Going into this TV season, “The Muppets” is a show that almost everyone had a little bit of hope in. These are beloved characters, and combining elements of their stories with a concept similar to “30 Rock” and “The Office” seemed to be a brilliant idea.
Unfortunately, things for one reason or another have not worked out as expected. The ratings for the series have slid since a strong premiere, and while the quality has improved in recent weeks, this is a show that took a long time to find its tone. Kermit the Frog was at times too depressed, while Miss Piggy was a little too mean. The show lost a little bit of the light and shade that has always been there in trying to flesh them out, and it also has felt like the show needed a stronger human presence. Part of the fun with these characters is seeing them around humans, with no one questioning how they are able to exist.
In the latest chapter of our Ratings Bubble Report below, we’re going to do our best to figure out just what the future for “The Muppets” could hold.
The good news – You’ve still got the rights to one of the best rosters of characters out there. We haven’t even mentioned the Great Gonzo or the Swedish Chef in this article, but we have now! There are so many classic Muppet products that if the quality is right, you’re going to be able to easily convince people to get on board. This is a little different to some other shows, where it is harder to get people on board with a concept that they don’t know or understand.
Also, we’re looking at a show that is looking to reinvent itself over the second half of the season. It can market itself as something different and look at this as almost a new lease on life.
The bad news – If more viewers don’t check the show out, things are not looking good. This is a harder show to make than the average comedy, and Disney cherishes these characters and wants them to be done right. We don’t get the sense that ABC was that happy creatively with the first half of the season, the ratings were not great (it lost over 60% of its 18-49 demo audience since the premiere), and they’ve already made a showrunner switch and pushed the show from 8:00 p.m. to 8:30. None of this is a sign of confidence.
Renewal odds – Low. We want to believe that “The Muppets” can turn it around, but we don’t get the sense that there is enough time. Not only that, but moving the show to 8:30 will limit its audience slightly and we think that ABC would be quick to move on if things do not improve in one way or another.
Do you think that “The Muppets” will return? Vote now in the attached poll, and head over here to get some other bubble reports right now! Also, sign up over here to get some other TV news on all we cover, sent right to you via our CarterMatt Newsletter. (Photo: ABC.)