On Muppets Humor & Memories

Fozzie Bear Kermit the FrogLet’s face it. There are people in this world who appreciate Muppets humor, and then there are the rest of you. It’s wacky. It’s ridiculous. And despite owing its creation to Jim Henson, who was born in Mississippi, I’ve always thought Muppets humor seems to have much in common with British comedy.

Or maybe that’s just because I’ve always thought the best Muppets movie of all time was The Great Muppet Caper, aka the only Muppets flick actually directed by Henson, which was shot in England? How’s that for a load of Muppets trivia for you?

Here’s some more: Disney (which owns the rights to the Muppets) has just released the first-ever Blu-Ray two-pack of Muppets movies!The Great Muppet Caper and Muppet Treasure Island are getting double billing!  Time for more trivia — the latter was made in 1996, six years after Henson’s death and is the second Muppets flick that actually came FROM Disney.

great muppet caper muppet treasure islandThe two-pack arrived at my house just in time for a snow day, and my daughter ended up watching them back-to-back because that’s how we roll when it is snowing like crazy, school has been cancelled, and Mom has to work. Needless to say, I’d seen them both before. The former was a childhood favorite; the latter one I watched with my little brother when it came out because despite being a teenager, I was certainly NOT too old for Muppet humor.

Nor am I now. Her laughter from the living room made it awfully tempting to blow off work and join her (but I didn’t, oh bosses!). But what really hit me as she giggled away was how universal these characters are. I loved them as a kid and love them now. I was able to drag my husband into the Muppets show at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and get him to laugh, and here our 8-year-old is a Muppets fiend.

It’s a rare universality, but what IS it that has turned them into pop culture icons?

Is it the heart and soul behind the funny? That seems to be what drove Jim Henson to make the Muppets in the first place — to give them depth.

Or is it that the jokes avoid snark but still have bite to them? That there is a bit of reality in everything they do and say — no matter how zany the gag?

Or is it just that these movies are funny? Plain and simple? Because The Great Muppet Caper is now 32 years old, and it’s as hilarious today as it was when I was a kid. Only now I get to share it with MY kid.

Who is your favorite Muppet?


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Disclaimer: I received a copy of the Blu-Ray for review purposes, however all opinions expressed are my own.

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