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What went wrong with Muppets from Space?

Discussion in 'Classic Muppets' started by Daffney, Apr 1, 2011.

  1. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Thanks for sharing that. There was so much potential that I wish had made it into the film. I purchased the Blu-ray for my collection and watched it again recently. There are some golden moments, but the experience left me kind of cold. The most remarkable thing that few people mention is the outright estrangement of Kermit and Miss Piggy. I know the film wasn't about them, but they appeared as if they couldn't care less about each other.

    Performances from the Electric Mayhem have been missing in the last 4 films. Let's hope the recent Kimmel appearance is a nod to their importance in the future of the Muppets.
    Pinkflower7783 likes this.
  2. Speed Tracer

    Speed Tracer Well-Known Member

    Much as I loved the use of "We Built This City," that was the PERFECT place for a new Electric Mayhem song. My roommate, a huge fan of the band, got so excited the second Dr. Teeth went "Well all riiiight!" but then just hit play on the boombox.
    heralde and frogboy4 like this.
  3. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Many people felt that they weren't ready for actually performing together at that point in the film, but they could have at least faded out the original vocal tracks and had the Muppets karaoke it. The "We Built This City" portion reminded me of the "Brick House" misstep in MFS. The Muppets are good singers. They can do it on their own. :coy:

    I still think they should have loaded up the end credits with more Muppety goodness that didn't fit into the picture itself. A Mayhem number and Animal telling people to go home would have been the perfect punctuation to end the experience. :cool:
  4. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Even in films like MCC and MTI, Kermit and Piggy have shared some tender moments. The only 2 movie projects that didn't were MFS and MWOZ, but that one at least has conceptual problems to blame.

    All I have to ask is WHY wasn't there even a scene where the Muppets were fighting over what to watch on television, and Kermit breaks through the chaos, calmly, and says "We have to support Piggy and watch her show." Kermit almost seems to say, "Ah, Piggy's little skit is on... I'm going to go downstairs and play Atari. Wake me up if something good happens." They're just... there. They could have done the movie entirely without Fozzie, Animal, or Kermit, and Piggy would only serve as host of that TV program. Gonzo has some great moments, as does Jeff and Bobo, Rizzo, VanNeuter, and Pepe... but Kermit's main laugh is quoting a Get Smart line, and it really feels he needed to have more closer heart to hearts with Gonzo.

    I see what you mean, but the two actually have different motives behind them. Brick House is some establishing shot (and sadly, one of the best scenes in the movie), but We Built This City is one of the many references to 1980's movies they put in the film. The old "cleaning stuff up" montage. They probably could have used "Put One Foot in Front of the Other," but the cheese factor of the song (and the building part) really made the scene work.

    Still, I really feel there should have been an Electric Mayhem number, but the film had SO much shoved into it that there wouldn't have been room. Heck, there was barely room for important plot points... but a line in a song is still more than they had since MTM. The next movie, however, should have an Electric Mayhem song in there. Even if it's a cover.
  5. miss kermie

    miss kermie Well-Known Member

    IMO I think what threw fans off, was the fact that they classified Gonzo as an Alien, as opposed to keeping him as a whatever.

    Also, they need to sing more.
    frogboy4 likes this.
  6. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    What was the Get Smart line quoted?

    Maybe the next movie should feature The Electric Mayhem as the stars, with the other Muppets appearing throughout the film.
  7. Space Muppet

    Space Muppet New Member

    After seeing the finished product, I was less than thrilled. But the movie did have some good points, I especially enjoyed the scenes with all the characters at the house & on the beach (I worked on the beach scenes). And everyone I talk to tells me they really enjoyed the film, but then again they might be trying to spare my feelings.

    It was probably a mistake to make Gonzo the lead, just because everyone expects Kermit to fill that role.
    frogboy4 likes this.
  8. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    That, again, is the fault of the director. If they did the original script, they were to have been a race of actual aliens who were such big fans of Gonzo, they basically cosplayed as him. Gonzo was revealed to not be an alien after all. But that's one of many concepts ol' Tim Hill didn't like. That and he felt the Muppets didn't paint the house enough.

    "Ah, the OLD Invisible Spray in the Rubber Duckie Trick."
  9. Oscarfan

    Oscarfan Well-Known Member

    I don't know where it was stated, but what was Travelling Matt's supposed cameo?
  10. Speed Tracer

    Speed Tracer Well-Known Member

    I know this might not work as a full-length movie, but I'd love so much a TV special that was all about the Electric Mayhem. I imagine it as a cross between This is Spinal Tap, A Hard Day's Night, and The Blues Brothers. One of those "if I were a Muppet writer" dreams.

    Actually - no one says I can't just do it for fun... :cool:

    (Oscarfan, the line from The Muppets in your signature is one of my favorites from the movie! I had no idea other people love it as much as I do, though I should've guessed! :excited:)
  11. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    All I remember is that it was supposed to be during the sequence at the end where everyone was at Cape Doom waiting for the ship. Matt was supposedly writing a postcard or commenting on how strange everyone looked.
  12. charlietheowl

    charlietheowl Well-Known Member

    Just watched this for the first time in a long time, and I have to agree with most of what was being said, but I do have one question. Why was Frank Oz not available to perform most of the time during the filming? I know he was probably directing something, but I'm sure he had to have had a contract that obligated him to perform x number of scenes or something. Fozzie seemed to be the most off of all his characters, IMO, throughout the film.

    Aside from that the most notable thing about the movie was playing Spot-The-Muppet at the beginning. Nothing exceptional, nothing terrible. I thought it was harmless.
  13. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    And it's not even just that. They had 3 of Frank's biggest characters in one whole sequence, and they didn't really do much of anything too in character or even notable. Somehow it feels like the movie should have had room for the Muppets to split up in COVNET and have separate adventures trying to find Gonzo, and just having him pop up just behind Kermit when they least expect it. If there's one thing in the movie that needed to be better, it's the COVNET breakout.

    Somehow I'd rather they have been just in time for the alien ship to arrive than to have them wait forever for it and have Gonzo lose faith in it showing up.
  14. charlietheowl

    charlietheowl Well-Known Member

    The breakout sequence seemed lethargic to me. Fozzie didn't do much and Animal just had that odd gag with Kathy Griffin. It seemed to me like some parts of it might have been axed from the script or something. 88 minutes, taking time out for opening and closing credits, is pretty light for a movie.
  15. Walter

    Walter Active Member

    Something went wrong with it?? I'm not suppossed to like it??? Oh no!!!:eek:

    Seriously though, as much as I like Gonzo.. I feel like the reason the movie didn't feel as strong is because Gonzo does not really relate with any other characters(besides Camilla). I mean, when you look into the Muppets past and the friendship moments they had.. Kermit and Piggy, Kermit and Fozzie, Rizzo and Pepe, They don't really click with Gonzo as well.. I mean, the last thing I can remember Piggy saying to Gonzo that was not insulting or negative was "Gonzo, is Camilla okay?" from TMTM. Gonzo is the black sheep..The weirdo.. and that's his character. When I look back at The Muppet Show even today, I always felt bad for Gonzo because it seemed liked he was the most distant from everyone else..I know that they DO like Gonzo and would do anything for him. But still, Gonzo is,in my opinion, the most distant of the main characters.

    In the end, Gonzo is probably the most difficult of the main characters to write for let alone script an ENTIRE FILM around.. I think the movie was a good time and the only nitpick I have is the lack of Muppet songs. (It sure beats MWoOz for sure!!)
  16. BobThePizzaBoy

    BobThePizzaBoy Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't say that, as time went on he became fairly close with Kermit and Fozzie and does have a close friendship with Rizzo that definitely is one of the reedeeming aspects of Muppets from Space.
  17. CaseytheMuppet

    CaseytheMuppet Well-Known Member

    The only thing I didn't like about it was the fact that the Muppets didn't sing ONE song. :sympathy: I mean, come on! ONE SONG! *iiinn controooolll*

    Fraggline likes this.
  18. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    Actually it's widely sourced that the performers work freelance. When Steve Whitmire was interviewed for Tough Pigs in 2008 he said that even with Disney owning the Muppets the Muppet performers remain freelance (I wonder if that's changed with the recent movie).

    But I have read of occasions where certain performers started out under contract. In the Muppet Central interview with Karen Prell she says she was only under contract for her first year, and Michael Earl has said on many occasions that he started out under contract for three years. Interestingly, it seems both performers were let go from Sesame Street as soon as their contracts were up.
  19. charlietheowl

    charlietheowl Well-Known Member

    I didn't realize that the performers worked freelance, I would have thought they would have had to sign a contract before a movie so they could commit to filming.
  20. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    The only problem I have with The Muppets is that there was too much concept in the run time they were allotted. They cut out quite a bit, but the movie had a break neck pace that made the most of every single moment. Other than the Me party segment, nothing dragged the movie down.

    MFS is quite the opposite. There are just too many drags in the script that stop the movie cold and ruin the pacing. A lot of it was Clifford checking mail, Kermit painting the house... and just droning portions of too few Muppets acting bored. The card playing scene? What was that about? Gonzo rushes in and says "I'm from OUTER SPACE!!" He could have just yelled that off the roof tops and got the same reaction of characters running out to see what the explosion was. Not 4 of the Muppets bored to death playing cards.

    Here's how the COVNET break out should have gone.

    Kermit, Fozzie, and Pepe should have been the only ones that broke in, with Floyd and Animal in the car for back up (having left Bunsen and Beaker behind... I still think that part was pretty brilliant). Piggy was back at Cape Doom covering the story, cutting to a sequence where she worries if Kermie is safe. Using the invisible spray, the three of them split up undetected looking for Gonzo (who just walked out of his holding cel after talking to the sandwich... Bobo forgot to lock the cel behind him), and the invisible spray wears off at compromising moments. They aren't caught, and manage to remain incognito. They all regroup to think up another plan to get Gonzo. Fozzie asks "okay, now how are we supposed to rescue him?" Gonzo pops up behind him and says "Find Who?" Fozzie replies "Well, Gonzo, we have to go find Gonzo." Realizing that, Gonzo points out they still need to find Rizzo. Fozzie asks, "Yeah! Where is he?" Rizzo pops up and says "WHere is who?" Fozzie replies "You know Rizzo, we have to... WOULD EVERYONE CUT THAT OUT!?!" Just a corridor away from escape, they manage to sneak closer to the exit without making a scene, even though it's clear that Gonzo escaped at that point and they just started to alert the guards. Meanwhile, back in the van, Animal grows impatient, Floyd is unable to hold him back. Animal storms the base (the guard is still affected by the Mind Mist), causes a ruckus before the others are almost out, causing a massive chase that leads them in circles (where they run into, and knock over Van Neuter, who himself is being chased by the rest of the rats)... there's large spread confusion, they use the door in a jar (to the same extent in the film) and manage to escape. Gonzo points out that it's almost time for the aliens to land, and they speed off in the Mayhem Van with Agent Singer and Bobo in hot pursuit.

    Meanwhile at the landing site, everyone gets sick of waiting for both the aliens and Gonzo (both are late), and everyone else seems dejected until the Alien Gonzos touch down. After asking where the one called Gonzo is, one of the Muppets waiting says that he didn't show up yet. The head alien says "We're a very busy people. Maybe we should try again next century." With that, the Mayhem bus careens to the beach, passers by jump out of the way. The bus skid to a stop, Gonzo jumps out of the door, runs, collapsing at the base of the ship and says "I'M HERE! I'M HERE!"

    And basically everything's basically the same from there.

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