Characters / The Muppet Show

For Muppets that showed up after The Muppet Show ended, go here.

Kermit the Frog

Performed by: Jim Henson (1955-1990), Steve Whitmire (1990-2016), Matt Vogel (2017-present)
Voiced by: Frank Welker (Muppet Babies and Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: Sam and Friends (1955)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kermit_6597.png

Banjo-playing amphibian from the Deep South and eternal Straight Man. Upon being discovered in a swamp by a talent agent, he headed to Hollywood, collecting the other Muppets along the way like so many hangers-on. Regularly depicted as the long-suffering boyfriend of Miss Piggy and the equally long-suffering pal to Fozzie. See also his entry on Characters.Sesame Street.

  • Author Avatar: He is often seen as one for Henson, who at one point said, "[Kermit] can say things I hold back." Indeed, while Jim never lost his temper, there's a limit to how far Kermit can be pushed before he erupts.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: While he usually takes the antics of his co-stars with mild frustration at worst, there are rare occasions where he completely snaps. Miss Piggy, whose temper Kermit is usually at the constant brunt of, almost lost her job as a result.
  • Butt-Monkey: He occasionally is this, often being eaten by monsters. In some cases, he gets kidnapped and almost nobody notices.
  • Catchphrase: "Hi-oh, Kermit Dee Frog here..."
  • Character Tics: Flailing his arms around wildly like he's directing air traffic.
  • Chaste Toons: Has a nephew, but no children. note 
  • Control Freak: In The Muppet Show and beyond. Kermit does not like ad-libbing and handles very poorly under pressure. This is because ad-libbing in the Muppets actually is rather detrimental, with bizarre and unpredictable consequences.
  • Deadpan Snarker: This was Kermit's original shtick to go along with his Only Sane Man persona. Later on, his snarkiness was downplayed to highlight his sweetness, but he still gets in on this once in awhile. This trope was reinstated in the 2011 film.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Originally appeared on Sam and Friends (before he was a frog) and Sesame Street as a regular, though he's far better known for his Muppet Show role.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Not that you could tell due to the shows being in black and white, but on Sam and Friends he was colored blue. He also had a more simplified design, was depicted as being of indeterminate species (not being definitively established as a frog until his appearance in the 1969 special Hey, Cinderella!), and tended to be much more anger-prone than he would become.
  • The Everyman: One of the most normal Muppets. Well, 'normal' by Muppet standards.
  • No Guy Wants to Be Chased: Throughout The Muppet Show, he's usually very reluctant to return Piggy's feelings towards him, but whenever she focuses her attention on a male celebrity guest, most notably Christopher Reeve and Peter Ustinov, he gets jealous.
  • Official Couple: Eventually with Miss Piggy. At least until they broke up in 2015.
  • Only Sane Man: Coupled with Only Sane Employee. Then again:
    Kermit: Me? Not crazy? I hired the others.
  • Precision F-Strike: In the 2015 series:
    Kermit: My life is a bacon-wrapped hell on Earth.
  • Southern-Fried Genius: He's from the Deep South, and one of the smarter and more rational members of the cast. Another highlighted similarity between Kermit and Jim Henson, as the latter was from Mississippi.
  • Species Surname: In the 2011 Movie, it's stated that his last name is "The Frog". note 
  • Straight Man: One of the most sensible Muppets.
  • Supporting Leader: Even if he's not the focus of the story, he'll often be this. Muppets from Space being a good example.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: The 2015 series throws a rather less flattering light on his managing style than ever before, mostly because he and Piggy are now a former couple, causing him to take numerous passive aggressive potshots at her.
  • Vetinari Job Security: It doesn't matter how pushy he is with his troupe; the series has proven he's the only person who can keep this bunch of lunatics working as a cohesive unit. The Muppets are already a pretty chaotic bunch, but if he's not around to manage them they become too chaotic to function.
  • Vocal Evolution: During the first 20 years of his career (1955-1975), his voice sounded deeper, softer, quieter and somewhat stuffy and dull. Beginning in 1976, his voice became louder, more rubbery and less stuffy.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: The other Muppets occasionally get carried away and commit all sorts of well-meaning anarchy. It's practically Kermit's job to say 'What the hell?!'
  • Wild Take: With much amusing arm-waving.

Miss Piggy

Performed by: Frank Oz (1976-2002), Eric Jacobson (2001-present)
Voiced by: Laurie O'Brien (Muppet Babies), Hal Rayle (Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass (1974)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/missPiggy_7678.png

The unholy spawn of Barbra Streisand and a rack of pork. Hailing from the Midwest, she was living off of Beauty Contests before meeting Kermit. Has a chronic need for stardom and will steal the spotlight from anyone, with violence if necessary.

  • Adaptational Heroism: While still ambitious, she's generally less selfish and abusive in the movies, and much more affectionate towards Kermit.
  • Armor-Piercing Slap: More like Karate Chop!
  • Attention Whore: Deprive Piggy of her spotlight at your own risk.
  • Badass Adorable: She's The Big Guy for the team and is a born diva.
  • Berserk Button: Plenty of them, one example is getting between her and Kermit,
  • Big Beautiful Woman: She is usually treated as such, even though she's not a human woman.
  • Brawn Hilda: She can bend metal bars with alarming ease.
  • Breakout Character: She was a fairly minor bit character early on in the first season, but swiftly became one of the most important stars of the show. In real life, Miss Piggy was one of the most popular fictional celebrities in the entire world during the late 1970s and early 1980s.
  • Cannot Tell a Joke: As seen in this 1984 Dick Clark special.
  • Catch-Phrase: "Kissy kissy," Hi-ya! and Moi.
  • Crossdressing Voices: In the original English version and Japanese. Other foreign dubs used female voice actresses until recently, when Disney forced them to use male ones.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Delivers this to Constantine in Muppets Most Wanted.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Especially when appearing as a guest on talk shows and the like; she'll snark about anything and everything. In the shows and movies, this trait is not as apparent, but she still displays it from time to time.
  • Determinator : Do NOT steal her purse whatever you do, she'll chase you all the way through Central Park if she has to.....on Roller Skates. And WHEN, not if, she catches you, she'll kick your ass.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: While she did have a huge crush on Christopher Reeve throughout the entire episode, one special mention goes to the backstage segment. Her somewhat legitimate question about how Reeve got the role for Superman degrades to "Wahaha!!!" when Reeve takes off his Vet's hospital costume, inadvertently showing off his muscles.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": A piggy named Miss Piggy in this case.
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: She pummels her male co-stars, usually Kermit, on a regular basis. Female guest stars weren't exactly safe either — it's just they couldn't be sent flying as easily as the male Muppets. In any case, it's all Played for Laughs.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: In the first season, Piggy was alternately portrayed by both Oz and Richard Hunt. The latter would usually perform her when the former had to play a more prominent speaking character, such as Fozzie or George the Janitor. It was only in rare occurrences, such as in "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song", that Oz voiced both Fozzie and Piggy.
  • Fan Disservice: Piggy acts as the main chorus girl throughout the series and, like most performers in Kermit's troupe, has an inflated impression of her own talents (wearing clothes that are 30 pounds too small for her).
  • Feminism: The only icon of 70s-era feminism to be a pig voiced by a man.
  • Flanderization: When Frank Oz was still performing the character, her karate-chopping schtick was used sparingly (and usually took quite a bit of working up to, although casual sexism could get you there quicker) and her negative traits and attitude problems did not completely dominate her personality. In many of her appearances in the 2000's, however, her karate-chopping schtick has been overused and her negative traits and attitude problems have been over-emphasized.
    • Her original Jerk with a Heart of Gold personality was reinstated in the 2011 movie, though.
    • However, some of her appearances still Flanderize her. A perfect example would be her Out-of-Character Moment in the Muppets' Good Luck Charlie guest appearance, because she would never ever hurt or threaten children, especially human children.
  • Gratuitous French: But not very well.
    • Funnily enough, she doesn't seem to know many words other than "moi" and "vous." From the episode hosted by Christopher Reeve:
    Piggy: Chrissy? May I have a word avec vous?
    Christopher Reeve: Oui, bien sur. Entree. note 
    Piggy: What?
    • At one point, Gonzo confides to Elke Sommer that "the only French she knows is what she learned from the back of perfume bottles."
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: It doesn't take a whole lot to get Piggy to give you a smackdown.
  • Haughty "Hmph": She's rather fond of this, especially after beating the crap out of people with her martial arts, or when she's about to storm off after complaining about or being offended by something.
  • I Know Karate: The other Muppets fear her anger because of this. Although Chef's blocking technique is excellent. The only people to survive a direct hit from Piggy are Charlie McCarthy (Solid oak!) and Christopher Reeve (He really is the Man of Steel!). And even Reeve doubled over in pain once Piggy stormed off.
  • Improbable Hairstyle: Sometimes sports these. She's also somehow able to go from bob to Rapunzel Hair and back in between scenes.
  • Informed Attractiveness: Some (non-Muppet) humans, most notably Nicky Holiday, find her extremely hot.
  • Interspecies Romance: With Kermit the Frog, obviously. Also attempted by Nicky Holiday and Jean Pierre Napoleon.
  • It's All About Me: Piggy is rather narcissistic on occasion, but deep down is rather nice.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Vain and violent tempered prima donna. Don't ever imply that she doesn't love her Kermy or care about the other Muppets, however.
  • Large Ham: Both literally and figuratively. (Please don't tell her that we described her using either of those words!)
  • Mr. Muffykins: Her dog Foo-Foo.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Originally named "Piggy Lee", after the larger-than-life singer Peggy Lee. She was hastily renamed Miss Piggy when the show became popular, so as not to insult her namesake.
    • Following an ugly breakup with Kermit in the 2000s, Piggy somehow becomes the managing editor of Vogue's Paris branch. This is a fitting nod to Anna Wintour (a.k.a. "Nuclear Wintour" for her management style).
  • Official Couple: With Kermit. At least until they broke up in 2015.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: While she's more likely to dole it out to others, she does frequently end up on the receiving end of a lot of physical humor.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Played with, depending on the episode. She sometimes is a big name, but her ego can be even bigger.
  • Stalker With a Crush: Her initial relationship towards Kermit.
  • Thinks Like a Romance Novel: Has a rather fantastic opinion as to what life with Kermit would be like.
  • Tsundere: She normally acts elegantly feminine (though her ego is always detectable), but if you piss her off...
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: Especially ridiculous (if somewhat justified) in the 2011 movie, when she has a new outfit and hairstyle in every scene in which she appears. In-universe, she's been earning a good living since the Muppet Show years as an editor for a fashion magazine.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: She can be violent towards Kermit at times, but if anyone else so much as touches her frog, they're in for a world of hurt.
  • White-Dwarf Starlet: Hasn't really made it enough to be washed-up, but has the personality.
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: That goes without saying, although its also hard to like her when she's not angry.

Fozzie Bear

Performed by: Frank Oz (1976-2000), Eric Jacobson (2002-present)
Voiced by: Greg Berg (Muppet Babies and Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/fozzieBear_828.jpg

Hopelessly corny, porkpie hat-wearing showman and a magnet for tomatoes. Originally a failed comedian working out of the El Sleazo Cafe, he is the first to join Kermit's troupe. His personality is a send-up of the stereotypical Borscht Belt comic. Wocka wocka.

  • Ambiguously Jewish: He's based on a Borscht Belt comedian, but his Jewish traits have mostly been forgotten over time.
  • Beary Friendly: Possibly the most genuinely nice member of the cast, and tries to be a friend and peacemaker to everyone.
  • Beary Funny: And how appropriate that the trope name should be a pun! Wocka wocka!
  • The Big Guy: Being a bear firmly wedges him into this trope.
  • Butt-Monkey: To Statler and Waldorf.
  • Catch-Phrase: Wocka Wocka! And just for the record, it's spelled "Wocka Wocka", not "Wokka Wokka" or "Wakka Wakka". He also tends to open his sets with "Hiya hiya hiya!"
  • Characterization Marches On: In the first season, he was intended to be the primary foil of Kermit and everyone else backstage. As a result, in the earliest episodes he tends to come off as abrasive, pushy, and obnoxious. They soon found a different, more neurotic, sweet, and vulnerable vibe for him, allowing the previous personality to be quietly discarded.
  • Cool Car: With a 1951 Studebaker in "The Muppet Movie" and a 1960s convertible in the 2015 series, he has a taste for vintage iron.
  • Couch Gag: During the first season, he would tell a joke during the opening. This was dropped when to opening changed in the second season, and replaced with a Statler and Waldorf gag.
  • Cower Power: Whenever in a threatening situation, he tends to hide behind the much-smaller Kermit. Which leads to ...
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: He actually does have his share of awesome when matters have fallen into his own hands.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Frank Oz has said it took him a while to get comfortable with the character, and cites the sketch where Fozzie keeps giving Kermit the wrong cues for his "neck-a-tie" joke as the moment when he finally figured out how to make him work.
  • Funny Animal: An anthropomorphic bear.
  • Giftedly Bad: The schtick for his stage show segments is that Satler and Waldorf get all the punchlines, his original joke is just setup.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Kermit and Gonzo.
  • The Lancer: Often content acting as Kermit's sidekick, especially in The Great Muppet Caper and The Muppets.
  • Laughing at Your Own Jokes: He does this while doing his stand-up act. He is often the only one laughing.
  • Let's See YOU Do Better!
    • Often does this, mostly to Statler and Waldorf. Usually backfires.
      • And in one case, they actually did perform on stage with Fozzie intent on heckling them.
    • He has also taken over management of the show from Kermit a few times. You can guess how well it went.
  • Nice Hat: His brown pork pie hat.
  • Produce Pelting: In Muppet Babies, whenever he makes one of his jokes, people throw food at him.
  • Pungeon Master: He loves puns. Most of his jokes contain play-on-words.
  • So Unfunny, It's Funny: He was (in theory) the show's stand-up comedian. Most of the humor of these skits came from how terrible he was at his job.
  • Too Dumb to Live: In some of the early post-Henson productions such as Muppets from Space. He later returned to his regular level of intelligence.
  • Verbal Tic: Frank Oz gave Fozzie a series of weird noises (the closest you could come to writing them out would be something along the lines of "Daaaaaaaagh" and "Agghaahaahaa") that he uses to convey certain emotions.
  • Vocal Evolution: In the original pilot, Fozzie's voice was much, much deeper, especially in the "Cowboy Time" sketch. To explain the different voice, a scene was added where Fozzie asks Kermit if it sounds like he's doing an impression of John Wayne. He also sings with this deeper voice in "Close to You" in the second episode with Connie Stephens.

Gonzo the Great

Performed by: Dave Goelz
Voiced by: Russi Taylor (Muppet Babies), Hal Rayle (Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: The Great Santa Claus Switch (1970, as Snarl) / The Muppet Show (1976, as Gonzo)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gonzoTheGreat_9675.jpg

In the words of John Cleese: 'The ugly, disgusting little one who catches cannonballs.' The only non-recognizable animal in Kermit's band (later revealed to be an alien), and the stuntman of the Muppets. He doubles as a Vaudevillian singer.

  • Abhorrent Admirer: In the first season, he had a crush on Miss Piggy, who found him repulsive. This trait carried over into Muppet Babies.
  • Amusing Injuries: Perhaps most notably, getting one arm stretched to about twelve feet in length in an ill-advised cannonball-catching act, and then turning for assistance to special guest star John Cleese, who kept misunderstanding Gonzo's requests and stretched his other limbs to match.
  • Ascended Extra: Both in becoming a character in the show (the puppet was first created as a background extra among many other weird monsters in the Christmas special The Great Santa Claus Switch) and becoming Those Two Guys/Narrator with Rizzo in the movies.
  • Badass Adorable: He's an adorable critter who is good at stunts.
  • Beta Couple: With Camilla.
  • Catch-Phrase: "What a terrific idea for an act!"
  • Characterization Marches On: In early appearances, his craziness was more subtle, and was depicted as a more slightly more neurotic, pathetic star akin to Fozzie. He gradually became more happy go lucky and his torture became harder to imply, given how much he enjoyed most of it.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: He's practically the king of Cloudcuckooland!
  • Couch Gag: On every episode of The Muppet Show, he emerges to play the last note of the opening theme with various comedic effects. For the first season, he hits the O in the show's logo like a gong; after that, he pops up within the O to play his trumpet.
  • Depraved Bisexual: Gonzo doesn't seem to care which gender his would-be conquests are, although his preference is for females and/or avians. He's even hit on Big Bird. As for 'deranged', well... you have been reading this list, haven't you?
  • Early Installment Weirdness: The first season Gonzo puppet was recycled from a TV special, was a bit ratty-looking, and had a permanent frown on his face. It was rebuilt for the second season, and his base appearance was in place.
  • The Eeyore: In the first season, Gonzo's eyes were perpetually half-lidded; that, combined with his sour frustration about no one understanding his "art," made him a rather glum fellow. This disappeared in the second season, and he became manic and jovial, though the latest show seems to be swinging him back towards his original characterization.
  • Freudian Trio: The Id to Fozzie's Ego and Kermit's Superego.
  • Gag Nose: His long, trunk/beaklike nose is a source of many jokes.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Kermit and Fozzie, and later with Rizzo.
  • Interspecies Romance: While his species isn't known, he has a fetish for chickens, on another occasion a cow and on yet another, Big Bird, and even flirted with Ms. Piggy in earlier episodes of the Muppet Show.
    • The movie Muppets from Space revealed that he's an alien. Unfortunately, this is also why that movie is essentially Canon Discontinuity. A later comic cemented this by having Scooter spend an entire issue trying to figure out what Gonzo was, only for him to say "An artist".
  • The Lancer: He's the most manic and unpredictable of the main group, making him the biggest contrast to Only Sane Man Kermit.
  • Mad Artist: He's supposed to be a partial Expy of Salvador Dali.
  • Meaningful Name: "Gonzo" means crazy or eccentric.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: If it sounds like something no sane person would subject themself to, Gonzo is up for it.
  • Noodle Implements: He gets booed off the stage before we can see what he was going to do with a flaming torch, a tyre swing and a cow. The act was originally going to use a typewriter instead of a cow, but he couldn't get one in time.
  • Official Couple: With Camilla the Chicken.
  • Sad Clown: If Gonzo isn't making you laugh, he's making you wipe away tears.
  • Stage Magician: Usually not magic, but is a showman called Gonzo "the Great".
  • Too Kinky to Torture: Implied in his stage acts in the show, directly invoked in Muppet Treasure Island.
  • True Art Is Incomprehensible:invoked On The Muppet Show, his shtick was performing bizarre performance art acts, like demolishing an antique car to the tune of "The Anvil Chorus"... or wrestling a brick, blindfolded.
    • In case you're wondering, it was no contest. The brick took him down early in the first round.
  • Vocal Evolution: His voice has gradually gotten deeper and less scratchy over the years. Just watch the first episode of The Muppet Show and then one of the post-Henson Muppet films.
  • Wasn't That Fun?: He finds many painful and/or dangerous things entertaining. This makes him a terrible judge of what audiences would find entertaining.

Scooter

Performed by: Richard Hunt (1976-1991), Brian Henson (2002-2003), Rickey Boyd (2005), David Rudman (2008-present)
Voiced by: Greg Berg (Muppet Babies), Adam Hunt (Muppets from Space), Matt Vogel (Muppet Race Mania)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/scooter_6331.jpg

The Muppets' stage manager. Originally portrayed as a childish Jerkass, he grew to be a dependable assistant of Kermit and co.

  • Adorkable: He wears glasses, looks cute, is smart, and a total geek.
  • Author Avatar: Richard Hunt reportedly based his performance on how he acted when he was younger.
  • Catch-Phrase/Once an Episode: "Fifteen seconds to curtain!"
  • Daddy Issues: In The Muppets episode "Pig's In A Blackout" he calls Kermit "Father" accidentally.
  • Demoted to Extra: Following Richard Hunt's death, Scooter was used far less often - not appearing in most productions and having minimal screentime in others. The 2011 movie appears to reverse this.
    • During the 1990s, Scooter was damn near unpersoned. Other characters without performers (like Rowlf, Dr. Teeth and Janice) at least made token unspeaking cameos, but Scooter was nowhere to be seen for just shy of a full decade. When the official Muppets website was launched, minor characters like Julius Strangepork got their own bios, but Scooter was only added after mass e-mails from angered fans.
  • Gosh Darn It to Heck!: In The Muppets, he's not even comfortable with saying phrases like "Good grief."
  • Half-Identical Twins: With Skeeter in Muppet Babies
  • The Intern: During the first season.
  • Momma's Boy: Became one in The Muppets
  • Nepotism: His uncle owns the theater and got him his job. Before developing a solid friendship with him, Scooter was quick to remind Kermit of this whenever he wanted something.
  • Nice Guy: Loyal, helpful, and likes everything.
  • Only Sane Man: All the chaos around him is what makes him funny.
  • Serious Business: "The Ex-Factor'' shows he treats painting ceramics like this.
  • Sidekick: To Kermit, sort of.
  • The Smart Guy: Well, he is a nerd. He even did a lecture at 2012's TED conference. No, no - not in a movie: in Real Life.
    • The 2011 movie reveals that he got a job at Google after the Muppets went their separate ways.
  • Vague Age: While considered to be one of the youngest of the main characters (after Robin, of course), his age is never really determined. Throughout The Muppet Show, everyone refers to him as a kid and his uncle got him the job at the theatre, so he would probably be somewhere in his teens. By The Muppets, he appears to be at least in his early 20s, seeing that he can go to a bar without getting kicked out, and some of the others tease him for still living with his mother.

Rowlf the Dog

Performed by: Jim Henson (1962-1990), Bill Barretta (1996-present)
Voiced by: Katie Leigh (Muppet Babies)
Debut: Purina Dog Chow Commercials (1962)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rowlf_2516.jpg

Originally a mascot for Purina Dog Chow, later rising to prominence as a TV sidekick to Jimmy Dean. (No, not that Jimmy Dean. The country singer and pork magnate.) A cameo on Sesame Street blossomed into a full-time gig for the character.

The in-universe Rowlf is a bluesy musician whom Kermit discovers in a piano bar. Since The '90s, it's been a popular gag to pair Rowlf up with famous musicians, leading him to branch out into rock.

  • Author Avatar: A number commented that aside from his piano skills, Rowlf was very much like Jim - arguably even more than Kermit.
  • Back-Alley Doctor: The "Veterinarian's Hospital" sketches put him in the role of Dr. Bob, "a quack who's gone to the dogs".
  • Cool Old Guy: While he's ageless like the other Muppets, he occasionally references his past career with Jimmy Dean in the '60s.
  • Demoted to Extra: In the 1960s, Rowlf was pretty much the main star and leader of the Muppets, with Kermit being more of a second-tier character. In the 1970s, when Kermit officially became a frog and his personality was fully-realized, Rowlf turned those leadership duties over to the frog and became more of a secondary character, yet he remained a prominent character in Muppet productions.
    • After Jim Henson's death, his appearances became limited to mostly brief non-speaking background cameos. When Bill Barretta started performing the character, he gradually returned to regular speaking roles and core character status.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Rowlf first appeared in Purina Dog Chow commercials in 1962. A year later, he began making regular appearances on The Jimmy Dean Show and proved to be quite popular. He also co-hosted the pitch reel for Sesame Street with Kermit, and had a cameo appearance in one of the "Song of _____" films from that show's first season.
    • During the "At the Dance" segment in the Sex and Violence pilot, he mentions his time on the Dean show and notes wistfully that "I used to be a big star then."
  • Hurricane of Puns: Especially the "Veterinarian's Hospital" sketches.
  • The Piano Player: He's never been the focus of an episode's plot, his main job is playing piano.
  • Straight Man: In many of the 1960s Muppet productions and on Muppet Babies.
  • Tareme Eyes: Makes sense, since they go with his kind, quiet, soft, calm, easygoing personality. Also very cute with Baby Rowlf.
  • The Voiceless: After Jim Henson's death, Rowlf quickly became this until a new performer (Bill Baretta) was found. Many people mistakenly thought that his silence was going to be eternal, as a tribute to Jim.

Sam the Eagle

Performed by: Frank Oz (1975-2000), Kevin Clash (2002-2003), Eric Jacobson (2005-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/samTheEagle_7520.jpg

True to his name, Sam is an uber-patriotic wet blanket who acts as the Muppets' censor. He strives to crack down on "lowbrow humor" and bring dignity to the proceedings, without much success.

  • The Comically Serious: "Why are they laughing?"
  • Ditzy Genius: He's academically smart (even hosting a "Muppet University" segment), but is a complete nutcase in terms of morals and values and refuses to believe that he is.
  • Eagleland: Although he isn't coarse in the way type 2 examples usually are, he still is one.
  • The Eeyore: He's not very fun.
  • Fantastic Racism: Hinted, in one episode, he mentions that he is displeased with his daughter for dating an owl.
  • Flanderization: On The Muppet Show, he started out as a general, pro-American detractor of the show's non-cultural content and a Stop Having Fun Guy with strong, exaggeratedly right-wing strawman views on various issues. In recent media, such as the Muppet Viral Videos, he's been depicted as generally obsessed with Americana itself and not much else. (For instance, he starts singingnote  "American Woman" by The Guess Who just because it has "American" in the title, something that the old Sam would never have done.)
    • However, The Muppets puts him back in his original role as the Muppets' censor.
  • Flat "What.": See 'Comically Serious,' above. Sometimes Sam just cannot cope with the weirdness.
    Kermit: And now, a classical Chopin scherzo...
    Sam: Culture at last!
    Kermit: As performed by... Dr. Teeth?
    Sam: What.
  • Interspecies Romance: Gains a (one-sided) crush on Janice in 2015's "Pig Out."
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: For someone who claims to value culture, Sam is a complete ignoramus about the arts. For example, in the Rudolf Nureyev episode he was thrilled that the show would be featuring someone with culture, but referred to Mr. Nureyev (a ballet dancer) as "my favorite opera singer" and didn't recognize him in street clothes.
  • Large Ham: Sam enjoys to chew the scenery.
  • Moral Guardian: A walking parody of one.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Particularly in his earlier appearances, Sam bears more than a passing resemblance to Richard Nixon.
  • Only Sane Man: How he views himself. He isn't.
  • Patriotic Fervor: "World Wide Web? Is there a way to only show it on the American parts?"
  • Perpetual Frowner: Not much of a smiley guy.
  • “Stop Having Fun” Guy: He thinks everyone in the rest of the cast are... weirdos. And he's appalled, appalled I tell you, that guest stars of talent are demeaning themselves by appearing on The Muppet Show. And have you saluted the flag today? Just as he suspected! Shocking. Shocking.
  • Strawman Political: Of the Nixon-era and the sentiments of conservative Moral Guardians.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: Believes he's the Only Sane Man surrounded by a cast of weirdos and freaks. In truth, he's just as eccentric as they are.

Dr. Bunsen Honeydew

Performed by: Dave Goelz
Voiced by: Howie Mandel (Muppet Babies seasons 1-2), Dave Coulier (Muppet Babies seasons 3-7), Bob Bergen (Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bunsenHoneydew_6268.jpg

Addled-brained scientist with a head like a melon. Invariably, his experiments result in nearly immolating his assistant Beaker.

  • Heroic Comedic Sociopath: His apathetic behavior towards Beaker is played for comedy.
  • Jerk Ass: Towards poor Beaker, though not intentionally. He's just really inconsiderate.
  • Mad Scientist: While he's not evil, and usually not as hammy, he still invents crazy contraptions and experiments that end up blowing up in his (or more accurately, Beaker's) face.
  • Meaningful Name: From three sources: Bunsen burners, honeydew melons, and Honeywell International, a huge aerospace/engineering firm that advertised heavily in the 1970s.

Beaker

Performed by: Richard Hunt (1977-1991), Steve Whitmire (1992-2016), David Rudman (2017-present)
Voiced by: Frank Welker (Muppet Babies)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1977)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/beaker_8680.jpg

Lab assistant to Bunsen Honeydew, whose face sports a perpetual look of shock. Only Honeydew (and in one episode, the Swedish Chef) can understand his "meep meeps."

  • Ambiguously Gay: See above. In the "Flowers on the Wall" YouTube video, he has a romantic dinner with a fake Bunsen, and constructs a Bunsen-shaped house of cards with hearts in its eyes. Most blatantly, in The Muppets episode "Pig Out", he and Bunsen arrive at work in each others' clothing and refuse to talk about it.
  • Butt-Monkey: Played with in so many ways, often when the experiments go wrong: losing body parts, getting electrocuted, being eaten by a giant germ, and so on. He recently died, and still doesn't get any respect from Honeydew. In an online skit, he tries to sing and gets trolled by commenters who laugh as he eventually sets himself and the room on fire.
  • Catch-Phrase: His only phrase is "Meep". But you'd be surprised how much you can communicate with that.
  • Characterization Marches On: In his first appearance he was a nervous wreck. This was gone by his third.
  • The Chew Toy: People feel sorry for him, but at the same time, getting hurt is the point of his character.
  • The Dog Bites Back
    • After accidentally cloning himself in one episode, Beaker spends most of the episode chasing Dr. Honeydew all over the theater.
    • While being electrocuted by the Muppet Labs Nose-Warmer, he grabs Dr. Honeydew and adds him to the circuit.
  • The Igor: With great reluctance. Partly because he's always the one expected to subject himself to the Obvious Beta that's being demonstrated.
  • Properly Paranoid: In the original skits, Beaker's always convinced that demonstrating the invention of the week will go horribly wrong.
  • Those Two Guys: With Bunsen.
  • The Unintelligible: To quote Miss Piggy:
    Miss Piggy: Beaker. How many times have I told you never to talk to me like that? (beat) Because I can't understand it.
    • Honeydew is primarily the only one who can understand him when he talks, but in the aforementioned episode where Beaker was cloned, the Swedish Chef understood him just fine, with Beaker likewise understanding his "Swedish".

The Swedish Chef

Performed by: Jim Henson (1975-1990), David Rudman (1992), Bill Barretta (1996-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/swedishChef_1625.jpg

A parody of TV chefs. Like to gesticulate with his hands a lot, uses some very strange cooking equipment, and keeps up a steady stream of Swedish-sounding gibberish as he cooks.

  • Animals Hate Him: ...because he wants to cook them.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: The language he speaks is explicitly referred to at least once as "mock Swedish"; it was once claimed that his actual native language is "mock Japanese". He occasionally uses English words and a bit of coherent Danish, but is otherwise just making a lot of nonsensical noises.
  • Badass Mustache: He's the only person who has blocked out one of Piggy's punches, and has a mustache.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: There's nothing up there but eyebrows. See Eyeless Face below.
  • Blazing Inferno Hellfire Sauce: In one skit, he cooks up a batch of pepper sauce that sends steam shooting out of his ears. He adds even more spices and succeeds in blowing his toque - and the top of his head - clean off.
  • Butt-Monkey: Nearly every episode ends with his ingredients or equipment getting the better of him.
  • Carnivore Confusion: His sketches often deal with this trope. Half the time, he's trying to cook members of the cast.
    Robin: Uncle Kermit! Somebody! Anybody! help!
  • Catch-Phrase: Bork! Bork Bork! (Accompanied by the Chef throwing aside whatever he is holding at the moment.)
  • Chef of Iron: It's not so much that he uses cooking utensils as weapons (although he does)- he actually "cooks" with weapons including a "cakensmooscher" (a baseball bat), a "boom-boom" (a blunderbuss), an ax, and more recently, a chainsaw and a bazooka.
  • Comically Missing the Point: "Piggy eaty hot doggy?"
  • Crazy-Prepared: He keeps a battle ax, a chainsaw, and a bazooka in his kitchen on the infinitely small chance someone suggests he use them to cook.
  • The Ditz: He once offered Miss Piggy a hot dog.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Everyone calls him "Swedish Chef" or just "Chef."
    • Though on the episode featuring Danny Kaye, the chef's Uncle (played by Kaye) revealed his actual full name, which was a string of mock Swedish syllables; he then admitted that the family just calls the Chef "Tom".
  • Eyeless Face: He has no visible eyes, only bushy eyebrows where eyes should be. His eyes have only been seen once in The Great Muppet Caper as the result of a Blinding Camera Flash gag. It's every bit as unsettling to see as it sounds.
  • Fauxreigner: Is sometimes acknowledged to not really speak Swedish.
  • Funny Foreigner: He's Swedish.
  • Intelligible Unintelligible: Whether or not most of his other co-workers can understand him is based on whatever is funnier, but he has been shown on several occasions to be able to communicate with the equally unintelligible Beaker and Hulk Speak speaker Animal.
  • Irony: In the Swedish dubbing, he is in fact the only character who doesn't speak Swedish.
  • Lethal Chef: The very few times he does actually manage to complete a dish, it usually ends up as something the non-suicidal would not want to put in their mouths. Although he did make two seemingly fine pumpkin pies once, with a bazooka.
  • Nonstandard Character Design: The only Muppet to be designed to use the puppeteer's exposed hands. Note that in such cases it had to be operated by two puppeteers simultaneously (Henson: head and voice, Oz: hands). It takes a lot of dexterity to be that clumsy.
  • Not the Intended Use: He does this all the time, using items such as firearms, sports equipment, and hand tools to cook his dishes.
  • Once an Episode: Doing a little song and dance, then throwing some cooking utensils over his shoulder. Frank Oz had a Self-Imposed Challenge to try to knock over every single item on the back wall. He only ever managed it once.
  • Team Chef: He seems to actually cook food for the cast as well as on-stage.
  • The Unintelligible: Mostly speaks in Swedish-sounding gibberish.

Statler and Waldorf

Statler performed by: Richard Hunt (1976-1990), Jerry Nelson (1975, 1992-2003), Steve Whitmire (2002-2016), Peter Linz (2017-present)
Waldorf performed by: Jim Henson (1975-1990), Dave Goelz (1992-present)
Both voiced by: Dave Coulier (Muppet Babies)
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/statlerWaldorf_3872.png

Two-man peanut gallery and patron saints of Caustic Critics everywhere. They've never sat through a show that they didn't hate.

  • Audience Participation: Anytime the two appeared onstage on the Muppet Show. They aren't actually part of the Muppet Show's staff; they're just audience members. In a different sense, any time they heckled the stage also qualifies.
  • Catch-Phrase: Doh-ho-ho-ho-Hoh!
  • Caustic Critics: On the rare occasions when they enjoy a number, they'll complain about the fact that the show is ruining its reputation - for uniformly bad material.
  • Characterization Marches On: In the Muppet Show: Sex and Violence pilot, the two talked a lot more slowly and sounded more like a couple of weak, tired, dying old men. When the Muppet Show proper began, they started talking and reacting a lot quicker and became more lively and energetic.
  • Corpsing: One of the most famous aversions, considering they always laugh at their own quips.
  • Deadpan Snarkers: The whole point of their existence is for them to snark at everything.
  • Dirty Coward: Statler, as proven when the Titanic sank... He still has the dress he used to get onto the lifeboat.
  • The Drag-Along: One episode suggests they stick around because Kermit locks the doors on them.
  • Flanderization: In The Muppet Show, they were audience members who constantly complained about the show. However, while they complained a lot during the show, they didn't complain about everything. Indeed, when it came to classic vaudeville numbers, they were positively enthusiastic and would even sing along, and rarely had anything negative to say about the guest stars. They show up in various roles later, where they complain about everything and seem to have never had a positive experience in their lives. It reaches its zenith in The Muppets at Walt Disney World, where they actually complain about not having anything to complain about.
  • Good Old Ways: They love the more old-fashioned vaudeville and burlesque acts, even performing a few themselves. Their whole heckling style is an old vaudeville bit as well.
  • Greek Chorus: They'll comment on the numbers just completed, usually managing to work in a pun or joke themselves.
  • Grumpy Old Men: Their entire shtick is complaining about pretty much everything.
  • Guilty Pleasures: It's why they show up.
    Statler: This show is awful.
    Waldorf: Terrible!
    Statler: Disgusting!
    Waldorf: See you next week?
    Statler: Of course.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: They're always seen together, though Waldorf at least is married, and Statler has a grandson.
  • Jerks With Hearts of Gold: Their hearts are in the right place despite their rudeness.
  • Sarcastic Devotee: They may be hecklers, but they're members of the Muppet family all the same, and that will never change.
  • Screw Politeness, We're Seniors!: Loud catcalls and heckling from the old men in the balcony.
  • Self-Deprecation: They make fun of everything, including themselves.
    Hey, we look like members of the rock age.
    No, we look more like members of the Stone Age.
  • Sour Supporters: They showed up every week.
  • The Stinger: By the second season, a final comment from Statler and Waldorf was the end to most of the show episodes.
  • Theme Naming: Named after hotels, of course. Waldorf's wife (who looks like Statler in drag) is named Astoria.
  • Those Two Guys: You know what they say: misery loves company!
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: They heckle each other, too. "You old fool" is practically a pet name between them.
    Waldorf: I have a good mind to leave!
    Statler: If you had a 'good mind' you wouldn't be here in the first place!

Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/electricMayhem_9013.jpg

A rock band consisting of Dr. Teeth on vocals and keyboards, Animal on drums (which he sometimes eats), Sgt. Floyd Pepper on bass guitar, Janice on guitar, and Zoot on saxophone. Lips later joined the band on trumpet.

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/drTeeth_6844.jpg

Dr. Teeth (keyboard)

Performed by: Jim Henson (1975-1990), John Kennedy (1991-2003), Bill Barretta (2005-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

  • Badass Beard: A fringe beard, with no mustache.
  • Delusions of Eloquence: The cause of most of his Word Salad Lyrics.
  • Gold Tooth: To give him more of a blues look.
  • Guttural Growler: I'm gonna 'splode an atom bomb... drill a hole to your sooooouuuuulllll...
  • Never Bareheaded: Until the action figure came out in 2002, he was never seen without a hat, often wearing his usual hat when dressed or or playing the role of The Cheshire Cat, and wearing a night cap when wearing pajamas (while the rest of the band didn't wear hats). The action figure had a removable hat, revealing that the character has a bald spot. The actual puppet wasn't seen hatless until a late-2000s group photo, and the first actual production to show him without his hat is The Muppets. In the latter two cases, he's shown at angles where the bald spot can't be seen.
  • Nice Hat: A large baggy stovepipe, striped.
  • Pimp Duds: His 'stage clothes' are vivid, striped and include those odd little shades.

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sgtFloydPepper_8558.jpg

Sgt. Floyd Pepper (bass guitar)

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (1975-2003), Matt Vogel (2008-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

  • Cloud Cuckoolander: Has shades of this in the 2015 series- for example, he believes that the Earth revolves around the Moon and that's why winter occurs.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He's full of snarky comments and lampshades. In one episode he even takes over for Statler and Waldorf for a while.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Not afraid to poke fun at others, but he still is plenty nice.
  • Kid with the Leash: He's the only one with any sort of control over Animal. A literal chain leash, mind you.

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/zoot_7747.jpg

Zoot (saxophone)

Performed by: Dave Goelz
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/animalMuppet_5128.jpg

Animal (drums)

Performed by: Frank Oz (1975-2000), Eric Jacobson (2002-present)
Voiced by: Howie Mandel (Muppet Babies seasons 1-2), Dave Coulier (Muppet Babies seasons 3-7), Hal Rayle (Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

  • All Drummers Are Animals: A comment about him by Buddy Rich is the Trope Namer.
  • Breakout Character: From season two of The Muppet Show onwards, he's a prominent part of the main Muppet cast, gets more merchandise than Kermit, and is the member of the Electric Mayhem seen most often without his bandmates (he's probably the second-biggest example of this next to Miss Piggy). He was even the mascot of the U.S. snowboarding team for the 1998 Winter Olympics!
  • Big Eater: He has an endless appetite.
  • Cartoon Creature: Is he a human? An animal? A whatever? The most plausible explanation is that he's a monster like the ones on Sesame Street.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He behaves like a complete psycho and tends to destroy things around him (hence his being kept in chains), but seems to be fairly close friends with his bandmates and the other Muppets. He even gets a major Big Damn Heroes moment in The Muppet Movie.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: In the recent-ish Muppet rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody, he only gets as far as "Mama..." Then he starts looking for her and shouting "Mama!" overjoyed at the prospect of seeing his dearest mother. When he doesn't find her, he begins searching for his father.
    • Later, they made a short celebratory video when the Bohemian Rhapsody parody won a Webby Award. The episode is just Animal calling his mama and excitedly telling her they won a Webby... the punchline being that he only caught her voice mail. The implications are that the second he heard his mother's voice, he completely geeked out with excitement. That is ADORABLE.
  • Extreme Omnivore: He even tries to eat his drums sometimes.
  • Fiery Redhead: Has orange fur and is wild.
  • The Unfettered: Not in the literal sense, of course. He's the one cast member who regularly has to be chained down.

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/janiceMuppets_7050.jpg

Janice (guitar)

Performed by: Fran Brill (1975), Eren Ozker (1976-1977), Richard Hunt (1977-1991), Brian Henson (2002-2003), Tyler Bunch (2005), David Rudman (2008-present)
Voiced by: Dave Coulier (Muppet Babies), Matt Vogel (Muppet RaceMania)
Debut: The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence (1975)

  • Crossdressing Voices: Averted in the Sex and Violence pilot and the first season of The Muppet Show, when she's played by actual women (Fran Brill for the pilot and Eren Ozker for the show proper). From the second season on, she was passed over to Richard Hunt, who created her Valley Girl persona, and ever since then she's been a prime example of the trope.
  • Eyes Always Shut: Her original concept drawing actually had no eyes, but the actual puppet became this. That said, she's been seen with her eyes open twice - once in her chicken form when a Cluckitus epidemic spread on The Muppet Show and the other time was in The Great Muppet Caper as the result of a Blinding Camera Flash gag.
  • Gender Flip: Also, her original concept drawing indicated that she was male and heavily inspired by Mick Jagger.

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/lipsMuppets_3847.jpg

Lips (trumpet)

Performed by: Steve Whitmire (1980-2016), Peter Linz (2017-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1980)

Rizzo the Rat

Performed by: Steve Whitmire
Debut: The Muppet Show (1980)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rizzoTheRat_1228.jpg

Self-interested, sarcastic and snide, Rizzo basically hangs around with the Muppets, making a pest of himself and shoehorning himself into every act he can just for the attention. Even when Muppets Tonight gave him a job, he didn't change much. He likes eating, wooing female rodents, and having laughs at his castmates' expense, although a softer side of him does come out, especially when with his best pal Gonzo.

  • Ascended Extra:
    • Rizzo started out as an anonymous member of a group of rats, but thanks to Steve Whitmire's performance soon emerged as the central rat character, started getting solo appearances and in the final season of the Muppet Show began popping up everywhere, usually as a background character and often in skits he had no place in. He was a pivotal supporting character in The Muppets Take Manhattan. Then, in The Muppet Christmas Carol he made the jump to main star when writer Jerry Juhl discovered just how well the Gonzo/Rizzo team worked, and since then has either been among the main characters or at least had a notable appearance in every major Muppet production. He also got what was pretty much Scooter's role on Muppets Tonight.
    • After being mostly absent from the two movies, he became an Ascended Extra again in the 2015 TV series.
  • Big Eater: Despite his small size.
  • Butt-Monkey: Lots of bad stuff happens to him.
  • Deadpan Snarker: With a Brooklyn accent, no less.
  • Demoted to Extra: In The Muppets, Rizzo doesn't have a single line, only appearing in crowd scenes. He did get one scene in 'Muppets Most Wanted'... in which he complains that he's been Demoted to Extra.
  • Iron Butt Monkey: Nowhere near as bad as Beaker, but he does suffer a lot, sometimes alongside Gonzo, who isn't fazed in the slightest.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's gluttonous, prankish, and mean, although he's one of Gonzo's best pals.
  • Lovable Coward: Usually played up whenever he's with Gonzo, to better contrast Gonzo's Fearless Fool tendencies.
  • Those Two Guys: Most often with Gonzo, but sometimes with Pepe.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: During his Muppet Show days, Rizzo would sport a different outfit for just about every scene he was in. Starting with Muppets Tonight, this was Inverted when Rizzo got his red-and-beige jacket and white tee-shirt, which became his trademark outfit.
  • You Dirty Rat!: Largely subverted as Rizzo is a Jerk with a Heart of Gold, but he still has a few of the trademark characteristics, mostly his cowardice, gluttony and poor personal hygiene.

Crazy Harry

Performed by: John Lovelady (1974, 1976-1977), Richard Hunt (1975), Jerry Nelson (1977-2003), Rickey Boyd (2005), Matt Vogel (2008-present)
Debut: The Muppets Valentine Show (1974)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/crazyHarry_219.jpg

A wacko even by the Muppets' standards, Harry doesn't do much other than detonate random explosions, laughing all the while. Needless to say, he's something of a fan favourite. His personality was based on Muppet builder Don Sahlin, who had a similar fondness for wacky pranks that, yes, involved explosions.

  • Crazy-Prepared: Harry is constantly seen detonating explosives... Explosives that logically would need to be set up ahead of time.
  • Even Psychotic Has Standards: During the song "Comedy Tonight", some monsters are seen chasing and terrorizing a little girl. Harry looks at the scene for a few seconds before blowing the monster up.
  • Laughing Mad: Half the time he does nothing but laugh while blowing things up.
  • Mad Bomber: His entire personality is blowing stuff up when you least expect him to.
  • Speak of the Devil: Words like boom or dynamite would often prompt him to appear pull his plunger.
    • Did someone say "Dynamite?" *KABOOM*
  • Trigger Happy: He likes explosions a lot.

Beauregard

Performed by: Dave Goelz
Debut: The Muppet Show (1978)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/beauregardMuppets_6657.jpg

A dopey, hard-toiling fellow, Beauregard is the loyal janitor of the Muppet Theater. He's generally agreeable and obliging, although his bumbling has spelled disaster for more than a few sketches.

Link Hogthrob

Performed by: Jim Henson (1977-1990), Steve Whitmire (2000-2016), Peter Linz (2017-present)
Voiced by: Bob Bergen (Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1977)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/linkHogthrob_2812.jpg

Imagine William Shatner with double the ego, half the brains, and a pig's snout. Link, star of the Pigs In Space sketches, considers himself a gifted actor, a brave action star, and irresistible to the lady pigs. Needless to say, he falls short in all of those categories.

  • Brainless Beauty: He considers himself handsome, though he isn't so smart.
  • The Captain: In Pigs in Space
  • Da Chief: In the Bear on Patrol sketches with Fozzie.
  • Demoted to Extra: If your familiarity with the Muppets is only with the movies, it comes as a surprise to see what a major character this guy was on the Muppet Show proper. After Jim Henson died, however, Link pretty much disappeared.
    • The Bus Came Back: He returned in the 2011 movie, appearing regularly in the background or in group scenes. He even has a major role in the "Smells Like Teen Spirit" musical number, singing as a member of the Muppet Barbershop Quartet with Sam, Rowlf and Beaker. As a result, this is the biggest role that Link has ever had in any of the theatrical Muppet films to date.
    • Link also had a good amount of lines and screentime in Muppets Most Wanted.
  • Dodgy Toupee: The wig he wears isn't his real hair.
  • Fake Ultimate Hero: He calls himself brave. Nothing could be further from the truth.
  • Fantastic Racism: He's a little too proud to be a pig.

Lew Zealand

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (2008-2003), Bill Barretta (2002-2005), Matt Vogel (2008-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1978)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/lewZealand_5434.jpg

A goofy clown who throws fish all over the place. Only on the Muppets would this act be considered boring. His act hasn't changed at all over the decades, but he's still trying relentlessly for the chance to show the world his comedic genius.

  • Ascended Extra: Originally created as a one-shot character, he appeared multiple times on The Muppet Show and in the movies.
  • Catch-Phrase: I throw the fish away! And they come BACK to me!
  • Flat Character: 99% of his appearances consist of variants on his boomerang fish act or talking about fish. He's still really funny.
  • I Call It "Vera": But with boomerang fish.
  • Non-Ironic Clown: He dresses and acts like a vaudevillian clown. His act is presented as ridiculous, but he's not evil or sad.
  • Simpleton Voice: Even his voice sounds silly.

Annie Sue

Performed by: Louise Gold
Debut: The Muppet Show (1978)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/annieSue_5353.jpg

A child prodigy, Annie Sue was introduced as Miss Piggy's understudy, known as the most hazardous position in the industry. Despite Piggy's scarcely-veiled animosity towards her, Annie Sue remained cheery and never failed to please the crowd. This, of course, only enraged Piggy even more.

  • Ascended Extra: Had turned up as a generic female pig used in various production numbers, but didn't get featured as a named character until season 3.
  • The Cutie: She's cute as a button, much to Piggy's chagrin.
  • The Ingenue: Oh, so very much.
  • Meaningful Name: Mary Sue, as confirmed by Word of God.
  • Recurring Character: Whenever the writers felt like tweaking Piggy.
  • Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: As Miss Piggy's younger, prettier and very talented understudy, this is how Miss Piggy saw her. It didn't help that Kermit found her to be quite charming and the theater audience adored her.

Robin the Frog

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (1971-2003), Matt Vogel (2008-2017), Peter Linz (2017-present)
Voiced by: Russi Taylor (Muppet Babies)
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/robinTheFrog_1484.jpg

Kermit's adorable little nephew, Robin's role on the Muppet Show fit his status as the youngest of the cast members. Sometimes he would cutely win the crowd over, and other times he would ask embarrassing questions, make impolite comments, and pout when he didn't get his way. Robin also seems to be the Muppet character designed to appeal best to small children.

  • Artifact Title: Why is he named Robin? In his first appearance, he was a human prince named Sir Robin the Brave who had... well, we all know this story. After this, he was retooled as Kermit's nephew (the whole Frog Prince thing could probably fall under the Animated Actors clause), but he kept his medieval-era name.
  • Cheerful Child: He's a good-natured, optimistic kid.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Robin may be a relatively minor character, but he's had two opportunities to take the spotlight all for himself: his performance of "Halfway Down The Stairs" (which became a Top 40 hit), and starring in his own action game for the Playstation.
  • Lovable Coward: Has some elements of this, being a kid and all. You may think "Sir Robin the Brave" is a reference to something, but The Frog Prince predates that movie by a few years.
  • Morality Pet: If the Muppets ever need to dial down the chaos and get a little sentimental, Robin is usually front and centre.
    • Notably, in the episode featuring Alice Cooper, they have Robin sing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow". In an episode full of irreverent humor, ghosts, monsters, and the most controversial guest star to date, they had that one sweet, innocent moment.
  • Nephewism: The second season firmly established Robin as Kermit's nephew. His parents are never seen, but his father was mentioned once on this show. Muppet Babies later referred to his mother being Kermit's older sister. This trope is so evident that Robin played the Tiny Tim role to Kermit's Bob Cratchit in The Muppet Christmas Carol.
  • Not Allowed to Grow Up: He's been a kid for 45 years and counting.
  • Odd Couple: He and Sweetums are the best of friends.
  • Odd Friendship: With Sweetums. Really odd considering The Frog Prince story cast them as enemies.
  • Tagalong Kid: For the Muppets, being the youngest.

Sweetums

Performed by: Richard Hunt (1976-1991), John Henson (1991-2005), Noel MacNeal (2008), Matt Vogel (2009-present)
Voiced by: Carl Banas (Tales from Muppetland: The Frog Prince), Jerry Nelson (Muppet RaceMania)
Debut: Tales from Muppetland: The Frog Prince (1971)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sweetumsMuppets_69.jpg

Sweetums first appeared as one of the main villains in Jim Henson's The Frog Prince special, but deep down inside, he's actually quite sweet despite his intimidating looks. He's a large, full-bodied ogre who's often paired with Robin.

Camilla

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (1978-2003), Alice Dinnean (2005), Matt Vogel (2008-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1978)

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A chicken, and a non-anthropomorphic one at that. Despite this handicap, Camilla hasn't let that stop her from being a singer and an actress in many acts on the show. It's also won her the love of the Great Gonzo, although her boyfriend's roving eye for all manner of fowl has often put a strain on their relationship.

Pops

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (1980-2002), Matt Vogel (2011-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1980)
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The Muppet Theater's crotchety, semi-senile old doorman. In the show's final season, guest stars had to get through him to get on the show - hilarity often ensues.

Uncle Deadly

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (1976-1979), Matt Vogel (2011-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

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The "Phantom of the Muppet Theater", Uncle Deadly is some sort of refined, British dragon-ghost-thing known for performing Shakespeare. He was murdered by the critics and spent his time afterwards scaring the theater's crew just for fun. He became more well-known after The Muppets, where he served as The Dragon to the Corrupt Corporate Executive Big Bad.

Dr. Julius Strangepork

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (1977-2003), Matt Vogel (2009-present)
Voiced by: Greg Berg (Little Muppet Monsters)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1977)

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Pigs in Space's German-accented science officer, forever the bearer of bad news, and the only crewman on the Swinetrek who takes his job seriously. Outside of this role, Julius' performances are few and far between.

Marvin Suggs

Performed by: Frank Oz (1976-1981), Eric Jacobson (2011)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/marvinsuggs.jpg

One of the show's stranger recurring characters, Marvin Suggs is a crazy little blue man with a silly accent who enjoys making music by beating on an instrument made up of sentient furballs (the Muppaphones). Despite his unusually cruel act, he rarely got any sort of comeuppance.

  • Black Comedy: Injures his sentient muppaphones all the time.
  • Catch-Phrase: "SHUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUT UP!" (to his Muppaphones, whenever they started complaining or getting restless)
  • Comically Missing the Point: When Leslie Ann Warren upbraids Suggs for hitting living creatures, he exasperatedly responds, "Of course they're alive. You can't make music by hitting DEAD creatures!"
  • Expy: This is a somewhat less psychotic version of the Monty Python "Mouse Organ" sketch.
  • French Jerk: His accent sounds french, and he's rather unpleasant.
  • Jerk Ass: He's rather sadistic.
  • Karma Houdini: Except twice — first when he himself gets clobbered with a gigantic mallet and second when a witch doctor gave him a well-deserved Karmic Transformation.
  • Kick the Dog: His poor Muppaphones...note 
  • Large Ham: "SHUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUT UP!"
  • Mad Artist: He has a bizarre act that no one understands, and is quite strange and aggressive himself.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Quite the egotist.
  • What the Hell Is That Accent?: According to Frank Oz, he based Marvin's accent on an exaggerated version of a French friend's voice.
  • You Do Not Want To Know: Marvin once told Kermit that the Muppaphones have to be replaced after a while because they go flat (literally). When Kermit asks him what happens to the old Muppaphones, Marvin replies, "I don't think you want to know."

The Newsman

Performed by: Jim Henson (1976-1989), Jerry Nelson (1996), Brian Henson (2001-2003), Steve Whitmire (2008-2016), Eric Jacobson (2017-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/newsman_1.jpg

A bespectacled, stone-serious journalist, the Newsman never hesitates to break the latest news story... and the subject of the latest story never fails to break him. One of the Muppets' most slapstick characters.

  • Throw the Dog a Bone: In the 2011 movie, the Muppets allow the Newsman to participate in their telethon, running the phone lines. Not only does nothing bad happen to the Newsman for once, but at the end of the film, he is able to report a news story in full, suffering no injuries! He also shows up in Muppets Most Wanted, delivering a plot-relevant report with no ill effects.

Wayne and Wanda

Wayne performed by: Richard Hunt (1976-1981), David Rudman (2011-present)
Wanda performed by: Eren Ozker (1976-1977), Kathryn Mullen (1979), Alice Dinnean (2011), Julianne Buescher (2017)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/wayne_and_wanda.JPG

A pair of snobby singers who would frequently take the stage to sing tired old ballads - only to abruptly have some strange fate befall them, always foretold by the song's lyrics. None of the Muppets seemed to like them much, except Sam the Eagle, who was forever trumpeting them as the only respectable act on the show. If only they could finish a number...

  • The Chewtoy: Invariably their duets ended with one or both of them injured.
  • Flat Character: What happened to them was funnier than the characters themselves actually were.
  • Hollywood Tone-Deaf: A nice aversion. Richard Hunt and Eren Ozker were both talented singers, and they gave Wayne and Wanda voices like those of modestly talented performers overconfidently pushing their vocals harder than they could handle.
  • The Moral Substitute: "They're also church people", according to Sam.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Based on old Hollywood musical sweethearts Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald.
  • Platonic Life Partners: Given their limited personalities, it was hard to pin down their relationship in their old days; they seemed pretty chaste for a pair known for singing love songs to each other. They were caught getting pretty un-platonic in the 2011 movie.
  • Put on a Bus: While Wanda's disappearance after the first season was unremarked at the time, she and Wayne reunited reappeared a couple years later as part of a This Is Your Life show for Kermit's birthday. They revealed that Kermit had fired them, and they were now scraping by on minimum-wage jobs. Kermit, appalled that he could have done such a thing, re-hired them. When they sang out of joy, Kermit re-fired them. Amusingly, this successfully kept the pair out of the Muppets for the next three decades.
    • The Bus Came Back: The pair finally rejoined the Muppets in the 2011 movie. While their return was a mild surprise in and of itself, nobody expected them to get one of the biggest laughs in the film!
  • Running Gag: The first season of the show had more running gags than character pieces. When Jerry Juhl replaced Jack Burns as head writer, Wanda was dumped, as running gags were all she had. Wayne, however, sporadically appeared in skits during the second and third seasons, oddly paired now with Uncle Deadly!
  • Small Name, Big Ego: One of the few times they were given any non-musical dialogue, they made rude remarks about Kermit until they realized that he was listening the whole time.
  • Speak of the Devil: Their injury is usually related to whatever they're singing about.

Mahna Mahna

Performed by: Jim Henson (1969-1976), Bill Barretta (2001-present)
Debut: The Ed Sullivan Show (1969)

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A scruffy, hyperactive little guy who joins in musical numbers unannounced and uninvited. He pops all over the place, either yammering in incoherent scat or playing an obnoxiously loud instrument. There's no stopping him, and it's foolish to try.

  • Divergent Character Evolution: A Muppet on Sesame Street sang "Mahna Mahna" on its first season, and was retained for future musical numbers. This character is not Mahna Mahna, but a different Muppet named Bip Bipadotta; although one could be forgiven for confusing them, as the two characters look very similar, and are both played by Jim Henson using the same voice. note  This distinction is Serious Business amongst the fandom.
  • Non Sequitur: His act basically makes no sense whatsoever, but it's extremely catchy to most people. In Muppets Tonight, the song was presented as a mental disorder wherein the Snowths would appear from nowhere and sing whenever someone would say the name of the song. In The Muppets, it's played during the end credits. Some people say it to break the ice in a conversation when they don't know what else to say, in the same vain as "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious"!
  • Flanderization: While many of his early appearances were in performances of the song, many of his early appearances also had him doing other things. In a sketch on The Ed Sullivan Show, he played the drums and provided wisecracks (and spoke coherent English) in the "String Quartet" sketch. In the "Sax and Violence" number he played the triangle bell and stole the show. But in recent years, his appearances are almost always performances or parodies of "Mahna Mahna". Even his Sesame Street counterpart, Bip Bipadotta, shouted "Mahna Mahna!" when he made a cameo in a 2009 episode.

Hugga Wugga

Performed by: Frank Oz
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hugga_wugga.jpg

One of the best-remembered "one-sketch" characters (possibly second to Mahna Mahna), Hugga Wugga is some sort of purple alien who wanders around an alien swamp chanting his name. He gets angry at creatures who try to sing anything else and tries to "assimilate" them, but is ultimately given his just desserts by a happy yellow creature that sings "You Are My Sunshine".

  • Berserk Button: Creatures that sing anything other than "Hugga Wugga".
  • Blow You Away: Shoots jets of air out of his nose whenever he gets angry.
  • Jerkass: He gets really angry at anyone singing a different song.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: The happy yellow creature that sings "You Are My Sunshine" gives him his just desserts at the end of the sketch.
  • Plant People: He looks rather like a Pikmin enemy.
  • Pokémon Speak: People call him "Hugga Wugga" because that's all he says.

Angus McGonagle

Performed by: Jerry Nelson
Debut: The Muppet Show (1980)

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The original planned "guest star" for the Star Wars episode, Angus McGonagle is an ugly purple gargoyle Scotsman whose main (and possibly only) talent is gargling George Gershwin compositions "gorgeously". For some reason, his act is widely hated among the Muppets and their intergalactic guests.

  • Trrrilling Rrrs: "Yes sirrrrree, Scoo'er lil' buddy, I'm rrrrready t'gae!"
  • Violent Glaswegian: Played with. He gets angry, but the worst he actually does is gargle. His gargling is then played as horrific.

J. P. Grosse

Performed by: Jerry Nelson
Debut: The Muppet Show (1977)

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Scooter's uncle, the owner of the Muppet Theater, and the man who Kermit has to keep happy at all costs. He was an unseen presence in the first season of the show, but made appearances in person for the second season, only to disappear again.

  • Cigar Chomper: Always seen with a cigar whenever he actually appears.
  • Evil Uncle: Although his nephew was the only one he was nice to.
  • The Ghost: As noted, at first the mere mention of him was usually enough to cow Kermit into giving in to Scooter or Muppy's demands. After three seasons of this, they finally brought him out as a regular character. However, the writers and performers eventually degreed that while Grosse was fun as an offscreen presence, in person he was too abrasive and threatening to be funny. Grosse was quickly Demoted to Extra.
  • The Scrooge: He's usually characterized as tight-fisted, although he lets the Muppet Theater fall behind on their rent regularly.

Thog

Performed by: Jerry Nelson (1970-1980), Tyler Bunch (2011)
Debut: The Great Santa Claus Switch (1970)

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A furry blue nine-foot-tall monster who loves to sing and dance.

  • Breakup Breakout: In his debut appearance in the 1970 TV special The Great Santa Claus Switch, he was paired with a slightly-similar green-furred counterpart named Thig. Unlike Thog, Thig made no further appearances after that special.
  • The Bus Came Back: He was resurrected in the 2011 film The Muppets.
  • Gentle Giant: He's humongous and completely harmless.
  • Put on a Bus: He stopped making appearances in Muppet productions after The Muppet Show ended.
  • The Quiet One: In many of his appearances, he doesn't speak at all. His scene with Harvey Korman revealed that he has a fussy, lisping little voice.
    Marvin the Monster Trainer: Speak, you demon! Speak!!
    Thog: I hardly know where to begin. I was weading Balzac the other day - just in translation, of course...
  • Your Size May Vary: When Thog was rebuilt in 2011, the new version of him ended up being 2 and a half feet taller than the original 1970 Thog costume. This was due to the puppet builder not having enough reference material of the original puppet to determine his proper height.

Astoria

Performed by: Unknown
Debut: The Muppet Show (1979)

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Waldorf's wife. She filled in once when Statler was sick and was unable to come see the show.

The Announcer

Performed by: John Lovelady (1976-1977), Jerry Nelson (1976-2011), Matt Vogel (2016-present)
Debut: The Muppet Show (1976)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/characterannouncer_1.jpg

The announcer for Pigs In Space, Veterinarians' Hospital and Bear on Patrol.


http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Characters/TheMuppetShow