Best of the Muppet Show - Volume 8: (Diana Ross / Brooke Shields / Rudolf Nureyev)
25th Anniversary Edition
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These hilarious, uncut episodes are jam-packed with all the outrageous skits, music hits, great guest stars and Muppet moments you love plus some extra laugh-out-loud tunes and sketches. Celebrity guests include Diana Ross, Brooke Shields and Rudolph Nureyev.
Diana Ross, Brooke Shields, and Rudolph Nureyev dance, sing, and banter in this trio of episodes from television's The Muppet Show (1976-1981). Dressed as a diva, the star of soul joins Kermit in a "live" variety show to a tough crowd of Muppets. When Ross is not giggling at the good-natured Fozzie or those mellow crooners, the Gills Brothers, she belts out a couple of familiar songs, including "Love Hangover." In the second installment, Brooke Shields, 15, plays Alice, in a thematic show based on Alice in Wonderland. Shields is paired with Miss Piggy as Queen, who is outraged at her only line, "Off with her head!" The highlight is a Muppets rendition of Jabberwocky, hilariously offbeat and imaginative. Finally, ballet superstar Rudolph Nureyev lends his talent and self-deprecating style to a variety-show format, fending off the flirtations of Miss Piggy. In a truly Muppets moment, Nureyev dances with Piggy to "Swine Lake," or, rather, avoids being knocked down by the imposing porker. Raucous fun. (Ages 5 and older) --Lynn Gibson
- Movie mania
- "From the Archives" photo gallery
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Top customer reviews
I have bought all of these discs to date and will continue to do so, but I would only recommend this one to people who are die-hard fans of either the Muppets or one of the guests on this set. A note about the "extras" - these are repeated from disc to disc, so if you have bought all of the previous discs then you won't see anything new here. It's a shame, too, because the Muppets are interesting enough to deserve better extras.
In the Diana Ross episode, the running gag is that the Muppet Theatre is jammed packed with Diana Ross fans who love everything Diana does, but hate everyone else and boo them off the stage. Waldorf and Statler decide to rate everything done on stage: Diana gets 10s and the Muppets can't seem to get a score higher than a 3. The Gill brothers, a group of singing fish are literally filleted. Fozzie doesn't even get through his "Wacka, wacka, wacka," before he does an about face and leaves the stage. Meanwhile, Gonzo is taken to the hospital after he was injured with a vegetable knocking him off his high dive. This episode of THE MUPPET SHOW has Diana Ross singing the song "Love Hangover" with the largest Muppets that Jim Henson's company ever created for the show. The creatures are over 8-feet tall. They look really bizarre and are kind of freaky looking (almost like a cross between those long-legged creatures in DARK CRYSTAL and the fire birds who pop their heads off in LABYRINTH).
The second episode on the disc stars a young Brooke Shields. Shields was the youngest guest star ever to be on the show (she was only 16 at the time). The cast puts on its own version of Alice in Wonderland with Shields in the lead. Something interesting I learned from watching the intro of this episode is that Shields was too young to work a full work day, so in her time off she helped create some new Muppets (including the slithy toves seen in the Jabberwocky scene).
The last episode on this disc is one that stars Rudolph Nureyev. Now, it might seem unusual that a world famous ballet dancer would guest star on THE MUPPET SHOW, but that's the kind of stuff that Jim Henson, Frank Oz, and company were always doing. If my recollections are right they also had a marionette troupe guest starring on the show once and another time, I believe there was a mime troupe as well. Anyway, Nureyev wanted to dance with Miss Piggy, but since at the time they couldn't do a dance with Piggy that looked realistic, they made a huge Pig Costume that a performer was fitted in and the giant pig danced with Nureyev in "Swine Lake". I've purchased several discs of the Best of Muppet Shows, looking for one particular sketch. This is the episode I've been looking for: it has the sketch with the Muppet who has only half of a face living in a half world singing about how he is incomplete until he meets his true love. When he meets up with her in the end, he and everything in his life becomes whole. The song is slightly humorous, but it's also surprisingly poignant (which is so typical of The Muppets).
This DVD also includes some Movie Mania, Muppetisms, and a sketch from the archives of the giant pig costume. Though there aren't a whole lot of outstanding sketches on this disc, it is a great example of what typical episodes of THE MUPPET SHOW were like and a typical Muppet Show was at least three times as good as most shows on the air at the time. Personally, I think this DVD is worth owning just for the "Incomplete Man" sketch and seeing Miss Piggy come on to Rudolph Nureyev.