BigDamnREWIND: The Muppet Show

“It’s time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights, it’s time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet Show tonight!”

Besides Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny there are few pop culture icons that have stood the test of time quite as well as Kermit the Frog and his gang of Muppets. Created by Jim Henson in the mid 1950’s, the larger than life characters would grow to become instantly recognizable across the world and have a staying power that few can claim. Whether it be appearances on Saturday Night Live or Johnny Carson to their own TV show, films and music albums the Muppets have fans of all ages and nationalities. As a child I’d watch reruns on Nickelodeon and it never even dawned on me that the Muppet Show went off the air five years before I was even born!

Lasting five season, The Muppet Show had guests that would include Vincent Price, Kenny Rogers, Julie Andrews, Mark Hamill, and even Johnny Cash. As a kid I didn’t know who half of these stars were (except Mark Hamill, duh) and I didn’t care. The music, comedy and general outlandish antics of the Muppets had me hooked for life. I’d sing along with the theme song and any guest songs I new, I’d laugh at Fozzie’s bad jokes, and hoot and holler at Gonzo blowing himself up in some new original way. Sure some of the humor was over my head as a kid, but I didn’t care or even notice. The jokes and humor that were aimed at adults just meant that The Muppet Show would continue to entertain me in new ways as I would grow up. Even now, I eargerly await  the new film “The Muppets” set to arrive in theaters November 23, 2011 for the holiday season.

Whether it be Pigs in Space or a scientific break through in Muppet Labs, the Muppets have never failed to entertain their fans. I can remember seeing Beeker have his head blown up by his partner Bunsen Honeydew while showcasing their latest discovery. Rowlf the Dog playing the piano and singing a song would always have my feet tapping along with him. I may even be able to blame my lack of culinary skills on the fact that I watched the Swedish Chef accomplish, well, so little in the kitchen as a kid! Of course, all these characters were held together by Kermit the Frog, who would be described as the eye of the hurricane. He was the calm in the middle of the insanity and chaos raging around him, somehow holding it all together.

The good news for fans is that Disney is currently in the process of securing all the rights to the music for the final two seasons of the Muppet Show to be released on DVD. Unfortunately, no release date has yet been set but the artwork for season four has as it features Gonzo on the cover. Along with these releases, all the Muppet films and specials are available on DVD and ITunes for your viewing pleasure and of course, The Muppets comes out November 23! So grab your favorite chicken, watch out for cannon fire, and call up your gigantic hairy pal and get some more Muppets in your life!

PETER is a Muppets fanatic and his wife finds it kind of odd/funny. He will force her to see “The Muppets” multiple times in theaters, and if she refuses he’ll go by himself. So if you see a grown, bearded man sitting in a late night showing of “The Muppets” laughing hysterically with popcorn flying everywhere. It’s ok, it’s just Pete.

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