Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Greg Wiggle Vs. Sam Wiggle: Let the Rumble Begin!

I was always a fan of Greg Wiggle of the Australian kids' band The Wiggles; he was my favorite compared to Jeff, Anthony and Murray Wiggle, that's for sure.  He was clearly the talented Wiggle, being able to sing, play guitar and dance about as well as you could expect an Australian man to dance.  It even looked like yellow was his natural color - he owned it that much.

But then in 2007 Greg Wiggle got sick with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and as a result was unable to move on as a Wiggle anymore.  It was a life long condition that "flared" up after a grueling World Tour  Were the Wiggles going to dissolve?  Would they stop touring?  But what would my kids do?  Luckily, and not surprisingly considering the money that was involved, instead of breaking up the Wiggles, the remaining members (and their handlers) determined to REPLACE Greg Wiggle.  They looked far and wide and settled on Sam Wiggle, a dancer in the Wiggles Troupe and understudy to Greg for several years. 

Now I haven't watched the Wiggles in years since my oldest son outgrew the Wiggles when he was 3 years old.  So I hadn't seen any of the new Wiggles episodes.  Was Sam Wiggle any good?  Could he sing, we already knew he could dance?  I didn't know the answer to that question as my daughter (who at 4 years old was able to talk old dad into watch their recent show at the Orpheum) and I rode the train into Town to see the Wiggles afternoon show at the Orpheum.  She didn't care and perhaps she didn't even know that Greg Wiggle existed.  Al we knew was that it was a cool train ride to see an even cooler show. 

As we walked toward the theater, I could tell that we were close given the increasing number of children and harried parents milling around.  I hadn't seen so many strollers, Baby Bjorns and Diaper bags in years.  My daughter, who outgrew all of that stuff almost immediately upon birth was curious about all the gear that all of these kids and their parents had.  She even asked if we could get a diaper bag like the cool colorful bag that the Mom and son sported next to us as we took our seats. 

"But you don't wear diapers"  I reasoned.  She looked at me diffidently about to yawn and moved on to the paper games that were left on our seats as swag.

As the show began, we were struck immediately by the a couple of Wiggles trying to do some acrobatics, since this was a circus themed show.  "Stick to the singing and dancing, boys" I was thinking to myself as Anthony Wiggle and Jeff Wiggle were attempting to do some hand stands (and failing miserably)  Murray Wiggle and the aforementioned Sam Wiggle didn't even bother to try their hands at the acrobatics.  Murray looks about 55 years old so I could understand that, but Sam's only excuse appeared to bet that he was a little overweight.  My daughter snapped me out of my cynicism though when she sat on my lap and started clapping her hands at the their first recognizable song, Rock-a-bye Bear.  I can't tell you how many times I had heard that song in my life, by the way.

As the show wore on, it was evident that I had hadn't watched these guys in a while since I didn't recognize most of the songs.  What made it even more discombobulating was that Anthony's voice was hoarse so it appeared that he couldn't make most of singing cues and had to be picked up by the other guys.  Again, DLG didn't care that much she was too busy clapping with Henry the Octopus.

Finally, after some interesting acrobatics on a fence and gate prop (thankfully by professional acrobats), they got down to their recognizable songs.  My son, after picking us up outside the show, started rattling them off.  Fruit Salad, blah blah blah.  Maybe I should have obtained three tickets...

Despite C stealing all of her thunder, my daughter enjoyed it so much that she didn't feel the need to yell at anyone.  And I guess our vote is for Sam Wiggle.  Fruit Salad, Yummy, yummy.

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