Song In My Head #92: “A F—ton of Cats” featuring Rachel Bloom

Since I’m a big fan of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend star Rachel Bloom (her San Francisco Sketchfest show was downright epic!) and show composer/Fountains of Wayne tunesmith Adam Schlesinger, it was guaranteed that a number from the series would appear here one day. A big part of me is shocked that it turned out to be this one. I’ve always had a tortured relationship with Muppet homage puppets, and worldly-wise puppet characters in general. I still haven’t seen Avenue Q, for example, even though my Stanford classmate Jordan Gelber starred in the original Broadway cast. (One of my favorite college memories involves an improv class where the suggestion was “A Yellow Christmas.” I narrated the story about newts yearning to experience Christmas on the sand dunes, while Gelber ended up playing Santa Claus. That’s another post altogether.) Then there was the time my friend Jeanette visited from Chicago, and we were staying in San Francisco. For several nights, we debated going to a Puppet Up! performance, finally admitting to each other that we didn’t think we could handle watching dirty Muppets on stage. (Near-tearful hugs followed.) That said, the cat chorus (charmingly voiced by Schlesinger, Steven Gold, and Nina Zeitlin) adds the perfect touch to the incredibly catchy song, and James Hayes’ cat puppets are downright irresistible. (After all, there are no iconic cats in the Muppet canon, unless someone out there can correct me. I only remember short-lived Sesame Street characters Chip and Dip, who weren’t too cute and didn’t have speaking roles.) Note the authentic Muppet headbanging the cats do (side-to-side, not back and forth as in heavy metal), and the visible arm rods! (While puppetry has obviously become more technologically advanced, I really miss the old-school ways. I remember bellowing “The world has gone to hell in a handbasket!” the first time I saw CGI Twiddlebugs.)

As for spelling out the title with dashes, what can I say? I always choose the unexpurgated version of any song, but I’m still lame enough to worry that my grade-school nuns will stumble onto my blog one day. I’m just a bundle of contradictions!

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