The Muppets have been a pop culture institution ever since the 1970s. What started out as minor puppets in a local access show and eventually coffee and other commercials turned into a Vaudeville-type show with the characters we all know and love today.
In his latest video, Matt Baume pays tribute to Richard Hunt, a gay man who was not only part of the core group right at the beginning of the Muppets popularity but also was the creator/ puppeteer/ voice for iconic characters like Scooter, Janice, Statler, Beaker, and Sweetums on The Muppet Show and Forgetful Jones, Placido Flamingo, Gladys the Cow, and more on Sesame Street.
After The Muppet Show ended, Hunt went on to be a puppeteer for even more characters in another Muppet project, Fraggle Rock. And when Jim Henson died in 1990, Hunt was there to pay tribute to his mentor and friend.
In 1992, at the age of 40, Hunt died of AIDS complications.
The full video from Matt Baume’s YouTube channel can be viewed below.