As one of the most hotly anticipated shows of 2015, The Muppets was poised to represent the perfect synergy of the nostalgia-driven remake trend and the viral video celebrity cameo machines that are late night comedy shows. But, after finishing Season 1 on March 1, will The Muppets return for Season 2? There has been no news from ABC about whether or not the show will be returning in fall of 2016, but considering it's based on a beloved preexisting property, that could certainly help it stick around. If it does get picked up, it will likely be back in September, close to when it premiered last year. Update: On May 12, ABC cancelled The Muppets, as reported by Deadline.
Earlier: After a midseason hiatus and what /Film reported as a switch of showrunners, I'd say The Muppets seems well on its way to sticking to a new formula that works even better for the series going forward. The first post-switch episode even addressed some of the show's early days of criticism with a meta-narrative about Up Late With Miss Piggy rebranding. And, even in just a few winter premiere episodes, the changes have made for a big difference. Here are some of the things that The Muppets should continue to incorporate to make a possible next season just as good if not better.
Keeping The Joy
As Kristin Newman, the new showrunner, said to Entertainment Weekly, "My job is to listen to what everybody is saying in common, and what they were all saying was, we want the tone to be more joyful. We want the Muppets to be the Muppets." Continuing on that path will bring even more joy to viewers.
Moving Away From The Mockumentary Format
While the mockumentary format works for some shows, the Muppets have always worked best as an ensemble. To split them up into one-on-one interviews hides one of their best features. Hopefully a Season 2 will bring them together more often.
Incorporating More Guest Stars
The show should continue to work talented actors into the group and let the actors experiment with playing unique characters rather than just versions of themselves.
Piggy & Kermit's Dynamic
They don't have to get back together — actually, all of the will they/won't they drama is very odd considering this is a pair of puppets — but the core of the original Muppets is about Kermit's fundamentally hopeful outlook contrasted with the rest of the Muppets' anarchic sensibility, especially the self-centered Miss Piggy. By giving Kermit his optimism back, the show feels more like the classic Muppets.
Making Miss Piggy funny is important, but making sure she isn't always the butt of the joke is even more crucial. She's an iconic character for a reason — so focusing on making her a better character has made the last few episodes significantly better. And if The Muppets keeps up with these changes, then the show could go from good to great in Season 2.
Image: Bob D’Amico/ABC; Giphy (6)