As one of a long list of upcoming TV revivals, it was announced earlier this month that ABC would be rebooting the Muppet Show.
The show, featuring Jim Henson’s iconic puppets (who first gained fame from a 1969 appearance on Sesame Street) was originally formatted as a comedy/variety show.
It began in 1976 and ran until 1981, and was then rebooted shortly in 1996 as Muppets Tonight, getting cancelled after two seasons.
The first reboot was essentially a reintroduction of the beloved 1976 series, but this upcoming revival seems to be going a bit off-script.
ABC released the first plot details for the new Muppet Show, and the network is taking a ‘more adult’ spin on the series, which is being spearheaded by Big Bang Theory co-creator Bill Prady and 3rd Rock from the Sun and Anger Management writer Bob Kushell.
The showrunners are also opting not to follow the typical variety show format, instead choosing a mockumentary style, like on The Office and Parks and Recreation, with an Entertainment Weekly post describing it as having a “30 Rock feel.”
An official statement from ABC read: “The Muppets return to prime time with a contemporary, documentary-style show that – for the first time ever – will explore the Muppets’ personal lives and relationships, both at home and at work, as well as romances, break-ups, achievements, disappointments, wants and desires; a more adult Muppet show, for kids of all age.”
This news comes months after it was announced that the upcoming fourth Toy Story film would not in fact be a sequel – wherein the plot followed the relationship between the toys and the children – but instead a standalone romantic comedy.
And this news is all pretty interesting, but also frightening… how adult are we talking here? I mean, this is the Muppets, for goodness sake.
Because, if you think about it, The Muppets always did talk about the romance between Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy. And there was clearly a connection between Jessie and Buzz in Toy Story 3 — and Woody and Bo Peep in the original.
So, is it simply that more characters will be paired off? Or are we really trying to add mature themes to beloved family programming?
All will be revealed in June of 2017… for Toy Story 4. ABC has yet to release a premiere date for the new Muppet Show reboot.
What do you think – are you excited about the potentially risky changes?
Until next time,