Down at Fraggle Rock
Kelly Masters (RedPiggy on Muppet Central Forums) – When asked what their favorite Fraggle fanfic was, the Muppet Central Forum members had only a few suggestions, some even admitting they rarely read them. As theprawncracker’s Perfect Harmony got two votes, this is the story I’ll be reviewing. The title of the story is taken from a Fraggle song, when Marjory the Trash Heap created a radish famine to bring Doozers (tiny green construction workers), Gorgs (humongous hairy gardeners), and Fraggles (Muppet-sized creatures who play and swim a lot) together.
We start off with an amusing argumentative banter between Gobo and Red Fraggle, arguing over who won a sporting contest. Okay, technically, following show protocol, we start in Doc’s Workshop, but I digress. The characterization is spot on, though it does give off the impression that some dialogue is liberally borrowed from similar scenes from the show. The story even mocks its own reliance on tradition by joking about a song that was repeated often even in the series. Cantus is also introduced, and his zen-like ambiguity is well portrayed.
Soon we come to the Doozers and there seems to be a brief lapse in writing as a character is misnamed. After that brief introduction it’s off to the Gorgs. In my humble opinion, if you are a fan of sitcom families, no matter how old the series is, then the Gorgs are for you. Ma and Pa and Junior always have a ready wit, and it really shines here.
Now, when it comes to Fraggle fics, the Rock is typically under threat of outright destruction. I’m guilty of it too. So, it’s no real surprise that the Rock is in danger. Still, it is entertaining to discover how an author will spin this particular ol’ standby plot.
Cantus tells Gobo he’s responsible for saving the Rock. Here’s the thing: I’m not trying to knock this story, really. If you’re looking for comfort and familiarity, this is a great piece of work. I’m just more of an obscure person, myself: I like elevating the lowly extra. Gobo was the hero at the finale of the series, most likely due to his everyman status. It enables the audience to follow someone who isn’t hardcore obsessed or manic or depressed or whatever. I just like to see a bit more creativity. That’s all.
One thing that theprawncracker does really well is keep that sense of Fraggle naiveté. The universe is so foreign to Fraggles, and this is portrayed with many conversations. You start to feel a sense of dread because they don’t know what they’re up against.
One of the show’s strengths was its ability to create a lot of drama out of simple misdirection, miscommunication and misunderstanding. This fic tends to keep the tradition, as several “dangers” don’t really seem like danger from other points of view. However, to the inhabitants of the Rock, it’s all awful.
At any rate, the real issues get harder and harder to avoid, until the Rock really is in danger. This story comes to a very satisfactory and Fraggley ending, so I would recommend it as a good Fraggle read.