Friday, April 3, 2020


With the April showcase for the Television Crossover Hall of Fame, we celebrate the Fool.  Now, this could be the wise fool on the level of Feste, or of Lear’s Fool.  Or it could be someone like Gilligan.

The TVXOHOF Committee always wants to get at least one puppet character into the Hall each year and while they are usually consigned to June, it was felt that April was the better choice for our candidate this year….


From Wikipedia:
Fozzie Bear is a Muppet character known for his lack of innate and effective comedy skills. Fozzie is an orange bear who often wears a brown pork pie hat and a red and white polka dot necktie.

The character debuted on ‘The Muppet Show’, as the show's stand-up comic, a role where he constantly employed his catchphrase, "Wocka Wocka!" Shortly after telling the joke, he was usually the target of ridicule, particularly from balcony hecklers Statler and Waldorf. Fozzie was performed by Frank Oz until 2001; Eric Jacobson has since become the character's principal performer.  

Fozzie also appeared alongside his fellow Muppets in the Halloween 2011 episode of ‘WWE Raw’, where he and Gonzo encountered Jack Swagger, Dolph Ziggler, and Vickie Guerrero backstage.

I’m only counting on the TV appearances for his tally which fall into Earth Prime-Time.  (This will include any serlinguistic work done in commercials and interstitials.  Fozzie is a performer and would be expected to toil for the Empire.)

The movie roles were not technically of Fozzie but of characters he played, including the fictionalized versions of himself.  But I stipulate that it was Fozzie who played those roles in the movies.

(The difference for ‘Big City Greens’ is that we have behind-the-scenes footage of him working on the cartoon.  The same holds true for the Muppets' version of "The Wizard of Oz".)

Maybe one day the Tooniverse version of Fozzie will gain entry into the Hall.  But as to including the ‘Family Guy’ appearances into the official tally?

Here are the TV shows I am including in his qualifications for Hall membership.

  • The Muppet Show (1976–1981)
  • Muppets Tonight (1996-1998)
  • It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie (2002)
  • The Muppets' Wizard of Oz (2005)(Appearance as Himself and the Cowardly Lion)
  • A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa (2008)
  • Studio DC: Almost Live (2008)
  • Lady Gaga and the Muppets Holiday Spectacular (2013)
  • The Muppets (2015-2016)
  • Big City Greens (2019)(Appearance as the voice of Dr. Enamel)

In one episode of ‘Sesame Street’, another Jim Henson production, Baby Bear says that "Fozzie" is a terrible name for a bear. (So they probably knew about Fozzie Bear.)

Fozzie was a contestant on the May 24, 2016, episode of "@midnight" and beat Kristen Schaal and John Hodgman.

Here is a list of appearances compiled by the fine folks at the Muppet Wiki:

TV Shows

  • The Muppet Show (1976-1981)
  • Little Muppet Monsters (1985)[But only as a puppet, not animated]
  • The Jim Henson Hour (1989)
  • Episode 103: Power
  • Episode 108: Videotape
  • Miss Piggy's Hollywood
  • Muppets Tonight (1996-1997)
  • Episode 103: Billy Crystal
  • Episode 104: John Goodman
  • Episode 108: Jason Alexander
  • Episode 109: Whoopi Goldberg
  • Episode 110: Martin Short
  • Episode 204: Pierce Brosnan
  • Episode 208: The Cameo Show
  • Muppets TV
  • The Muppets
  • The Muppet Babies (2018)
  • Carpool Karaoke: The Series (2018)

TV Specials

  • Kagayake! Gorō Mapetto Geba Geba 90-pun! (1976)
  • The Bob Hope All Star Christmas Comedy Special (1977)
  • Julie Andrews: One Step Into Spring (1978)
  • The Muppets Go Hollywood (1979)
  • A Christmas Together (1979)
  • The Muppets Go to the Movies (1981)
  • I Love Liberty (1982)
  • The Fantastic Miss Piggy Show (1982)
  • Rocky Mountain Holiday (1983)
  • The Muppets: A Celebration of 30 Years (1986)
  • A Muppet Family Christmas (1987)
  • The Muppets at Walt Disney World (1990)
  • The Muppets Celebrate Jim Henson (1990)
  • Studio DC Hosted by Selena Gomez (2008)
  • A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa (2008)
  • Lady Gaga & the Muppets' Holiday Spectacular (2013)

TV Appearances
  • Kagayake! Gorō Mapetto Geba Geba 90-pun! (1976)
  • The Orson Welles Show (1979)
  • Good Morning America (1992, 2004, 2005)
  • Saturday Night Live (2004, 2011)
  • Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (2005, 2010)
  • Jimmy Kimmel Live (2005)
  • America's Funniest Home Videos (2005)
  • Chuck the Movie Guy (2008)
  • The View (2008)
  • Hollywood 411 (2008)
  • D23 Expo (2009)
  • Andrea Bocelli & David Foster: My Christmas (2009)
  • The Early Show (2010)
  • WWE (2011)
  • Good Luck Charlie (2013)
  • Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (2009, 2014)
  • The Arsenio Hall Show (2014)

  • Polaroid (1981)
  • National Wildlife Federation (1985-1990)
  • MasterCard Commercials (2002-2003)
  • Pizza Hut Commercials (2004-2005)
  • Disney Channel Bumpers (2005)
  • Will Rogers Institute (2006)
  • The ESPYs (2008)
  • Give a Day, Get a Disney Day (2009)
  • Lipton (2014)
  • Warburtons (2015)
  • Facebook Portal (2019)
From Facebook:
Though his main job was to be the show's comedian, he has had a number of other roles on ‘The Muppet Show’. He sang and danced in many musical numbers, and frequently acted in sketches (most famously his recurring sketch “Bear On Patrol” where he plays an unlucky police officer). He also often helps backstage and even attempts to plan out the show in one episode, and write the script in another.

Welcome to the Hall, Fozzie!

My thanks to the Muppets Wiki for the list of shows.  And I'm sure in my search for pictures of Fozzie via Google Image Search, I probably grabbed quite a few of their pictures.

I hope they forgive me....

Wokka wokka!

Wednesday, April 1, 2020




From the IMDb:
As Perry prepares to go to Scotland on vacation, a little girl arrives in his office asking him to determine who she is. His search takes him to Switzerland where he meets a woman who becomes his client after a murder.



From the IMDb:
Pride in what other people think presents itself to Andy two-fold when he hears that Opie only gave a measly three cents to a school charity fund and when a two-years-dead husband walks up to say hello.

It may not seem evident from the summaries for these two episodes, but this was one of the first CBS crossovers.

If you check the cast lists for each episode, you’ll notice that Ray Collins (Lt. Arthur Tragg of ‘Perry Mason’) and Don Knotts (Deputy Barney Fife in ‘The Andy Griffith Show’) were both absent from their respective episodes.

At the time both of these episodes were filmed, both actors were busy on the sets of each other’s show.  They filmed cameo appearances allegedly as their characters although they went unnamed.

In the ‘Perry Mason’ episode, while Perry was at the airport, Barney could be seen in the concourse struggling with luggage as he departed a flight from North Carolina. It was a silent routine, full of the usual Barney ticks and mannerisms which only lasted a minute at best.

Meanwhile, in “Opie’s Charity”, Lt. Tragg showed up at the Taylor home and asked Aunt Bee where he could find the Sheriff.  Apparently he had some questions about the character of Tom Silby, the long-missing husband played by Stuart Erwin (who made several appearances on ‘Perry Mason’.)  He left but we never saw him later with Sheriff Andy.

This was a way to hype the new show by having a well-established series like ‘Perry Mason’ give ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ some free two-way publicity.

In order for it to have the full impact, CBS hyped the exchange of characters all through the summer with a promo in heavy rotation.  It was from that I was able to track down the still picture seen in this post, thanks to a collector I know from Facebook.

Don’t waste your time trying to track down those scenes in either show.  They only got one broadcast before being edited out.  With eventual syndication in mind, the network thought it might be confusing to the audience to see one part of the crossover without the other, even though they weren’t really connected.  And they were structured in such a way so that they could be easily excised from the episodes.

This practice would be repeated by CBS nearly forty years later.  In May of 1998, archival footage of classic CBS characters were blended into scenes of various top shows which were then on the air so that they interacted with the current stars.
  • Edward R. Murrow (‘Murphy Brown’)
  • James Arness (‘Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman’)
  • Lucille Ball (‘The Nanny’)
  • Jack Benny (‘Cosby’)
  • Chad Everett ('Chicago Hope')
  • Steve McQueen (‘Walker, Texas Ranger’)
  • Dick Van Dyke (‘Diagnosis Murder’)
Here are two examples:

Those special episodes were broadcast only the one time and then were excised for future reruns and syndication.

Someday I hope I’ll be able to see those two scenes linking ‘Perry Mason’ to ‘The Andy Griffith Show’.  When I lived in Manhattan, I was a member of the Paley Center for Media and every time I visited, I would check to see if they had gained those holy grails.  For all I know, they finally got them now that I’m no longer there to view them.

That would be typical for me…..