4/2/1965 – ‘Paar Show – Robot.’

Jim and his colleagues were comfortable at the NBC studios at Rockefeller Center having made numerous appearances on The Steve Allen Show, The Tonight Show, and The Today Show. They were guests several times on Jack Paar’s primetime variety show, The Jack Paar Program, and during an appearance in 1964, they left a permanent record – Jim, Frank Oz, Jerry Juhl and Don Sahlin decorated a closetful of pipes with paint and fur – the “Muppet Pipes” are now part of the NBC tour.

Several months later, in April 1964, Jim and his team went back to NBC to do another appearance on Jack Paar’s program. This time, they brought their blinking and beeping robot to perform and did a comedy routine that commented on the fallibility of machines and our hopes for the electronic age. Jim had used versions of this robot before for a trade show in Germany and an AT&T seminar. Since the routines required that the robot self-destruct, Jim had to rebuild him several times. Clearly, Jim and his collaborator Jerry Juhl felt a certain affection for this overconfident and underperforming machine.

Learn more about the previous Paar appearance and the Muppet pipes at NBC.

Jim used variations on this robot for several appearances, including on The Jack Paar Program. See how he was used for AT&T.

Jim and Jerry Juhl repairing their robot, mid-1960s.

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