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Piggytoday2007

Miss Piggy with Al Roker, Meredith Vieira and Matt Lauer on August 7, 2007.

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Cookie Monster with Ann Curry on May 10, 2007.

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Miss Piggy's Dinner Party on April 16, 1996.

Today-JimHenson,Kermit,GeneShalit,Grover,FrankOz-(1977-01-12)

Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Gene Shalit and friends on January 12, 1977.

Traveling Matt, Cotterpin Doozer and Katie Couric on Today04:47

Traveling Matt, Cotterpin Doozer and Katie Couric on Today

Katie Couric interviews Cotterpin Doozer and strangles Traveling Matt, 1993.

Todaystrangulation

Katie Couric violently strangles Miss Piggy, ca. 1997.

Today-MissPiggyWithMattLauer-(1998-01-01)

Dumping Matt Lauer on January 1, 1998.

Rats Today04:00

Rats Today

Rat crew on January 1, 1998.

Kermit on Today as Washington for State Quarters02:42

Kermit on Today as Washington for State Quarters

January 2001

The Today Show 2002 Frank Oz Piggy03:46

The Today Show 2002 Frank Oz Piggy

Frank Oz's last known appearance as Miss Piggy on January 14, 2002.

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Miss Piggy and Kermit say goodbye to departing co-host Katie Couric on May 16, 2006.

Elmotoday2007

Elmo says goodbye to Couric on May 25, 2006.

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Abby's first TV appearance on August 14, 2006.

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Lauer with Clash & Elmo on September 6, 2006.

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Piggy and Vieira on September 14, 2006.

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Elmo's Birthday on February 2, 2007.

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With Kotb and Gifford on July 29, 2008.

The Muppets Takeover Today

Taking over Today on November 13, 2008.

Todaydec17

Lauer with Piggy on December 17, 2008.

Today-MissPiggyTeasedWithBacon-2009-02-06

"Smelling the bacon" on February 6, 2009.

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Elmo going green on April 2, 2009.

Nov62009Today

Celebrating 40 Years on November 6, 2009.

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"Not the swine flu" on December 3, 2009.

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Elmo with Ann Curry and Matt Lauer on June 7, 2012.

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Elmo with Boris Johnson, mayor of London.

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Elmo and Chris Rock with Al Roker, Ann Curry, Matt Lauer, and Natalie Morales.

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Elmo, Abby Cadabby and Grover in London on August 9, 2012.

Today, also known as The Today Show, is a daily morning news and talk program on NBC. Debuting in January 1952, it is also the third-longest running American television series.

The Muppets were frequent guests on Today in the early 1960s, doing local cut-ins for the show from Washington, D.C. They performed sketches from Sam and Friends; Jim Henson and Jane Nebel were also interviewed occasionally.

Decades later, the Muppets still make regular appearances on the show to promote current projects. Miss Piggy has had a particularly stormy past on the show; she seems to have a romantic history with co-host Matt Lauer, and she's had dust-ups with hosts Katie Couric and Meredith Vieira. Elmo has also had a long standing flirtation with news anchor Ann Curry.

The Muppets have also played host to the Today hosts -- Lauer, Natalie Morales and weatherman Al Roker have both appeared on Sesame Street. Willard Scott and Jane Pauley were guests on The Jim Henson Hour in episode 103, when Fozzie Bear visited the set of Today. Matt Lauer interviewed Cookie Monster on Sesame Street's Episode 4115 about the "Veggie Monster" controversy.

Former Today co-host Bryant Gumbel also contributed a recipe for Miss Piggy's 1996 cookbook, In the Kitchen with Miss Piggy.

Appearances

  • Weekly appearances in 1962 and 1963 with host Hugh Downs.
  • January 30, 1963 -- Jim Henson wears a coat with a removable collar during a Jack Lescoulie segment on men's fashions.[1]
  • April 3, 1974 -- Ernie and Bert get interviewed by Gene Shalit. Bert announces he's going to be an interviewer on the show, but Ernie informs him that he'll need a disguise so he won't be recognized on the street, so Bert dresses as Gene Shalit.[2]
  • January 12, 1977 -- Jim Henson does the Today Show for the 45th time,[3] along with Frank Oz. Kermit the Frog appears in his reporter attire to introduce the station break with Gene Shalit. After their performance of "Java", Shalit interviews Henson and Oz, who are joined briefly by Kermit the Frog and Grover; Shalit asks whether the two are rivals.
  • August 8, 1977 - Gene Shalit interviews Kermit the Frog, Fozzie the Bear, and Miss Piggy, and later Jim Henson, who talks about their worldwide appeal, and Frank Oz talks about "Halfway Down the Stairs".
  • September 26, 1979 - Phil Donahue interview Dr. Dorothy Singer, co-director of Yale University's Family TV-Research Centre, and Edward Palmer, VP of Research for CTW about the effectiveness of the program. Palmer feels a study's suggestion Sesame Street causes hyperactivity is unfair; the study also looked at Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.
  • July 27, 1981 - Tom Brokaw in London interviews Jim Henson and Frank Oz about their careers with the Muppets. Upcoming movie is titled "Dark Crystal" and introduces a new, different kind of creature. They say they are at a loss to comprehend Miss Piggy's popularity. They regard commercial spinoffs from the muppets as secondary. Their emphasis is on entertainment from the heart. Segment created while Today was in Britain, covering the Royal wedding. Peter Ustinov appeared on the program later.
  • December 7, 1982 - A taped segment starts with clips of Ernie and Bert, Kermit riding a bicycle, Yoda, E.T. walking down an aisle at the premiere. It then shows behind the scenes production of Dark Crystal, and masks used in production. Producer Gary Kurtz notes that Jim Henson has been "granted artistic freedom" by the movie, and reassures viewers that while successful, the puppets will not fully replace human actors.
  • December 8, 1982 - Pretaped piece with Jim Henson discussing how the creatures were created and manipulated for the film. Producer Gary Kurtz mentions the technical issues encountered in filming.
  • December 14, 1982 - Jim Henson appears in a live interview, and discusses The Dark Crystal: its all-puppet cast, the choice of Panavision to capture detail, crediting Frank Oz for creative input, mentioning the Muppets will continue, and Kermit will not marry Miss Piggy.
  • July 10, 1984 -- Willard Scott introduces Gene Shalit's interview with Jim Henson, which starts with Henson throwing out a nod to Scott about having begun his career working with him at WRC-TV. Henson is promoting the company's new film, The Muppets Take Manhattan, which Shalit says is a refreshing break from the summer's crop of terrible movies. This launches into a discussion about violence on the screen in contemporary cinema. Later, Kermit stops in for an interview (he's even miked on his collar), and receives the usual volley of questions about the rumors concerning a marriage and on-again/off-again relationship with Miss Piggy.
  • March 16, 1986 - Director Jim Henson interviewed about Labyrinth. The in the interview, he says he loves to perform, and he is comfortable directing large films. The new movie is noted as more comical than Dark Crystal.Henson says scenes were tailored to what Bowie would do musically, and that Jennifer Connelly was exactly what he was looking for in an actress. In an interview, Connelly tells that she has gotten used to talking to "Muppets", noting each creature is believable. The segment ends with Henson, who "maintains he knows how to handle creatures in his films." Behind the scenes clips are interspliced.
  • June 25, 1986 -- Jim Henson appears to promote upcoming film Labyrinth, and reassure viewers that it is a family film.
  • June 30, 1986 -- Jennifer Connelly appears on Today to talk about her career, including newly released film Labyrinth.
  • July 1, 1986 -- Gene Shalit gives Labyrinth an unfavorable review.
  • January 27, 1987 -- Gene Shalit interviews Jim Henson about The StoryTeller.
  • October 17, 1997 -- Matt Lauer interviews Miss Piggy about her new book, Miss Piggy's Rules.
  • January 1, 1998 -- The morning after New Year's Eve, Miss Piggy breaks up with her New Year's date, Matt Lauer. Some rats appear as well, with one taking over a camera, another leading a tour of the studio for other rats, and "Weatherrat Al Rodent". (video)
  • Late 1998 -- Miss Piggy appears (earless) to promote her new perfume, Moi.
  • June 12, 2001 -- Kermit and Gonzo celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Muppet Show
  • January 14, 2002 -- Kermit and Miss Piggy appear for the show's 50th anniversary celebration. This is the last known appearance of Frank Oz as Piggy.
  • May 2006 -- With the announced departure of Katie Couric, assorted celebrities tape segments offering their farewells. Miss Piggy and Kermit appear on May 16, and Piggy takes offense at Kermit's sign: "Hey Matt, want a pig?" On May 25, Elmo shows up to offer his own goodbyes, following General Norman Schwarzkopf.
  • August 14, 2006 -- Leslie Carrara performs Abby Cadabby in an introduction of the character to the general populus. Note: This appearance was originally scheduled for Friday, August 11th.
  • September 14, 2006 -- Miss Piggy thinks that she's the new co-host, and not Meredith Vieira. And if that wasn't enough, the poor pig also has to deal with bacon breath.
  • January 5, 2007 -- Miss Piggy pops out of the roughly four-foot-tall cake and sings "Happy Anchorversary" to Matt Lauer, in celebration of Lauer's 10th anniversary on the program.
  • February 2, 2007 -- Elmo appears to celebrate his birthday and talks about his Walk-around Bookstore Tour to promote childhood literacy
  • February 7, 2007 -- The cast of Sesame Street LIVE: Elmo's Coloring Book performs on the plaza to promote their run at Madison Square Garden.
  • May 10, 2007 -- After a retrospective video looking at Ann Curry's 10 years on The Today Show, Elmo appears in a live segment from Italy wishing Ann well. The cast escort Curry to a short wall, from which Cookie Monster pops out from in behind. Cookie pulls out a plate of cookies, presents Ann with a bouquet of flowers, then calls in "Lou" to bring a case with an engraved necklace. As Ann hugs her co-hosts, Cookie starts to chow down on his cookies, before being hugged mid-eat by Ann.[5]
  • August 10, 2007 -- Elmo promotes season 38 of Sesame Street.
  • December 25, 2007 -- "Abby and the Sesame Street gang" scheduled to appear on the show, according to an email by Leslie Carrara.
  • July 29, 2008 -- Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford talk to Kermit and Miss Piggy about the first Studio DC: Almost Live. Before the segment, Gifford apparently tried to provoke Miss Piggy, so she would react during the segment. After talking to the two about the guests, Piggy discusses her fitness regimen, shopping, and Kermit mentions he chases his food with his tongue. After discussing their relationship, Hoda asks Miss Piggy what she thinks of the fourth hour of The Today Show: "I've never watched it." [7]
  • November 27, 2008 -- The Muppets appear in a cooking segment on Thanksgiving. A Whatnot version of Al Roker is set to host the "cooking turkey" segment until a live turkey appears, explaining that they're actually doing a "cooking with a turkey" presentation. The turkey prepares a steak via a George Foreman grill, but a passing bull is shocked by what he sees, and sadly questions the steak: "Mama?!" Al happily closes the segment as the bull runs away in tears.
  • December 17, 2008 -- Miss Piggy appears to plug A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa. She reveals that she asked Santa for "one of those 25 billion dollar bailouts that the government's giving out." She explains that in the special she's furious at Kermit for canceling their vacation. Asked if she eventually forgives Kermit and gets in the holiday spirit, Piggy snaps, "Look, this is a holiday special. It has a happy ending, all right? It's okay. And plus, I could never stay mad at my Kermie. No. I like to think of him as mistletoe with webbed feet." Asked whether she's ever written a letter to Santa, Piggy says, "Oh, well, yes, of course I have. Look, I wouldn't leave any stone unturned when it comes to getting Christmas presents." [9]
  • February 6, 2009 -- Miss Piggy appears to promote The Diva Code.
  • April 2, 2009 -- Elmo appears in his green version to promote his new DVD Being Green.
  • September 8, 2009 -- Elmo and Elmo's Mom appear to promote Families Stand Together. (video)
  • November 6, 2009 -- The 40th Anniversary is discussed and Elmo, Cookie Monster and Abby appear to promote the new season. (video)
  • December 3, 2009 -- Kermit and Piggy appear. Miss Piggy is sick and sneezing, but insists it isn't swine flu. (video)
  • May 3, 2010 -- Elmo appears to promote The Best of Elmo 2. During a promotional bumper, Elmo appears with Betty White, giving the former "Golden Girl" a kiss. Elmo also continued his longtime flirtation with Ann Curry, and talked about his new friend Memory-Bot.
  • August 9, 2012 -- Elmo, Grover and Abby Cadabby appears live from London to promote the 2012 Olympics event.

References

See also

References

  1. NBC Universal Archives- Jan. 30, 1963 archive summary
  2. Jim Henson's Red Book -- 4/3/1974 – TODAY Show – Bert as Gene Shalit.
  3. Jim Henson's Red Book -- 1/12/11
  4. Jim Henson's Red Book -- 4/17/1980 – To Today Show – pipes – say hi to Willard Scott.
  5. MSN.com archive - "The ANN-iversary" (2007-05-10)
  6. MSN.com archive - "Still stealing the stage, after all these years" (2007-08-07)
  7. "Today: July 29, 2008", listing on TV.com.
  8. Danielle Brennan, "THE MUPPETS TAKE OVER TODAY", Live from Studio 1A, November 13, 2008.
  9. MSNBC.com video: part 1, part 2.

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