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I've recently learned about how Episode 4419 was a tribute to writer Judy Freudberg and her love of animals, namely horses. After doing some research I learned that she owned an Icelandic horse named Lucca, who is referenced in the episode. More research shows that the puppet is modeled after an Icelandic horse, notably its bushy hair (not used for other equine characters).
One article (at blog.hankypanky.com) mentions Lucca, using that spelling. I also found that there's an Icelandic horse named "Lukka" in Elmo's World: Horses. I don't know if Lucca is a popular horse name, but could this be Freudberg's horse that was later the inspiration for the puppet? (Freudberg also wrote that Elmo's World episode, so there's another connection.) -- MuppetDude (talk) 01:47, 5 November 2020 (UTC)
- Nice research! Here's the blog you mentioned. I think your conclusion about the spelling is reasonable. Shane created Luca (horse) in 2014 before we had scripts, so I can check those later to confirm. —Scott (talk) 12:20, 5 November 2020 (UTC)
- Some sources for spellings:
- Luka — 4419 script
- Lucca — EW Horses script
- Lukka — owner's newsletter
- I suppose the only bearing that the live horse from Elmo's World has on the situation is that we were trying to consider the name as a common horse name.
- At the very least, I would say that Luca (horse) should be moved to Luka to match the script spelling. Unless we can source what Freudberg used as a spelling for her horse, and crop the script spelling up to an error on the part of Molly Boylan. —Scott (talk) 20:39, 5 November 2020 (UTC)
- Some sources for spellings:
- Yeah, at the time at least it belonged to the trainer Suzanne Sheppard, also in the segment and confirmed by Scott's newsletter link. They're the same breed and same name (apart from spelling possibly), so perhaps that's where Freudberg got the name and horse from if she knew them personally, but who knows. As Scott said, it really doesn't factor in. -- Andrew 23:08, 5 November 2020 (UTC)
- Actually looking further, it seems like it might just be a misinterpretation of the blog entry Tony mentioned, or by the blog. The relevant passage: "Judy’s friends from Middletown, NY, where she rode her beloved Icelandic horse, Lucca, sang a somewhat offkey but endearing rendition of Happy Trails." The horse ranch of Sheppard and Bob Jeffreys is in Middletown and they might be the unnamed friends. That newsletter has Lukka listed for sale in 2005 ("Elmo's World: Horses" still has the horse with its confirmed owner Sheppard), so either she bought the horse later, which seems possible, or they just meant "her horse" in terms of being the one she rode there (that's not unknown). Not enough to form a conclusion either way, but in either case, the spelling preference would be towards the original owner's choice at least for the actual horse in the film segment (4419 is just missing one k). -- Andrew 23:15, 5 November 2020 (UTC)