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THE MUPPETS Episode 5: ‘Walk the Swine’

After a week off ABC’s The Muppets is back, and it jumped right back into the sitcom-style they’ve been nailing these past few weeks. As we’ve covered before, the docu-series framework and the 30-minute run-time suit the show quite well, because nothing gets too overdone. The show also seems to be settling into the 3-plot standard for most episodes. Hey, it’s a sitcom. It’s to be expected.

Miss Piggy and Reese Witherspoon

Guest-starring as herself, Reese Witherspoon drops by Piggy’s show as a first-time guest and as you can imagine, things a bit tense. Miss Piggy’s harboring a grudge because Witherspoon got the coveted role as June Carter in Walk the Line and subsequently won an Oscar for it. Seizing any chance to try and get revenge on Reese, Piggy shows up for some charity work for Habitat for Humanity and things (surprise!) go awry. Witherspoon is an utter delight in this episode. She even pokes fun at the idea of her being “tough” for doing her own stunts in Wild, stating she did “all her own walking” in it.

It sounds silly to complain about this because I know it’s in Piggy’s DNA to be spiteful, jealous and vindictive (it’s kind of the reason we love her) but I worry it’s becoming a bit one dimensional. Piggy always hogged the spotlight (pun!) but her heart was always in the right place. No matter how boorish her behavior (homophone pun!) she’s always redeemed herself. And although she apologized at the end of the episode, she did so in such a spiteful manner that she just came across as swine (pun hat-trick!).

Despite all that, we do get the best GIF ever with a Miss Piggy mic drop:

Fozzie and Becky

We also gets to see a bit more of the relationship between Fozzie and Becky (Riki Lindhome), which brought in another real-life issue. Fozzie ends up in hot water when he told jokes about Beck’s excessive sweating. Look, we’ve all been there. Sometimes a joke goes too far at someone else’s expense and there’s hell to pay. The joke does so well at the comedy club that Becky retaliates against Fozzie by airing some of his embarrassing personal habits to the gang at the office. With this we learn two important things. One, Fozzie and Becky have a fairly adult relationship that can take some ribbing and ridicule, but they’re adult/bear enough to work through the problems in an arguably healthier way than fighting. And two, Fozzie is a sucker for the song “True Colors.”

I hate to keep loving this show as much as I do because I almost always hate seeing mostly positive reviews of things. I feel as if I should find something cutting to complain about or overanalyze, but the show has yet to disappoint on any major level. The characters are all real – or as much as they can be for being Muppets – and the combination of tempo and writing is keeping it fresh. Once again, well done Muppets.

Muppet Musings:

  • I really want Piggy’s arc to branch out a bit. It’d be great to see her “dark secret” being her sincerely caring about something.
  • Scooter really is the Dwight Schrute of this show.
  • Uncle Deadly needs more time. He’s always been so weird and creepy. Let’s see his home life.
  • Piggy’s poison muffins are troubling. Piggy shouldn’t be framed at that level of crazy.
  • Riki Lindhome’s “Becky” is fantastic and it’s so great to see her and Fozzie’s relationship get more time.
  • Reese Witherspoon wins the episode for this look alone:

What’d you think of “Walk the Swine”? Let us know in the comments below!

Images: ABC

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