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Talk:Episode 318: Leslie Uggams

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Guest Star

We've played around a bit in the past with how to deal with the guest star slot in the box when more than one guest is involved (while we generally use the simplest form for the episode titles themselves). Sometimes that can be tricky, true. David removed Big Bird from the episode box, citing a removal on Episode 102: Connie Stevens of Ernie and Bert. I just checked the openings and closings of both episodes (and also Episode 417: Star Wars, a similar situation) and I'm not sure they're comparable. First, I'm not so sure Kermit's opening should be automatically trumped by the closing credits so much as be weighed with it; for 417, Kermit's opening is "our very special guest stars, the stars of Star Wars". The closing credits lists "Special Guest Star Mark Hamill" with "Guest Stars" listing everyone else ("including R2-D2 as himself.") Listing just Mark Hamill would be inaccurate, and the full closing is better dealt with in the article text than in the box, so we use Kermit's opening phrase, which is the most accurate summary.

The simplest reason the end credits don't list the guest Muppets as guest stars is just because of the way the performers were billed. Now, on episode 102, it says "With our very special guest star Connie Stevens and from Sesame Street, Ernie and Bert." However, in the episode itself, they only appear in the final number, so moreso than the credits, I think it's fair to treat Connie as the main guest star (we also don't count the mass Sesame cameos in Episode 518: Marty Feldman in the box).

However, in episode 318, we have the opening from Kermit and more importantly, Big Bird very nearly has equal time (moreso in the backstage scenes) and is vital to the episode. Here, there's no closing credit to list only Uggams as guest star (at least not on the DVD), and if it happened in the UK that way, it arguably says more about the fact that Sesame Street was obscure there; Spinney receives separate credit, but then he always did. Minor thing, true, but I think Big Bird deserves his due here as a guest star, even if it was in the family so to speak. Thoughts? -- Andrew Leal (talk) 23:04, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Yeah -- I agree. Big Bird was treated as a guest star in this episode. Bert & Ernie weren't because of only appearing in one number. -- Wendy (talk) 23:18, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
Yup, I agree too. Ernie and Bert were played by Henson and Oz, who were already performing on the show. Spinney as Big Bird was a true "guest star" -- a performer making a special appearance. -- Danny@Wikia (talk) 23:26, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Mutations dancers

318dancers

In the performers listing, there are four dancers listed. Three of them are listed as performing Mutations, and the other one is just listed alone, with no mention of character he performed. I know that this episode had a special credit for the dancers, but I recall this credit only listing dancers, not who each dancer performed. So how is it known which ones specifically performed The Mutations? --Minor muppetz 02:52, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

There aren't four dancers listed. That is, we don't know if Jess Whitfield is a dancer or not. The list of performers lists the puppeteers, Caroll Spinney as Big Bird, then the three ballet dancers courtesy of the Royal Opera house. Then after them, "And Jess Whitfield," which could mean he's a dancer, could mean he did something else; I haven't found anything at all for him, whereas the other three have detailed histories. It was an assumption, but I think a safe one, that the three folks specified as dancers from the Royal Opera, were the Mutations, since the most elaborate dance moves were by them, and whenever multiple ballet folks were used, it was always as groups (the Bird Dancers); just this time, they were singled out by name. Timmy Monster also dances a bit, but could have been either Whitfield or a Muppeteer. While it's *mildly* possible that two Royal Ballet people were Mutations, the third was Timmy, and either Whitfield or a Muppet person was the other Mutation, again, I think it's unlikely. So yeah, it's an educated assumption based on the fact that Whitfield isn't specified as a dancer or as anything, and general movements, but I think it holds up as well as many. If it really bothers people, I can take the attributions out, but it seems quite reasonable to me, not a guess so much as a deduction based on detective work. Barring anything to prove that Whitfield was a dancer and played a Mutation, I'd just as soon leave it. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 03:06, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
It's been years since I last watched the episode, but from my memory, after the first three dancers are credited, there is a note saying something to the effect of "appear with permission from the Royal Opera House". It's possible that Jess Whitfield was a dancer, just not a Royal Opera House dancer. --Minor muppetz 16:15, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Scott removed the designations, which I'm fine with, but I'm not comfortable saying Whitfield is a dancer. Maybe, maybe not. The credits are vague, and while the three Opera House people's identities are confirmed, the only "Jess Whitfield" that turns up in the performing arts is in a direct to video Treasure Island on IMDb. That's way too vague for me. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 17:51, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Here's Jess Whitfield's credit as a dancer. —Scott (talk) 19:20, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
It still seems vague to me, just an "And". Also, "She?" Have you actually found info on this person? -- Andrew Leal (talk) 19:54, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
What's not clear about his/her credit as a dancer? It's right there in the credits. I don't know how much more clear it can be. As for the dancer's gender, Jess is more often short for Jessica than it is Jesse, but I admit that there's a possibility that it's male. —Scott (talk) 21:20, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

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