Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: Rugby Tiger

WMW Rugby

Today’s Weekly Muppet Wednesdays article was written by Maxwell Jessop.


Performed by…Rugby
Dave Goelz

First appearance…
The Christmas Toy (1986)

Most recent appearance…
The Secret Life of Toys Episode 113: “Who Shares Wins/It’s a Giveaway” (1994)

Best known role…
Conceited tiger toy

Best friend…

Rugby Tiger is the adventurous toy tiger that starred in the 1986 TV special The Christmas Toy. In the special, Rugby was a relatively new toy who selfishly traveled to the living room in hopes of reprising his role as the toy inside Jamie, his owner’s, box. Little did he know, there is a new toy in the box instead.

Rugby was often paired with Mew, an innocent mouse toy. Despite Rugby’s criticism for being a “cat toy,” Rugby truly loves Mew and expresses this feeling after Mew is frozen.

Eight years after the special, Rugby starred alongside his fellow toys in a short-lived Disney Channel series The Secret Life of Toys. In the show, we see his adventurous side and see his relationship with the other characters build.

In the final episode, Episode 113: “Who Shares Wins/It’s a Giveaway,” Rugby was going to be donated to a children’s hospital. He had mixed emotions about leaving, but, in the end, Jamie’s dad decides to keep Rugby. 

Instead of songs or moments, I’ve listed Rugby’s starring episodes in the 13-episode run of The Secret Life of Toys.

  • Episode 105: “Climbers/Be Plush”
  • Episode 106: “Ditz and Datz/Mummies”‘
  • Episode 109: “Down with Dinkybeard/Mr. & Mrs. Rugby”
  • Episode 113: “Who Shares Wins/It’s a Giveaway”

Well, Rugby brings a fun atmosphere to the playroom just as other toys do! And even though he’s sometimes conceited, Rugby is a very helpful toy who really loves his friends and the children. They need Rugby because he is deep down the friendliest toy of all.

The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier, muppetmindset@gmail.com

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