Love is Dead.
August 4, 2015 12:06 PM   Subscribe

If Kermit and Miss Piggy can't make it work, what hope do the rest of us have?

For those not wanting to click on Facebook:

"After careful thought, thoughtful consideration and considerable squabbling, Miss Piggy made the difficult decision to terminate our romantic relationship. We will continue to work together on television (“The Muppets”/Tuesdays 8pm this fall on ABC) and in all media now known or hereafter devised, in perpetuity, throughout the universe. However, our personal lives are now distinct and separate, and we will be seeing other people, pigs, frogs, et al. This is our only comment on this private matter. Thank you for your understanding."
posted by ApathyGirl (73 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
 
We'll always have Manhattan!
posted by ApathyGirl at 12:07 PM on August 4, 2015


Here's a related question: in a Mendelian square is the pig or the frog recessive for breeding purposes?
posted by codacorolla at 12:07 PM on August 4, 2015 [4 favorites]


from Twitter:

Now Kermit and Scooter can be together. The lie is over.
posted by The Whelk at 12:08 PM on August 4, 2015 [35 favorites]


It seems sudden and shocking, but I'm sure that in 13 to 22 weeks, they'll be back together and their relationship all the stronger for it.
posted by SansPoint at 12:09 PM on August 4, 2015 [16 favorites]


Nice try, Disney, but I'm still not watching the show.
posted by Atom Eyes at 12:09 PM on August 4, 2015 [4 favorites]


Never before
Have two souls met so freely and so fast
For me this is the first time and the last
Is this an angel's gift for men?
Never before
And never again...

-sigh-

(It's not like they weren't having relationship problems for a while anyway. Piggy was working in Paris for years away from Kermit.)
posted by hippybear at 12:12 PM on August 4, 2015


Anyway, this is a bit of a better article about the whole thing.
posted by hippybear at 12:13 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


As far as promotional break-ups go, I like this one better than remembering how much I care about Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:13 PM on August 4, 2015 [3 favorites]


Bah, everyone knows love died three years ago.
posted by jedicus at 12:16 PM on August 4, 2015 [5 favorites]


From the comments in the first link:

This message was brought to you by the letter "I" and the number "1"
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:17 PM on August 4, 2015 [13 favorites]


Good.

I'll say it: the Kermit-Piggy relationship was terrible. Piggy is so much more in love with the idea of Being With Kermit than she is with Kermit himself, and Kermit is decidedly ambivalent about being in a relationship with Piggy, but is too weak to actually break it off.

It's an awful relationship and I'm glad they ended it.
posted by gauche at 12:20 PM on August 4, 2015 [54 favorites]


Did they ever actually announce that they were together in the first place? They had the fake marriage in Manhattan of course, but I always thought that it was Miss Piggy claiming they were together and Kermit denying it. Source (Muppet Wikia)
posted by Melismata at 12:21 PM on August 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


This is great news! Their romantic relationship has always been dysfunctional, at best. Their working relationship was always more productive.
posted by theatro at 12:21 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


And frankly I've thought for a while -- this is the extra-textual comment -- that the Kermit-Piggy relationship was so unhealthy and rooted in gross gender assumptions that it was in sharp contrast to the otherwise generally-pretty-progressive stuff that I think the Muppets are about.
posted by gauche at 12:22 PM on August 4, 2015 [14 favorites]


Sounds like Charles Grodin has a chance with Miss Piggy now after all.
posted by Nevin at 12:25 PM on August 4, 2015 [11 favorites]


This makes perfect sense from an entertainment standpoint. Disfunctional/ambivalent relationships hold plenty of comedy potential; happy couples don't (unless you're going for "over-the-top cloying sweetness" jokes, but those get old fast). Let's face it, 'twas never meant to be.
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:29 PM on August 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


Piggy is so much more in love with the idea of Being With Kermit than she is with Kermit himself, and Kermit is decidedly ambivalent about being in a relationship with Piggy, but is too weak to actually break it off.

Neither of them know how to be in a relationship, as far as I can tell. She's a controlling narcissist and he's a workaholic who would rather put his personal life on cruise control. They're really both quite stunted as people.
posted by mr_roboto at 12:33 PM on August 4, 2015 [5 favorites]


And frankly I've thought for a while -- this is the extra-textual comment -- that the Kermit-Piggy relationship was so unhealthy and rooted in gross gender assumptions that it was in sharp contrast to the otherwise generally-pretty-progressive stuff that I think the Muppets are about.

I was watching some old Muppets episodes a few weeks ago - and man, not only is Kermit a terrible, terrible person but that whole show is horribly sexist and gross. Funny and inventive, yes, but pretty difficult to watch, especially the parts where everyone gangs up on Miss Piggy for being too fat or unfeminine or whatever. Or the parts where Kermit and/or other muppets grope the women guest stars.

I was always kind of a fan of Rowlf.
posted by Frowner at 12:34 PM on August 4, 2015 [6 favorites]


This series looks like it's going to be comedy genius. ohpleaseohpleaseohplease...
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:34 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


Perhaps it's for the best. I always thought he must have a gamboling problem.
posted by amtho at 12:35 PM on August 4, 2015 [7 favorites]


I was always kind of a fan of Rowlf.

But I never harmed an onion!
posted by Melismata at 12:36 PM on August 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


I just watched the trailer, and caught a line I hadn't before.

"The band is happy. Legally."
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:38 PM on August 4, 2015 [8 favorites]


I was watching some old Muppets episodes a few weeks ago - and man, not only is Kermit a terrible, terrible person but that whole show is horribly sexist and gross.

That's disappointing, but not really surprising. It's easy to idealize comforting things from one's childhood.
posted by gauche at 12:39 PM on August 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


I was watching some old Muppets episodes a few weeks ago ... that whole show is horribly sexist and gross.

It's not like there are any other cartoons and shows of their ilk with problematic histories. Oh wait.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:46 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


I don't know what you're talking about. Piggy is, morally speaking, a widow even if they never made it legal.

As we all know, Kermit died unexpectedly a little over 25 years ago, on May 16, 1990. It was tragic and no small shock, but I've taken comfort over the years that no craven corporate jackasses tried to foist a replacement on us.

Right?
posted by uberchet at 12:49 PM on August 4, 2015 [6 favorites]


I was watching some old Muppets episodes a few weeks ago ... that whole show is horribly sexist and gross.

To be fair, no more or less so than any other show of its time. That doesn't excuse poor behavior, but there's not much point in removing it from its historical context.

And "groping"?? Can you point me to any examples? I certainly can't recall any.
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:53 PM on August 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


And "groping"?? Can you point me to any examples? I certainly can't recall any.

I actually was just watching random episodes from the first couple of seasons and the guests were all revue stars with whose oeuvre I was not familiar, so I can't point to a particular episode, but there definitely were some pretty creepy puppet-touching moments, some structured as part of song-and-dance numbers.

You know, I don't really care if it was okay to make fun of Piggy for being fat and not-girly-enough in 1982 or whatever. It's still gross and disappointing, all the more so because the official narrative is how wonderful the Muppets are.

What came back to me as I watched the show was how I felt pushed to identify with Piggy as a little kid because she was the only girl except Janice and the chicken, and how bad I felt when people would run her down based on her appearance. Also, I didn't really like her- she's such a stereotype of the too-aggressive, too-sexual woman - and I felt bad about there being basically no other girls on the show.
posted by Frowner at 1:04 PM on August 4, 2015 [11 favorites]


Oh, for the love of...

The Muppet Show was a satire on showbiz. And just like SCTV or 30 Rock, of course the characters sometimes behave in awful, licentious, cringe-inducing ways. But to claim this makes the show itself "sexist and gross"? Nope, not buying it.
posted by Atom Eyes at 1:05 PM on August 4, 2015 [13 favorites]


Piggy's problem in the old show was that she was a victim of Smurfette syndrome. The only (major, starring) female cast member, she was required to be all things Woman, instead of just a particular character, so of course she disappoints. Her relationship with Kermit was always the least interesting part of the show/movies, but back then, that's what women were for. Romance. I mean, why even have a woman if there is not a romantic sub-plot? What was cool at the time is that they also let her do other stuff, like beat the crap out of people. I always fast-forwarded past the part of the Muppet Movie where she moons over Kermit to the part where she beats up a room full of bad guys.

I'm not super hopeful the new show addresses the not-enough-females thing, I haven't seen any indication of new female cast members being significant, but here's hopin.'

(I would point out the Raquel Welch show as one that's chock full of "humina-humina" jokes and all the male Muppets being dumbstruck by Teh Sexxy, though I don't remember any groping. Also Ms. Welch could not really dance, but she faked it admirably.)
posted by emjaybee at 1:28 PM on August 4, 2015 [10 favorites]


Here's a related question: in a Mendelian square is the pig or the frog recessive for breeding purposes?

The only dataset we have comes from A Muppet Christmas Carol. The frog appears to be dominant in males and recessive in females.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 1:30 PM on August 4, 2015 [13 favorites]


Considering the physical abuse that Kermit took on a regular basis, it's not much of a leap to assume he's better off.
posted by ODiV at 1:33 PM on August 4, 2015 [3 favorites]


My theory is that Miss Piggy was written to be what they supposed a feminist was in the '60s. Prickly and combative, superficial and insecure, yet still a slave to her passions.
posted by Soliloquy at 1:35 PM on August 4, 2015 [6 favorites]


There's definitely a shortage of women among the principal Muppeteer cast. It would be amazing to have Stephanie D'Abruzzo on board the new show.
posted by Faint of Butt at 1:55 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


My theory is that Miss Piggy was written to be what they supposed a feminist was in the '60s. Prickly and combative, superficial and insecure, yet still a slave to her passions.

27 Reasons Miss Piggy Is The Ultimate Feminist Icon, including
She’s a woman that swaps extreme femininity and masculinity with ease. Frank Oz once described her as a “truck driver that wants to be a woman.”
posted by psoas at 2:02 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


I think that was one of a handful of jokes that went beyond the Muppets' trademark of being hilariously bad to just plain bad.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 2:05 PM on August 4, 2015


Here's a related question: in a Mendelian square is the pig or the frog recessive for breeding purposes?

That's not how genetics works. That's not how any of this works.
posted by maryr at 2:09 PM on August 4, 2015 [5 favorites]


I can't believe I am participating in a thread where "bad" and "Muppets" are used in the same sentence.
posted by Melismata at 2:11 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


ANYWAY, isn't this all an excuse so Kermit can flirt with the female guest stars and Piggy can flirt with the male guest stars and no one is a cheater?
posted by maryr at 2:13 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


By which I mean this is just like any other modern Facebook breakup drama: IT AIN'T OVER.
posted by maryr at 2:14 PM on August 4, 2015


This is transparently setting up plot points for the show.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 2:14 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


At least not until your parents chime in .
posted by maryr at 2:14 PM on August 4, 2015


THEY WERE ON A BREAK
posted by Soliloquy at 2:15 PM on August 4, 2015 [9 favorites]


Oh god, imagine Miss Piggy and Ross as a couple.
posted by maryr at 2:16 PM on August 4, 2015


otoh, if this leads to Piggy covering Sisters Are Doin' It For Themselves, net win.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 2:19 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


Oh god, imagine Miss Piggy and Ross as a couple.

Wait, you mean Rachel wasn't...?

zing! hey-yo
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:25 PM on August 4, 2015


And "groping"?? Can you point me to any examples? I certainly can't recall any.

Maybe the Muppets is getting confused with Meet the Feebles or Crank Yankers? I've watched the Muppet Movie, the Great Muppet Caper, and the Muppets Take Manhatten with my kids, and while they certainly reinforce standard gender roles, the movies are pretty entertaining. It is slapstick humour. We're talking about puppets here.
posted by Nevin at 2:34 PM on August 4, 2015


No, go back and watch that first season (maybe first few) again. I don't specifically remember "groping" off the top of my head, but let's just say I wouldn't be surprised.
posted by ODiV at 2:37 PM on August 4, 2015


Sounds like Charles Grodin has a chance with Miss Piggy now after all.

But he can't even sing! His voice was dubbed! DUBBED!
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 2:46 PM on August 4, 2015


I'll say it: the Kermit-Piggy relationship was terrible.

Well of course. Unhappy families and all that.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 2:55 PM on August 4, 2015


This is really old news. If you'd seen the original 2-minute 'announcement teaser' or the 10-minute 'pitch pilot' or the ComicCon Muppet panel (all posted here), they all referred to the fact that Kermit and Piggy had broken up. In the 'pilot', it was the reason it was so hard to get Piggy signed on to the new show... in fact, in the scene where Piggy's on a movie set, she gives co-star Topher Grace the longest, most passionate Muppet-Human kiss in the history of the franchise. And they briefly showed Kermit's new girlfriend as he made the comment about living in a "bacon-wrapped hell". A questioner at the ComicCon panel noted that the 'new pig' looked like Spamela Hamderson, a character created for the '90s Muppets Tonight show, who was 'puppeted' by Leslie Carrara-Rudolph, best known for Abby Cadabby on Sesame Street. The producers noted that they were planning to change that character "some". The were also non-committal about adding more female Muppets, even when one audience member specifically mentioned Skeeter, who was Scooter's twin sister in Muppet Babies and seen very little elsewhere (and one jaw-dropping factoid: Skeeter was voiced in the cartoon by Howie Mandel!!!) Leslie Carrara-Rudolph can do a lot of characters and would go far to solve The Muppets' "female problems", BUT can she be spared away from The Street long enough? ALSO remember who's the Ex-Muppeteer/Sitcom Showrunner who made this all possible: Bill Prady, whose other current show "The Big Bang Theory" has had its own "female problems".
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:39 PM on August 4, 2015 [5 favorites]


The central idea behind The Muppet Show is that almost everyone from the prima donna down to the hecklers is hilariously incompetent at their chosen vocation. The lead actress is a ham. The cook can't cook. The comic is so bad that Kermit works to keep him off-stage. Band members are one step away from either walking off or getting absorbed in their own solo. The science guy is a walking disaster. And no one can figure out what the geek is, much less what he's going to do with the chickens this week.

Left at that, the Muppets would just be a very good parody. But Jim Henson had the foresight to take us behind the curtain and show us that The Muppets are exactly what they look like on stage. And that puts them on the same level as Lucy and Hulot.

They become even more real when you have some of the best people in show business share the screen and take them seriously.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 3:56 PM on August 4, 2015 [13 favorites]


I wouldn't say that all of the Muppets are incompetent. Rather, most of them are just ill-suited for professionalism. All of the Electric Mayhem are talented musicians, but you're right; left to their own devices they'd drift off into a four-hour jam session (or, in Animal's case, just eat the drum kit). And Rowlf is a skilled pianist, but he'd rather spend his evenings dozing off in his recliner with a beer in one paw and an old film noir on TV.

It's to Kermit's credit as a ringleader that he actually manages to wrangle all these weirdos and produce something resembling a show on a regular basis.
posted by Faint of Butt at 4:18 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


Rowlf and Scooter stick out as exceptions for me. But I think Fozzie is wonderfully quixotic, and I could stand to be be a bit more Fozzie and do for the joy of doing without giving a damn about how it's perceived.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 4:25 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


Yes, Rowlf IS a very good pianist, and one of the few characters who predated the show. Jim Henson's big break in Prime Time TV was "The Jimmy Dean Show" where Rowlf appeared every week doing a two-man (one-man-one-dog) comedy routine that got longer every week. And when they wanted to have Rowlf play the guitar, Henson brought in Frank Oz to work his 'other' hand while Jim did the mouth and main hand. He was my favorite Muppet and still is AND HE IS SO UNDERUSED. In the new show, he'll be one of the few classic characters NOT working directly on the show-within-the-show. He will have a piano bar ("Rowlf's Place") next door to the studio where everybody hangs out. I'm keeping my expectations low.
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:49 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


I wonder if we'll get an updated Guide to Life as a result. (I had this book and loved it when I was a kid!)
posted by SisterHavana at 4:53 PM on August 4, 2015


With Miss Piggy hosting a talk show, I expect to see her do an Oprah-esque Book Club as a merchandising tie-in.
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:01 PM on August 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


I am officially shipping Kermit and Janice, the guitarist from The Electric Mayhem.

Or Sweetums.
posted by mrjohnmuller at 5:08 PM on August 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


Janice gets around, and she's not ashamed of it. She's been romantically linked with both Zoot and Floyd in the past.

Rowlf abides.
posted by Faint of Butt at 5:10 PM on August 4, 2015 [3 favorites]


A Piggy/Kermit throwaway post becomes a discussion on their interpersonal dynamic (I see the askme now...) and a side thread about how she's judged on her performance of feminity.

This is why I come to metafilter :)

Anyways as a kid I always felt really uncomfortable watching Miss Piggy, maybe because while I identified with her ballsy sugar/spice attitude, I also felt that the framing of her vs Kermit was basically telling me that she was too dominant to be likeable - that she was the problem. When really she was just with the wrong person all along!

But, y'know +1 for inter-species dating, that's progressive I guess (just don't get me started on Gonzo with his chickens...)
posted by St. Peepsburg at 5:54 PM on August 4, 2015 [4 favorites]


from the Muppet Wiki:
In episode 124 of The Muppet Show, Gonzo falls in love with Miss Piggy, who is disgusted and annoyed by him. He transfers his affections to guest star Madeline Kahn in episode 209.
In The Muppet Movie, Gonzo briefly shows interest in the prospect of a romantic dinner with Miss Piggy. He also tries to get Miss Piggy to dance with him in Episode 217, but only because he needs a partner.
In episode 217, Gonzo is briefly attracted to a live cow that appears backstage. However, Gonzo's amorous desires are most often centered on chickens. This poultry passion first surfaced in Episode 204, when he held auditions for dancing chickens. Dave Goelz ad-libbed the line, "Don't call us, we'll call you... nice legs, though!" After this, the writers decided that Gonzo should have an attraction to chickens.
Episode 318 introduced Gonzo's regular chicken girlfriend, Camilla. This did not prevent him from developing a brief fascination with Big Bird, however.
On Muppet Babies, Baby Gonzo has an ongoing crush on Baby Piggy, going so far as to view Baby Kermit as a rival


At the ComicCon panel, while talking about Muppet relationships, Bill Prady said “Gonzo’s going to do some online dating.” (What would Tinder for chickens be? Tender?) It's not canon, but Gonzo does the Humpty Hump.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:22 PM on August 4, 2015 [3 favorites]


Tendr, ofc.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:41 PM on August 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


> I am officially shipping Kermit and Janice, the guitarist from The Electric Mayhem.

Kermit/Fozzie. They've been through a lot together.
posted by ardgedee at 6:57 PM on August 4, 2015


You guys do get that the Kermit/Miss Piggy characters are already a subversion of traditional roles, right?

Kermit is a frog. What other myths do we have where a frog is the leading man in the story? The one about the Handsome Prince. But Kermit has no backbone; he's constantly a victim of his environment. He's a lovable loser. He's not a prince, and certainly won't be a king.

Miss Piggy is a glamorous blonde. She's curvy and brassy, and when she's trying to seduce, she affects a saccharine, cute, little girl voice. Miss Piggy thinks she's Marilyn Monroe. But Miss Piggy is a pig. You know. The animal that's supposed to be happy wallowing in shit.

Kermit won't ever be a handsome prince. Miss Piggy won't ever be glamorous. They'd both be better off if they just accepted their place in life.

But no. They strive. They dream. They should not be together -- they're very different people that want different things. But they love each other anyway, across even the species barrier.

And that's where the humor comes from.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 7:37 PM on August 4, 2015 [15 favorites]


[Yorkshireman] And you try and tell the young people of today that...they won't believe you.
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:58 PM on August 4, 2015 [5 favorites]


Even though I know the relationship was dysfunctional and weird, I still feel like Cool Papa Bell about it.

And I find it to be kind of a bummer anyway even if she was over the top crazy about him and he acted like she had teh cootiez (that guide to life book, dang).
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:14 PM on August 4, 2015


Dear AskMe,

All right, dears, I know it's my fourth question about the same relationship, but puhhh-lease humor me. As usual, who is putting in all the effort? Moi. Meanwhile, he just sits on the couch playing his banjo, undermotivated, uninteresting, unexciting. I ask where he'd like to go to a romantic candlelit dinner, he says, "oh, I don't care." Where should we film our next movie? "Anywhere, really." Do you even care if I SPEND THE REST OF MY LIFE OUT OF THE COUNTRY? AWAY FROM YOU, YOU STUPID FROG? "Did you say something? I wasn't listening."

Then I'm like, hi-YAH! Ugh!

Advice? Stories? Anyone else in a difficult relationship with a self-centered workaholic man? (Please note: splitting up is NOT AN OPTION and I will ignore any answers suggesting it. Hmph!)

[Post 24674 by ParisianPigette deleted for the following reason: Sorry, but your last three posts were greeted with a chorus of DTMFA. I don't think this one will be any different. Besides, this is chatfilter -- cortex]
posted by thetortoise at 11:44 PM on August 4, 2015 [15 favorites]


Sorry, but your last three posts were greeted with a chorus of DTMFA.

DTMFA = Dump the Man-Frog Already

"Welcome to Couples' Couseling with Sam the American Eagle. You are both weirdos."
posted by The Underpants Monster at 6:17 AM on August 5, 2015 [6 favorites]


oneswellfoop: "And when they wanted to have Rowlf play the guitar, Henson brought in Frank Oz to work his 'other' hand while Jim did the mouth and main hand. He was my favorite Muppet and still is AND HE IS SO UNDERUSED. In the new show, he'll be one of the few classic characters NOT working directly on the show-within-the-show."

I think the problem with Rowlf is they can't seem to get the voice right. I find the current Kermit voice fine, basically - it's slightly different, but not much. But Rowlf is way, disturbingly off.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:20 AM on August 5, 2015


I never cared for Miss Piggy - her personality and demeanor is everything I detest in an animal. I always thought she bullied Kermit into whatever relationship they ended up having.
I think it's for the best that they move on from one another and see other animals. If, eventually, they discover that they truly do belong together, then so be it.

BUT I have to hand it to her, she was always at her best playing a nurse in those Veterinarian's Hospital sketches. Really excellent comedic timing.
posted by annekenstein at 7:11 AM on August 5, 2015 [1 favorite]


Pigs. In. Space!
posted by I-baLL at 8:39 AM on August 5, 2015 [1 favorite]


Is this the first time that fanfic in the form of an askme has occured?

::applaudes::
posted by Faintdreams at 9:23 AM on August 5, 2015


Really, the thing with Rowlf is... he is the Muppet that Jim Henson identified with the most. After his death, Rowlf was retired for several years, and when I saw him brought back I was a bit astounded.

Here's a compilation of Rowlf performances compiled after Henson's death, Ol' Brown Ears Is Back.
posted by hippybear at 9:40 AM on August 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'm watching Kermit and Piggy fight and frolic their way through Central Park in The Muppets Take Manhattan right now. They can issue all the statements they like, they can go on and off as many times as it suits them, but IT WILL NEVER BE OVER.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 3:08 PM on August 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


« Older "You've never seen any of them. At least, let's...   |   Targeted Advertising Considered Harmful Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments