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Are the Muppets as popular as they were 30 to 40 years ago?

Discussion in 'Classic Muppets' started by DMHFan, May 20, 2017.

  1. DMHFan

    DMHFan Well-Known Member

  2. MWoO

    MWoO Well-Known Member

    Seems like a joke being taken out of context.
  3. datman24

    datman24 Well-Known Member

    I think there are a couple of reasons why the Muppets are not as popular as they were 30 to 40 years ago:

    1. Many longtime fans have given up on the Muppets. I believe that after Jim Henson's passing, a lot of people did not think that the Muppets could recover from this. Henson's direction made the Muppets a worldwide phenomenon, and no one else could try to replicate it. As we have seen in the past 25 years or so, that has been the case. The Muppets have been (for the most part) unsuccessful in trying to replicate what made them funny in the first place. Instead going above and beyond what anyone else has tried to do, the Muppets are... well, doing what everyone else has done. It's more safe than it is risky, violent, and chaotic.

    2. Today's young people are having a hard time getting into the Muppets. Because of their constant exposure to CGI nowadays and having been practically raised on that stuff, which can obviously do far more than what one can do on strings, they might see anything involving colorful, bright, and/or furry puppets as "for babies." Of course, they could try to like it if the Muppets were able to give us he same laughs they once did 30 to 40 years ago. Unfortunately, that has not been the case.

    I know I sound pretty negative about this, but I care about the Muppets as much as the rest of you do. I want them to succeed in the modern age. So far, the closest they have ever been to Henson's off-brand of humor were the Bohemian Rhapsody music video and the 2011 film. If they can to do some of things of what made those work, then the Muppets may have a bright future ahead of them.
  4. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    Both of those theories are actually pretty significant: there are a number of "purists" out there, who outright refuse to at least look into any post-Jim Muppet fare, which is sad, because Jim wanted the Muppets to continue after he left us - that's actually why it was Disney he chose to sell them to, as they kept Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, Pluto, et al alive long after Walt's passing. Granted, post-Jim Muppet fare isn't the same as what Jim did with the Muppets when he was alive, but not only is that to be expected, but also, consider this: even when he was alive, Jim was always looking into different areas to branch out into and develop projects for . . . for all we know, Jim could have, eventually, sort have abandoned the Muppets altogether, and began dabbling in other areas. I could easily see him diving into the world of 360 VR filmmaking right about now.

    As for the CGI thing, yes, that's unfortunate, and it's also affecting traditional, hand-drawn animation as well.
  5. MWoO

    MWoO Well-Known Member

    Question. If the Muppets were popular again, but only as CGI characters on a similar (though higher quality) level as the new Muppet Babies, would you guys be ok with that?

    I really dont know if i would be ok with that.

    As for Disney keeping its charactrrs alive, not really. Mickey and friends are relegated to pre-school shows and merch. Donald Duck got to be relevant again with the Duck Tales reboot, but other than that when was the last Mickey Mouse movie? Non-kiddy family TV show? But that merchandise train keeps on rolling. I think at best they have done some direct to video stuff. This is the path the Muppets may be on. Though I would take direct to dvd stuff over nothing.

    Of course when Jim was planning to sell his company to then he planned to come along for the ride with a 15 year deal and still have creative control during that time. Seems was planning on taking advantage of having the ability to create without the hassle of having to manage the business end. Also, part of me feels he wanted to get away from the Muppets much like Frank did to focus on other things. The original pitch for the Jim Henson Hour didnt have Kermit in the Muppet TV segments and i think he really wanted to let Disney handle the characters with his guidance so he could do more Dark Crystal like stuff.
    Blue Frackle and DMHFan like this.
  6. Sgt Floyd

    Sgt Floyd Well-Known Member

    NOTHING stays popular forever. Yes, there are some timeless things, but timeless doesn't mean popular. Timeless just means that its always going to be recognizable and that there will always be a dedicated fanbase.

    No, the muppets arent as popular as they once were. But neither is anything else...except like...maybe Elvis or the Beatles or other old bands.

    They just aren't going to ever be popular today, and that's not me being pessimistic. That's me seeing different trends and different tastes developing. That's not to say a new muppet production can't be successful, but its not going to ever be as popular as most diehard fans want.

    I don't think the muppets being in the public eye would help either. It might attract people who grew up with the muppets if done right, but it's not going to attract a new audience on the level that something needs to be successful due to different tastes in media.
  7. LittleJerry92

    LittleJerry92 Well-Known Member

    People not wanting to give anything post-Henson related a chance reminds me of 90’s kids who constantly have to remind us of how every single show after 1999 sucks. :rolleyes:
  8. DMHFan

    DMHFan Well-Known Member

    Kinda tough for them, isn't it?
  9. datman24

    datman24 Well-Known Member

    Honestly, I think the Kermit memes have become more mainstream than any of the Muppet projects of the last 25 years.
    Blue Frackle and LittleJerry92 like this.
  10. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    . . . . But, that's none of our business.
  11. LittleJerry92

    LittleJerry92 Well-Known Member

    ^ nailed it!
  12. Blue Frackle

    Blue Frackle Well-Known Member

    Literally the two things keeping classic Disney characters and the Muppets alive (respectively): Kingdom Hearts and memes. Donald and Goofy are two of the three main characters in Kingdom Hearts, and it's one of the few current representations of the characters in their purest forms that I can think of, but I guess Disney doesn't get full credit for that as Square is making the game... how Winnie the Pooh ended up in the same game as a bunch of anime guys in robes who have a zillions forms of themselves is beyond me, but yeah; this game is about to sell millions of copies.

    What do you mean by that? That's it's an objectification of the characters that has nothing to do with why we love them in the first place?
    Froggy Fool likes this.
  13. Duke Remington

    Duke Remington Well-Known Member

    Not really. You have forgotten about the Paul Rudish Mickey Mouse shorts, which are also still in production, extremely popular, have won lots of awards and are definitely not “kiddie”. The new shorts designs of the characters even seem to get used in Disney media more frequently than, say, their preschool show designs (they’ve even heavily featured the Rudish Mickey and Friends designs on stuff related to Mickey’s 90th birthday). Heck, Disney’s Hollywood Studios is getting a new major attraction based on those new Mickey shorts.
    DMHFan and Prof Bunsen like this.
  14. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    That's actually one of the Kermit memes: Kermit sipping tea, and commenting on some hot-button issue that's going around, then ending his comment with, "but, that's none of my business."
  15. DMHFan

    DMHFan Well-Known Member

    Hey Duke. Nice to see you. I agree with what you said.
    Duke Remington likes this.

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