The Best Episodes of The Muppet Show

Last Updated: Sep 30, 2018

The Muppet Show is a British-American television program produced by puppeteer Jim Henson and featuring Muppets. After two pilot episodes were produced in 1974 and 1975, the show premiered on September 5, 1976, and five series were produced until March 15, 1981, lasting 120 episodes. The program shows a vaudeville- or music hall-style song-and-dance variety show, as well as glimpses behind the scenes of such a show. Kermit the Frog stars as a showrunner who tries to keep control of the antics of the other Muppet characters (and his temper), as well as keep the guest stars happy. The show was known for outrageous physical slapstick, sometimes absurdist comedy, and humorous parodies. Each episode also featured a human guest star. As the show's popularity rose, many celebrities were eager to perform with the Muppets on television and in film.

Dizzy Gillespie

#1 - Dizzy Gillespie

Season 4 - Episode 17

Statler is sick (of the show), so Waldorf brings his wife Astoria to the show. Meanwhile, Inspector LaBrea of the County Environmental Department arrives backstage to monitor the noise level of the show. LaBrea tells Kermit that to keep the noise down, he has to cut the trumpets for the show. Kermit tries to keep LaBrea busy while Dizzy performs.

star 8.66
17 votes
Harry Belafonte

#2 - Harry Belafonte

Season 3 - Episode 19

Sketches/Songs: ""Day-O"", ""Tea For Two"", ""Pigs In Space"", ""Honeysuckle Rose"", Animal and Harry play the drums, ""Muppet Sports"", ""Turn the World Around""

star 8.60
10 votes
Mark Hamill

#3 - Mark Hamill

Season 4 - Episode 16

The regularly-scheduled guest (a terrible singer) is bumped when four stars of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope suddenly appear in the theater. It's a natural for the Pigs in Space.

star 8.59
19 votes
Bob Hope

#4 - Bob Hope

Season 2 - Episode 17

Sketches/Songs: ""The Pig Calypso"", ""For What It's Worth"", ""Muppet Newsflash"", ""Swedish Chef"", ""Muppet Newsflash"", Rowlf plays piano, ""Long Long Ago"", ""Muppet Labs"", Rowlf plays piano, ""Don't Fence Me In""

star 8.58
12 votes
Leo Sayer

#5 - Leo Sayer

Season 3 - Episode 12

Sketches/Songs: ""You Make Me Feel Like Dancing"", ""Carbon Paper"", ""The Daffodills"", ""The Show Must Go On"", ""She was a Dear Little Dicky Bird"", Fozzie's Act, ""When I Need You""

star 8.57
7 votes
Jean-Pierre Rampal

#6 - Jean-Pierre Rampal

Season 5 - Episode 9

Miss Piggy is cornered by flautist Jean-Pierre, who wants to speak French with her. She claims to have laryngitis, whispering, "My vocal coach told me not to speak French. I'm not even supposed to eat French fries!"

star 8.57
7 votes
Bernadette Peters

#7 - Bernadette Peters

Season 2 - Episode 7

Sketches/Songs: ""How Could You Believe Me When I Said I Loved You When You Know I've Been a Liar All My Life"", ""Take a Little One-Step"", Chickens playing piano, ""Veterinarian's Hospital"", ""The Sheik of Araby"", ""The Ant and the Grasshopper"", ""Just One Person"", ""Swedish Chef"", ""Muppet Labs"", ""I'm Five"", ""Muppet Newsflash"", ""Apple Jack""

star 8.55
11 votes
Rudolf Nureyev

#8 - Rudolf Nureyev

Season 2 - Episode 14

Sketches/Songs: The Electric Mayhem, A Wagner opera performed, ""Swine Lake"", ""Something's Missing"", ""Veterinarian's Hospital"", ""It's Cold Outside"", ""Clair De Lune"", ""Top Hat""

star 8.50
12 votes
Carol Burnett

#9 - Carol Burnett

Season 5 - Episode 14

There's no show today, almost; the theater is turned into a dance marathon hosted by Gonzo.

star 8.50
8 votes
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Marisa Berenson

#10 - Marisa Berenson

Season 3 - Episode 14

Sketches/Songs: ""Russian Pig Dance"", ""Dance"", ""Muppet Sports"", ""Someone to Watch Over Me"", ""Do-Re-Mi"", ""Our House"", ""The Wedding""

star 8.50
4 votes
Milton Berle

#11 - Milton Berle

Season 2 - Episode 8

Sketches/Songs: ""There are Millions of us Who are Ugly"", Milton Berle's monologue, ""Pigs In Space"", ""The Entertainer"" (Milton Berle), ""The Entertainer"" (Miss Piggy), ""Who"", ""Top Banana""

star 8.50
10 votes
Alice Cooper

#12 - Alice Cooper

Season 3 - Episode 7

Sketches/Songs: ""Welcome to my Nightmare"", ""Muppet Labs"", ""Toothache"", ""Somewhere Over the Rainbow"", ""Once a Year Day"", ""You and Me"", ""Pigs In Space"", ""School's Out""

star 8.47
23 votes
Cheryl Ladd

#13 - Cheryl Ladd

Season 3 - Episode 8

Sketches/Songs: ""True Love"", ""South Rampart Street Parade"", ""Pigs In Space"", ""There's a New Sound"", ""I Enjoy Being a Girl"", Gonzo's Act, ""Sunshine on my Shoulder""

star 8.44
9 votes
Elton John

#14 - Elton John

Season 2 - Episode 16

Sketches/Songs: ""Crocodile Rock"", ""Swedish Chef"", ""Benny and the Jets"", ""Veterinarian's Hospital"", ""Any Old Iron"", ""Goodbye Yellow Brick Road"", ""Pigs In Space"", ""Don't Go Breaking My Heart""

star 8.41
17 votes
Dom DeLuise

#15 - Dom DeLuise

Season 2 - Episode 4

Sketches/Songs: ""Don't Dilly Dally on the Way"", ""Merdlelidop"", ""Drum Solo by Animal"", ""Veterinarian's Hospital"", ""Henrietta's Wedding"", ""Don't Blame the Dynamite"", ""Animal Shelter"", ""We Got Us""

star 8.40
10 votes
Petula Clark

#16 - Petula Clark

Season 2 - Episode 22

Sketches/Songs: ""Sea Chantey"", ""The Boy From Ipanema"", Saloon sketch, ""At the Dance"", ""Upidee"", ""Too Shy To Say"", ""Veterinarian's Hospital"", ""Swedish Chef"", ""Tomorrow""

star 8.37
8 votes
John Denver

#17 - John Denver

Season 4 - Episode 1

John and Kermit have a surprise for the cast; they're all going to Kermits' home the swamp! But even Gonzo, even with his love of the nasty and strange, thinks it's a bad idea and no one is willing to take him up on the offer even when Kermit offers them to go.

star 8.36
14 votes
Phyllis Diller

#18 - Phyllis Diller

Season 1 - Episode 20

Jim's love of jazz is evident in the performance of "Hugga Wugga". This sketch had evolved from a longtime favorite Henson sketch originally titled "Sclrap Flyapp" in the early sixties. It was originally performed on "The Today Show", "The Tonight Show" and "The Ed Sullivan Show". Jim played with the idea of combining eerie music, visual imagery and special effects. He tied-in one of his favorite songs, "You Are My Sunshine" with this sketch. It was renamed "Hugga Wugga" for Nancy Sinatra's early seventies' Las Vegas show.

star 8.35
23 votes
Gene Kelly

#19 - Gene Kelly

Season 5 - Episode 24

Gene is under the impression that he's a "guest" -- that is, he's going to sit and watch, but not perform onstage. Frantic, Kermit tricks him into performing by asking him to give him a dance lesson on-stage. Kermit plans a surprise closing number, "Singin' in the Rain," Gene refuses, saying that he doesn't think he'll ever sing the song as good as he did in the movie, but he does eventually sing it backstage. Meanwhile, Scooter uses his Tarot cards to predict that the world is coming to an end. Beauregard believes him, and tries to convince the rest of the cast the apocalypse is near.

star 8.29
7 votes
Harvey Korman

#20 - Harvey Korman

Season 1 - Episode 13

Finally, success with Fozzie's comedy spot! While maybe not "the world's funniest joke", this routine is by far the funniest of the season. The experimentation that the writers have been taking finally pays off. The key ingredient being the interplay between Fozzie and Kermi. The rest of the season will return to the monologue format, but as a result, more interplay between the bear and the frog will be seen backstage leading to the redemption of a possible failed character. Next season will see more experimentation occur in Fozzie's act as he tries roller skating, ventriloquism, and in another classic pairing with Kermit, a phrenology demonstration! A side benefit of Fozzie having more involvement in backstage plots will be more character development as we learn more about his offstage persona. Most of Fozzie's stories this season will concern his struggling for success, be it overcoming Statler and Waldorf's heckling, the threat of being canceled or replaced when he's stuck in a magician's box, and bringing in his agent to negotiate his contract. Second season episodes will deal with Fozzie's desire for acceptance as he meets his idol, tries to impress his mother in the audience, finds ways to improve his act, and takes on more backstage responsibility. Then in the third season, we'll follow Fozzie confronting his insecurity by going to group therapy, asking Kermit for a list of his good points and bad points, and trying to become more assertive. Harvey Korman would later have the honor of being the only actor to perform in both of the Flintstones movies (with contributions by The Jim Henson Creature Shop) in different roles (The Dictabird and Colonel Slaghoople).

star 8.28
32 votes
Steve Martin

#21 - Steve Martin

Season 2 - Episode 6

Kermit auditions new acts for the next show. Songs/Sketches: ""The Garbage Can Can"", ""Swannee River"", balloons, ""Tie a Yellow Ribbit Round an Ole Oak Tree"", Baskerville auditions as comedian, Lenny Lizard auditions for emcee, The Four Fazoobs, ""Gonzales & Yolanda"", ""Old Man River"", ""Ramblin' Guy"", ""Varisity Drag"", ""Yes, We Have No Bananas"", ""Jugglin' Guy"", ""Flying Zucchini Brothers"", Steve plays with Lubbock Lou & the Jug-Huggers.

star 8.27
26 votes
Peter Sellers

#22 - Peter Sellers

Season 2 - Episode 19

Sketches/Songs: ""A Gypsy's Violin"", ""When"", ""Down Memory Lane"", Masseur sketch, ""It's Not Easy Bein' Green"", ""Muppet Labs"", ""Cigarettes & Whiskey""

star 8.27
15 votes
Lola Falana

#23 - Lola Falana

Season 4 - Episode 10

After years of failure Gonzo is actually appriciated for the actor he is and decides to quit the Muppet Show and move on to movies. Piggy, more jealous than sad, asks Gonzo to refer her to the director. This is one of the episodes that teeters on the edge of being very sad.

star 8.25
8 votes
Edgar Bergen

#24 - Edgar Bergen

Season 2 - Episode 3

Sketches/Songs: ""Baby Face"", ""Consider Yourself"", ""Muppet Newsflash"", Gonzo's Act, ""Pigs In Space"", ""Show Me a Rose"", Fozzie's Act, ""Time in a Bottle"", ""Down at Papa Joe's"", Edgar and Charlie perform

star 8.25
12 votes
Cleo Laine

#25 - Cleo Laine

Season 2 - Episode 23

Sketches/Songs: ""Limbo"", ""Ain't Got That Swing"", ""Pigs In Space"", Bruce Schwartz, ""Mad Dogs and Englishmen"", ""Swedish Chef"", ""(I Wonder Why) You're Just In Love"", Fozzie's Act, ""If""

star 8.22
9 votes