We’re saddened to learn that Tom Smothers, half of the legendary comedy duo The Smothers Brothers, has passed away.
In addition to his many accolades, which include starring in the acclaimed variety show The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, performing with John Lennon, and his social activism, he also had a brief-yet-memorable run-in with the Muppets.
In 1975, Tom Smothers appeared on Cher’s solo variety show (aptly titled, Cher). Among the other guests in this episode were the Muppets, and Smothers shared the screen with Rufus the Dog singing “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes”. In the sketch, Tom sings while Rufus attempts to smoke a cigarette.
Unfortunately, this clip continues to be lost media, as the episode also features Bill Cosby. A shame, but we’ve recounted the episode entirely here on ToughPigs.
Interestingly, Tom’s younger brother Dick – the other half of The Smothers Brothers – has also worked with the Muppets, appearing as The Ghost of Christmas Future in A Special Sesame Street Christmas. The brothers never worked together with the Muppets, but early drafts of scripts for Sesame Street have been found with their names, presumably when they were being courted to make an appearance on the show.
Tom Smothers was a comedy legend, and we’re so very glad he was able to be counted among the special few who’ve worked with Jim Henson.
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by Joe Hennes – Joe@ToughPigs.com