Since the Muppets were re-introduced to the wider pop culture landscape with Jason Segel’s 2011 continuation of the film series, many have wondered if the beloved felt creations would return to their original home on the small screen. Fans have longed for such a day, and while some baby steps in that direction were made recently with a series of shorts airing on the Disney Junior channel, an honest-to-God Muppet show remained a dim hope—that is, until now. Deadline reports that ABC has ordered a presentation for a new pilot starring Jim Henson’s creations, bringing joy to the hearts of Muppets fans everywhere. ABC then immediately set fire to that joy by hiring the co-creators and showrunners of The Big Bang Theory and Anger Management to write the presentation.
The proposition isn’t as horrifying as it may seem, however. After all, Bill Prady, co-creator and executive producer of The Big Bang Theory, has turned that series into a massive hit, something that ABC would surely like to replicate with the Muppets. And given that show’s characters possess roughly the same emotional depth as cut-out pieces of fabric, it shouldn’t be too hard for Prady to dig a little deeper and deal with a series that actually possesses some nuance, like The Muppet Show did. (To be fair, Prady has written for seven different Muppet shows/specials in the past, including The Jim Henson Hour and Muppet Classic Theater.)
Also, hiring Anger Management’s Bob Kushell just makes sense, given that the Muppets work by having puppeteers shove their hands up the characters’ backsides, and Charlie Sheen works by having drugs shoved up his backside. It’s what people in the business call a “no-brainer.” (Anger Management, that is, although it’s an apt description of this business decision, as well.)
Details about the presentation are sparse, but it’s rumored that the premise involves the Muppets working behind the scenes of a late-night talk show. It would feature the roster of Muppets featured in the films, including Kermit The Frog, although some of us are hoping to see noted character actor Kermit The Gorf make an appearance. This would be the first time since 1996 that the Muppets had their own primetime series, and the first chance in years for Kushell and Prady to work on a show that’s funny.