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Friday, April 25, 2014

Why Everyone’s Got it Wrong About the Muppets… by Ceris Anne

Special thanks to Ceris Anne from London, Ontario Canada for this great article. Enjoy!

Why Everyone’s Got it Wrong About the Muppets…  

Since the “reboot” of our fun and fabulous furry friends in 2011 there’s been lots of speculation about the longevity and appeal of The Muppets as characters, stars and as a viable franchise.

I’m here to say that the speculation is nonsense and unnecessary. They are viable. They just are.

Mr. the Frog will be 60 next year. He likes to say that the number is his age in human years and that he’s really a lot younger. He’s allowed, he’s famous, and I’ll let him be whatever age he wants, because he’s actually ageless.

Here’s the thing, The Muppets are timeless and classic, and they are innovative and fresh. They are funny and poignant and they have lots to share with us.

So here’s why everyone’s wrong about The Muppets. They don’t need to be judged or banked on or have their numbers counted, because as they’ve shown us time and time again, they always turn adversity into opportunity and they persevere.

When they were in the hands of their creator, Jim Henson, and his creative team of original puppeteers and builders and writers, they were new and experimental. They were subversive, funny and innovative.

So, what are they today? They are now under the control and watchful eye of the Disney Company, with the world as their potential creative partners. The hands of master builders, writers and puppeteers, (yes, I meant to do that) are in everything they do, and these skilled artists were trained, guided and inspired by the Muppet creator(s). The legacy gets passed on, and yes, it may change a little, but the audience responds, because The Muppets are timeless. They speak to everyone.

You’ve probably seen the countless quizzes that are popping up these days:

Which Disney character are you, which country should you live in, and which Muppet are you?”

Did you notice that? The Muppets are broad enough that they get their own identity in quizzes, because they are that big, that all encompassing and speak to everyone with their art.

So, maybe their opening weekend grosses for their latest film might not be as huge as speculation predicted, but I think that’s because everyone knows, in their heart, that The Muppets aren’t going anywhere. We identify with them. We love them and we need them. So really, The Muppets are the Most Wanted franchise around. 

- Ceris Anne

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