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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Muppetational Fun
by Betty Jo Tucker

Talking about her relationship with Kermit, Miss Piggy reveals, “We are definitely married.” But Kermit insists they’re not even dating. In one of the bonus features for The Muppet Show: The Complete Second Season Special Edition DVD, these two icons of puppetry disagree about many things. “We have a house in Maine,” declares Miss Piggy. “I’ve never been to Maine,” says Kermit. Does it matter who’s telling the truth here? Not really. The important thing is how much fun it is to watch the Muppets again -- or for the first time -- in all their glory.     

Just take a look at the list of high-powered guests: Bob Hope, George Burns, Madeleine Kahn, Rudolph Nureyev, Bernadette Peters, Peter Sellers, Elton John, Julie Andrews, Rich Little, Steve Martin, Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy, Teresa Brewer, Jaye P. Morgan, John Cleese, Nancy Walker, Judy Collins, Cloris Leachman, Zero Mostel. Although some of these stars relate to Muppets better than others, all of the shows in this second season sparkle with great music, funny skits and lovably bizarre characters. The biggest surprise to me? George Burns singing “It All Depends on You” with a spellbound group of Muppets.  Absolutely charming! Who knew Mr. Burns would be such a big hit on a show like this? On second thought, he probably had lots of similar experience working with the beautiful, quirky Gracie Allen.

My other favorite segments include Cloris Leachman’s terrific impersonation of Jeannette MacDonald, complete with the diva’s curly hairstyle, and tiny Bernadette Peters dancing with three VERY large Muppets. I also have to admit being an admirer of elderly hecklers Waldorf and Statler, no matter how corny their lines are, and to getting teary-eyed when Kermit sings the classic “It’s Not Easy Being Green.”

Most Muppet fans will enjoy the DVD bonus items, especially The Muppets Valentine Special with guest star Mia Farrow. Farrow gets the chance to show off her charming singing voice here, and the message about love is quite touching. The Muppets on the Muppets should also be of interest because it features humorous and revealing interviews from Kermit, Miss Piggy, Gonzo, Rizzo, Fozzy Bear, Animal and others. You’ll be bowled over at what Animal says would make him happy!

The Muppet Show: The Complete Second Season Special Edition DVD celebrates the enormous talent of the late Jim Henson, who created these marvelous characters we love so much. Fortunately, Henson’s genius lives on in this entertaining DVD presentation. 

(Released by Buena Vista Home Entertainment and rated “G” as suitable for all ages. Bonus materials not rated, and subject to change.)

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