The opinions of our friend James Gannon do not necessarily represent the opinions of The Muppet Mindset as a whole. As always, we attempt to showcase all sides of the spectrum, so we are happy to display James' thoughts on Marvel's republishing of The Muppet Show Comic Book.
James Gannon - Months ago, BOOM! Studios lost the license to and stopped publishing The Muppet Show Comic Book and the Muppet Classics series. Word of this broke glacier slow, giving fans faint and dying hope that the last four part story arc by Roger Langride, "The Four Seasons," would still be published at some point. The final nail in the coffin was an announcement Monday, which said Marvel would be publishing the Muppet Comics. However, instead of publishing the end of the series and new, future issues, the announcement was that the first four stories of the “Meet the Muppets” arc would be republished (for fourth time now) in a kiddy friendly magazine. To quote Charity Bazaar of the cartoon series Histeria!, “I’m not happy.” Really, if this wasn’t a family site, I’d let loose like a drunken sailor who dropped a large hammer on his foot. Let’s see if I can get through this rationally.
Sure, this is a boon to all of those who missed out on the first issues, the news stand reprints, and the graphic novel (and if you did, you’re either in another country, absolutely broke, or don’t care), but to someone like me who did everything he could to get every single issue since it was released, this couldn’t be a bigger insult. Disney did announce the same fate with its Pixar titles, also previously published under BOOM!, cancelling the license and moving to Marvel to only reprint old stories--which makes me glad I didn’t get involved with The Incredibles comic like I wanted to (that ended mid-story). Now, I could put all the cute refercens to Mr. Spock saying “Highly illogical, Captain,” but this isn’t the time for sarcastic jokes (plus, I never even watched Star Trek). Why would anyone take the license away from a company that was doing a great job on all counts to bring the license to a company (granted, one they own) that has its own worldwide instantly recognizable characters they have to kill off and revive? Marvel couldn’t even spell Fozzie’s name right in the press release. Does that sound like they care the way BOOM! cared? Somehow, I’m suspicious that the Muppet and Pixar license was married to each other. Even then, BOOM! was doing great stuff with Pixar titles reprints in magazines can’t offer.
Now, I admit, I’ve moved on from the disappointing ending of Muppet comics (Muppet Sherlock Holmes, as decent as it was, was unsatisfying as the end of an era). I get the same excitement over their new Rescue Rangers and Darkwing Duck (a personal favorite cartoon) series, and I’m looking forward to their DuckTales series--I strongly suggest you all check these out--but the least Disney could have done, however, is to have granted BOOM! the extension (as something went down with Roger, and the comic was delayed) and had the last arc published before the magazine came out. I mean, I know it’s late and you want to close the restaurant, but come on! Let me order dessert first before you try to push me out the door. We would have all accepted the fact the comics were ending if we saw the end.
That’s really the worst part. They have the prime opportunity to finally print that, and they blow it to try to “re-introduce” the characters before the movie for kids. That’s the only bright spot in this whole mess, at LEAST it can help out the movie a little.
Meanwhile, there’s a Phineas and Ferb magazine that runs original comics. New stories, new material. Who here wouldn’t rather see new Muppet stories and art being produced instead of just getting the same stuff in a different format? That’s what the TV series and movies on DVD are for. The only advantage I can see is not getting more fingerprints on the comics if I want to reread them. I bet the only extras will be simple kid’s word searches or something. That’s no improvement. And even if these do lead to further magazines, if this is quarterly, it will take them two years to get to the unpublished arc.
Over all, other than consolidation and going around the middle man as far as licensing goes, there is NO real advantage to pulling the license from BOOM! when they were doing a MUCH better job with it. The Muppet Show Comic Book got me back into caring about comic books again. Thanks for taking that away.
The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier