Guest-starring Dom DeLuise!

Ben and Pete call out the Muppets and the guest-star for fat-shaming and for not agreeing with their pet thesis that the Muppets are more important than the temporary human visitor. They talk about DeLuise’s recipes, Ben’s research into Zulu-inspired folk music, and Pete nearly walks off the show due to punnery.

Sources and References:

Basic biographical information about Dom DeLuise can be found in his obituaries, either behind a paywall or free, but nagging for tips — which will include his attendance at Tufts University. A description of the division and distribution of his archives can be found via its curator, Nat Segaloff. An scan of DeLuise’s first memoir-cum-cookbook, Eat this — It’ll Make You Feel Better, shows the way in which he combines recipes and anecdotes, like the one mentioning his appearance on Merv Griffin, long before the current trend in needing to add personal stories to recipes in order to copyright them on the internet.

Ben quizzes Pete about Dom’s niece’s recipe for beer bread because of their mutual history with ice cream bread. Ben first learned about the two-ingredient practice of mixing ice cream with self-raising flour — seriously, that’s it! — from Andrew Wheeler, and making it has become a staple for Pete when he attends Sandwich Night with the members of The Chris Gethard Show community. As Pete said in the quiz, the details about killing the chicken were too specific, and that’s because they come from the cookbook’s recounting of the DeLuise family story of his birth.

Currently lost to the vicissitudes of a dead laptop, Ben’s list of very, very long film titles may have come from this Yahoo! article. And here is the very basic map of connections between Dom DeLuise and Jim Henson via Connect The Stars:

You’ll notice that, while The Muppet Movie isn’t in DeLuise’s top four on IMDb, the fact that he’s the first person other than Kermit to appear in the film does make it the most direct connection. Ben’s “fun” connection from Cannonball Run to Farrah Fawcett to Logan’s Run to Peter Ustinov to The Great Muppet Caper to Jim Henson is much, much more convoluted and therefore not depicted.

DeLuise’s print ad campaign for personal computers is well-sourced on the internet, as are compilations of his popular Ziploc bag ads.

The Muppet Wikia transcript from the episode helped Pete and Ben figure out what was going on with the mineral “koozequartz”, even if it didn’t help explain the strangeness of the DVD subtitling it “coucrous”. Pete journeying to Urban Dictionary to verify “immi” as slang for “imitation” didn’t help, but did reveal some very strange alternate definitions, including the one he read out meaning “amazing”.

The Bandcamp page for RJ Knapp and Honey Robin shows that while their album is called “Don’t Blame the Dynamite”, the individual track is not available for purchase through the site. You’ll notice it is listed as track 14 on the Amazon page for the CD-R that the band produced, so they clearly did record and perform it at some point. And the copyright entry, as mentioned, lists it as being registered in July 1977, leading Ben to the supposition that they covered it but didn’t have the rights to distribute that recording, especially since it is listed as an original song to The Muppet Show.

YouTube has what appears to be a complete rip of the album Joseph Marais and Miranda — Revisit the South African Veld (with the Bushveld Band), so you can hear how Joseph Marais and Miss Miranda performed their version of it. Marais’ South African accent with Miranda’s Netherlands lilt give the whole exercise a curious exoticism, and it’s really interesting to read that they were trying to recontextualize and share African folk music with the wider world through what appears to be beneficent intent, even though it sounded to Ben’s ears like colonialism run rampant. The Smothers Brothers version of a folk song Marais and Miranda also performed, “Marching to Pretroia“, should not, as Pete did, be confused with Oscar Pistorius,

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