I grew up on The Muppets, and in many ways adore this “love letter” the creators of the film have created. I love the little touches and references to the previous films and TV show. And, I am not afraid to admit I tear up each time they recreate the opening credits perfectly.
That moment is awesome.
Since the movie was so successful, there has been talk about a new film being made, but I, even as a lifelong fan, keep wondering why?
Didn’t we just come off of thirty or so years of nothing but movies and specials that seemed to get less and less, well, special? I mean, the movie’s point seemed to be that people want the show back, right?
I am right in that assumption, aren’t I?
For me, The Muppets while fun in film format, never really worked in this long-story format. Consider it too much of a good thing like eating cake for dinner and dessert. They shine in clips, skits, short adventures and segments. See, this new film was smart in making the plot not about The Muppets; yes, they were an important part overall, but the story was more focused on the humans (and Walter, of course), and their character growth. Not to sound all writing snobby, but there was real character growth which gave it an arc!
It just seems to me that making another movie would be just to return to the every few years film schedule we had just gotten over…. So why am I writing about this then?
Well, first off my kids love The Muppets (even my one-year old laughs each time she sees them), and I would like to recommend a better alternative-
Why not bring back the show as a special event?
This is my idea- 10 new episodes of the old show as a summer event, highly marketed. It would spruce up a boring summer schedule on ABC (with its repeats), give the kids home on summer break a “TV event” and will give the voices and geniuses behind The Muppets an opportunity to do something new for the audience… and for Disney and their money people, there could be repeated showings of those 10 episodes on The Disney Channel, and a Blu-ray release before the holidays with outtakes. (You hear the cash registers?) And what celebrities (old and young) wouldn’t want the chance to host The Muppet Show?
So in other words, this would keep The Muppets alive, allowing them to return to the base that they worked best in- skits. And this schedule could go on for years- 10 new each summer.
The fact is, unless they have a really great script idea for the new film, I’d be surprised if the proposed second film would ever do as well as the buzz over the last one. You can’t have a return of a return! Frankly, this success is an opportunity for the people behind Henson to think outside of the box… I just recommend they return to being inside the box.