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The Muppet Show
Rich Little02.jpg
Guest Rich Little
Production June 14-16, 1977
Premiere UK: November 4, 1977
NYC: September 23, 1977
Releases Season Two


Gonzo auditions real chickens for his dancing chicken act. Due to a last-minute cancellation, he finally gets on stage, but his chicken Lolita hardly moves.



  • In Of Muppets and Men, Dave Goelz talked about the origin of Gonzo's passion for chickens: "There was a moment during the second season when I had Gonzo ad-lib a line that was, I think, important for my understanding of his character. He'd been auditioning chickens for the show -- dancing chickens -- and they were all terrible. At the end of the scene I had him turn to the camera and say, 'Nice legs, though.' Something jelled right there. It told me something about him." Eventually, Gonzo's interest in chickens would lead to a long-term relationship with his girlfriend, Camilla.
  • This was the first episode that Louise Gold performed in, as part of her audition. She won the audition and would become a regular performer starting with episode 207, but she wouldn't receive screen credit until the third season. In this episode, she triple-tracked her voice for the singers in the opening number and performed Mildred (who had previously been performed by Richard Hunt, Frank Oz, and Dave Goelz).[1]
  • This episode also marks the first appearance of Fleet Scribbler, who would appear in a few more episodes, notably episode 210.
  • Rowlf's piano sounds significantly different from other episodes. In this episode, it sounds more of a honky-tonk piano than usual.


Picture Description
Cold Open: Scooter calls for guest star Rich Little, but keeps finding other celebrities emerging from his dressing room (in reality, Rich Little impersonating W.C. Fields and Humphrey Bogart). Finally, Mean Mama exits the dressing room and says he'll be right there. Scooter remains astounded by Rich Little's versatility.
"The Muppet Show Theme": Gonzo's trumpet blows up a long, yellow balloon.
A trio of Girl Singers perform "Chanson D'Amour." Crazy Harry joins them to perform the "Ra-ta-ta-ta-ta" part... along with a bit of explosive punctuation.
Backstage, Gonzo informs Kermit that he is auditioning for dancing chickens today. Kermit claims to have never heard of anything as ridiculous as dancing chickens, to which Gonzo points out the notion of a talking frog. Gonzo leaves Kermit with the instructions to send any auditioning chickens back to the prop room.
Rich Little performs his act, impersonating the Muppet characters. This, of course, leads to a bit of confusion. First, Fozzie can't figure out who Rich is trying to impersonate. Then Miss Piggy's jealousy flares up when Rich impersonates her and she assumes it is a new female performer (flirting with Kermit, no less). Little and Piggy, both annoyed, karate chop each other, knocking both of them out.
Gonzo and Rowlf try to audition dancing chickens, but their efforts prove useless. The chicken doesn't do anything interesting at all. But, as Gonzo states, the chicken has "nice legs, though."
At the Dance: Mary Louise holds Animal too tight on the dance floor. She finally drops him to the floor, the remainder of the segment sees Animal trying to get out of the place. Crazy Harry is only too willing to comply with his requests for escape and blows him through the roof.
UK Spot: Miss Piggy sings "The Boy in the Gallery" with Rowlf on piano. Eventually, she is joined by the audience.

Lenny the Lizard performs "The Glow-Worm." He is approached by two inchworms, both of which he eats. When a third approaches, he is met with a big surprise.
A group of reporters interview Rich Little by the stage door. While the Newsman would hope to keep the interviews serious, Mildred can't help but ask Rich to answer as some of his impressions (including Cary Grant, Kirk Douglas, Burt Lancaster, Groucho Marx, Richard Nixon, James Stewart, and Vincent Price). And Fleet Scribbler can't help but tear down those impressions.
In the prop room, Gonzo continues to audition chickens, even hoping some have Broadway experience.
Veterinarian's Hospital: Dr. Bob prepares to operate on Fozzie Bear. It seems the bear's a "little horse" and has a "colt in the head." But Dr. Bob is just barely operating.
Kermit has canceled Gonzo's dancing chicken act. It didn't fit into the "general ambiance of sophistication and classic theater" they try to maintain on the show. But when Adolf Nureyev and his trained seals cancels, Gonzo's act is back on.
Gonzo and his dancing chicken, Lolita, perform to the tune of "Tea for Two." Nothing happens, but the chickens in the audience love it!


Scenes from the Great Musical Comedies of Yesterday: Rich Little and the Muppets recreate scenes from Singin' in the Rain, Gigi, and High Society. Rich performs "Singin' in the Rain" with Fozzie (impersonating Gene Kelly, Winston Churchill, and John Wayne), "Well Did You Evah?" with Kermit the Frog (impersonating Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby), and "I Remember It Well" with Miss Piggy (impersonating Maurice Chevalier).
At the closing, Rich reveals that he has perfected another impression: a chicken, just Gonzo's kind of performer.




Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo, Animal, Scooter, Girl Singers, Crazy Harry, Statler and Waldorf, Rowlf the Dog, The Newsman, Lenny the Lizard, Mary Louise, Gorgon Heap, Fleet Scribbler, Janice, Mildred Huxtetter, Mean Mama, Whatnots, Inchworm, Pig

Background Muppets:

T.R. the Rooster, Chickens, Svengali's Assistant, Sweetums, Timmy Monster, Beautiful Day Monster, Green Frackle

Audience Muppets:

Baskerville the Hound, Miss Mousey, Shakey Sanchez


Jim Henson as Kermit the Frog, Rowlf, Waldorf, The Newsman, Whatnot Dancers, and Lenny the Lizard
Frank Oz as Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Animal, Gorgon Heap, and Big Mary Louise
Jerry Nelson as Mean Mama, Crazy Harry, Chickens, the Announcer, Whatnot Dancers, and Fleet Scribbler
Richard Hunt as Scooter, Statler, and Janice
Dave Goelz as Gonzo
Louise Gold as Mildred Huxtetter and Girl Singers (uncredited)



See also

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Milton Berle Judy Collins