The Newsman is the weary, bespectacled Muppet News Flash anchor on The Muppet Show, debuting in the second episode. The Newsman always tried to deliver the news with accuracy, but was visibly perplexed on camera by the day's latest bizarre story or interview. From the second season onward, he suffered from a nasty streak of bad luck that usually culminated in some person or object - somehow related to the day's story - falling on his head. For example, a plea to return missing library books results in a pile of books falling on the Newsman from seemingly out of nowhere, and a stock market report that beef is falling causes a cow to plummet upon his person.
One would think the solution would be to give up the news after so many mishaps, but due to either dedication to his craft or a limited sense of self-preservation, the Newsman keeps plugging along. Apart from his Muppet Show berth, the veteran journalist has presented breaking news bulletins in The Great Muppet Caper, A Muppet Family Christmas, and The Jim Henson Hour, as well as non-news related cameos in The Muppet Movie and The Muppets Take Manhattan and as a background character in Muppets Tonight. More recently, he surfaced in the video games Muppets Inside and Muppet Party Cruise, in The Muppet Show Live at MuppetFest, and on Muppets TV.
The Muppet newscaster also appeared in several Muppet movies in scenes where a news flash was required by the script. In contrast to the Muppet Show
gags, which were typically isolated gags, the Muppet newscaster was part of a larger joke in the movies. For example, from the movie The Great Muppet Caper
has just spilled the news that Kermit
will go on a date with the supposed Lady Holliday:
- Fozzie: "Don't worry, it won't go outside this room."
- Muppet newscaster: "This is a Muppet news flash! Kermit the Frog to date Lady Holliday! Details at 11."