Sunday, January 11, 2009

Muppet Movie - The Rainbow Connection

If you grew up in the '70s and '80s as did I, you probably have a soft spot in your heart for all things Henson. Jim Henson, that is. Whether you learned to count with Count von Count, or couldn't wait for The Muppet Show each week, or you thought the Fraggles had it right in their sheer enthusiasm for living in the moment, or Yoda's wisdom in Star Wars inspired you to seek a path of love and light in your own life, you were touched by Jim Henson and his remarkable creations. And, in some way, you're probably a better person for it. We're all better for having been influenced by his multiple cultural phenomena as children.

For one more week, you can catch a glimpse of Henson's brilliance, peeking behind the scenes at his early work and how it all evolved into the famous and beloved characters we think of as Henson's best. The Atlanta History Center has been hosting a traveling exhibit called Jim Henson's Fantastic World.

If you're at all curious about how the Muppets evolved or if you love learning details like the fact that the characters of Bert and Ernie were actually based on Henson and his long-time collaborator Frank Oz, you will love this exhibit!

We went yesterday for the second time since December to see the exhibit. Scott and I, naturally, got more out of the exhibit than the boys did, but they loved seeing favorite characters like Rolf and Kermit and Bert and Ernie. I got teary-eyed watching video that included Henson's speech when he was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame. It makes me sad to think that his beautiful imagination was silenced when there was so much more joy he could have brought into this world.

Think how much darker and more somber our collective childhood lived out in the shadows of nuclear annihilation, a global oil crisis, and Reaganomics would have been without the vivid and joyful expression of life that existed in shows like The Muppets, Fraggle Rock, and Sesame Street.

I wish there was someone today who was as committed to creating quality entertainment for kids that inspired them to act creatively.


Kel said...

Oh I just loved the muppets! It is strange to look back and see the world amidst chaos and craziness when we had such colorful happy days.

It would be nice to have something like that for our kids today.

Lisa said...

I loved the Muppet Show! What a wonderful gift Henson gave us.