Things I miss: Fraggle Rock


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/08/29/things-i-miss-fraggle-rock.html


#2

Me too! Such a great show… I can’t think of a Henson produced show from the 70s or 80s that wasn’t wonderful. Do you remember The Storyteller:

John Hurt was wonderful… We rewatched it not too long ago and it stood the test of time.


#3

A few years ago I rewatched the whole series end-to-end over the course of six months or so, and it’s astonishing how well crafted it is. The ending is downright spiritually uplifting. Plus all the songs are silly and catchy as heck.

Fraggle Rock was one of the best-written, funniest, and most entertaining kids’ shows ever made, in my book. But Jim Henson created it to bring about world peace, so he certainly had high hopes for it.


#4

Ben Folds Five did a video with them – couples years back. It’s a decent tune.


#5

Also, remember this show:

It came out years before Fraggle Rock, but I remember watching it, as they’d air it every year.


#6

Oh goodness yes. We watched it every year at Christmas. The version available on DVD now has some seriously weird edits and changes; the original with the Kermit the Frog intro is the one to find on VHS.

A few years back I got to see the short lived Emmet Otter musical, with new Paul Williams songs and the original Muppet characters making cameos. Being able to stand within five feet of the actual Emmet and Ma Otter puppets was crazy.


#7


#8

Work the days away (clap clap)
Fraggles come and eat our hooomes
Such a fruitless life (clap clap)
Down in Fraggle Rock

Also, for those who hadn’t noticed, each verse of the theme is a Haiku with “Down in Fraggle Rock” at the end


#9

I could never square the minute of pure joy that was the opening credits versus the poorly-paced, dreary nonsense of the actual show.


#10

I will say though that there’s a reason you haven’t seen the Emmet Otter musical on Broadway after that local workshop. They added a framing story about a little girl reading the story of Emmet Otter, which is fine, but she gets ‘sucked into the book’ and becomes the protagonist of the entire thing. All of the Gift of the Magi stuff is gone along with references to Christmas. Their idea was to make it a year-round musical rather than a seasonal one, and it didn’t work very well. Seeing the puppets was wonderful and amazing, however!


#11

They should have just done the original story… it’s was fine!


#12

“C’mon
If you don’t let me turn on the TV set soon all that’ll be left is Fraggle Rock
I hate the Fraggles
I hate the Fraggles”


#13

“Ozzie badozzie ba doo; hey we can build it!”


#14

It’s all part of the symbiotic relationship between the two. Doozers love to build, and if a cave network becomes too full of their constructions to allow further building they are forced to leave.


#15

[quote=“Modusoperandi, post:9, topic:84369, full:true”]I could never square the minute of pure joy that was the opening credits versus the poorly-paced, dreary nonsense of the actual show.[/quote]Verily, while there seems to be no shortage of enthusiasm for the show (rumours of the film with Joseph Gordon-Levitt continue to circulate), I cannot recall the show doing much at all for me as a young’un and I do not think I ever once grasped what was going on. Maybe I just wasn’t old enough.


#16

I can’t thank you enough for that reminder. I read about Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas in National Geographic World but never got to see it. We were almost always in transit to my grandparents’ house, although it seems like it was only shown here once or twice. The local networks also didn’t carry The Muppet Show until a UHF station picked up reruns in the mid-'80’s.

I missed out on Fraggle Rock too. My parents went with Showtime instead of HBO. My childhood was practically Dickensian.


#17

Aw! I’m sorry… those were all great things… most of them can be found on DVD now, although apparently the version of the Emmet Otter show that’s on DVD is weird and not like the original…

But hey! guess what, Henson studios is working on the adaptation of Wee Free Men, so that’s something to look forward to!


#18

It’s generally the same and still charming, but there’s small changes throughout:

  • some of the acts in the talent show are different
  • Kermit is edited out, which means it doesn’t have the same ending or narration
  • there’s odd bits changed here and there, lines of dialogue cut or shortened. The weirdest is the removal of Ma saying “I hope you fall off the dock”.

Nothing crucial but as someone who grew up watching it a jillion times, seeing the edited version was jarring.

Edit: you can read about all the different changes and versions here.


#19

WHOA! It was there the whole time and I never noticed it. Crazy.


#20

Anna Kendrick, Rob Corddry, Ben Folds, some other dude, and the Fraggles sing part of the intro (tail end of video I posted above)