Jim Henson and the Muppet Adventure
It was once believed that Puppets were exclusively meant for children. Shows that featured Puppeteers and their characters had a “kiddie show” mentality with fun colors and songs to match. When Jim Henson entered the scene, he changed the stage one Muppet at a time. The fame of the Muppets began as a humble design that turned into a brilliantly successful empire. The smart little green frog was the first to make his debut to audiences. Kermit became a sensation along with his fuzzy friend Rowlf the Dog. They made regular appearances on a variety of shows such as Sesame Street, along with their voice and creator Jim Henson.
A Muppet World
Mr. Henson had a belief that Puppets were meant for all ages. A plan was set in motion to introduce the concept that his shows could be appealing to both children and adults. He led a team of designers and writers and soon gathered a community of Muppets. Each character had their own name, personality and role in the Muppet world. The difference of Henson’s Muppets and others of that time was the unique depth he had given them. The illusion of free roaming Muppets collaborated with the idea of invisible Puppeteers to allow a visual aesthetic of the Muppet neighborhood.
The success of The Muppets came from creative genius. They brought a sense of diversity to the show that was relatable to older and younger crowds. Jim Henson and his team found the in between lines that balanced the humor and plots to match the perspective of any age group. For decades The Muppets have been a part of our lives and our living room under Henson’s inspiration. The Muppets through the years integrated into multiple aspects. Film, television and books were the three of the outlets alongside an entire branch of toy lines and goods. Jim Henson went on to innovate titles such as the Dark Crystal, Fraggle Rock and many more.
The weekly show gained immense popularity as we watched the Muppets live out their daily lives. Putting on a show is what they did best. Everyone had their favorite stars of the theater style presentation. The Muppets grew until they had several main cast members and dozens of supporting Puppet Actors to enhance the scenes. Eight favorited Personalities that were regularly included in the story line include:
- Kermit the Frog- Host and Main star who is wise and quiet
- Miss Piggy- Diva who loves fame, fortune and Kermit
- Fozzie Bear- Self-described Comedian who is trustworthy and a loyal friend
- Gonzo- A daredevil performer with an odd personality
- Rowlf the Dog- Piano player and wisecracker… very observant
- Animal- wild rocking drum player
- Statler and Waldorf- sarcastic critics who sit in the audience and offer commentary through the show
Tragically, the Muppets and the world said goodbye to Jim Henson in 1990. His wife and family along with the heads of the Henson businesses did their part to maintain the integrity that was in the heart of Henson’s creations. The Muppets have found a home with Disney while the Henson organization is still in close contact.