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The Blue & Gray Press | August 19, 2017

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The Muppets return to the small screen

The Muppets return to the small screen

By NICOLE LINDELL

“My life is a bacon-wrapped hell on earth,” sighed Kermit during the first scene in Tuesday night’s episode of ABC’s “The Muppets” fades into a commercial break. The premier of this new series, however, was far from any sort of hell.

With humor reminiscent of “The Office,” this witty ‘mockumentary’ style television series has taken the beloved characters of “The Muppets” and placed them into our world as seemingly real people; the previous shows and movies that they had starred in were simply jobs that they took as actors.

The result of this transcendence into the real world is an array of characters with which the viewer can relate to and empathize with, all while having a good laugh.

The series presents itself as a documentary being filmed behind the scenes of Miss Piggy’s late-night talk show “Up Late with Miss Piggy.”

Familiar faces involve Kermit as the producer, Fozzy Bear as the host and Gonzo as the writer, Pepe the King Prawn as a sound tech, all while Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem are the musical entertainment for the show.

The characters maintain their signature quirks while also dealing with the ups and downs of everyday life, which gives the familiar world of “The Muppets” a type of relevance that one would not expect from a show starring a bunch of puppets.

Things are a bit awkward between Kermit and Miss Piggy as they have recently undergone a nasty split due to Piggy’s growing ego and nasty diva attitude.

Kermit often expresses his frustration with being the producer of a show starring his ex and seems to have become a bit of a pessimist which makes for a lot of wonderfully sarcastic remarks throughout the show.

Piggy, on the other hand, is completely outrageous. She is the epitome of the diva stereotype- always on a rampage, screaming at others and never completely satisfied.

A subplot of the show follows the not-so-funny Fozzy Bear, a failed comedian turned talk show host, in his quest to find love on the internet. Fozzy is dating a human girl that he met online and finally agrees to meet her parents, only to find out that they are not exactly thrilled with the idea of their daughter dating a bear.

He tries, in vain, to impress them, even bringing them to a taping of “Up Late with Miss Piggy,” which turns out to be a disaster due to Piggy’s antics and results in the parents fleeing the scene and Fozzy ending his relationship.

The situations that The Muppets find themselves in are so real that one can almost forget that they are just puppets and not humans.

It is this sense of reality, along with the inclusion of such guests as Elizabeth Banks, Tom Bergeron and Imagine Dragons, that make the show such an overwhelming success.

If you are a fan of shows like “The Office” or “Parks and Recreation,” you should give this show a watch on Tuesday nights at 8 p.m.

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