UK Beginnings

    • Can anyone try and post the UK version of 'Beginnings' on YouTube?

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