ABC’s announced its new fall lineup of shows, and among the newcomers are a revival of “The Muppets.” This time, it’s about their supposed private lives “off camera,” done in a “mockumentary” style. It’s also meant to be more “adult” series, with jokes and elements with a more adult-oriented tone. The trailers for the series are available on YouTube.
I’m not completely sure about the “adult” premise—it still feels a bit odd to see Kermit saying “bacon-wrapped Hell on Earth.” (I’ve read Kermit supposedly used the same h-word in a clearly-a-prototype pilot for the original “Muppet Show,” but still…) The jokes about Miss Piggy, and even Kermit, not recognizing other characters were funny. (Funnier that even the C-listers can’t recall in which specials they appeared…)
As for this new show’s fate, hopefully it’ll fare at least as well as the previous Muppet series to also have aired on ABC, “Muppets Tonight,” which ran from 1996 to 1998. At worst, I hope it avoids being anything like “The Looney Tunes Show,” i.e., classic zany characters forced into a bland, confining sitcom format. Still, “The Muppets” has a few hurdles to overcome: “Muppets Most Wanted” was anything but at the box office last year; the show’s on directly opposite The CW’s “The Flash” (renewed for a second season); and some people might feel that the Muppets, or puppetry as entertainment in general save for very young viewers, are passé. Despite all those possible concerns, I’ll definitely be tuning in this fall to see Kermit and company’s primetime return.