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State of the Muppets - An Opinion

Discussion in 'Muppet Appearances' started by Frogster, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. wwfpooh

    wwfpooh Well-Known Member

    Agreed. They need more exposure & they need a specific kind.
  2. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Yeah, but what do you expect? Jim Henson and Richard Hunt have passed on, Jerry Nelson hasn't done anything TMS related since VMX (as he;s in some sort of semi-retirement), and Frank Oz is focusing on his film career. He seems to have moved on, and I DO NOT want to start that discussion up again. I have yet to see the special to talk about the performances, but maybe, just maybe, we have another OZ predicament where the human cast has no chemestry with the Muppet actors, and visa versa.

    Personally, I think Piggy has come a long way, but Eric does a better job with Fozzie. His best work would be Bert and Grover, but that's because Sesame Street is always in production... less so with Muppet projects.

    I agree with everything else though. I think Disney deep down knows what it wants to do, but realizes it can't, and we have to keep waiting and waiting seeing projects go unfinished. A special of loosely constructed interstitials, which probably would air better between the shows as they were intended, isn't the best re-launch project. I'm sure that something good can happen between now and whenever that Segal/Stoller film gets made (if and when).... but we have to keep waiting.

    This project was to see how the younger kids reacted with them... and unfortunately it was very mixed. I think they should focus on something more adult, with better celebs, for a network special. Then and only then will we truely gauge what's gonna happen.
  3. Super Scooter

    Super Scooter Well-Known Member

    It's about time someone said it, monsieur prawncrackah! Agreed with every word. The Muppets have been in top form lately. The performers are doing wonderfully, and I think Jim Lewis and Kirk Thatcher's writing has been magnificent! I'd say their work could even be compared to the greatness of Jerry Juhl's at times. It would have been nice if they had written Studio DC, but you can still see their influence on the Muppet parts of it.

    Yeah, I agree. When a few people are completely negative, it makes those with a balanced view of things seem negative, too. People (at least the negative people) focus exclusively on the bad things you have to say, and don't recognize the commendation in your words. It's tough. You don't want to give empty praise, but if you don't, then you get lumped in with the negative crowd.

    "Why can't we strike a balance here?"
  4. Redsonga

    Redsonga Well-Known Member

    It's hard to be balanced when you care really deeply about something IMHO, most of all when it sometimes dates back to the core of who you are now :)...
  5. TogetherAgain

    TogetherAgain Well-Known Member

    It is a very fine line there. It seems like there should be a whole lot of middle ground in between, and I guess sometimes there is, but really... It's a very fine line. When you love something as much as most of us love the Muppets, it's easy to start to hate anything they do that isn't exactly the way you know/picture/think of them.

    The trick is to stand back and assess what you really do like and dislike about each appearance.

    If we shower praise on everything the Muppets do, just because they're Muppets and we love them, then that's no good. Then we're just blindly saying we're happy, and Disney will assume it doesn't matter what happens to the quality of the characters, the performance, the jokes, the actual content... and then we really will have trash.

    But on the same token, we cannot afford to bash every last Muppet thing we see. Not everything will be perfect; not everything will be exactly how we like it; but if we focus on the negative and, much worse, call everything negative, then Disney is just as likely to completely disregard us. We'll never be pleased, so why should they bother? They might as well just put the Muppets on a shelf and let them gather dust. I may be wrong, but I'm pretty sure I speak for the whole forum when I say that's NOT what we want.

    So, personally... I'm thrilled with the YouTube and Muppets.com videos. Do I religiously watch every single one of them every day? No. But I can't honestly think of anything I don't like about them. Every single clip is just... Muppets, being Muppets. I couldn't ask for better than that.

    As for Studio D.C., am I thrilled? No, not really. I'm not exactly a Miley Cyrus fan, and I've avoided High School Musical like the plague, to be perfectly honest. So, was I disappointed to see the Muppets working with those particular stars? A little, yes, but like it or not, they are stars. So... the Muppets are working with stars, and that's a good thing. A mixed blessing, if you will.

    And Kermit's dancing in "Bop to the Top" was some of the best dancing I've seen from him in a long time, nevermind with whom he was dancing. And, personally, I was so excited about the fact that Zoot spoke that I squealed rather loudly and therefore had to watch again... just so I'd be able to hear what he said. Can I point out that all of the Electric Mayhem spoke? We've complained with countless Muppet projects that the band was left on the back burner, and here they are finally at the forefront. That, in itself, is a huge success for us, the fans, in my opinion. Can it completely override all of the things I didn't like about Studio D.C.? Well, for me, it can. But that's just my opinion.

    This post got to be a lot longer than I meant it to be, and of course now I see that a lot of what I'm saying was just said while I was taking too long to say it. (...Huh?) My point is, though, that we have to take the good (which is a whole lot right now!) with the bad. We'll probably disagree about which parts are good and which parts are bad, but we cannot afford to label everything all-good just because it's the Muppets or all-bad just because it's not exactly what we want.

    ...Yeah, I think that covered it.
  6. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    I am still very impressed with the Muppet performers as of late. It appears that only Studio DC is being singled-out. In recent interviews, Muppets.com and YouTube clips the Muppets have found a new snap and wit that calls back to years past. I’m not certain in you’ve seen all of this Frogster? :D

    It appears you continually ignore the statements of fact that this work with the Disney kids is a commercial for later projects with modern stars that have a wider appeal. Whether or not they'll get the rumored Angelina Jolie it is clear that they are targeting A-list considered Hollywood actors for the upcoming film. :flirt:

    If these DC projects were all there was I'd be very upset, but we know this is just a blip under the radar and that the real Muppety goodness is coming. I see no reason to complain. :confused:
  7. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    The Muppet performances of late have been top notch in most other fans eyes. You obviously haven't been seeing the YouTube clips, Muppets.com segments or any of the recent interviews.

    The Muppets are back, dude, and they're not relegated to the kiddie market as you suggest. I don't see why you continue perpetuating that falsehood. You have made your distaste for Studio DC clear, but that's not all there is! This was an attempt at including that particularly fickle market in a tiny project so they won't have to drag down the real projects to come.

    It appears you already have your mind made up (and on very little information) so there’s no need for further discussion from this Frog. :)
  8. Frogster

    Frogster Well-Known Member

    I did see the YouTube stuff, and the Muppets.com stuff. Didn't like the youtube material but loved the clips they had for the Muppets.com site. And I've seen enough interviews to know how they go. A week of Kermit on Kimmell was enough for me lol.
  9. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    I like the Muppets.com stuff, but find the YouTube stuff is the Muppets at their most classic, simple and abstract. You must not have enjoyed such numbers on the Muppet Show either (Gonzo with his dancing cheeses etc). Kermit's Kimmel bit was quite a while ago. The recent appearances of Kermit with Fozzie Bear have been really good - especially on the Fozzie part. If anything the bear is too funny. I am very impressed with all the performers. This is about as close to the classic Muppets that anyone could be without redoing old scripts. If you don't like the new stuff there's enough old stuff to watch. But no amount of complaining can bring Jim Henson back and I'm glad that the Muppets are making the rounds again! :)
  10. Reevz1977

    Reevz1977 Well-Known Member

    I personally prefer the youtube® videos. For me, they feel so much closer to the sketches from the Muppet Show and the more anarchic nature of the Muppets. Whats interesting is that people prefer different things and are being catered for. So really, and I never thought I say this, Disney may not be doing too badly with the Muppets afterall in that theres something for everyone!
  11. Ilikemuppets

    Ilikemuppets Well-Known Member

    Very well said, Ryan and I agree with you all the way! If you can get past the fact that there working with so and such and that it was clear that the director and writer don't really know how to direct and wight for the Muppets, it's really not all that bad. And honestly, I've rather have when they are doing them more years of nothing so for that I am grateful to Disney for! I'm sure more, and bigger and better things are on the way! I can't wait!:)
  12. Ilikemuppets

    Ilikemuppets Well-Known Member

    Well, all I gotta say is you have to start somewhere, and I think it's a good start.
  13. wwfpooh

    wwfpooh Well-Known Member

    Especially since Disney's targeting more audiences than just us.
  14. wwfpooh

    wwfpooh Well-Known Member

    Although it has parts that people may have a dislike for, DC Live indeed was a mere start to get people interested in The Muppets again.
  15. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately, it seems Disney is only heavily focussing on the tweenager market. And I don't just mean muppets, either. it would be great to actually work with the bloomin' original characters they've had since the beginning, without reducing them to Dora clones....
  16. wwfpooh

    wwfpooh Well-Known Member

    Heck, if they wanted, why not create an all-new MMC with Miley, Zack & Cody, and all the rest of the Disney Tweens as the performers and the Sensational Six as both hosts and as stars in cartoon segments for the show? This way, fans of the six and fans of the Tweens can both be gratified.
  17. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    Hoping I'm not considered a Moderation-Nazi, I just did some editing but posted reasons.

    I haven't seen it yet, but as long as they are trying to begin something with the Muppets it's good. This, I'm sure, is a vehicle to get something else going and maybe we're soon to see a new Muppet show on TV somewhere if this is a big enough hit.
  18. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    I think in all honesty, if the kids did reaaaaly take to the Muppets, it would be definitely a sign of the Muppet projects to come ... fortunately for us, they really need the whole "family" demograph to get the audience they would need to do anything with the Muppet brand.

    I agree that while Muppets Tonight was a 2nd rate TMS with weak characters, and some of the movies (not all) weren't as great as they could have been ... the Muppets have been on a slow spiral upwards since the Henson kids bought them back off EMTV. The wheezer video, VMX, some of the appearances, and now Muppets.com and Youtube - the Muppeteers seem to be getting their groove back and when the people who really know the Muppets best are let loose with them they can definitely start to work some of the old chemistry again. I agree with the OP, Studio DC was a near train wreck, although i do agree some parts were ok and the Muppets did need to be reaqauinted with the kids .. though it was cobbled together from material that wasn't even supposed to be a show, and written very poorly - a better re-introduction could have been created with the right people and script.
  19. Convincing John

    Convincing John Well-Known Member

    Script...that's a key word, there. Writing is so important in the Muppets. Remember the story about Jerry Juhl in the room of Fraggle puppets? He said to the other writer with him: "Without us, these are just socks!"

    Forget the search for the next American Idol. We need the search for the next "Jerry Juhl". Steve, Eric and Bill are great performers, but there's got to be an equally great team of writers behind the scenes.

    Convincing John
  20. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    Everybody comes down hard on Muppets Tonight, but I liked it. I have a VHS copy of the whole series and once a year watch all the episodes. It's cool to see the characters go from being not-so-hot to being full-fledged characters. I think of that series Sal and Johnny got my vote as great characters, obviously Pepe and Seymour and Bobo Bear. The flamingo announcer was funny, too. It was also the first time in a long time we got to see Gonzo perform some great acts! I liked it. But that's me.

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