Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock

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Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock
Promotional poster for Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock.
Genre
Based onFraggle Rock
by Jim Henson
Developed by
  • Matt Fusfeld
  • Alex Cuthbertson
Starring
Voices of
Opening theme"Down at Fraggle Rock"
ComposerChristopher Lennertz
Country of originUnited States
Canada
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes27
Production
Executive producers
ProducerRitamarie Peruggi
Cinematography
  • Gavin Smith
  • Asaf Benny
Editors
Production companies
Original release
NetworkApple TV+
ReleaseJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21) –
present

Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock is an American children's musical fantasy comedy puppet television series about interconnected societies of creatures. It is a reboot of the 1983 series Fraggle Rock by Jim Henson. The first season was released on Apple TV+ on January 21, 2022. It was renewed for a second season which was released on March 29, 2024.[1][2]

A holiday special Night of the Lights Holiday Special was released on November 18, 2022.[3]

Plot[edit]

In the house belonging to a woman named Doc and her dog Sprocket, there is a hole that leads into Fraggle Rock. The Fraggles, Gobo, Mokey, Wembley, Boober, and Red live their lives within Fraggle Rock while experiencing different adventures along the way as well as interacting with Doozers and avoiding the Gorgs while harvesting radishes.

Characters[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Season 1 (2022)[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal release date
1"Pilot"Paul FoxMatt Fusfeld & Alex CuthbertsonJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Gobo Fraggle tries to prove himself a brave explorer when his Uncle Traveling Matt invites him to explore Outer Space.

In Outer Space, Doc and Sprocket settle into their new living quarters.
2"Red and the Big Jump"J. J. JohnsonJohn TartagliaJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

A new Doozer construction proves to be the perfect platform for Red's new diving game. But, when she tries to force Wembley to dive, he literally freezes with fear.

Meanwhile, Sprocket feuds with a crab that Doc brings back from the beach.
3"The Merggle Moon Migration"J. J. JohnsonJocelyn StevensonJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Mokey has a prophetic dream that convinces her she should trust her own intuition rather than facts, which leads her into trouble as the Fraggles make their way to witness the Merggles's one-in-a-generation migration dance. Meanwhile, Cotterpin and Architect Doozer go out looking for new sources of radishes.

In Outer Space, Doc and Sprocket use a drone to watch baby sea turtles hatching.
4"The Glow"Paul FoxSabrina JaleesJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Boober discovers his baloobius is able to glow and tries to hide it from his friends, just as the famed Archivist comes to check out an Outer Space artifact sent by Uncle Traveling Matt. Meanwhile, Junior Gorg also makes friends with a plant.

In Outer Space, Doc deals with plastic litter on the beach.
5"Four Wembleys and a Birthday"J. J. JohnsonMaurin MwombelaJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Wembley's friends want to celebrate his birthday with different activities. His attempts to participate in all of them end up splitting him into four individual versions of himself. Meanwhile, Cotterpin makes a gooey discovery in a strange vine.

In Outer Space, Doc takes to the internet to bring attention to the ocean's plastic problem.

Note: The episode's title is a reference to Four Weddings and a Funeral.
6"The Legend of Icy Joe"Paul FoxDouglas LyonsJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Gobo and Wembley discover the recently-unfrozen body of Icy Joe, a legendary Fraggle explorer whose temperament makes it hard to adjust to modern Fraggle society. Meanwhile, Junior Gorg continues work on the Gorg fountain.

In Outer Space, Doc tries to stay awake while writing a paper.
7"Flight of the Flutterflies"Jordan CanningCharley FeldmanJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

The Troubadours come to the rock to celebrate New Day's Day. Boober becomes the unwilling centerpiece of the festivities, where he must give a holiday speech and release a new swarm of Flutterflies.

In Outer Space, Doc prepares to propose her plastic-eating bacteria to her professors.
8"Craggle Lagoon"Jordan CanningMaurin MwombelaJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Inspired by the latest correspondence from Uncle Traveling Matt, the Fraggle Five decide to take a vacation at Craggle Lagoon. They discover that all the water has gone missing and Inspector Red helps the Craggles figure out what happened to it. Meanwhile, the Doozers try to find a way to use the mysterious pink goo Cotterpin discovered, and Junior Gorg looks for the perfect place to sun his plant.

In Outer Space, Doc and Sprocket take a "staycation".
9"The Giggle Gaggle Games"Jordan CanningSabrina JaleesJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Part 1 of 5. To help the Craggles fit in, Mokey Fraggle uses her supposed knowledge of Craggles to come up with a plan: the Fraggles will play all sorts of games with the Craggles. The Craggles do not enjoy Mokey's pandering, and Mokey learns that there's far more to understanding someone then meets the eye. Near the end, Pa Gorg tells Junior to drain all of the water causing Barry Blueberry to declare (and become) a cliffhanger.

In Outer Space, Doc tries to contact her landlady and ends up hearing a message from Cotterpin Doozer.
10"Wembley the Spokesfraggle"Jon RosenbaumCharley FeldmanJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Part 2 of 5. The Doozers use the pink goo in their Doozer stick recipe, but the Fraggles loathe the taste and avoid eating them. In order to construct more towers, famed and persuasion expert Jack Hammer recruits Wembley to promote them.

In Outer Space, Doc creates a robotic replica of herself to take care of Sprocket while she's at work.
11"Deep Dive"Jon RosenbaumDouglas LyonsJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Part 3 of 5. With the Merggles now residing in Fraggle Rock with goo-induced hiccups, Red tries to fix all the problems that have been piling up, but injures herself in the process. Gobo, Wembley, and Boober Fraggle find a way to cure the Merggles while Mokey tries to find an outlet for Red's anxiety. Meanwhile, Cotterpin continues finding a way to get rid of the goo which has now made its way to the Gorgs (with mixed reactions).

In Outer Space, Doc tries to get Sprocket to take his medicine among other problems.
12"Into the Trash"Adam Stein & Zach LipovskyJohn TartagliaJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Part 4 of 5. Boober feels insignificant amid the growing chaos of Fraggles, Craggles, and Merggles when all he's tasked with is making soup. He is soon recruited to help an ailing Marjory the Trash Heap by going into her trash pile to find a cure. Meanwhile, Junior Gorg is forced to give up his plant and Cotterpin finds a solution to the goo problem in Outer Space.

In Outer Space, Doc studies her new bacteria for potentially eating microplastics.

Note: The Foo Fighters make a special appearance during Uncle Traveling Matt's postcard.
13"All of Us"Adam Stein & Zach LipovskyMatt Fusfeld & Alex CuthbertsonJanuary 21, 2022 (2022-01-21)

Part 5 of 5. Gobo has a dream that inspires him to get everybody including Junior Gorg to solve the mounting problems in Fraggle Rock.

In Outer Space, Doc puts her bacteria to the test and Uncle Traveling Matt gets trapped by Sprocket.

Special (2022)[edit]

TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal release date
"Night of the Lights"Jon RosenbaumJohn Tartaglia and Matt Fusfeld & Alex CuthbertsonNovember 18, 2022 (2022-11-18)
It’s the Night of the Lights, the most Fraggily holiday of the year, and the Rock is filled with songs and cheer. When Jamdolin (voiced by Daveed Diggs) encourages Wembley to make a special wish, the Fraggles head out on an adventure to find the brightest light and, maybe, the true meaning of the holiday.

Season 2 (2024)[edit]

No. in
season
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"The Great Wind"Jordan CanningMatt Fusfeld & Alex CuthbertsonMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Doc's wind power experiments create windstorms in the Rock that cause Wembley great distress. Gobo tries to reassure him that there's nothing to worry about.

Meanwhile, Pa Gorg forbids Junior from interacting with the Fraggles, and Uncle Traveling Matt returns from Outer Space with his latest discovery: strawberries (or, as Matt designates them, "sweet radishes").
2"The Twisty-Turny-Thon"Paul FoxMaurin MwombelaMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Red thinks she'll be a shoo-in for the Twisty-Turny-Thon race, but the windstorms have created obstacles in her established route. Wembley lets the leftover wind gusts (or "gusties") determine his path, and he encourages Red to do the same.

Elsewhere, Gobo gives Junior Gorg a souvenir from Uncle Traveling Matt, the Doozers look for a way to detect wind so they can power their turbine, and Sprocket has to adjust to Doc's new work schedule.
3"When Mokey Met Lanford"Jordan CanningJohn TartagliaMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Mokey takes in a plant that was uprooted by the wind. She names him Lanford and starts devoting all of her attention to him, which concerns her friends.

Cotterpin goes overboard installing wind chimes everywhere, including one near the hole to the workshop, catching Doc and Sprocket's attention. Junior Gorg discovers strawberries sprouting in the garden.
4"The Repeatee Birds"Jordan CanningDouglas LyonsMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

When strawberries distract the Fraggles from Boober's "Radish Razzle" experience, Boober uses the Repeatee Birds to spread gossip, causing a Fraggle furor over whether radishes or strawberries are better.

Cotterpin and Architect are also split on strawberries, so the Doozers do extensive testing before using them as building material. Meanwhile, Doc reprograms her robotic likeness; this time not to dog-sit Sprocket, but to help with her volunteer teaching.
5"I'm Pogey"John TartagliaCharley FeldmanMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Wembley develops a new look using Mokey's old robe, but his reflections tell him he can only express himself in one way. Later, he and Pogey meet The Great Glitterini, a transformative creature who shows them they can express themselves however they want to.

Meanwhile, Pa Gorg has Junior take part in the sacred Gorg tradition of Boxing Day (involving actual boxes), and Doc is embarrassed by an old video of her singing.
6"Mezzo: Live in Concert"Jordan CanningAnnalise TahranMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Mezzo is performing for one night only in Fraggle Rock, and superfan Gobo is eager to clear Concert Cave for her presence. He shoos away the Doozers and a swarm of bugs, who turn out to be Mezzo and her band.

Meanwhile, the Gorgs look to enlarge their crop of strawberries, and Doc helps Sprocket overcome his fear of bees.
7"This for That"Jordan CanningJocelyn StevensonMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Mokey meets a Fraggle named Pryce, who comes from a distant community that operates on a "this for that" trading system. The two introduce the concept to Fraggle Rock, with mixed results.

Meanwhile, Doc is given a lucrative job offer and weighs the pros and cons of accepting it.
8"Colder Boulders"Paul FoxMaurin MwombelaMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Red becomes annoyed with the gusties, so she decides to board up the Great Hall, preventing airflow and causing extreme heat. Determined to cool everyone off without unsealing the Hall, Red discovers a colder boulder that Icy Joe keeps in her cave. Red goes off to find more colder boulders, not listening to Icy Joe's warning about respecting the ecosystem.

Elsewhere, the Doozers and the Gorgs devise their own delivery systems to transport the enlarged strawberries, and Sprocket subscribes to a doggie treat delivery service.
9"The Great Radish Ball"Paul FoxSabrina JaleesMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Boober has the most fun of any Fraggle at this year's radish celebration, but disaster strikes when Icy Joe informs everyone that there are no more radishes, not even in the Gorgs' Garden. While frenziedly looking for more radishes, Boober uncovers a tube that turns out to be a time portal to the start of the Great Radish Ball. The Fraggle Five keep jumping down the tube to relive the festivities.

Cotterpin finds the Doozers' strawberry delivery service repetitive and develops a way to regrow radishes. Meanwhile, Doc and Sprocket have a never-ending pillow party.
10"Fraggle Up"Jon RosenbaumDouglas LyonsMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Cotterpin's method of regrowing radishes will take many months to produce results, so Gobo takes charge in searching for radishes. In his leadership, Gobo takes his Uncle Matt's advice and pushes his feelings down. Misinterpreting Marjory the Trash Heap's advice, Gobo directs the others to dig underground for radishes, just as a dust storm — caused by the Gorgs raking up their garden — fills the Great Hall.

Meanwhile, Doc has promised to watch Fluffinella for Mrs. Shimmelfinney, and Sprocket tries hiding his fear and acting tough.
11"Lost and Found Fraggles"Jon RosenbaumCharley FeldmanMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Continuing from the previous episode, the Fraggle Five (along with Cotterpin and Lanford) happen on the underground cave of the Lost Fraggles, who are led by their Leader. The Fraggles pal around with their Lost Fraggle counterparts, with the pointed exception of Mokey, and they learn the true origin of the radishes.

Elsewhere, Ma Gorg laments her woes to Marjory the Trash Heap, and Sprocket tampers with Doc's turbine model after being told not to.
12"Letting Go"J. J. JohnsonAnnalise TahranMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Mokey is posed with the challenge of having to part with Lanford when a special plant is required to help revitalize the Gorgs' Garden.

Meanwhile, Doc reluctantly lets Sprocket go to Doggy Day Camp.
13"Hope and Socks"J. J. JohnsonJohn TartagliaMarch 29, 2024 (2024-03-29)

Red becomes uncharacteristically hopeful in everyone's ability to power the windmill in the Gorgs' Garden, but she completely loses hope when their first attempt doesn't work.

Meanwhile, Doc is stuck on creating a new workable design for an offshore turbine.

K-pop group Aespa make a special appearance during Uncle Traveling Matt's postcard.

Cast[edit]

Puppeteers[edit]

  • John Tartaglia as Gobo Fraggle, Sprocket, Architect Doozer, Gunge, Barry Blueberry, and Lyle Craggle (puppetry only)
  • Karen Prell as Red Fraggle, Icy Joe, and Merggle Queen (puppetry only)
  • Donna Kimball as Mokey Fraggle, Cotterpin Doozer, and Storyteller Fraggle
  • Jordan Lockhart as Wembley Fraggle, and Murray the Minstrel
  • Frank Meschkuleit as Boober Fraggle (puppetry only), Uncle Traveling Matt (puppetry only in select episodes), The World's Oldest Fraggle (puppetry only), Pa Gorg (face and voice performance), Large Marvin Fraggle, and Mantivore
  • Aymee Garcia as Ma Gorg (face and voice performance), Archivist (puppetry only), Marjorie the Trash Heap, Brool the Minstrel, Henchy Fraggle, Bongo, and Styles Craggle
  • Dan Garza as Junior Gorg (face and voice performance), Philo, and Kyle Craggle
  • Ali J. Eisner as Turbo Doozer, Jack Hammer Doozer (puppetry only), Joogie the Inkspot, and Balsam the Minstrel
  • Kira Hall as Brio the Minstrel
  • Kanja Chen as Pogey
  • Kevin Clash as Uncle Traveling Matt (puppetry only in select episodes)
  • Andy Hayward as Pa Gorg (in-suit performance), Wrench Doozer, Jamdolin (puppetry only), Rupert Fraggle, and Giant Talking Radish
  • Ingrid Hansen as Ma Gorg (in-suit performance), and Skitter Stone
  • Ben Durocher as Junior Gorg (in-suit performance)
  • Anna Cummer as Additional puppeteer

Voices[edit]

Production[edit]

The title cards of the original Fraggle Rock TV series states the puppet characters as "Jim Henson's Muppets". After The Jim Henson Company sold the Muppet franchise to The Walt Disney Company in 2004, the Fraggle Rock characters, which Henson retained, stopped being referred to as Muppets (though Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock was co-produced by Regency Enterprises and 20th Century Studios's subsidiary New Regency, owned by The Walt Disney Company following its acquisition of 21st Century Fox's assets on March 20, 2019).[4]

On May 26, 2020, following the success of the Fraggle Rock: Rock On! shorts that were released in April 2020, Apple TV+ announced a deal with The Jim Henson Company to produce a full reboot of Fraggle Rock, consisting of half-hour episodes, in addition to exclusive streaming rights to the original series and specials.[5] In January 2021, The Jim Henson Company announced that production had officially started on a reboot of the show. The show is filmed at the Calgary Film Centre.[6] Each episode features original songs, and reprises of songs from the original series.

Pre-production on the series began in late 2020 with the working title Raphanis (derived from the Latin word for "radish"). Filming commenced on January 25, 2021, in-studio at the Calgary Film Centre in Calgary, Alberta, Canada[7][8] and wrapped in June.[9]

In November 2021, a trailer revealed the Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock title, and the January 21, 2022 premiere date.[10]

Several original characters return, and new characters are voiced by celebrity guests, including Patti LaBelle, Cynthia Erivo, Daveed Diggs, Ed Helms, and Kenan Thompson. Foo Fighters make a cameo in one episode.[11]

Reception[edit]

On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the series holds a score of 100% based on 14 reviews, with an average rating of 8.1/10. The website's critics consensus reads, "Back to the Rock gives Jim Henson's beloved production a brand new fleece that fits just right, sure to delight longtime fans while enthralling a whole new generation."[12] On Metacritic, the series has a weighted average score of 89 out of 100 based on eight critics, indicating "universal acclaim".[13]

The show won Outstanding Art Direction at the 1st Children's and Family Emmy Awards and received three additional nominations for Best Children's or Family Viewing Series, Outstanding Cinematography and Outstanding Editing.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Fraggle Rock: Back To The Rock (Season 2)". Production List. 19 September 2022. Retrieved September 22, 2022.
  2. ^ Milligan, Mercedes (January 11, 2024). "Apple TV+ Races into 2024 with New 'Peanuts' Special and Returning Kids' Series". Animation Magazine. Retrieved January 12, 2024.
  3. ^ "Apple TV+ Rings in the Season with New Specials & Peanuts Classics". 11 October 2022.
  4. ^ McClintock, Pamela; Bond, Paul (February 6, 2019). "Anxiety, AWOL Executives and "Bloodshed": How Disney Is Making 21st Century Fox Disappear". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 13, 2019.
  5. ^ Vulture "Dance Your Cares Away, a Fraggle Rock Reboot Is Coming to Apple TV+" by Josef Adalian, May 26, 2020
  6. ^ Ahearn, Victoria (January 25, 2021). "Fraggle Rock children's puppet series reboot starts production in Calgary".
  7. ^ Calgary Herald "Fraggle Rock reboot to begin production at Calgary Film Centre in mid-January" by Eric Volmers, November 24, 2020
  8. ^ Edmonton Journal "Cameras to roll next week on Calgary-based Fraggle Rock reboot" by Eric Volmers, January 22, 2021
  9. ^ Donna Kimball on Instagram, June 4, 2021
  10. ^ Heldman, Breanne L. (November 15, 2021). "Dance Your Cares Away! Apple TV+'s Fraggle Rock Reboot Teaser Recreates the Original Intro". people.com. Retrieved 2021-11-19.
  11. ^ Happy New Year, silly creatures from outer space! “Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock” to debut January 21, 2022 on Apple TV+ Apple, January 5, 2022
  12. ^ "Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved July 5, 2023.
  13. ^ "Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock - Season 1 Reviews". Metacritic. Fandom, Inc. Retrieved July 5, 2023.

External links[edit]