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The Answer Is Not Something New

Generations placed the Muppet masters Jim Henson and Frank Oz on the level of comedy duos like Abbott & Costello and Laurel & Hardy. Henson died in 1990, but Oz continued to portray such beloved characters as Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Bert, and Grover. Since the early 2000s, though, the puppeteer and filmmaker has been an infrequent presence in the extended Muppet-verse.

Disney acquired the rights to the Muppets in 2004, and many, including Oz himself, feel that this once rich franchise has lost its soul, and consequently, its audience. In an interview, Oz shared, "The soul’s not there. The soul is what makes things grow and be funny."

Once when asked how Disney could salvage the iconic franchise, the interviewer suggested the possibility of hiring "a unique, creative soul, to come in and do something new with the Muppets?" Oz had this to say:

I don’t think the answer is to do something new. I think the answer is to go back and be true to who they are. There’s nothing new to do except to dig deeper into their purity and innocence; that is what speaks to the audience. The problem was, in my opinion, that they were trying to do something new.

Perhaps his advice would be wise council for the Western church today. Maybe the church should not do something "new." The answer is to "go back and be true to who they are." To return to the purity and innocence of the gospel message.

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