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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Episode 1128 [1970]

Original Air Date: April 29, 1970

  
For details on Episode 1128, visit the Neighborhood Archive.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Episode 1015 - The Royal Wedding

NOTE: Information about this episode was taken from an audio recording -- therefore, no screenshots are currently available. If a video copy of this episode is out there somewhere, please drop me a line.

Original Air Date: February 28, 1969

EPISODE DESCRIPTION

SONGS:

  • I'm Going to Marry Mom
  • Peace and Quiet

With the royal wedding about to take place, Mister Rogers sings I'm Going to Marry Mom. Miss Emilie (Emilie Jacobson) stops by the house and is dressed beautifully for the big day. She takes a moment to share a poem about the soon-to-be royal couple before departing for the wedding [NOTE: Blanks are in place where words cannot be clearly understood on the recording I have].

Today is a very special day
It's special in a special way
Our king, our great and glorious king
Whose praises through the Neighborhood ring
Is being married today
Today
This is indeed a special day
His _______________ street
We all are gathered here to greet
Sara Saturday has seen
____ duty to be our queen
We wish them happiness galore
We hope the future has in store
All joy, mutual love and peace
May their devotion but increase
_________________
For that's how families begin

As she is leaving, Chef Brockett arrives and talks with Mister Rogers about the wedding cake which "took 81 hours" to make. Chef Brockett heads to the castle as well while Mister Rogers takes a pretend bath and puts on his pretend purple gloves.

In the Neighborhood of Make-Believe, Edgar Cooke is helping King Friday put the final touches on his hair. Lady Aberlin arrives with the Queen's new crown and is surprised to learn that King Friday wants the wedding to be held in the castle garden when the plans have already been made to have it in the W room. With only 4 1/2 minutes to move the festivities, Lady Aberlin and Edgar Cooke scurry off to make the necessary changes and are promptly joined by Chef Brockett. X the Owl gathers the others who all come to the garden for the wedding. Mr. Anybody (Don Francks), serving as the minister for the service, is having trouble locating the castle until Lady Aberlin finds him and shows him the way.

Finally, the ceremony is underway with the crowning of the new queen...

Mr. Anybody: "Sara Saturday. Will you accept the duties of queen of this Neighborhood of Make-Believe and promise to reign in justice and equity all the days of your life?"
Sara: "I will so accept with all your help."
Mr. Anybody: "The Neighborhood of Make-Believe crowns thee Queen Sara Friday Saturday. Long live the queen!"
All: "Long live the queen!
"

And then the wedding begins. Miss Emilie reads the royal poem before King Friday and Queen Sara take center stage.

Mr. Anybody: "Will the king and queen please join hands. Do you, King Friday XIII, love Queen Sara Friday Saturday and want to live with her always?"
King Friday: "I do."
Mr. Anybody: "Do you, Queen Sara Friday Saturday, love King Friday XIII and want to live with him always?"
Queen Sara: "I do."
Mr. Anybody: "King Friday, will you repeat after me: 'I, King Friday XIII, take thee Queen Sara Friday Saturday, to be my lawful wedded wife. To have and to hold. In sickness and in health. In joy and in sorrow. For richer or for poorer. As long as we both shall live.'"
[King Friday repeats]
Mr. Anybody: "Queen Sara, will you repeat after me: 'I, Queen Sara Friday Saturday, take thee King Friday XIII, to be my lawful wedded husband. To have and to hold. In sickness and in health. In joy and in sorrow. For richer or for poorer. As long as we both shall live.'"
[Queen Sara repeats]
Mr. Anybody: "What do you give as a token of your marriage?"
King Friday: "Robert Troll has the token. [Taking the ring] This is an outward sign of an inward affection, Sara."
Queen Sara: "Thank you, Friday. [Taking her ring] This is an outward sign of my affection, too, Friday."
King Friday: "Thank you, Sara."
Mr. Anybody: "By the authority vested in me, by the arch-clergy of Make-Believe, I pronounce that King Friday XIII and Queen Sara Friday Saturday are now husband and wife. Who make-believe has joined together, let no man put asunder. Long live the King and Queen!"
All: "Long live the King and Queen!"

Following the ceremony, everyone adjourns to the C room to enjoy Chef Brockett's cake.

Back at the house, Mister Rogers reflects on the fun that was had at the wedding and suggests that after the excitement of a wedding, people often like to have some peace at quiet. He concludes by singing Peace and Quiet.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Episode 1101 - Death of a Goldfish [1970]

Original Air Date: March 23, 1970

  
For details on Episode 1101, visit the Neighborhood Archive.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Episode 1685 - Fast and Slow

Original Air Date: February 24, 1995

  
For details on Episode 1685, visit the Neighborhood Archive.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Coffee Mugs

I get a lot of comments at work on my Mister Rogers' Neighborhood coffee mug. Some people smile as their own memories of Mister Rogers briefly cross their minds. Others look at me wondering why a 30-something male has a Mister Rogers mug. Over the past several months, a few other Neighborhood mugs have popped up online so here is a quick peek at a few of the coffee mugs out there featuring Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.

The picture I have of the first mug is too small for the copyright year to be read, but it features the Trolley on the front with "Won't you be my neighbor?" on the back.

 
The next mug is very similar but more colorful in design -- this one from 1991.

 
Finally, this is the mug that I have which my wife purchased for me a few years ago from the FCI online store. On the front you can see the Trolley as well as several of the regular character from the Neighborhood of Make-Believe. On the back are the words "It's a beautiful day in this Neighborhood."

This particular mug sells in the FCI store for about nine bucks (plus shipping); I will warn you, however, that it is advertised as "dishwasher safe" but the image on mine faded significantly after only two trips to the dishwasher. I definitely recommend hand washing this mug if you have (or purchase) one. Other than that, I love it -- a large handle on an oversized mug is perfect for a hot cup of coffee in the morning.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Episode 1684 - Fast and Slow

Original Air Date: February 23, 1995

  
For details on Episode 1684, visit the Neighborhood Archive.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Episode 1683 - Fast and Slow

Original Air Date: February 22, 1995

  
For details on Episode 1683, visit the Neighborhood Archive.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Character Bio: Daniel Striped Tiger

I tried to gather a few facts about Daniel, like I had for Corny, and it got really long and involved. This is by no means definitive, and is culled only from my memory of the limited time I viewed the show, but it's fun nonetheless.

Daniel Striped Tiger lives in a large orange, yellow, and red grandfather clock at the end of the Neighborhood of Make Believe farthest from the Castle. On the Childrens Corner (where he looked like a much more mature tiger) he lived in a cuckoo clock. His current clock has no hands on the face, a large pendulum that looks like a sunflower, and a knocker on the right side. I remember visitors using this knocker to announce their presence, but like the bells at Henrietta's and the Museum Go Round, the knocker doesn't seem to get much use in the current batch of episodes. I think I even remember Handy Man Negri installing the knocker, but can't be sure. The clock is covered with ivy and flowers, and the face, looks like it opens, though I don't remember that ever being shown. Perhaps it was constructed to open to give Daniel a few more places to appear, and I just didn't see when he used that function. One neighbor has told me that he was disturbed that Daniel seemed to be a child and yet lived alone in that clock. I can't say I ever thought about that as a child. I know I noticed it once I got older, but as a kid, I think I saw how well he was taken care of by the other Neighbors and just didn't worry. Does anyone ever remember seeing the inside of Daniel's clock? I remember getting glimpses of all the other Make Believe interiors, but never the clock.

In my limited exposure to Daniel on the Children's Corner, he seemed to be a bit older. He was basically the same character, a tame friendly tiger, but his dialogue seemed to be that of a more confident tiger, someone who was equal to the human host. In the LP, Tomorrow on the Children's Corner, he plays breakfast host to Josie Carey and also explains the various protocols on visiting King Friday- that Daniel is not the timid toddler he later became. However by the time I was watching the Neighborhood, he had become the shy childlike character we all know and love. I assume this happened gradually and perhaps when the puppets were redone, the physical change was emulating what had already happened to the characters personality. While all of the make believe inhabitants could in some way speak to the concerns of a child, Daniel was the most thoroughly childlike. He was the toddler of the Neighborhood, who Lady Aberlin doted on, who Handy Man Negri reassured, and who Lady Elaine tormented (purposely or not). Once Prince Tuesday came along, he and Daniel seemed to become good friends. Ana Platypus would seem to be a playmate too, but I don't recall seeing her and Daniel interact much outside of school.

Daniel's favorite toy is his dumptruck. I'd be interested to know when this was established. It certainly was present in the Mister Rogers Goes to School episodes, and the truck remains evident throughout the shows run, as opposed to some of the other character's passions (X's fascination with Benjamin Franklin, or Lady Elaine's Space pursuits) which kind of disappeared when they weren't integral to the story. Daniel also wears a small rectangular watch on his left paw. That's another detail I'd love to hear the origin of. I've heard it said that the reason there are no hands on the grandfather clock is to illustrate that Make Believe is timeless, though one wonders then why Daniel bothers with a wristwatch. And that pendulum is always swinging too. I guess times not nonexistent, just unimportant.

Daniel featured in a few of the Neighborhood Operas, most notably in A Grandad for Daniel, where he was the child of Lady Aberlin, and Chuck Aber. In the real Neighborhood story, we find out that Daniel never knew his grandparents, and this inspires an opera about a tiger whose Grandfather went away a long time ago, but returns and meets his grandson. Daniel also played Tiny Star in A Star For Kitty. Lady Aberlin, as Kitty, wishes for a star on her birthday and Half Moon says she can have Tiny, though nobody bothered to ask Tiny how he felt about it. Daniel is perfect as the helpless Tiny whose future is being dictated by the older people around him. It's a story about the realities of self determination and, like all the operas, it's whimsically silly on the surface, but deeply profound to those who gave it a closer look.

I think I always felt a special fondness for Daniel. As I said, he was the most childlike, and I related to him the most I think. And unlike Prince Tuesday and Ana, I somehow feel that Daniel was a more sincere character- not to knock the performers who did those two other puppets, but somehow Daniel's role and performance really was more heartfelt. As Fred Rogers did most of the writing, and performed Daniel himself, it's not inconcievable that he may have put a bit more thought into Daniel's lines, or specifically chosen Daniel for the especially poignant scenes.

Daniel's special way of showing affection was to rub noses with someone, and say "Ugga Mugga". I'm not sure when that started either and would love to hear where the phrase came from, but he most frequently did it with Lady Aberlin. A sweet gesture, and certainly in line with his kittenish appearance.

Unlike his audience, Daniel never really grew up. He stayed perpetually childlike and shy, always discovering some new thing to worry or wonder about. It was usually the scenes with Daniel that encapsulated the emotional thread of the story, and the point of the series. Whereas most of the other characters played their parts and moved the story along, it was often in a quiet moment with Daniel that the whole philosophy of Mister Rogers Neighborhood was best illustrated: no matter what you look like, people can like you exactly the way you are.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Fan Art- Daniel Striped Tiger



After I posted my artwork of Corny, from Mister Rogers Neighborhood, I got a lot of requests to see the other characters I had done, with Daniel being by far the most requested.






Ironically, I didn't do any sketches of him in his standard wide eyed shy expression. My main question in tackling each of these characters was to see if you could get any facial expression into them while still keeping them recognizable. I will say he seems to be the easiest. I think his kitten-like appearance is a somewhat familiar cartoon form, and that made it a little easier. That's not true with some of the other characters.

I was going to post a short bio of Daniel, but it got so long and involved that I decided I'd make it a seperate post. So this one's just fan art. If anyone else has any fan art for that is Neighborhood related, we'd love to see it!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Episode 1682 - Fast and Slow

Original Air Date: February 21, 1995

  
For details on Episode 1682, visit the Neighborhood Archive.