Spin Again Sunday: The Muppet Show Game (1977)

muppet show 1977 box

Almost two years ago,  I featured a 1979 Muppet Show game. Today’s version, from 1977, is special to me because I actually owned it as a child. (I probably received it as a gift for my ninth birthday.)

Today’s Game: The Muppet Show Game

Copyright Date: 1977.

Manufacturer: Parker Brothers.

Box: A colorful photographic array of Muppets and a large Muppet Show logo must have made this eye-catching in the toy aisle.

Recommended Ages: 7 to 14.

muppet show 1977 board

Board: It is meant to resemble a stage, with dressing rooms at the bottom and footlights at the top. Most squares are blank floor spaces, but others identify starting and stopping points for various “sets.”

This is a "set" for Veterinarian Hospital.

This is a “set” for Veterinarian Hospital.

Various Muppets (including my daughter’s favorite, Janice)  show up in illustrated form at the very top of the game board. This illustration is similar to the one on the 1979 game box.

muppet show 1977 pawns

Pawns: These feature double-sided photographs of eight characters. They make up color-coded teams, and each player manipulates both members of his or her team.

Object: Getting your two pawns, plus the color-coded set associated with them, from their starting spots on the board to their ending spots near the footlights.

muppet show 1977 board closeup

Here you can see dressing rooms, where characters start the game, as well as two starting points for sets.

This close-up shows ending spots for several characters and sets.

The photo above shows ending points for several characters and sets.

Game Play: A Muppet Show “script” guides players on their journey.

muppet show 1977 spinner

First, they use this double spinner to determine their act and scene numbers.

muppet show 1977 script

Then, they look that combination up in this script, which tells them how many spaces they can move either their set or one of their Muppets. They can move forward, backwards, sideways, and–if specifically told to do so–diagonally. Occasionally, they get a chance to move another player’s Muppet. They can also try to block other players with their own Muppets.

My Thoughts: This is a simple game, but the character pawns and unique way of moving them makes it fun to play.

Other Spin Again Sunday posts you might enjoy:

Bewitched

Family Affair

The Bride Game

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Spin Again Sunday: The Muppet Show (Le Jeu des Vedettes)

Because tomorrow is Jim Henson’s birthday, my weekly series on vintage board games has a Muppety flavor this week.

Today’s Game: The Muppet Show (Parker Brothers Board Game of the Stars, AKA Le Jeu des Vedettes, par Parker Brothers)

Copyright Date: 1979

Game Box: A colorful cartoon rendering of every Muppet imaginable. That’s why I bought this game for my daughter. She loves Janice, the Electric Mayhem’s female member, and it’s rare to find merchandise that includes Janice’s picture. Not only does this box feature Janice, but the game board does as well!

Most Interesting Feature: What I didn’t realize when I bought this game is that it was made in Canada and has a bilingual board–one side in French, one side in English. I actually felt a little peeved when I opened the box and found a French board. I only speak un peu de French and didn’t know how I would manage to play this with my daughter. When I flipped the board over and found the English side, I no longer felt peeved—just stupid for not noticing the French writing on the box.

French game instructions.

Game Pieces: Rather lame. You know how some game pieces have a plastic base, into which you slide a cardboard picture? Well, that’s what this game has, but the cardboard pieces don’t display characters—just colors. There’s a yellow one, a red one, a green one, and a blue one. Why not just use regular colored-plastic markers?

Janice, yay!

Recommended Ages: 7 to 14.

Game Play: The game designers came up with a concept relates well to The Muppet Show and its characters. Players move around the board and try to collect cards representing three judges—Miss Piggy, Sweetums, and Fozzie. Once you have all three, you can “perform” for the judges. That involves picking one of six Sam the Eagle cards and hoping that it doesn’t match the number your opponent rolls on the die. If you don’t match Sam, you receive a star; seven stars win the game. The rules have a few wrinkles—such as allowing players to “upstage” each other—that keep it from getting too repetitive. Sam is one of my favorite Muppets, so I enjoy his role as censor here.

My Thoughts: I owned a different Muppet Show game when I was little, one that dated from 1977. I don’t remember much about that game, but I can endorse this one as fun for young Muppet fans.