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Another from Jim Hill Media...

Discussion in 'Muppet Babies' started by Tim, Aug 30, 2006.

  1. Tim

    Tim Member

    A comment in response to the newest line of animated "babies":

    DerekJ said:
    "The way I understand it, it's the late Jim Henson that we really should blame for this toon baby thing.
    By that I mean: Henson's the guy who basically invented this genre back in 1984, when he introduced the Muppet Babies in 'The Muppets Take Manhattan'"
    ----
    A little historical context about how we got the Muppet Babies in the first place might explain why every other company Just Isn't Getting It:
    Henson claimed he had marketed the babies "based on their popularity on the movie"--But the chronology's a bit off, as some products were already being marketed months to a year before the movie, and the Babies don't even seem to make much sense in the movie and appear suspicously like an infomercial cameo...
    Jim had always intended that the Babies would take over all future marketing for the "adult" Muppets, but the reasons why don't look too nice: At that point in his career, Jim was busy with "Labyrinth", had fallen in love with the studio's big-scale special-effect puppet work since "Dark Crystal", and believed that the Creature Shop would pay all the company's future bills...
    As for his lil' foam pals, you can see him taking a condescending approach to the characters that the other writers and performers weren't, and as for the "new source of marketing", you don't have to be Freud to figure out what "Baby Kermit" was now doing in a playpen and being marketed to preschoolers.
    (And the fact that "Labyrinth" DIDN'T singlehandedly build the company's future is why we still have Kermit around today, Michael Eisner notwithstanding...For the rest of his life, and sounding very much like Walt Disney and "Fantasia", Henson never could understand "why the movie had been such a flop".)

    Of course, as the article says, once Saturday morning saw the ratings, everyone else got the idea, as it was getting harder to flog their franchises for one more concept. Disney and Sesame Street were naturals, since they knew which side their baby-marketing was buttered with new moms--
    But as for Marvel, the idea of selling their comics to anyone under the age of 12 has literally been a -punchline- at the company since the early 90's: Never mind Baby Wolverine, if I was to say the words "Power Pack", would any fan know what I was talking about?... :)
    August 29, 2006 11
  2. Ilikemuppets

    Ilikemuppets New Member

    Wow, thank you Tim. do you Soppoes that Movie like Jaws and Starwars and anything to do with Jim Henson's thinking at the time?

    That interresting to know that you can contribute that as the reason that Kermit is still around now.
  3. Tim

    Tim Member

    I remember Jim with to Johnny Carson one night. He was promoting the new season of The Muppet Show, and brought Link Hogthrob out. They were talking about the new "Pigs In Space" sketches, and Jim specifically said to Johnny how "It was nice that 'Star Wars' had just come out because we didn't know about that."

    I'm not sure if that really answers your question or not, but maybe it puts a kind of time frame on what he was thinking about when.
  4. Ilikemuppets

    Ilikemuppets New Member

    Well, I think that could sum it all up prety well. I maen that knid of puts things into prespective a little for me. But thank you for the imformation, Tim.
  5. Kimp the Shrimp

    Kimp the Shrimp Active Member

    Muppet Baies copyed Flintston kids lol
  6. erniebert1234ss

    erniebert1234ss Active Member

    Actually, Flintstone Kids stole fizzy lifting drinks from MB.

    BJ
  7. Vic Romano

    Vic Romano Active Member

    When did making good quality and profitable entertainment become a bad thing? Jim no doubt set out to make a better tomorrow and accomplished just that, but to think he did it without any intention of making a living from it is just absurd. :rolleyes:
  8. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    I agree, the entertainment industry is a business, and yes people are in it to make money. There is no shame in that. And it doesn't mean money is the ONLY reason.
  9. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    You know, I have read some sources that mentioned that Muppet Babies was inspired by the popularity of the scene from The Muppets Take Manhattan, but I'd also noticed that it premiered a few months after the movies release. There wouldn't have been time to develop a new animated series based on the popularity of a scene from a movie and have it premier at the beginning of the following TV season. There would have to be the process of hiring people, animating, recording voices, and also developing. I don't think Jim Henson would have been in favor of rushing production of something based on how popular a small scene is (though I know that production was rushed on Little Muppet Monsters based on the popularity of Muppet Babies). I wonder which was planned first: the animated Muppet Babies series or the sequence from The Muppets Take Manhattan.
  10. Ilikemuppets

    Ilikemuppets New Member

    Tim explaind this somewhere. Jim Henson was trying to get away from puppettry so movies would pay the bill, so he was using the muppet babies as the main source for the muppets from then on. But he did make them before the movie. Something like that.
  11. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    It still makes sense. Maybe they were planning out the idea of Muppet Babies, and then used them in Muppets Take Manhattan to see if the idea was workable and drum up some early attention.
  12. Buck-Beaver

    Buck-Beaver Well-Known Member

    I enjoy reading what Jim writes and hearing his point of view on things, but often it's a lot of hot air based more on his personal speculation than actual facts.

    Good journalism has sources and facts that can be verified. Anytime you read anything like this it's a good idea to ask yourself how much of this is his opinion and how much of it are actual facts. This seems like a lot of speculation and conjecture to me.
  13. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    That's true, you have to differentiate between opinion and facts when reading articles.
  14. BEAR

    BEAR Active Member

    Yeah, this Jim Hill guy really gets under my skin sometimes. He tries to make controversy out of such uncontroversial things. Who cares what came out when and why? They were both great projects with the intention of providing good family/childrens entertainment.
  15. heralde

    heralde Well-Known Member

    I don't mind he gets controversial, but yeah not just for the sake of causing a fuss.
  16. Ilikemuppets

    Ilikemuppets New Member

    Youre right, thanks guys. I'm so naive sometimes.

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