Tag Archives: The Muppets

Lost Week: The Best Lost Fan Vids – Part Two


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Well, our six-year journey almost over.

As I type this, we are less than five hours away from the start of the final episode of Lost (less than two hours if you’re on east-coast USA).

So here is the finale of the Choob’s Lost week – one last batch of the best fan videos I could find (plus a few professionally made ones).

Enjoy and I’ll see you in another life, without Lost, Brutha.

Here’s US talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel‘s excellent reaction to the controversial Jacob and Man In Black origin episode a few weeks ago:

I so wish that this product was real:

Previously on Lost:

Muppets!

The Swedish Chef!

Next, The Onion News Network reports on how the final season makes Lost fans more annoying than ever. Harsh but fair!

Desmond: The Brutha! compilation:

And finally, this official ABC promo originally aired, I believe, during the 2006 Superbowl. It’s Robert Palmer‘s Addicted To… Lost?

Final Season Of ‘Lost’ Promises To Make Fans More Annoying Than Ever

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It’s Theme Tunes Day – The Muppet Show


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Computer animation is all very well and good but I still find it quite awe-inspiring how much character and emotion and humanity the late, great Jim Henson – and those who inherited his legacy – could convey with something so low-tech as a little green glove puppet.

The Muppets‘ enduring appeal is a testament to his creativity and genius and this week’s classic theme tune comes from what was arguably the Muppets’ finest hour – certainly their greatest showcase.

The Muppet Show was made in Britain by Lew Grade‘s ATV, part of the UK’s ITV network, after Henson found it tough to sell the idea of a puppet variety show to the big US networks.

It became a huge syndicated hit, running for five seasons (120 episodes) between 1976 and 1981 and launching the Muppets into a successful movie and TV franchise that is still going strong today.

The opening theme and title sequence varied from season to season, so here are versions from all five seasons:

Season 1:

Season 2:

Season 3:

Season 4:

Season 5:

And here is a “clean” version of the full theme song, without the interruptions from the televised opening credit sequences:

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The Choob’s 12 Days Of Christmas: The Muppets’ 12 Days Of Christmas


On the twelfth day of Christmas, The Cathode Ray Choob
sent to you…
A fitting end to the festive season courtesy of the Muppets and John Denver.

It’s twelfth night, so it’s time to take down the tinsel, box up the decorations for another year and mulch the tree (you might want to skip the mulching if you have an artificial tree).

And what better way to round off the festivities, not to mention The Cathode Ray Choob’s 12 Days Of Christmas, than with The Muppets singing us out in style – with a little help from the late John Denver and a lot of hindrance from Fozzie Bear.

Enjoy (and remember, only 353 days till Christmas 2010)!

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Tuesday Is Theme Tunes Day – Fraggle Rock


Another Saturday-evening TV tradition for the young Choob was watching Fraggle Rock while eating his tea.

It was yet another outstanding show from the late, great Jim Henson‘s Muppet stable and boasted one of the all-time great TV theme songs.

In order to make it easier for kids to identify with the show, some of the countries where the show aired had their own specially tailored live-action intro and outro sections.

In the British version (which aired on the ITV network), for example, the action took place underneath a lighthouse where lighthouse keeper Fulton Mackay and his dog Sprocket lived. In the American version (which aired on HBO), The Fraggles lives under an inventor’s (Gerard Parkes) workshop.

Here, then, is the UK version of the opening titles:

And here is the slightly different US version:

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A Word From Our Sponsors… Treeee-oh!


Here’s another series of adverts that a generation of Brits has forever filed away in the section of their brain labelled “Once seen, never forgotten”.

Yes, it’s the insanely catchy, you’ll-never-get-it-out-of-your-head (in a good way) Trio advert, featuring the bombastic cartoon singer, Susie (“Too loud…”)

Trio, for the uninitiated, was a biscuit (or cookie, if you are American) sold in the UK from, I think, the early 80s until a few years ago when they were discontinued by makers Jacob’s.

As the name suggests, they were made up of three distinct parts: a shortcake-y biscuit base, three dollops of a caramel-flavoured topping (in the advert, it looks quite runny and chewy but, in fact, it had more of a soft fudge consistency), all covered in milk chocolate, with the bar divided into three blocks.

The adverts were inspired by a 1957 novelty record by satirical comedian Stan Freberg (left) called Banana Boat (Day-O), which itself was a parody of Day-O (The Banana Boat Song), a traditional Jamaican calypso work song  popularised by Harry Belafonte‘s 1956 recording.

Like the Trio TV advert, Freburg’s version of the song features a laid-back, beatnick bongo player complaining that the singing is too loud.

So, let’s start with the original Trio TV advert. You might recognise the distinctive tones of the late, great British DJ John Peel delivering the advert’s sign-off at the end:

Next, here are a few follow-up adverts, also featuring Susie and the bongo player:

James Bond-style:

Okay, that’s all the Trio adverts I could find. Here is Stan Freberg’s Banana Boat (Day-O) song for comparison. Rather than just embed an audio-only version of it, I found this excellent amateur puppetry/lip sync video for the song, made by Paul Maxted, Karen Elvin and Colin Soper.

And last, but not least, here is Harry Belafonte performing his version on TV with a little “help” from The Muppets:

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Saturday Stuff – Pulp Muppets


So, if you’ve been paying attention, you’ll know, from posts such as this and this, that the Choob loves The Muppets.

I also love Pulp Fiction.

Now, if there was only some way to combine the two…

Wait… what’s that? There already is, thanks to the nice people at 416film.com? Cool! (The funniest bit is at 1min 36secs…)

Actually this has been around for a while now, though I just found it a few weeks ago. If you’re interested in knowing how they did it, check this out.

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It’s Independence Day On The Choob!


Happy Independence Day from The Cathode Ray Choob, especially to all the American readers out there.

I shall be in your fine country this weekend (I’m writing this in advance), in New York. It’s the first time I’ve been in the US for Independence Day, so to celebrate, here are a few 4th of July-related clips.

Resisting the temptation to use the obvious movie clip, and since this blog is made in Scotland, here instead is a classic film scene from Braveheart that embodies the spirit of independence and freedom from a Scottish perspective. 

Talking of Scottish/American relations, here is Scottish-born comedian Craig Ferguson, now a US citizen and talk-show host, giving a speech in Boston’s Faneuil Hall as part of the city’s 4th of July celebrations in 2008. In between the jokes, he quotes from the 1320 Declaration of Arbroath as he reflects on the common ground shared by his Scottish roots and his new US citizenship :

And now for something completely silly… yet wonderful. It’s a brilliant performance of Stars And Stripes Forever, courtesy of The Muppets:

Oh, alright, I couldn’t resist the temptation to use the obvious clip after all. Enjoy the holiday weekend!

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