Your #MuppetOscars Campaign is in Full Swing -- Is That a Good Thing?


It's been roughly 13 minutes since Eddie Murphy departed as Oscar host, and already we have a strong frontrunner to replace Brett Ratner's comeback kid: The Muppets. Supporters rallied on Twitter for their consideration, and now an official "The Muppets Should Host the 2012 Oscars" campaign has been launched on Facebook. We offered up the idea of a Muppet-emceed Oscars in our possible host roundup yesterday, but would the reality of Kermit, Miss Piggy, and Gonzo at the dais be as enchanting as we want?

Let's consider that this Oscar campaign doubles as a publicity stunt ahead of The Muppets's November 23 premiere. The convenience makes me cynical about the fast-growing cause, but of course, this entire cause is based in cynicism: Those backing the campaign have the same mantra: "Well, that's an Oscars I'd watch!" Read: They're not the regular Oscar viewership. I'm sure many of these same people were ecstatic to learn that James Franco and Anne Hathaway were going to host the show last year, as it represented a fresh, populist changing of the guard. We already catered to them once. Look what happened. I think it's wiser to erase Ratner's stench with a more reliable candidate like Tina Fey or Neil Patrick Harris before we hand over an entire ceremony to the Muppets.

Furthermore, though Oscar hosts are mainly responsible for reading one-liners off a teleprompter, the essential element in an Academy Awards telecast is spontaneity. The Muppets would be cute as toastmasters, no doubt, but they're just not able to be present and reactive. Could they respond to a hissing crowd? Bitingly? Could they gauge audience reactions at all? Most importantly, are they allowed to be sarcastic? Even the safest Oscar hosts (Billy Crystal, Ellen Degeneres) have to resort to sarcasm in order to level with the fickle home audience, and I just don't know if a four-hour sequence of canned jokes, awkward staging, and vanilla humor will be that exhilarating. That said: I hope the Muppets present a big chunk of the technical categories. That's where we need their sped-up, mechanized pep.

#MuppetOscars Facebook Campaign


  • snideproject says:

    Have you ever seen any of Elmo's unscripted conversations with Ricky Gervais? They're as witty and reactive as anything Triumph the Insult Comic Dog has ever done... probably moreso. Not as offensive, but very clever.
    All we need is a bigger podium for the puppeteers to hide behind....

  • KevyB says:

    The EW with the Muppets in it say how funny the Muppeteers can be unscripted so why wouldn't they be able to do this? And the best part? You could actually have a dozen hosts? Sick of Kermit? Here's Miss Piggy! For this segment, here's Gonzo! Now here's Dr Teeth and the Electric Mayhem backing up for all the nominated songs! Added bonus, they've always been good at parody, so the scripted stuff should be awesome. Sorry, but this idea is genius!

  • bryan says:

    You've clearly never experienced the Muppets in any real capacity. The BEST thing they do is ad lib and react. Watch Kermit on The Daily Show or Cookie Monster on Martha Stewart to see how unscripted and amazingly "present" they are. Billy Crystal had his time. Why repeat the same show ten more times? The Muppets are a tremendous force for vaudeville and theatre... Let them have the stage!