Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: Boober Fraggle

WMW Boober
Today’s Weekly Muppet Wednesdays post is written by our very own Lisa the Intern!

Performed by…6ed8b-boober
Dave Goelz

First appearance…
Fraggle Rock Episode 101: “Beginnings” (1983)

Most recent appearance…
Fraggle Rock Episode 513: “Change of Address” (1987)

Best known role…
Laundry-washer, cook, and medic for the Fraggle Five; superstitious pessimist

Memorable quote…
“I’m worried about enclosed spaces and death and pain and spiders and words with R in them and—did you want the whole list, or just a general overview?”

On the surface, Boober seems to be the anti-Fraggle. He doesn’t like singing, dancing, games, swimming, jokes, parties, noise, or… well, just about anything else that Fraggles live by. Or at least, he claims he doesn’t. Boober prefers the quiet drudgery of endless loads of laundry, peacefully watching the dust settle and the laundry dry, cooking up delicious feasts for his Fraggle friends, and listening to the gentle drip-drip drop-drop of stalactites. He devotes his life to the avoidance of germs and injury—two of the things he fears most. (There is, of course, a very long list of the things he fears most… but those two are somewhere near the top.)

Boober is Fraggle Rock’s self-proclaimed expert on death, doom, and destruction, but he does have a fun side. He represses this side of himself as best he can, which is how he ended up with an alter-ego, a second personality, known as Sidebottom—the fun side of Boober that he keeps on the bottom. Sidebottom comes out every once in a while to help (or force) Boober to cut loose and have fun, but Sidebottom is nothing if not extreme, going so far as to dress up as the Old Gypsy Lady or hypnotize a Gorg for the sake of a laugh.

But Boober doesn’t always need Sidebottom’s help to have fun; like it or not, he is a Fraggle, and Fraggles live for fun. Boober is as prone to burst into song as any of his friends, and you can often find him laughing with everyone else when there’s a big party going on (see, for example, “Catch the Tail by the Tiger,” “Mirror, Mirror,” and “The Honk of Honks”). He will even play tricks on his fellow Fraggles with the excuse of testing their beluviouses (Fraggle tails, which flair out when the Fraggle is scared).

Because Boober is so dedicated to the avoidance of illness and injury, he knows all sorts of remedies for just about any ailment a Fraggle may encounter. With this expertise, he is something of a medic for the other Fraggles. He is also more than happy to do all their laundry—cleanliness is another great way to avoid germs, after all—and although his cooking skills are sometimes questionable, he enjoys whipping up any sort of dish.

Despite his occasional protests that the Fraggles sing too much, Boober enjoys a good song as much as anyone else in the Rock. Here are some of his classics…

  • “Get Blue” – episode 115: “I Don’t Care”
  • “The Friendship Song” (with Red Fraggle) – episode 117: “Marooned”
  • “I’m Never Alone” – episode 202: “Boober Rock”
  • “Party Hard (Who Knows What You See)” – episode 206: “Boober’s Dream”
  • “Dump the Stuff Out” – episode 219: “The Doomsday Soup”
  • “I Sniff the Rose” – episode 223: “Boober’s Quiet Day”
  • “Talkin’ ‘Bout Germs” – episode 306: “Pebble Pox Blues”
  • “Fun is Here to Stay” – episode 403: “Sidebottom’s Blues”

Well, who else is going to do all that laundry?

Seriously, though… Fraggle Rock needs Boober for balance. It’s easy for the Fraggles to get carried away without realizing when they could be in danger, and Boober forces them to be aware of the possibility of trouble. Yes, he thinks that everything is dangerous, but it takes quite an extreme Fraggle to balance out the entire rest of the Rock. And though his extremist attitude makes him easy for the other Fraggles to write off, he can and does take action when it’s necessary. Without him, Fraggle Rock would be a much dirtier and more dangerous place.

Besides… he has all the funniest lines in the show.

The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

2 thoughts on “Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: Boober Fraggle

  1. You dare contradict what Boober is after you point out what would happen if he was never part of Fraggle Rock?! I can't believe you!

    Boober isn't funny! He's a really serious guy and so am I. His seriousness is what makes me like him.

    Characters who don't make me life are my types of characters. Why? 'Cause I've been a serious person for a long time and I really like it.

    Plus, funny characters get on my nerves whereas serious characters are more mature, intelligent, sensible, and are good role models in that they know what to do.

  2. On the other hand, like it or not, Sidebottom is a big, major part of Boober and, like it or not, Sidebottom is Boober. I agree that I certainly would not say that Boober has all of the funniest lines on the show after I say why the Rock needs him, but Boober is a great, wonderful guy and an all-around wonderful Fraggle and as he is a Fraggle, he does sing songs like his friends all do.
    However, as my second point, bursting into song does certainly NOT mean that Boober is “having fun like the rest of his friends.” Boober sings songs about things that matter to him, songs like Get Blue (Goin' Down the Road) and The Friendship Song.
    I am a serious person too and I also like it but that doesn't mean that us serious people don't have our slightly happier moments. When Boober takes back his lucky blanket from The Trash Heap in, “I Don't Care”, he sings a much happier reendition of the song Get Blue (Goin' Down the Road) and proceeds to go on to the Fraggle play where Mokey is quite cruel to him by taking his blanket away. Boober is by far my favourite Fraggle (and Muppet), but surely you have to agree that Boober can be funny at times, whether it be for Sidebottom or for his very unintentional sarcasm. Or you can go the way, he (and I) sometimes like to go, which is this, “I am not funny! I am distinctly UNfunny!”

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