Let’s face it, regardless of the weak ending and occasional plot holes, The Muppets was the most fun you probably had watching a movie last year. With an almost unheard of Rotten Tomatoes rating of 96%, it’s safe to say that more people enjoyed the movie than disliked it. For some people it was their first Muppet experience while others it was a breath of fresh air to hardcore Muppet fans who had to deal with 10 years of terrible made-for-TV movies. I loved the film so much I even wrote an open letter to Jason Segel thanking him.
That being said, the film is far from perfect. The DVD came out today and when you re-watch it you are going to see random things that don’t hold up well a second time. But I still love the Muppets, as has been evident multiple times on this site.
A few weeks ago it was announced that cowriter and star Jason Segel won’t be returning for this film. While it saddens me, it made me excited that a sequel was in the works. Hopefully Disney puts it in the right hands and I can only hope that those people read this article because here’s what we want to see in the next Muppet movie.
1. PAUL WILLIAMS AND BRET MACKENZIE
Bret McKenzie did a fantastic job writing songs for The Muppets, although a few of them (Me Party for example) sound more like a Flight of the Conchords than the Muppets. Regardless he’s one of the best muppet songwriters since Jeff Moss and Paul Williams. While Jeff Moss is deceased, Paul Williams is Still Alive. It would be a Muppet fans dream for Williams to write a new song for our favorite pieces of felt. Williams wrote all the songs for The Muppet Movie one of the greatest cinema soundtracks ever and Paul WIlliams was robbed an Oscar at the 52nd Academy Awards. Perhaps Bret McKenzie can use his magic to give him his well-deserved Muppet-Themed award.
2. NO STAR (BESIDES THE MUPPETS AND YOUR VILLAIN)
As much as I love Jason Segel, there was too much of him in the Muppets. I understand the importance of having big named stars like Jason Segel and Amy Adams in this movie was to bring people into the theater to make the Muppets stars again. Well mission accomplished. The Muppets are stars again. Let’s treat them as such. I’m a Muppets purist and I’m a firm believer that at the end of the day The Muppets are the star. The only other star needs to be the villain.
3. THE MUPPETS NEED TO BE ACTORS, NOT THEMSELVES
The Muppets was very similar to 1977’s The Muppet Movie. For starters they both have Rainbow Connection in them, but more so than that they both follow the Muppets rise. The Muppet Movie tells of how they all met and The Muppets tells how they all reunite. Well now it’s time for us to get a Great Muppet Caper or a Muppets Take Manhattan out of them. This film needs to be a Muppet movie, not a movie about the Muppets. Make Fozzie and Kermit twin brothers again that work for a newspaper company like in Great Muppet Caper. Perhaps have them fresh out of college like Muppets Take Manhattan. Whatever it is, don’t make another The Muppets.
4. GET BETTER USE OUT OF THE CAMEOS
While The Muppets brought us back the time honored tradition of Muppet films being filled with cameos, most of them left something to be desired. Most of the cameos in the film are quick and don’t use the actor/actress to it’s fullest level. As much as I love the movie, the cameos added as much comedy to the movie as ‘random flashbacks’ add plot line to an episode of Family Guy.
Let’s take a look at 1977’s The Muppet Movie. We have a brilliant sequence with Steven Martin
That’s Steve Martin playing a very Steve Martin type character and interacting with the Muppets. In the new film we see people like Neil Patrick Harris, Mickey Rooney, Sarah Silverman and Feist but not only are they in the film for microseconds… they don’t interact with the muppets or even say or do anything funny or memorable, they’re treated like famous extras more than celebrity cameos.
For this next film we need to see big names like John Hamm, Conan O’Brien and Adele playing parodies of themselves, weird characters and more importantly interacting with the Muppets (be it selling a car or serving them food).
5. MORE 80’S ROBOT