ABC’s The Muppets premiered only last night, and already the more adult Muppets have caused some controversy with one group: moms. Not necessarily moms everywhere, but the parent watchgroup One Million Moms is displeased about what they saw in the pilot episode. In fact, the watchgroup even called The Muppets “perverted” in a new statement released this morning. There’s more, but here’s the main gist of their grievances:
Many parents unknowingly will let their children watch an episode only to find out its perverted nature too late, unless they are alerted ahead of time. 1MM and others need to get the word out to families to avoid this program at all costs.
Anyone who watched The Muppets premiere knows there were some more adult jokes in the pilot. The mockumentary style and the personal lives of each of the Muppets lends itself to more grownup humor, including sex jokes (a bear dating a human makes for an interesting dynamic) and nods to the Electric Mayhem’s penchant for pot-smoking. But even with the adult-oriented jokes, The Muppets premiere was more tame than a lot of other comedies on television and even on network TV—including stuff like Two and a Half Men. Calling it perverted seems a bit strongly worded. In addition, ABC has been open for months now regarding The Muppets’ return to more adult humor.
When The Big Bang Theory’s Bill Prady took over the show, he stated he wanted a more adult program. Later, ABC’s logline for The Muppets also called it more adult. The One Million Moms' complaint seems to be taking the line that parents aren’t aware of the new outlook of the Muppets, but since it also mentions the big Kermit and Miss Piggy breakup, Kermit’s “full frontal spread” (because he doesn’t wear pants) and Miss Piggy saying she’s pro-everything when MSNBC asked if she was pro-life or pro-choice, it seems as if the watchgroup should have sort-of known what they were getting into when The Muppets aired last night.
ABC’s new The Muppets show isn’t as kid-friendly as the more recent movies Disney has put together, but it’s not out to morally bankrupt your kids, either. There’s a reason that ABC felt comfortable putting it in the 8 p.m. timeslot on Tuesday nights, and it's because the show only lightly treads on adult humor. Obviously, this version of the fun felt characters won’t be as cheesily appealing as some of the kids movies to a certain faction of fans, but it’s also more entertaining to others.
In fact, that can be proven with the ratings. Last night’s episode of The Muppets drew in 8.9 million total viewers and a 2.8 rating, beating out Ryan Murphy’s high-profile project Scream Queens and more. So there is definitely interest in the series, even if it doesn’t come from One Million Moms.
You can catch new episodes of The Muppets on Tuesday nights at 8 p.m. ET, only on ABC.