On Friday March 23rd, the Muppet Babies will return to television on Disney Junior and a whole new generation of children will meet the Muppets in their preschool days. Not all of the Muppets will be part of the series, but the core group — Kermit, Piggy, Fozzie, Gonzo, and Animal— will be back along with a new Muppet, Summer Penguin. The revival of the show comes with an updated version of the theme song and soundtrack full of energetic numbers that are sure to please kids.
The soundtrack is charged, cheery, will easily hold a child’s attention, and it’s not so young that it’ll drive adults crazy. The production quality is excellent and the instrumentation spans a range of styles including twangy guitars, bluesy pianos, folk style fiddles, and tinny tambourines. The album starts with the theme song and it’s clear the time kids are about to spend with the Muppets will be full of fun. The songs cover a variety of topics that children will relate to such as, “Laughter is the Best-est Medicine” about cheering up friends when they’re feeling blue; “Start Up Your Imagination” encourages even super heroes to invite their friends to play along; and “Someone Like Me”, Gonzo sings about his quirky preferences (pickled popcorn, deep fried lettuce, and potato friends), and meeting others who like the same things. The soundtrack ends with “I’ve Been There Buddy”, a sweet song about how sometimes life can be frustrating, but it’s okay to cry and the bad things won’t last that long.
For someone who doesn’t have kids, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this soundtrack. It remains true to the colorful spirit of the Muppets while changing just enough to introduce them to the next generation. Overall, the album not only stands on its own but also hints at the promise of the new series.
Muppet Babies premieres on Friday, March 23rd at 10am on Disney Junior.