Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: Seymour

WMW Seymour

Written by Ryan Dosier.


Performed by…Seymour
Brian Henson

First appearance…
Muppets Tonight Episode 102: Garth Brooks (1996)

Most recent appearance…
Muppets Tonight Episode 210: The Gary Cahuenga Show (1997)

Best known role…
Pepe’s one-time partner; elevator operator; commissary employee

Seymour is an elephant who worked at KMUP Studios throughout the run of the series Muppets Tonight. Seymour was first and foremost the performance partner of Pepe the King Prawn. The duo would take any chance they could to get a role on the show. Whether they were doing their “Elifino” gag, impersonating Miss Piggy, or hosting a cooking show, Seymour and Pepe were always inept. They are best known for their intro jingle, “I’m Seymour,” “I’m Pepe,” “We’re two of a kind!” “I’m a little bit forward,” “And I’ve got a big behind.”

In the first season of Muppets Tonight, when they weren’t shamelessly attempting to perform on the show, Seymour and Pepe worked as elevator operators for the studio. During this gig they made Martin literally Short and confused quite a few other guest stars on the show as well. Seymour and Pepe’s elevator operators role was significantly underplayed when compared to their performance aspirations.

In the second season of Muppets Tonight, Seymour and Pepe were promoted to employees of the KMUP commissary. Their attempts at cooking usually failed–especially Seymour’s, whose grape balls caught on fire. Thankfully it led to a fun song from Dennis Quaid. In another episode, Seymour was attacked by a giant squid and in another he squashed a musical ant and ruined Rick Moranis’ big “High Hopes” number.

After Muppets Tonight, Seymour disappeared completely and hasn’t been seen in over 15 years. There are many stories about what happened to Seymour. Pepe has claimed that Seymour lives in a condo in Florida, lost his green card and got deported to India where he works in a zoo, and works in the sanitation industry in Los Angeles. Last year, Pepe claimed that he and Seymour are still friends, but Seymour is too big to fit into the clubs with him.

In our interview with Muppeteer Bill Barretta he shared his insights on Seymour as well saying, “You know I’m not really sure why or who decided to fizzle Seymour out… It may have been Brian, but I loved Seymour, he was so sweet and biiiig. A great character and I loved his design, small trunk and great hands… Loved him!”

Clearly Pepe the King Prawn did not need Seymour, as his star rose exponentially after Seymour was retired. However, Seymour was still a fun character whose size and genuine qualities made him a perfect contrast to the sleazy Pepe. Perhaps one day Seymour will return to knock Pepe down a few pegs.

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

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