More Mary Travers and Janice the Muppet

A few weeks ago, I blogged about the question whether Mary Travers was the inspiration for Janice the Muppet.

A visit to the Muppet wikia site about Janice gave me this:

Michael Frith’s original sketch of the character indicates that she was intended to be a male character, a takeoff on Mick Jagger’s emaciated frame. Her name is probably a reference to Janis Joplin. However, in her final form as performed by Hunt and built by Bonnie Erickson, she bears very little resemblance to either Jagger or Joplin.

Here, I even shamelessly lifted the original concept sketch:
(That’s OK, right?)


For originally being a male character, I think the sketch is androgynously along the way toward the final Janice. Unless Mick Jagger was shaped like Christie McVie back then. (Not that McVie was “emaciated”, but neither was Mick.)

No mention about Mary Travers. But like I said the other day, I think Mary was a big enough influence on rock early on that it’s easy to imagine that she influenced any number of female rock performers—even those from the Muppet kingdom.

4 thoughts on “More Mary Travers and Janice the Muppet

  1. No way! The face and little beret she wears is totally Ricky Lee Jones. At RLJ’s popularity was much more contemporaneous with the Muppet Show.

    1. I would agree that she was an influence except for one thing:

      The Muppet Show (and Janice) premiered in 1976.

      Rickie Lee didn’t hit it big until 1979 (“Chuck E’s in Love”).

      You might say Janice the Muppet was an inspiration for Rickie Lee Jones.

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