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BWW Blog: It's Time for a New Generation to Meet the Muppets

Why am I the only college student who loves The Muppets?

BWW Blog: It's Time for a New Generation to Meet the Muppets

On Friday, February 19th, "The Muppet Show" will assume its rightful home on Disney+. I, a twenty-one-year-old college student, could not be more thrilled. Confused? Let me explain.

As a child of the eighties, my older brother was a big fan of The Muppets. Today, he has almost every single film on DVD and even made a mixtape of his favorite songs from Jim Henson's projects. Needless to say, that meant that I too grew up as a Muppets fan, unlike most of my friends. The Muppets started dropping in popularity around the early 2000s, right around the time that most current college-students were in their target audience. The resurgence in their popularity with 2011's "The Muppets" coincided with my generation entering middle school, therefore being "too cool" for the hilarious puppets. So, The Muppets were never really something I could share with my friends. They became something special just for my brother and me, reserved for movie nights and road trip sing-alongs.

During the rougher moments of the pandemic, when everyone turned to binge-watch comfort series such as "Friends" and "New Girl", I turned to The Muppets. I rewatched all of the films that were on Disney+ and borrowed the DVDs from my brother's collection to fill in the more obscure classics, like "Follow That Bird" and my personal favorite, 1984's" The Muppets Take Manhattan". On the road back to school this past fall, the road-trip Muppets mixtape came out, complete with a green sharpie Kermit illustration on the cover.

I've often been confused with my generation's lack of interest in The Muppets. I have a personal connection because of my brother and my love for Miss Piggy, but why did no one else seem to care? Yes, they are often associated with "Sesame Street" and therefore could be seen as babyish, but then again, aren't we a generation obsessed with Disney? No college student I know would say that they hate Hannah Montana or The Princess and the Frog, just because it is what we watched as children. If anything, that only increases the love. There's a major element of nostalgia, a remembrance of the better times. That's why we all were so focused on our favorites during a lockdown in the first place, turning to what reminds us of when things were better.

Kermit and his friends are not nostalgic for college students because they simply were not a large part of our collective childhood. Our childhood directly coincided with the decline of The Muppets' popularity. Even worse, we did not have access to them. Their movies and shows were not popular re-runs, and not everyone was lucky enough to have all the classics on a personal device. There are few ways to gain access to content if it is not online or on a streaming platform of some sort. No one could watch the movies, even if they wanted to.

So, fellow late-teens and early-twenty-somethings, consider this your invitation to play the music and light the lights. It's time to meet The Muppets, on your couch tomorrow night.


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From This Author Student Blogger: Emma Rose Dorsch