1 The Muppet Mindset: My Favorite Things About Fraggle Rock, Part 4 - The Bonus Features

Jun 15, 2012

My Favorite Things About Fraggle Rock, Part 4 - The Bonus Features

Ryan Dosier - After talking about Fraggle Rock for three weeks, you start to become a little Fragglish yourself. I constantly find myself dancing my cares away and eating radishes... but that's beside the point. Today's entry marks the final in my series discussing my favorite things about Fraggle Rock. If you've missed the first three parts, you're missing out on The Characters, The Music, and The Silly Creatures and you should probably check those out before continuing. Today I'll be talking about one of the most impressive aspects of the show's release on DVD: the Bonus Features.

While not technically a part of Fraggle Rock itself, the bonus features included on the DVD release of each season of the show are so all-encompassing and add so much to my understanding and appreciation of the series that I consider them to be a beautiful tribute to the show. These bonus features are truly, truly incredible and pull together so many people who worked on the show that I can safely assume we will never see features like this again on any other Muppet-related release.

Season One set the precedent with hours of conversation with Jerry Juhl, Jocelyn Stevenson, and the Muppet performers who so deserve the spotlight: Dave Goelz, Jerry Nelson, Steve Whitmire, and Karen Prell. Season Two brought even more discussions with the Muppeteers and more writers plus an amazingly beautiful tribute to Jerry Juhl. Season Three we got to hear from Gerry Parkes (Doc) and even more writers. Season Four spotlighted the talented individuals inside the Gorgs. These are just small pieces of the big picture of bonus features included on these releases.

It is truly amazing just how many individuals came out of the wood work to discuss Fraggle Rock and it shows how truly special this series was to everyone who worked on it. It is a wonderful treat to see Dave Goelz and Steve Whitmire sit together and laugh about the pranks they used to pull on the crew. Or to watch Karen Prell one up the both of them with her Muppet knowledge. Or to see Jerry Juhl light up when discussing the show. Or to hear Gerry Parkes' obvious adoration for the show and the role he played. Or to feel how much the writers truly believed in these characters and what they were preaching. Everyone who talks about Fraggle Rock clearly loved it and that is a beautiful thing.

Another amazing set of features spread across the four seasons are some incredibly rare, magnificent behind the scenes footage. In one, Steve Whitmire takes us behind the scenes with a handheld camera, in another we get to see parts of the wrap party with touching speeches from Jim Henson and Jerry Juhl and hilarity from Karen Prell and Richard Hunt. A lot of the behind the scenes footage is contained in the amazing documentary on Season One, "Down at Fraggle Rock." Hosted by Jim Henson and running at least an hour, this documentary is truly special and a fantastic look at the entire series.

Overall, these features remind us why Fraggle Rock was so wonderful... because of the people who made it. Writing these articles and watching the series from start to finish has been such a delight. The true spirit of Fraggle Rock lives in the people who made the show real. The love, the fun, the beauty of the series will surely live on in the folks who brought the Fraggles, Doozers, and Gorgs to life and in the millions of fans who have fallen in love with this nearly perfect show. If you still have not seen Fraggle Rock, you are truly, truly missing out (and are probably really confused by these articles). Get on that. Soon.






The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier, muppetmindset@gmail.com

3 comments:

  1. This a great post. Really enjoyed it. Just ordered Fraggle Rock season one, can't wait to relive a portion of my childhood! Thanks for sharing.

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  2. Thanks for highlighting these special features. They really are terrific. I'm so grateful that Henson/HIT/Lions Gate bothered to put so much time and energy into making these packages really something special. I wish Disney would have given The Muppet Show the same treatment.

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  3. Fraggle Rock really had a devoted staff working on it. Even something as forgettable and skippable as the animated Fraggle Rock was released AND had an extra with Michael Frith talking about how he had to simplify his designs for animation.

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