A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that The Muppets brings Kermit, Miss Piggy, Gonzo, and the rest of gang back to prime-time TV in a reality-mocumentary format. The setup is that Miss Piggy headlines a late-night talk show and the rest of the Muppets -- including her ex-boyfriend, Kermit -- work behind the scenes, so the ups and downs of office politics account for much of the comedy. The show also mines the characters' personal lives for laughs, especially with regard to romance. Expect subtle references to sexuality, drug use, and other mature topics as well as some mild language ("hell" and "suck," mostly). There's a fair amount of slapstick humor and plenty of hilarious celebrity cameos in every episode.
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What's the story?
THE MUPPETS is a mockumentary that goes behind the scenes at a network talk show called "Up Late with Miss Piggy," starring the razor-tongued diva herself. Cameras trail the cast as they prep for and film each day's episode and tag along when they're off the clock to see what they get up to. There's no shortage of drama on the set or off, especially since Miss Piggy (voiced by Eric Jacobson) has recently split with her longtime boyfriend (and the show's executive producer) Kermit (Steve Whitmire), and his budding relationship with a new pig named Denise greatly complicates their working relationship and causes strife for nearly everyone around them.
Is it any good?
This very funny exposé-style comedy is a must-see for Muppet aficionados who are mature enough to pick up on the flocked folks' masterfully witty (and often suggestive) repartee. Everything longtime fans have come to expect from the Muppets is on full display here: Miss Piggy's all-consuming egomania, Kermit's fretful attempts to appease, Fozzie's (Jacobson again) comical flops, and so on. What's more, the talk-show shtick means there's a job that's a natural fit for each personality, from Gonzo's (Dave Goelz) writing team to Animal's (Jacobson) house band and the persistent hecklers, Statler (Whitmire again) and Waldorf (Goelz again). There's so much subversive content at play that you'll want to watch with the rewind button at the ready so as to not miss a single quip. Add a bevy of big-name guest stars to the mix, and you have the makings of some great entertainment.
But much of The Muppets' appeal is nostalgic in nature, beckoning to viewers who have watched the characters' joint story evolve over the years through a classic TV show and a variety of movies. For these viewers, this series puts a modern reality spin on the working relationships and environment we saw as far back as the original Muppet Show. On the other hand, for those whose introduction to the Muppets themselves is this show, the laughs may be harder to come by, and the more overt use of mature humor calls into question its role as family-friendly fare.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the Muppets' appeal. Did you enjoy this show? Were you familiar with the characters' relationships before you watched? Does the fact that they're puppets change anything?
What challenges exist in working relationships, whether they're on the job, on a team, or in a classroom? Are friendships compromised by competition or one member's authority over another?
Why are so many classic TV characters being remade? How do they stand up against more modern offerings? Which TV shows and characters stand the test of time for you?
Themes & Topics
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
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