Moms say ABC 'ruined' Muppets; new sex jokes not family friendly

by Michael Foust, Guest Reviewer |
ABC Muppets

NEW YORK (Christian Examiner) -- One Million Moms sent out an action alert last week telling families not to be fooled into thinking ABC's new "Muppets" comedy is for kids. Rather, the alert said, it's "for adults only."

A moms-led organization that fights indecency is warning parents the new show is anything but family-friendly, adding it has strayed far from its innocent 1970s roots with discussions about sex and drugs.

ABC actually promoted the show by saying in a trailer, "They're all back ... like you've never seen them before."

"[One Million Moms] suspects there are going to be a lot of shocked moms and dads when they discover that the family-friendly Muppets of the 1970s are no more," the alert said. "It appears that no subject is off limits. ... The new show is aimed at a mature, modern audience and addresses subjects not suitable for family viewing."

The new program is not, One Million Moms said, "what Jim Henson imagined and created." Henson, who created the Muppets, died in 1990.

Indeed, during the series' debut Tuesday night, Muppets said words and engaged in dialogue that would not have made it into the 1970s skits.

Fozzie Bear, driving to his girlfriend's house to meet her parents, says to the camera, "When your online profile says 'passionate bear looking for love,' you get a lot of wrong responses." Then he adds, "Not wrong ... just wrong for me."

Kermit the Frog says during an interview that he found Miss Piggy "sexy" when they were dating. Then he tells the camera about his latest girlfriend, a pig named Denise.

"We started dating a couple of months ago," he says "She runs marketing for the network, and we were at a cross-promotional synergy meeting. And we ended up, uh ... cross promoting. What can I say? I'm attracted to pigs."

Later Denise whispers into his ear, seductively, "Tell Denise what you want." (He tells her he wants a brownie sundae.)

The show also contained inappropriate language. Kermit says "he--," while at another point an unidentified Muppet says "Oh G-d."

The show airs at 8 p.m. Eastern and 7 p.m. Central, a time when many if not most children are still awake.

"The mature version of 'The Muppets' will cover a range of topics from sex to drugs," One Million Moms said in the alert, noting Miss Piggy comes out as a "pro-choice feminist during an MSNBC interview."

Million Moms in its alert goes on to say despite ABC's hopes that children could end up viewing the show and even "enjoy" some of the comic elements, 1MM believes ABC 'has ruined' it.

"How many parents want to explain the punch line of sexually charged jokes to young children?" 1MM asks.

Parents, the organization said, will "unknowingly will let their children watch an episode only to find out its perverted nature too late."

"Meanwhile, parents will have to explain to confused children that the program they once were allowed to watch is no longer a nice show," the alert said. "This would have been completely unnecessary if ABC had made the program follow its original family-friendly design."