According to a report over at muppetcentral.com, a new 10-minute Muppet Show “pilot” has been filmed and is going to be shopped around to the networks. If you’re too lazy to click on the link and read the full article, here’s a brief snippet:
The short pilot uses the television syntax of a documentary (think “The Office” meets “The Muppet Show”). The series revolves around Kermit the Frog as he attempts to reassemble the Muppet troupe and launch a new Muppet show.
Hmmm…now that’s an interesting concept. Instead of seeing the actual variety show, we’d follow the Muppets behind the scenes trying to put the show together, Reality TV style. Muppet fans have been clamoring for years to get Jim Henson’s felt creations back on the air on a regular basis since the original Muppet Show went off the air in 1981, but none of the attempts made after Henson’s death were successful. One reason for this may be that television audiences simply grew tired of and moved on from traditional variety shows. Certainly now, in this day and age of the nonexistent attention span, airing a variety show (even with the Muppets) would be ratings suicide. It’s an antiquated format, and I don’t think today’s American Idol-loving audiences would pay any attention to it.
This new show sounds interesting to me, and I’ll definitely tune in to see Gonzo, Lew Zealand, Fozzy, and the others, but a part of me thinks that perhaps Brian Henson and his team should leave well enough alone. Much of the Muppet “magic” died along with Jim Henson, and most of the Muppet projects made after his death were either mediocre at best or downright train-wrecks that suffered from poor vocal work, weak writing and an emphasis on newer characters like Clifford who just weren’t up to snuff.
Still, how funny would it be to see Miss Piggy give Fergie a karate-chop, or Lew Zeleand chuck a fish at Paris Hilton? What do you think of this idea?