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The Muppets 'hosting' the Oscars needs to happen


It's time to play the music, it's time to light the lights...

The Muppets

By now, even those remotely familiar with the movie 'scene' have probably heard about Hollywood little rich kid turned big budget director Brett Ratner resigning his post as 2012 Academy Awards show producer. Turns out that, regardless of what terrible (but profitable) movies you've made, certain flippant and homophobic insults are still out of bounds in the real world. Like when you say, in front of an audience of several hundred people, that "rehearsing is for fags". That kind of talk might be kosher for whatever 1980s coke binge and shoulder pad party that Ratner still dreams of coming across on a nightly basis. But, perhaps none too surprisingly, it isn't copacetic vis-a-vis the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, an institution comprised of as many humorless and conservative types as the attendees of a secret Freemasons meeting.

With Ratner out, his handpicked host and recent star of Ratner's latest film Tower Heist, "comedian" Eddie Murphy, is also out. So now the 2012 Oscars show, a mere 2+ months away, is sans producer & host. Buzz has been rife across the interwebz regarding who will now produce the show and who that producer will choose as the face and voice of the 2012 Oscars. Happily, a groundswell of support has been picking up speed on various social networks for a certain cast of characters to bring a little fun and levity back to the Oscar stage - the Muppets.

Do I think this sounds a bit silly? Yeah, what of it?

Do I think this could work? You're damn right I do. I think that bringing in the Muppets team to host the Oscars would be a wonderful choice. And I have posterity behind me to prove it.

It's in vogue right now, and rightfully so, to draw parallels between America's current state of affairs and the economic and social upheavals of the 1970s. Back then, America was stuck in the quagmire of Vietnam, the economy was in a shambles, and life was, for many millions of people, the pits. The films of the early-to-mid 1970s were dark. Bleak. Gritty cop films, depressing war movies, and other selections that largely focused on the hard times of the post-Woodstock era were all the rage. Then a little movie called Star Wars came along in 1977 and reminded moviegoers and people all over the world that magic and FUN were still out there. It reminded film fans that movies could be an ESCAPE from the horrors and pressures of real life. To wholly disregard Star Wars as at least having something to do with pulling America out of its 1970s funk would be an egregious mistake.

So where do we find ourselves today? Embroiled in wars overseas, with the economy in the tank, protestors camping out in cities nationwide, anger, hatred, unease. It's a drag, man. Did we really need Brett Ratner, Prince of the Smirking Douchebags, and Eddie Murphy, star of Norbit and legendary has-been, to lead us through a crappy Oscars? Nope, I could have done without that. And because of Brett's big mouth, that part of the problem has solved itself. Now we just need to replace them with a socially-proper and talented alternative. Who better than the Muppets?

I'll admit it - I'm as big of a cynic as they come. I shout at stupid commercials, snicker at bad film trailers, rant about politics. If somebody or something is stupid, I'm one of the first people to take them/it down a couple hundred pegs. But there's a time and a place for that. Imagine how incredible a Muppets-hosted Oscars would be. In a room full of self-congratulatory back-patters, it would be beautiful to see Kermit or Miss Piggy or Fozzie Bear gently chide them without the snideness and cynicism that is so prevalent these days. Instead of inside jokes amongst the disinterested and bored 1%, you could have Statler and Waldorf lobbing goofy cracks from the balcony. Instead of the milquetoast orchestra playing, you could have Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem down in the pit, with some Rowlf accompaniment. And how about Janice and Beaker announcing the Science awards? Maybe Sam the Eagle and Scooter playing a bit of the 'straight man vs. joke man' routine? SQUEEEE!!!! I just got so excited that I dropped my Animal water bottle.

Yeah, the show would be corny as hell. That's the point! Honestly, which would you rather watch? A show full of gags and pratfalls and jokes so cheesy that you grin and laugh and shake your head at the zany absurdity of it all? Or a wooden host or hosts using the tired 'straight man feebly wisecracking for pity laughs' routine. Yeah, I've seen that one enough lately to last me for a while. I want to see a fun Oscars telecast, not a live show that's painfully trying to pass itself off as a Season 7 episode of The Office. That show sucks. If they play it that way, the Oscars WILL suck. Or they could try something fresh and funny and heartwarming. The Muppets are funny. They make people laugh. They aren't mean or two-faced or pushy or dicks.

That's what we would have been forcefed with Ratner and Murphy. A bunch of smart-ass, smug jokes "pushing the envelope". I think that I speak for a lot of people when I say that I'm a little tired of everyone constantly pushing the envelope. Grittiness starts to wear on you after a while. Make me smile; make me laugh; make me remember old happy times. It's the 70s all over again around here, so at least make an effort to give us a Star Wars. Even if it's just an award show. Deep down, even the biggest cynics love nostalgia, and it doesn't got more nostalgic than The Muppets.

Thousands of people have jumped on the bandwagon just today, at the Muppet Oscars Twitter page and Facebook page. Give them a look, a 'follow' or a 'like', and remember being a kid and watching the minds behind The Muppets entertain the hell out of you. If you have time, take a look around the net for some great articles (besides this one) posted today that make a strong case for The Muppets, including this one from & FEARnet editor (and former Cinematical boss) Scott Weinberg. There are many others, so go look for them. Have fun, tell your friends, remember good old-fashioned fun.

We could all have a great time with this, so do your part. Demand The Muppets as the 2012 Oscar hosts.

See also:

10 reasons The Muppets was great

15 Essential Muppets Moments

Second Muppets teaser trailer is just as witty

Scorsese versus Kermit for Thanksgiving box office


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#1 I'm in! suzyq 2011-11-10 04:10
Bring on The Muppets! I'm all for it. I'm tired of watching lame hosts "trying" to be funny and sarcastic. It's getting pretty old. The Muppets would be a welcome change!
#2 Gabriel Ruzin Caleb Leland 2011-11-10 14:31
Once again you've looked into my soul and retrieved the words I could not otherwise express. As a life-long Muppets fanatic, I am in love with the idea of them hosting the Oscars. The last few years, the awards show has seemed too formulatic, with stale jokes and obligatory song and dance numbers that feel unispired. Bring back the humor and warmth that only The Muppets can provide!

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