What’s Worth Watching: ‘The Muppets’ on ABC for Tuesday, September 29
The Muppets, “Hostile Makeover” (Tuesday, Sept. 29, 8/7c, ABC)
It probably won’t surprise anyone who watched last week’s premiere of The Muppets, with its edgier take on the beloved characters, that the crew of the show-within-the-show Up Late With Miss Piggy has a color-coded warning signal (not unlike Homeland Security) to represent the various volatile moods of its temperamental star. As the second episode opens, everyone’s on “Code Red,” which means Piggy’s on the rampage. When it’s decided that all she needs to calm down is a date, enter Josh Groban (having fun spoofing his nice-guy persona), and suddenly for maybe the first time ever, the workplace is at a peaceful “Code Green.” Reason enough for Kermit to wave his arms in a jubilant “Yay-y-y-y!”
But Miss Piggy’s happiness comes with a price, because it’s not long before Groban begins throwing his own weight around, suggesting the Electric Mayhem band go acoustic, and booking guests better suited to PBS’s Charlie Rose. This is a fruitful situation for comedy, appeasing those who may have worried the new Muppets show was going to be too innuendo-heavy to pass as family entertainment. (There’s also a solid subplot for the wonderful Fozzie Bear as he goes too far in his idol worship of Jay Leno.) While it’s still too early to know if The Muppets will be a hit in the long run—the heavily promoted premiere did well—if future episodes follow this path, it will be a lot easier to love.