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Name Again

For almost a decade we had all adjusted to calling this character Mean Mama based on the fact that that's the name she was called in Henson Company documents, even though she was often called Big Mama in merchandise. But now I see in this article that she was referred to as Big Mama in Julie Andrews: One Step Into Spring. If she was referred to as such on-screen, should we change it back? --Minor muppetz (talk) 03:32, February 17, 2014 (UTC)

hug Charles citation

This trivia game created by Emma Shane and Mike Dixon (webmaster of which had loose ties to Henson) references the Prince Charles hug, but I don't know where the info originates. Emma might know; Dixon is uncontactable. —Scott (talk) 17:44, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

The event was mentioned in the first issue of The Muppet Show Fan Club newsletter -- see Image:Fanclub_vol1num1pg1.jpg. The item says "England's Queen Elizabeth, II, Prince Philip and Prince Charles turned out to meet the Muppets -- performers Dave Goelz, Richard Hunt, Jerry Nelson (not pictured), Frank Oz and Jim Henson -- after a Royal variety performance. Her majesty was amused." Louise Gold isn't mentioned there.
I've seen the performance from the Royal Variety Performance; it's included in a compilation called "Kermit and Miss Piggy Guest Appearances" at the Museum of Television and Radio. Mean Mama doesn't appear in that sketch; it's just the main Muppet characters singing "We Got Us" -- the same recording that's used on Muppet Hits. -- Danny (talk) 19:01, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Emma's interview confirms that Louise was at least there, but I don't know about Mean Mama. —Scott (talk) 19:12, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Basically there are three sources (which one has to put together to make the whole).
i)The info started with the book 'Of Muppets And Men' where it says that "Louise Gold inside one of the Muppet Monsters enlivened a Royal Variety performance by attempting to embrace Prince Charles.
ii) The first time I ever encountered Louise Gold (Summer 1997), I actually made a point of asking her whether she really had hugged the Prince Of Wales, she confirmed that she had as one of the Muppet Monsters (although the matter of what specific monster she was performing was not mentiobned). She did however confirm it had been the 1977 performance. I posted about that on the rec.arts.henson+muppets newsgroup at the time, so if one does a Google Groups search one should be able to locate my post about it.
iii) There was a thread on Muppet Central, probably around 1999, about Muppet Monsters. Jerry Nelson himself was posting on the thread at the time, and with a bit of urging he not only mentioned about Louise hugging Prince Charles. But confirmed what many of us suspected, that the monster was Big Mama/Mean Mama. I may possibly have a printout of that MC thread somewhere (it's long dissapeared from the internet). Hope that helps Emma 14:09, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
Great! Here's the OMAM quote: "No shrinking violet, Louise Gold -- inside one of the Muppet monsters -- enlivened one Royal Variety Performance by attempting to embrace Prince Charles." page 91. -- Danny (talk) 14:30, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

I have this on tape, and i'll watch it back soon. The Monsters were definitely all in attendance! Wozza 23:01, February 2, 2011 (UTC)

Female monsters

The second sentence in this article confuses me: "She is among the only explicitly female monsters on the show." That sentence doesn't make sense to me; "among the only" just sounds wrong to me. I just changed it to "She is one of the few explicitly female monsters on the show".

That sentence still sounds vague, though, and I'd like to clarify it. Are there other explicitly female monsters, or is she the only one? -- Danny (talk) 12:26, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Well, there's Beakie. -- Peter (talk) 16:23, 17 October 2006 (UTC)
On Beakie's page, the text refers to Beakie as "he/she/it"... -- Danny (talk) 16:17, 17 October 2006 (PDT)

Mean Mama


The character was always known as Mean Momma - should it be corrected? - Vard

Really? I've heard Big Mama for years -- does anybody know where that name comes from? -- Danny Toughpigs 03:44, 28 January 2006 (UTC)
I have never read anything about her ever being called mean Mama. I've read that the name, Big mama, comes from the fact that she was a mother monster in her first appearance, in Episode 201: Don Knotts. --Minor muppetz 04:18, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
I have checked with sources at Henson. In their archival records and pattern files, she is called Mean Mama, not Big Mama. There is no reference for the latter. Thanks - User:Vard
Can you please state the source that says that she is Big Mama?...Because, as a former keeper of the Henson archives, I can tell you that Henson records say she's "Mean Mama". If Wiki wants to keep it as "Big" they can but..... User:Vard.
Somehow the character became known over the years in fan circles as Big Mama. I suppose the real question is, what's the source for that name?
I trust Vard's information. For accuracy, we might want to move the artcle to "Mean Mama" and keep the redirect from "Big Mama," citing in the article the source of the name, etc. Especially if there's no source for "Big Mama." -- Scott Scarecroe 04:29, 8 February 2006 (UTC)
The phrase "Big Mama," apart from showing up in various fan sites and on IMdb, was used for the character in a recent review of a Louise Gold stage appearance, but the main source appears likely to come fromhere, in this Muppet Central review. However, it basically does seem to have been a name coined based on a single sketch, which I don't have on hand to confirm if the character was even specifically called "Big Mama" within that sketch. So personally, I'd definitely be in favor of moving the article name in light of more reliable information (maybe with a note in the article, "sometimes called Big Mama by fans", or something). --Andrew, Aleal 04:31, 8 February 2006 (UTC)
That sounds fair. I don't want to start any friction here. The fans can call her what they want. I'm just stating what we have known her as all the years that we have maintained, rebuilt, dressed & filled out customs forms for when she was shipped over to the UK year after year....Vard 8 February 2006
Aw, it's no friction; we're just trying to figure things out. I found the source of the Big Mama name -- it's from this page of The Muppet Show Annual 1979, published in the US as Muppet Madness. That's been the only source we've had, so we've been using the name "Big Mama" all this time. But the UK annuals can be a little loose with the names -- they called Crazy Harry "Mad Harry", and Angus McGonagle was credited as "Argyle Gargoyle". So Vard is a better source than that. I'll add all this to the article, and change the title. -- Danny Toughpigs 14:38, 8 February 2006 (UTC)
Hey, Vard, since you've worked on the puppet, do you know why it was rebuilt and/ or how she was operated (I have a feeling that the puppeteer inside the costume looked out the mouth of the puppet, but I don't know for sure)? Info such as that would be appreciated for the page on Mean Mama. --Minor muppetz 15:57, 8 February 2006 (UTC)
I was also curious about that. How were puppets like this and Gorgon Heap operated? I noticed some type of pole is used somehow on the Muppets and Men cover. Scooter 20:48, 8 February 2006 (UTC)
    • To answer the last 2 inquiries.. I have never seen Gorgon Heap in person. By the time I came on board at Henson, he was -as we say at Henson, "toast". It's a very old puppet and not one that we used much after it's inital use. I bet that both of these charatcers had a helmet inside to support the puppet over the peformer's head (like Sweetums). Also like Sweetums, the performer looked out of the scrim in the mouth and kind of "jerked" open the frown-like mouth. A rougher method of mouth manipulation than the more gentler, smoother lip sync employed by the smaller charaters. I doubt that there was a pole used for support. I think that Marjorie Trash Heap (Fraggle Rock) had a pole to help support the height & weight. - Vard
So, are you saying that there was some kind of wire inside the head to move her mouth, or are you saying that the performer inside her would alternate between performing the right arm and the mouth? Also, I did ask if you knew why she was rebuilt as a full-body character. I'm not sure if you missed that question or if you just don't know. --Minor muppetz 00:17, 9 February 2006 (UTC)
Hey guys, I found another source for the name Big Mama. She is featured in a Muppet Show "Black Peter" card game from 1977; the name "Big Mama" is mentioned on her playing cards. ... That kinda elaborates things, doesn't it? -- Jog 23:10, 8 February 2006 (UTC) Jog
Dear Minor Muppetz - I don't know the exact mechanism for moving the mouth - it could be anything from a wire to a wooden dowel to a hole in the foam jaw for the performer to stick his fingers in. Boy, you like the minutia, huh? She was probably rebuilt to make her full-bodied. Often, for budgetary reasons or for a quickie build, a character is built to satisfy only the shot it's needed for. If the charatcer becomes a favorite, and if it's a lage puppet, it would be "expanded" to a full body for a dance sequence or a running effect....As to the Big Mama reference in the Plack Peter card set...I can't explain....Only that "at the Jim Henson Company, she was ALWAYS "Mean Mama". Licensing, especially Europe,often got things wrong....Vard 2/18/06
I wouldn't necessarily blame the UK annuals. It does appear as though calling the monster Big Mamma started with either Richard Tippett or Muppet Puppeteer Louise Gold (when Tippett interviewed Gold in 1978). The reason the character is called Big Mama in the review of Louise's cabaret act is because the reviewer used the 1978 interview as the source for that characters' name. - If anyone needs to see a copy of that interview I do actually have the magazine. Emma 20:24, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Lady Di

In 1977, Princess Diana wasn't Princess Diana but plain Miss Diana Spencer. The Royal Wedding took place four years later -- on July 29th, 1981. --

Full Bodied?

The third paragraph states that she's "unique among the monsters in that she has appeared in both full-bodied and hand-puppet versions." But she's not unique, because Behemoth was used as a hand puppet in the Vincent Price episode, then as a full-bodied puppet in the Sandy Duncan episode. Shawn 07:02, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

What Episodes of Jim Henson Shows (Like the Muppet Show, or Dog City)did Mean Mamma Appear in?

I've Been wondering where Mean Mamma appeared in Jim Henson Shows' Episodes like:

  • The Muppet Show
  • Muppets Tonight
  • Fraggle Rock
  • Land of Gorch
  • The Jim Henson Hour
  • Dog City
  • And etc.

I know Mean Mamma may have not  been in all of these shows, but bassicly I know the name of The Show, and What Epiode(s).  Because I'm REALLY curious, Not like I'm going to watch every one of them, but some.

--The Mean Mama page already lists all of the Muppet Show episodes she appeared in. I don't know what episode of Dog City she was in. And she never appeared on any of those other shows listed here. --Minor muppetz (talk) 04:13, April 18, 2014 (UTC)

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