1 The Muppet Mindset: March 2011

Mar 31, 2011

Jason Segel and Amy Adams Are Crazy (about The Muppets)

Greetings, Muppet fans! Do you remember a few months ago when we couldn't go a day without having a News Update featuring loads and loads of cameo rumors, on-set pictures, Jason Segel interviews, and more all about this fall's The Muppets? Well, since they wrapped filming news has been pretty quiet from the Mouse House and the mouth of Segel--that is, until yesterday, when all smell broke loose (it smelled like strawberries) (rethinking that... this could be a bad sign).

Tuesday was CinemaCon 2011 in Las Vegas where all the big studios (Paramount, Dreamworks, Disney) got together to show off their biggest upcoming features to theater owners wanting to get butts in their seats (or seats in their seats, even). Disney's big show included action sequences from Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, revealed that the Monsters, Inc. sequel would in fact be a prequel, and showed off stuff from Winnie the Pooh. But... of course you don't care so much about that. What you want to know is... what the heck did they say about The Muppets?!

Well, it turns out... a lot. According to quite a few sources (including The Hollywood Reporter), Jason Segel and Amy Adams were on hand to introduce the first official footage from the film. The Reporter states that "Disney impressed" with the footage, which is either journalistic fancy wording or a really good sign. Jason and Amy also revealed that there are four new songs in the film, along with callbacks to classic Muppet songs, as reported by LatinoReview. (e.g., "Rainbow Connection," "Mahna Mahna," which we had heard about previously.) Also semi-notable... this article confirms that Miss Piggy is relocated in Paris after the Muppets separate in the film. The Wrap also highlighted Segel's joking that, "I do not do any full frontal nudity. Kermit on the other hand..."

Then yesterday the news kept coming in, especially from CinemaBlend, which posted an exclusive, awesome video interview with Segel and Adams along with a very enlightening article about what was included in the footage shown and what else went down at the presentation. Be sure to read the article then watch the video below:



I don't know about you... but that video not only made my day (yesterday), but it made me even more incredibly excited for this movie--which I didn't know was possible (okay, yes I did). The tone that Jason and Amy have already is exactly perfect for the film and if they carry that through the movie--even plussing it--then we are in for quite a treat. I love Amy saying, "We're really putting on a show!" and "It takes a real, concerted effort to be joyful." I am so excited to have both of these incredibly talented actors to play along with the Muppets in this movie. And I firmly believe that it is going to be nothing but joyful.

Finally, our friends over at StitchKingdom confirmed that the title treatment we showed off in January is indeed the official title treatment for The Muppets. Make sure you enlarge the picture on the webpage linked above to see it hi-res. The Kermit M is textured and fuzzy and I love it. (PS - That logo makes an epic desktop background... just sayin'.)

And in case you somehow still don't know...

The Muppets will be released in United States theaters on November 23, 2011







The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 30, 2011

Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: The Gingerbread Men

Today's brilliant little article is written by Anthony Strand, a frequent contributor to ToughPigs and friend of The Muppet Mindset making his debut appearance here on the blog. As you'll soon see, Anthony shows off his huge fandom for one of the most fully-baked musical groups of any generation. The album covers come to us courtesy of Joe Hennes, who until this point had no connection to this blog whatsoever... darn it.


THE GINGERBREAD MEN

Performed by...
Frank Oz (Crumby)
Jim Henson (Ginger-Brad)
Richard Hunt (Frostington)
Jerry Nelson (Clive Cookiepants)
Dave Goelz (Ginger Spice)

First appearance...
The Jack Paar Show (1963)

Most recent appearance...
The Wayne Brady Show (2002)

Best known role...
Crumby: The cute one
Ginger-Brad: The sensitive cute one
Frostington: The goofball
Clive Cookiepants: The wise older brother
Ginger Spice: The dangerous one

Memorable quotes...
“Fresh out of the pan, sweet gingerbread man!”
“Uh-huh.”
“We’re bigger than Betty Crocker now.”

WHO ARE THE GINGERBREAD MEN?
The Gingerbread Men released their first album, Catch the Gingerbread Men!, in 1963. A massive success, it was followed by a dozen more albums over the next two decades, spawning such hit singles as “Cool Gingerk” (1964) and “All You Need is Crust” (1967). Often unfairly accused of coasting on their non-threatening good looks, the Gingerbread Men were actually one of the most innovative bands of the era.

Unlike many so-called “teeny-bopper” groups, the Men played their own instruments from the very beginning. Realizing that traditional instruments could not be played by their two-pronged, mitten-like hands, they developed special apparatuses which allowed them to perform. Mitten-handed musicians have been grateful ever since. Even more impressively, they recorded some of pop’s most delightful harmonies even though 4/5 of the band had mouths which did not open.

In the mid-60s, the Gingerbread Men took the world by storm. They released seven albums in as many years, and the public gobbled them all up. They appeared on dozens of TV shows, including Merv Griffin, Dinah Shore, The Marty Feldman Comedy Machine, The Flintstones (as The Gingerbrock Men), and Batman (as henchmen under Louie the Lilac, played by their fellow Muppet Show guest star Milton Berle.)

However, as the 60s became the 70s, the band’s popularity declined. Their records were coming out less frequently, mostly as a result of increasing experimentation. While hardcore fans consider these albums to be some of their most savory, the general public preferred the original recipe. By the late 70s, it looked like they might be headed for the garbage can. That all changed when they got a call from Mr. Short, Green, and Handsome.

Muppet fans, of course, remember the Men for their appearance on The Muppet Show in 1977, performing “Sweet Gingerbread Man,” the first single from their tenth album. What most people don’t know, however, is that they had nearly turned down that appearance, wary of sharing guest star status with bug-eyed comedian Don Knotts. But their manager Burny convinced them that appearing on a show run by other non-humans could have only a positive effect on their career.

It did. For the next three years, the Men enjoyed a great rebirth. They gained new, younger fans and embarked on the Cinnamon And Sugar Tour, their first in nearly a decade. Still riding that wave of popularly, their next album was even more successful, containing their all-time biggest hit, “Rolling Pin.” An introspective sequel to “Mixing Bowl” from 1966, it looked at how that song’s title character had dealt with his time out of the kitchen.

Sadly, the resurgence was short-lived. After two straight disappointing albums and little-attended tours, The Gingerbread Men were finally spit out for good in 1984.

In the years after the Gingerbread Men’s break-up, only Crumby (and his working mouth) has had much success as a singer. In 1991 he released the smash-hit album Dough-ets, featuring songs with Martha Stewart, Graham Kerr, The Swedish Chef and other culinary legends. It won both the Yummy Award and the Taster’s Choice Award for Album of the Year.

The others mostly left music to focus on other interests. Frostington turned to acting, most notably a well-received dramatic role in Terry Gilliam’s The Brothers Grimm in 2005. Ginger-Brad returned to modeling, his first love. He can be seen in any number of books for both bakers and children. Ginger Spice devoted himself full-time to improving life for the mitten-handed with a variety of gadgets designed specifically for them. Finally, Clive Cookiepants hosted the long-running talk show Delicious! With Clive Cookiepants in his native England.

Despite those pursuits, the Men’s story wasn’t quite over. In 2002, Wayne Brady, a self-proclaimed “Sweet Tooth” (the name given to obsessive Gingerbread Men fans by the media) reunited the band on his talk show. To great applause, they performed a medley of their biggest hits. They were a little older, but they could hardly have been called stale. 40 years later they were, as ever, fresh out of the pan.

GINGERBREAD MEN DISCOGRAPHY
Catch the Gingerbread Men! (1963)
Surfin’ Gingerbread Men (1964)
Gingerbread Bread Men Turn Up the Heat (1965)
Mixing Bowl (1966)
Between the Sugar-Coated Buttons (1967)
Crumby’s Factory (1968)
Let It Bake (1969)
Pastry Road (1971)
Goats’ Head Gingerbread (1974)
Darkness on the Edge of the Pan (1977)
Bad Luck Streak in Baking School (1979)
Moving Ginger (1981)
Warm (1983)


WHY DO THE MUPPETS NEED THE GINGERBREAD MEN?
Pfft. The Muppets should consider themselves lucky that the Gingerbread Men lowered themselves to make an appearance on that silly little puppet show.






The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 29, 2011

Muppet Madness Tournament 2011: Final Four!


Ah, The Muppet Madness Tournament... it seems like it grows up so fast. Why, only last week I could have sworn we were in the Regional, yet here we are, looking at the Final Four. And what a contest this is shaping up to be, huh? Out off the West we have Super Grover vs. Mr. Snuffleupagus and from the East is Rizzo the Rat vs. Statler and Waldorf. Odd how we tried to pair up the Muppets with Muppets from other productions yet we get Sesame vs. Sesame and Muppets vs. Muppets. Well anyway... here's how we see this all going down:

Super Grover vs. Mr. Snuffleupagus
Does Snuffy stand a chance against everyone's favorite furry, blue super monster? No... probably not. He may be big, but the sentimentality people feel for the shaggy fellow is not close to enough to topple such a huge fan favorite like Super Grover. One look at the adorable blue caped one and voters will most likely cast one towards him. He's Not just a favorite, he's a force to be reckoned with. If Super Grover wins the entire tournament I will not be at all surprised.

Rizzo the Rat vs. Statler and Waldorf
Some comments on the Tournament page have been saying that they're shocked at how far Rizzo has come. I'm honestly pretty surprised too. After upset victories over Sam Eagle and The Penguins, it seems that Rizzo, the rat who could, will finally meet his match in Statler and Waldorf. The fierce words and stiff competition being put up by the two old farts seemingly can't be stopped. Rizzo's American Idol journey will probably end here. ...Wait, what? Wrong show? Oh. Well... no one reads this anyway, so what's it matter?

If my predictions are correct we'll be looking at a Super Grover vs. Statler and Waldorf championship round. And, honestly, I've been predicting that since the votes started pouring in for Round 1. Oh, and did I mention... you can now vote EVERY 4 HOURS! Yes, for this round ONLY, you can now vote in the Final Four every 4 hours! I am so excited! Oh, how I love Muppet Madness! I can't wait to see how it all plays out--and what surprises we have up our sleeves! (Yes, that's right, not even we know what surprises we have!)







The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 28, 2011

Upcoming Muppet Screening Events - Texas, New York, United Kingdom

Everyone's favorite documentary about Kevin Clash (that I still haven't seen), Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey is screening at the Dallas International Film Festival this Saturday, April 2nd at 12:30pm. Cost is only $10 to get in and see this fantastic film, so if you live in the Dallas, Texas area and haven't had the opportunity to see Being Elmo yet... why haven't you bought your tickets already?!

Speaking of the Longhorn State... the fantastic Jim Henson Legacy sponsored series Muppets, Music & Magic: Jim Henson's Legacy is showcasing several different screenings in the Austin, Texas area at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in the coming weeks. Click the link above for all the information on the various screenings between March 29th and April 10th. I've seen a couple of the screenings being shown, including Inside the Sesame Street Vault and Sesame Street at 40 and they're both wonderful gems that are sure to delight any Sesame fan (and I'm sure the other ones are too) so if you happen to be in the Austin area and you need more Muppet goodness in your life, be sure to check this out!

The Muppets, Music & Magic: Jim Henson's Legacy (pages 10-15 of the PDF) series is being showcased in the United Kingdom as well at The Filmhouse, home of the Edinburgh Film Festival. The screenings will occur from April 18th through April 27th (check the schedule in the PDF link above for specific screenings) and will feature appearances by Martin Baker on April 22nd, 23rd, and 24th at various screenings.

The Tribeca Film Festival in New York City is hosting a screening of The Muppets Take Manhattan on April 23rd at 8:15pm at the Tribeca Drive-In. This is a free screening of the film and it includes, what sounds like, a very fun pre-show with face-painting, Muppet trivia, sing-alongs, and "fuzzy surprise guests." One can only imagine what that might mean. But if you live in the New York area and you've got yourself a free night on April 23rd, why not stop by and witness Miss Piggy's hideous 80's afro on the big screen?

And, finally, for those Muppet fans who don't live near Dallas, Austin, New York City, or the United Kingdom (like myself)--and even for those of you that do--we have a new Super Grover video from Sesame Street to share with you all. It is, in a word Fantastic!









The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 27, 2011

(Kind of) Weekly Muppet Quotes, Week 3

Casey Daron - Hello everybody! It's Casey again, I have another round of Muppet Quotes for you! These quotes I found in the three recent books written by Kermit the Frog (Before You Leap), Miss Piggy (The Diva Code), and Pepe the King Prawn (It's Hard Out Here for a Shrimp). I hope you like them as much as I do!

"If at first you don’t succeed, complain loudly until they give it to you." – Miss Piggy, The Diva Code

"The Muppets don’t judge me, don’t blame me, and don’t mind me. What is wrong with them, okay?!" – Pepe the King Prawn, It’s Hard Out Here for a Shrimp

"There’s something about the English, who see absolutely nothing odd about letting a frog and a bunch of crazies have their own variety show." - Kermit the Frog, Before You Leap

"Enjoy life's journey. Especially if someone else is paying for the gas." - Pepe the King Prawn, It's Hard Out Here for a Shrimp

Thank you, and I'll see you in two weeks!








The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 26, 2011

The Muppet Madness Tournament 2011: Round 3


Greetings, Muppet fans! Here we are again, already time for Round 3 of The Muppet Madness Tournament 2011--or, the Regional, if you like sports or glee club competitions. The match-ups between Muppets is getting more and more intense! We now have two classic Frank Oz character variants pitted against each other... and we have Statler and Waldorf facing off against Scooter. How will it all go?! Well... once again, here are our predictions:

Character Variants
Alistair Cookie vs. Super Grover
Arguably the two most popular characters in this year's lineup, Alistair Cookie and Super Grover have been racking up record vote numbers since Round 1. It will be extremely interesting to see if their rampant fans continue coming out in full force to support them in the Regional. But who will win? Well, I've been calling for a Super Grover victory of the whole tournament, so my money is on the super monster who is furry, lovable, and cute, too. I suppose this race could go either way... but I find it hard to believe that the uber fan-favorite Super Grover could be beaten by Cookie Monster's Monsterpiece Theater character. Although, like I said last time, I've been wrong before!

Creatures
Mr. Snuffleupagus vs. Mahna Mahna
Another hotly debated race. Snuffy and Mahna Mahna have been engaged in some of the most vocal and passionate competitions of this whole tournament. Snuffy's pull out over Cantus last round and Mahna Mahna's victory over the Doozers have solidified them both as heavy fan favorites. However, like always, Snuffy is heavier. I have to call a victory for Snuffy in this round. Yes, finally ready to prove he is so not imaginary by making it to the Final Four, Mr. Snuffleupagus will trounce Mahna Mahna. I'm sorry, Mahna Mahna fans... I just really don't think he can do doo do doo it.

Animals
Rizzo the Rat vs. The Penguins
Some of these matchups... it's like picking favorite children! (Obviously the one that runs a Muppet blog is always the favorite.) While Rizzo is one of my very favorites... the Penguins define Muppet randomness and zaniness! How will we choose?! I don't know about you... but I'll probably go back and forth voting for both. I suspect that most casual fans will vote for Rizzo, simply because of his history and characterization. The Penguins may be fantastic but they simply don't have the character or wit and charm of Rizzo. Sure, they're great for tossing around... but they can't bat the rat and that is that.

Humanoids
Statler and Waldorf vs. Scooter
Ladies and gentleman, the only matchup in the Regional that is completely one-sided! Unfortunately, Scooter just cannot stand up the might of Statler and Waldorf ("might" used here to mean overwhelming age). The two old geezers have the highest likelihood of going to the final round int he whole tournament. Poor Scooter just can't take that heat... No matter how much they may hate it (even though they probably secretly love it), I'm calling yet another all out victory for Statler and Waldorf.


And there you have it, Muppet fans! I guess we'll just have to see how it all plays out. Now... go vote! In this round only you'll be able to vote every 8 hours instead of 12. So what are you waiting for?! Hop on over to http://muppetfans.com/tournament and make your vote count!






The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 25, 2011

The Muppets Vinylmation Series 2 Update and Possible Release Date

Our friends over at Destination Vinylmation have some great info on the upcoming Series 2 set of The Muppets Vinylmation available at the Disney Parks and online. Their post reveals the current planned release date for the set, April 15th and also pictures of the figures that are confirmed for inclusion so far. They include...

DR. TEETH (new picture)

 DR. TEETH (same figure, different angle; provided by Daniel Moss)
 FLOYD PEPPER
JANICE
SAM EAGLE 
Other figures, including GONZO and SCOOTER have also been confirmed (sans pictures) by Vinylmation.net. Every Vinylmation series contains 12 figures, so logically The Muppets Series 2 will include a dozen new figure designs as well. Six are confirmed, what others can we expect? Well... here's one Muppet fan's theories:
  • ANIMAL - It stands to reason that we'll see Animal in this wave, not only to tie together the Electric Mayhem, but also because he's one of the most popular Muppets and not including him probably just isn't an option.
  • ZOOT - Releasing an entire group of Electric Mayhem figures in this series seems to be the goal, so logically Zoot will be included. I hope the figure has Zoot's famous saxophone painted on.
  • PEPE - While they're busy including popular characters in Series 2, they might as well toss in Pepe. He's really the only other semi-major character not yet included in this or the previous series.
  • PENGUINS or CHICKENS - Two definitions of Muppets in feathered fowl form... it stands to reason that one of them will eventually be included. One would think that with the penguin orchestra of Muppet*Vision 3D we would see penguins... but who knows?
  • WALDO C. GRAPHIC - I don't really know how the Vinylmation artists would pull this one off... but considering Waldo is such a huge part of Muppet*Vision and the Vinylmation are sold at the Disney Parks, it would make a lot of sense to include Waldo.
  • TOURIST KERMIT - My prediction for the chaser figure of this line can also be seen in the above image with the Scooter prototype. It makes sense to have another Kermit in the line... he's sort of popular. Or so I hear.
Well... only time will tell what The Muppets Vinylmation Series 2 will hold. Hopefully we will find out on April 15th, the date which both Destination Vinylmation and Stitch Kingdom have claimed as the release date for the series. I don't know about you... but I'll be hovering over DisneyStore.com that whole day to buy some!

And, as always, check out The Muppet Mindset for more news on Muppet Vinylmation as soon as we get it!







The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 24, 2011

"?" with Jarrod Fairclough: What is the Best Sesame Street Toy? ANSWER!


Jarrod Fairclough Presents: "?"
Because Asking Questions Is A Good Way To Find Out Things
Question: What is the Best Sesame Street Toy?
 THE ANSWER! 

Jarrod Fairclough - Hello sports fans, and welcome to a very special edition of my little segment.  Why is it a special edition?  We’ll get to that.

This is of course the follow up to my question “What is the best Sesame Street toy?”, and I received a few answers from people around the Muppet fandom world.  So let’s just jump in shall we?

Out first answer comes from our good friend Joe Hennes from ToughPigs:
“The Pook-a-Looz are really great plush. I gave one to my nephew a few months after he was born, and it's pretty much the most adorable thing ever. I was going to give him Fozzie, because I think he's most adorable, but I ended up with Kermit because I had a vision of him dragging the Kermit around by his leg, and that was too cute to pass up."

I love it, and I do think the Pook-a-Looz are pretty adorable. And I do have great visions of my little niece-phew (thats a mixture of niece and nephew seeing as we won’t know the babies gender until it’s born) dragging around a little Muppet.

But let’s see our next answer, from the always wonderful Ryan Dosier:
"I, personally, love the Collect-a-Pal toys. They're tiny, but not so tiny to be swallowed or stuck in ears or other orifices, cheap, and fun. They're like little ball versions of the Sesame characters. They're quite stylistic and not exactly accurate representations of the characters... but how can you not love them? And, also, I know it's not really a toy... but you absolutely cannot beat The Monster at the End of This Book."

Ha, I love those little guys. Might need to jump on the internet and buy some... For my niece-phew. And for me...

Some quick answers from some blog readers:
Lucus – “Sesame Street Firehouse.  Big Bird and Grover as firefighters...  It came with Barkley, too!”
Sparkle – “Tickle Me Elmo”
Shane – “Sesame Street Beanie Babies”

And a nice long answer from frequent contributor Michael Wermuth, Jr.:
“I don't have any Sesame Street toys that have been produced in the past ten years, but I guess you can't go wrong with Tickle Me Elmo or any variation. Or those anniversary plush that came out a few years ago. I'd also recommend the Sesame Street Beans that came out in 1998, the Magic Talking Kermit, the finger puppets from the 1970s and 1980s, and the die-cast Sesame Street vehicles which I think were released by Playschool in the 1980s. Of course you'll probably have to try eBay or search flea markets and goodwill stores for those.

I think it'd be easier to pick out books and DVDs. You can't go wrong with The Monster at the End of the Book, and there is a book called the Sesame Street Treasury, which combines many books from the show's 40 year history (including How to Be a Grouch and The People in Your Neighborhood). When it comes to DVDs, I'd suggest Monster Hits, Silly Storytime, C is for Cookie Monster, Bert and Ernie's Word Play, A Celebration of Me Grover, or any of the anniversary DVDs.”

Some great answers there.  I love every single one of these ideas, and I’ve actually seen the big Treasury book around, so I might have to get that and put it away for a couple of years time.

So there we have it, some fantastic answers from fantastic people.  And a lovely little way to wrap up my segment "?"

Whoa, I hear you say.  Rewind that.  Play it again.  “...lovely way to wrap up my segment ‘?’”

Yes  That is why this is a special edition, my friends, for it is, at least for the foreseeable future, my final edition of this segment. Why? Let me tell you. When I began this post with the question about Oscar’s can, that was the only thing I could think to ask. I managed to come up with a few questions, but the vast majority I came up with were easily answerable with a bit of looking. And truth be told, I’m out of questions. So, I’ve decided to end it. But thank you to everyone who ever submitted or helped get answers for me.

Thanks to Joe Hennes from ToughPigs for getting me in contact with Joe Mathieu. Thanks to Joe Mathieu who was kind enough to give me a detailed answer in my first edition, and has since been very kind to me.  Thanks to Katy Perry for wearing scantily clad clothing. Thanks to Corey Edwards, the hopefully director of The Fraggle Rock Movie. Thanks to Jim Lewis for an answer about Pepe, and then of course a huge thanks to Bill Barretta for an answer on the same question. Thanks to the people here who put in their answers about kids toys. Thanks to Beau for his comments. Thanks to Artie Esposito – he knows why. Thanks to Paul McGinnis. Thanks to Emilio Delgado, who had written an answer for an unpublished edition about Maria and Luis’ last names. Thanks to Matt Vogel – he didn’t do anything for my segment, but the man is still responsible for getting me on the Sesame Street set back in 2008. And, of course, thanks to Ryan Dosier, a man so filled with Muppet fan-ism that it makes me jealous.

BUT NEVER FEAR, for I’m not disappearing. Just this segment is disappearing. It took me 18 months to get a ‘Frequent Contributor’ credit, and I’m not losing it anytime soon. I will be back, in some type of other format, doing some other type of segment. I need to talk to Ryan about some ideas.

But, before I really end this thing, you may recall in my very first answer about Oscar that I saw an episode where he was wearing a garbage can lid as a hat, but I missed out on getting a photo...

Well, guess what I managed to catch on TV the other day?


See ya, kids.
Jarrod Fairclough.







The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 23, 2011

Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: Statler and Waldorf

Today's article is written by Michael Wermuth, Jr. with edits and contributions by Ryan Dosier.

STATLER AND WALDORF


Performed by...
Statler
Richard Hunt (1976-1990)
Jerry Nelson (1975, 1992-2002)
Steve Whitmire (2003-present)

Waldorf
Jim Henson (1975-1990)
Dave Goelz (1992-present)

First appearance...
The Muppet Show: Sex and Viloence Pilot (1975)

Most recent appearance...
The Muppets (2011)

Best known role(s)...
Hecklers; those two old guys in the balcony; bear-comedy haters; hurlers of over-ripe fruits and vegetables

Family...
Waldorf has a wife named Astoria, who resembles Statler in a drag. Statler has mentioned having at least two wives in the past. Statler also has a grandson, who attended the show when Elke Sommers was the guest star.

WHO ARE STATLER AND WALDORF?
Statler and Waldorf are the two old men who regularly watch The Muppet Show from a small balcony, despite the fact that they usually hate the show. They often heckle all of the acts on the show, but their favorite target has always been Fozzie Bear and his comedy monologues. Despite this, they do occasionally like what they see on the show (particularly certain guest star performances). When they’re not complaining about the show, they’re making insults at each other (using such terms as “old fool”). Their old age has sometimes led to them forgetting or mishearing certain things, or even caused them to sleep during the show. The two are rarely seen without the other.

Outside of The Muppet Show, they have been involved with almost every big Muppet production, whether they are among the main group of Muppets or not. In the movies, they often just happen to be at a location that the other Muppets are at: such as in the park while the Muppets ride their bicycles, or sunbathing in New York City while Kermit walks by. On Muppets Tonight, they were often seen watching the show on television, initially from inside a nursing home, but later at a variety of locations such as a beach, a bar, and a ski resort.

In 2005 they hosted their own web series, Statler and Waldorf: From the Balcony on Movies.com in which they reviewed recent movies. This series was fairly successful, but only lasted a year. More recently, they have appeared in every Muppet viral video, usually by giving their comments from at the computer at the end of the videos. A handful of viral videos were just them in front of their computer screen giving comments.

WHICH ONE IS WHICH?
Statler is the one with gray hair and eyebrows. Waldorf is the one with white hair and a mustache. They usually sit with Waldorf to Statler's right.

MEMORABLE QUOTES...

Statler: It’s good to be heckling again.
Waldorf: It’s good to be doing anything again!
~ The Muppet Christmas Carol

Statler: Well, Waldorf, they’ve finally made it to Broadway.
Waldorf: Yup, and I’ve got tickets.
Statler: You did? Are they good seats?
Waldorf: They sure are! They’re for the next train out of town!
~ The Muppets Take Manhattan

Statler: We’d love to see your act!
Waldorf: In fact we’d hate to miss your act!
Statler: In fact we’d love to hate your act!
~ A Muppet Family Christmas

Statler: The question is “What is a Mahna Mahna?”
Waldorf: The question is “Who cares?”
~ The Muppet Show Episode 101: Juliet Prowse

STATLER AND WALDORF SONGS
  • "The Varsity Drag"
  • "Take Ten Terrific Girls"
  • "It Was a Very Good Year"
  • "Marley and Marley"
MEMORABLE MOMENTS
Though usually seen in their balcony, the duo has occasionally acted on-stage at the Muppet Theater. After complaining about their opening numbers, Kermit once let them put on their own opening number, “Take Ten Terriffic Girls.” Statler and Waldorf got the opportunity to host the show themselves when Hal Linden guest starred.

When Danny Kaye guest starred, the duo chose to sit outside the theater as opposed to watching the show, citing “Whats-his-name Kaye” as the worst performer on earth. However, as the show was about to end, they realized that they misheard who the guest star was: Manny Kaye, the tune clam player, and it turned out that Danny Kaye was actually one of their favorites, making them wish they had watched the show.



WHY DO THE MUPPETS NEED STATLER AND WALDORF?
It's kind of hard to justify the Muppets needing Statler and Waldorf, per se, considering how much of a pain they can be. Yet I think it's safe to say that Statler and Waldorf need the Muppets. What else would they do with their down time? Who would they heckle that wouldn't eventually call PGOP (Prevention of Grumpy Old People)? The Muppets are so thrilled to just have someone in the audience that they'll take the two old geezers no matter how awful they are to them. Yet Statler and Waldorf keep coming back... could it be that the two of them actually like the acts and they only heckle the Muppets to keep them on their toes and keep doing their best work?! ...Nah.

Additionally, Statler and Waldorf represent the audience, especially those who may think the Muppets are weird. They represent old people. And they also give the Muppets a bit of conflict, though they aren’t really villains.







The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier

Mar 22, 2011

Ryan's Adventures in Walt Disney World, 2011

Ryan Dosier - Greetings, Muppet fans! I can't tell you how disappointed I am to be back from Walt Disney World... I mean, do you realize how difficult it is to be at the Magic Kingdom one day and then sitting in Anthropology class the next? It's no Zip-a-Dee-Do-Dah day, let me assure you. But you don't really care about that, do you? No, you care about the Muppet presence at Walt Disney World--and who can blame you? With the new movie, The Muppets, coming out in 245 days one would obviously have to wonder what sort of Muppety things are happening at the largest Disney park in the world. Well... the answer will disappoint most but shock hardly no one. Let's break it down by park, shall we?

EPCOT
The first day of my Disney journey began in EPCOT, where you can take a world tour and become a crash-test dummy all in one afternoon (unless the lines are brutally long, then it might last into the night). The Muppet presence was especially strong at the Experimental Prototype City of Tomorrow on March 13th because it just so happened that Steve Swanson of The MuppetCast was hanging around Orlando as well! Seriously people, we did not plan this! It was just a wonderful coincidence. Steve, as always, was great to hang out with. He bought two Muppet Vinylmations for us to open while being filmed on his handy-dandy Flip-Cam. Steve pulled out Sweetums (lucky dog) and I got Waldorf... so now I have to spend thirteen bucks to buy Statler on eBay--thanks a lot, Steve. (Seriously though, thanks!)

Anyway... other than that there wasn't too much Muppet stuff to go around at EPCOT. I did buy a Kermit Kooky Pen which was $7 or something ridiculous like that... but I loved it and probably wouldn't be a real Muppet fan if I didn't buy it. (Even though I didn't buy the three piece Kermit, Piggy, and Beaker pen set--in my defense, it was $21!) Other than that there were Muppet Vinylmation nearly everywhere they sold the addictive things. I was very pleased to see that, considering last year when I went they were sold out virtually everywhere so it's nice to see that they were popular enough to warrant more production.

Oh, one more thing! I wore a Kermit t-shirt to EPCOT and I got quite a few comments from quite a few people (including a cute girl--*waggles eyebrows*) about how awesome they thought it was. People love that Frog!

Disney's Animal Kingdom
Much like last year there was hardly any Muppet merchandise at the Animal Kingdom park... which really didn't surprise me. Vinylmation were present in a few Dinoland USA gift shops and I think I saw a Fozzie plush somewhere, but I'm not positive. So... in place of Muppet merchandise, enjoy this picture of me with Brer Rabbit!

Magic Kingdom
The Magic Kingdom... my favorite place on earth. (Note: I haven't been many places.) In between my trips through Space Mountain, my rollicking on Splash Mountain, and my waiting an hour to see Ariel (long story) (even longer line), I kept my eyes peeled for Muppety things and... well, same old, same old. They had the Kooky pens, the Vinylmation everywehere, and, my favorite, the Kermit Ears Hat (seen at right). Other than that there wasn't much... a few plush dolls hidden in the corners here and there but not much else. I think the Muppets--and a lot of other Disney properties--were being overshadowed by the huge amount of Walt Disney World 40th Anniversary merchandise... cause there was a lot of it.

However, I did wear my Muppets walking down Abbey Road t-shirt to the Magic Kingdom and the response it got was epic. A girl came up to me and asked if she could take a picture of my shirt--just my shirt, a few Cast Members commented on it, and one working at an ice cream stand made sure that everyone else working in said stand saw how awesome the shirt was. They were all impressed that I got it at Target and not Hollywood Studios... and quite frankly so was I.

Disney's Hollywood Studios
Ah, yes... the home of Muppet*Vision 3D, the place you are guaranteed to find at least some Muppet merchandise. But... how much? The answer... not much. Yes, once again I was incredibly disappointed with the haul at the Muppet*Vision gift shop... especially because it had essentially the exact same stuff it had last year. The only thing that I saw that was new this year was a Kermit mug that I forgot to go back and buy--and it wasn't even that cool! They had a few t-shirts (read: five), Vinylmation, and the same old plush dolls they've always had.

This is once again a case of Disney holding off on the Muppet merchandise wave until their promotion for the movie begins, I think. I spoke to the cast members working the gift shop and they didn't know much... but they were extremely hopeful and seemed to think that lots of merchandise was on the way with the movie promotion. I agree with them and certainly hope that's factual.

But this was my first time seeing Muppet*Vision after the new Disney Digital 3D transfer and I must say... it was absolutely gorgeous. I've seen this film so many times and became accustomed to the slight graininess it had acquired over the years, but 20 years later after this brilliant refurbishment I am thrilled to say that the film looks like it was made this year. It's gorgeous! Kermit and Fozzie never looked better. I just wish that they could do the same to the pre-show. It's such a hilarious gem and it would be nice to see it get a bit of a touch up because it is definitely showing signs of aging.

Well... there you have it, Muppet fans. So there's not much going on, Muppet-wise, at Walt Disney World at the moment... but I just know that as we get closer to the release date of the movie we'll be seeing a flood of Muppets at the Parks. I just wish I could be there then. Ah, well. Also, I've been hearing that the second series of Muppet Vinylmation will be released on April 15th and that Dr. Teeth is confirmed to be included... so that gives us Janice, Floyd Pepper, Sam Eagle, and Dr. Teeth confirmed so far. I'll keep you posted as I hear more!

Have a Magical Day, Muppet fans!







The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier