Disney attempts yet another reboot of the Muppet franchise by focusing on their iconic (to Muppets fans) rock group, The Electric Mayhem, with mixed results. The Muppets themselves are always a blast; it’s the humans who cause portions to drag or fall flat.
The Muppets Mayhem is just fine for those looking for a Muppets fix after a bit of a drought. I was a fan of Muppets Now from three years ago, a modern take on social media and entertainment TV starring Kermit, Piggy, Animal, etc. I also enjoyed Muppets Haunted Mansion, a 2021 Halloween special that treated both the Muppets and Haunted Mansion entities with respect. Alas, Haunted Mansion was a one-timer, and it doesn’t appear as if Muppets Now will get a second season.
The story for the new show is simple: The Electric Mayhem have been touring for decades, and Nora (Lilly Singh), an ambitious record executive, discovers the band owes her label a record. The episodes include a series of road trips and recording sessions as Nora tries to help both herself and the band hit the big time as recording stars. Unfortunately, anytime Singh occupies the crux of the story, the show bores.
There are moments that are fun, such as Animal becoming a superstar chef, and the band mistakenly painting Danny Trejo’s house. There are plenty of celebrity cameos, none of them as mind-blowing as, say, Steve Martin as a waiter inexplicably wearing shorts. It’s never surprising to see somebody like Ryan Seacrest in a show like this; Tommy Lee’s tattoo probably has the best of the cameos.
Because it’s an Electric Mayhem show, there’s no Kermit, Piggy, Gonzo, Scooter, etc., and it’s always a loss when you create a Muppet project that doesn’t feature their core characters. Dr. Teeth and co. keep things amusing, but the show feels like it’s missing something. Fans will be happy enough they have some Muppets stuff to watch—but few will be overjoyed.
The Muppets Mayhem is now streaming on Disney+.