Random Muppet #17: Dr. Sigmund Sillystuff
An absent-minded professor.
Performer: Jerry Nelson
Muppet Universe of Origin: Sesame Street
Most Significant Appearance: The Best of Elmo 2, released in 2010
Elmo is a popular character and has been for over two decades now. So it's surprising that his second "best of" compilation video was not made until 16 years after the first in 1994. As with most clip shows, there is a frame story set in place to explain why Elmo is revisiting these old clips (even though the target audience probably wouldn't care or notice a difference). In the original, Elmo drew many pictures that represented some of his more classic moments and shared them with his friends. For the sequel, Elmo meets a robot that runs on memories to stay alive and functional.
Well, we are in the 21st Century now.
The clips are more tangentially related to Elmo this time around. While the first special featured original songs and skits, most of the clips used this time are musicians singing parody versions of their hits and Elmo just happens to be present for them (because Elmo is everywhere at this point). Throughout the special, the Memorybot requests explanations for certain themes so that his "memory bank" can be completely filled. And finally, an hour later (the first was only 30 min), there are enough memories to keep the robot in operation.
And the first thing Elmo and the robot do is...the Robot.
Finally, Memorybot's inventor, Dr. Sigmund Sillystuff finds the two and informs us that he created the mechanical man in order to help him with his own faulty memory. Except it's a robot that runs on memories, it doesn't store them. He was just asking for it to get misplaced.
For a brilliant man, he's not very bright.
But everything is okay because now, the robot has had so much fun with Elmo that he has made his own memories that he can run on. The trio celebrates by...doing the Robot.
Why is He the Most Important Muppet?
Dr. Sillystuff invented a robot that runs on memories. And the robot created it's own memories that it can use to fuel itself.
Ignoring the amazing possibilities and physical magic that comes with the telepathic transfer of a memory from a living being into an automaton...
..not to mention the fact that it can display these thoughts as well...
...Dr. Sillystuff has created a perpetual motion device!
A mind-reading device is an astounding invention in its own right, but while it seems like science-fiction to us, steps are currently being made to that invention becoming a reality (although we are still in the primitive stages). But a perpetual motion device is impossible in any time period.
Energy has to come from somewhere. It can't just be created from nothing or destroyed completely. Yet, this robot supplies its own energy and somehow uses it with even less energy being burned. This technology is wasted on a mere robot!
Sillystuff should try to implement this technology into vehicular transportation. This man has single-handedly solved the world's energy crisis! So many problems can be solved with this discovery but he only uses it to help a little red monster think about the time Jason Mraz sang about playing outdoors to the tune "I'm Yours"? Seriously?!
Dr. Sillystuff isn't just the most important Muppet. He is the most important person ever. If only he could remember it.