Onky in an On-Cor Frozen ad
DEBUT 1962
DESIGN Jim Henson

Onky is a blue humanoid Muppet character who first appeared in a series of ads for On-Cor Frozen Foods.

A series of three ads were produced featuring Onky with a human grocer played by Bill Gibson.

In 1962, Jim Henson created the new Muppet character, Onky, for the On-Cor Frozen Foods ads. Onky is cited as one of Henson's earliest live-hand Muppets.

The puppet style was a departure from the hand and rod puppets Henson had been using – Onky had “live-hands” meaning the puppeteer put his hand in the puppet’s glove-like hand, enabling the character to easily pick up things (like the product being advertised) and give a more realistic performance. While Onky’s arms were short and almost flipper-like, making for an awkward kind of movement, later in the year, Jim and his new collaborator Don Sahlin created a live-hand puppet that was extremely expressive: Rowlf the Dog.[1]

The puppet was later re-worked to become Mack, a character featured in ads for Claussen's Bakery, McGarry's Sausage, C & P Telephone Co. of VA, and Southern Bell Telephone.


  1. Jim Henson's Red Book entry (1/25/64)
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