World’s Strangest

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R.I.P. Muppeteer Jerry Nelson

Jerry Nelson, one of the original Muppeteers, died last night after a battle with cancer. Nelson was already a professional puppeteer when Jim Henson hired him to fill in while Frank Oz served in the military in the 1960s. Although his Muppet credits are numerous, Nelson was best known as The Count. With the exception of [...]

Jim Henson on Muppet History, Construction, and Performance

In this ten-minute video, Jim Henson, Frank Oz, and Michael Frith discuss some of the history and functions of muppets — how they’re put together, how simplicity leads to subtlety, and how to bring life to puppets. This is nerdier and not nearly as emotionally loaded as yesterday’s post on Jim Henson’s Memorial Services. It’s unclear [...]

Jim Henson’s Memorial Services

In May 1990, Jim Henson passed away. Five days later, a memorial service was held at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York. In July, another memorial was held in London, at St. Paul’s Cathedral. Both services were open to the public; Henson had made instructions about the services four years earlier, [...]

7 Little-Known Muppets

Sure, you know the Swedish Chef, Kermit, Miss Piggy and Beaker. Who doesn’t? But what about some of the more obscure Muppets? Let’s take a closer look at seven of those with a little (okay a lot of) assistance from the awesomely amazing MuppetWiki. 1. Catgut Catgut is the blues-singing, trumpet-playing cat from The Muppet Musicians of [...]

Sesame Street Voices

You may love Sesame Street, but how well do you know the Sesame Street characters? In Today’s Lunchtime Quiz at mental_floss, you are challenged to match the Muppet with a picture of the person who provides its voice. There is no option to select Jim Henson or Frank Oz, so this is more difficult than [...]

9 Muppets Kicked Off Sesame Street

In 40 seasons, Sesame Street has featured over 1,000 characters. Although we’ll always have mainstays like Big Bird, Elmo, Bert and Ernie, many Muppets have been forgotten or deemed unnecessary. Here are a few Sesame Street residents who were evicted. 1. Roosevelt Franklin Perhaps the most famous of the retired Sesame Street Muppets is Roosevelt Franklin. Originally [...]

Ten Pigs We Love

Pop culture is full of cute, smart, and talented pigs that we love. Sure, you adore bacon, but this list is going whole hog! One thing you won’t find here is swine flu, because we don’t love that. 10. Pink Floyd’s Flying Pig How about swine flew? First appearing on the cover of Pink Floyd’s 1977 album [...]