A rash of the Muppets performing their rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody has infested the internets today, appealing to people nostalgic for The Muppet Show and Queen. I’m glad to report that this is not just a passing fad, the Bohemian Rhapsody video being but a string in the strong presence that the Muppets are carving for themselves in the digital realm. We’ll report more on this development after the jump, but first, the aforementioned cover:
Jim Henson created more than a trademark, developing puppetry into a national hallmark from the dregs that it had found itself, creating family-friendly television that appealed both to children and their handlers. Thankfully, despite his untimely passing, the bar he raised remains high and apparently in good hands, with this coming computer-addicted generation-to-be still capable of getting their hands on good, educational programming.
The Muppets have always married entertainment to education, and continue in this excellence by creating digital shorts that showcase classical works to a new audience in a timely, humorous fashion. Take for instance Beaker’s rendition of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Fourth Movement, commonly known as
Ode to Joy :
That video was in fact a response to this video:
which demonstrates that the marketing department for the Henson Company are on their A-game. They’re keeping on top of trends and topics and are adapting their campaign to match not just what people are watching, but what they’re doing too.
Following that same theme, they came out with this video, introducing to many net surfers I am certain, Johann Strauss’ An der schönen blauen, known to the English-speaking world as Blue Danube, via Gonzo and his “Pitch Perfect Poultry”:
Furthermore, the Henson Company is foraying into public consciousness and seemingly attempting to fix other companies’ screw-ups with human culture. Remember MTV’s Carmen: A Hip Hopera? (The audio synch on this video is screwy, but this is probably the best part of the whole debacle, and that’s only because of Mos Def.)
Well, The Swedish Chef, Beaker, and Animal take a shot at making you forget it all about it (sorry to have brought it up again) by taking on Georges Bizet’s most famous aria, Habanera from the opera Carmen:
Now, in closing, I would like to point out the Muppet’s social commentary, which there is a strong history of as well. This is made even more prevalent at the tail-end of those videos, where Waldorf & Statler (the grumpy old men in the box) comment on the videos they have just “watched” via the internet. If you haven’t watched these videos through to the end, go back and finish the Muppet ones, I’ll wait.
Waldorf and Statler continue with their acerbic remarks, but now through the safety of their office chairs, as here:
So not only is the Henson Company utilizing the magnificent tool that is the internet, but they’re also mocking it, gratuitously and defiantly? These guys are the epitome of digital productivity, deserving kudos, accolades, and commendations all around. Not only do they see the future, they’re actively working to make it a brighter place.