After I wrote the article C3PO Meets Big Bird, I felt a follow-up was needed. Since George Lucas is no stranger to money-making ploys, there certainly is enough material to go around, and this time the bottle points at: The Muppet Show featuring Luke Skywalker, C3PO, R2D2 and Chewbacca! Can you think of a better way to promote a movie than having the characters make fools of themselves in the company of Fozzie Bear? I certainly can't!
Before we start, I'd like to share a memory with you. When Return of the Jedi was released in 1983, I was three years old. The first time Star Wars was broadcast on television here in Norway was in 1992. Hence, C3PO and I don't go a long way back (which probably explains why I hate him so much). But... Since it took this Muppet Show episode two years to travel across the Atlantic, I was able to watch it at age five, meaning this episode is my first encounter with the Star Wars universe. The crossover made no sense to me back then, and it still doesn't.
So, what has Lucas got up his sleeve this time? Well, you see, Chewbacca has been kidnapped by a mad turkey, and Luke and his droids follow their track to what Luke assumes is "a comedy variety planet". Here, they hijack the Pigs in Space ship to find that the turkey is no turkey at all, but Darth Vader! And if you think Vader is Luke's father, you are mistaken, for the true identity of Vader is... Gonzo!
While the Sesame Street cameo had material enough to support pages on pages of ridicule, this appearance lacks the overwhelming stupidity of the Big Bird incident. That doesn't mean there aren't moments worth mentioning, though. First of all, do you remember C3PO's sing-and-dance number in Sesame Street? Remember how I said it was the most stupid thing I ever saw? Those were the words of an ignorant man, for now I have seen C3PO tap-dance to When You Wish Upon a Star!
That's right! And he's incredibly enthusiastic about it as well! Add a muppet choir, a waltzing wookie, canned laughter and two Mark Hamills, and we've got a winner!
Yup, there are two Hamills at work here: He plays both Luke Skywalker and himself in idiot mode, impersonating Kermit, Fozzie and Jiminy Cricket as well as doing a cabaret dance number. As for the canned laughter, why on earth would someone laugh at R2's jokes? You figure it out.
Concluding the Sesame Street article, I asked the question "Which is worse: The Star Wars Holiday Special or this Sesame Street cameo?" This time, the question is "Which is the worst crossover appearance of C3PO?" The answer: Sesame Street, by far. First of all, Big Bird is replaced by Kermit the Frog. I have always loved Kermit. In fact, I have arranged matters so that when I die, The Rainbow Connection will be played at my funeral. Second, the C3PO factor is reduced by half. Third, R2 doesn't fall in love with a frigging fire hydrant! Don't get me wrong, this crossover is so dumb it shovels snow in July, but it's not as stupid as the Sesame Street disaster.