Sunday, March 4, 2007


"Hiya, kids! Hiya, hiya, hiya!"

Last week I mentioned I watched a couple of old episodes of 'Charlie's Angels'. In the one with the reference to Harry S. Truman, "Consenting Adults", there was a near-Zonk that should be addressed.

A burglar named Mumford decided to take a ceramic frog from an antique store, not because it had any real value (little did he know!) but because it reminded him of Froggy the Gremlin from the old children's TV show, 'Andy's Gang'.

Certain shows in children's programming get a pass when it comes to Zonks. They exist as TV shows in the Trueniverse as well as in Toobworld. These would include 'Captain Kangaroo', 'Sesame Street', and 'Mr. Rogers'. Sometimes you just have to surrender to that or else the Zonks win.

And I would add 'Andy's Gang' to that list. However, as with the other shows mentioned, it comes with a caveat: in Toobworld, the puppets on those shows are real.

I don't often splain my view on puppets, but I go back to the second century AD (when TV was REALLY primitive!) for "True History" by Lucian of Samosata for their origins. The natives of the Island of the Blessed are invisible spirits without the webbing that gives them form. As Time passed, they developed puppet shells to serve as their bodies and they would take on the characteristics of that which they resembled. So for all intents and purposes, Kermit would be a frog, Globey would be a globe, and the McDonaldland Gobblins would be cartons of French Fries.....

Froggy the Gremlin not only took on the aspects of a frog (and thus might be considered kin to Kermit), but he O'Bviously applied himself to a trade as well. He was a frog who could do magic, and the sobriquet of "Gremlin" was probably more of a job description than a species classification.

The late Mr. Mumford probably was not aware of any of that. He just knew that 'Andy's Gang' was a treasured memory from his youth, and the frog statue reminded him of that.

And it ended up costing him his life. But at least there's no Zonk!


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