The second episode of ABC’s “The Muppets” gets past the headline-garnering news that Miss Piggy and Kermit ended their decades-long romance, and instead shows them moving on — with disastrous results — to other people. In a reverse-Beatles, however, it’s none other than Josh Groban whose relationship with Miss Piggy has her making bad decisions that threaten everyone’s careers.
Whether you like the episode or not largely depends on how you feel about Groban, who seems quite game to laugh at himself. In a way, this is actually quite reminiscent of the classic “Muppet Show,” as some guests (Spike Milligan? Elke Sommer?) would undoubtedly appeal to certain viewers more than others. The difference, however, is that in the past you could go fix a snack while the actor did their “serious” song — but on “The Muppets,” the guest stars are weaved so thoroughly into the plot that they’re inescapable.
The best line of the episode, as so often happens, had virtually nothing to do with the plot. When Zoot was handed a birthday card for Sweetums, he began drawing in it. Then, when he is told “Hey, no dirty pictures!” he responds “Maybe I can turn it into a saxophone.”
The closer Groban got to Piggy, the worse her late night talk show got. In no time, she was interviewing authors and making Dr. Teeth play unplugged background music. In another subplot, Fozzie got to hang out with Jay Leno but kept stealing things from him.
The show’s highlight, however, came from Kermit’s revelation that he’s always had a thing for Lea Thompson. Sure enough, the “Back to the Future” actress ended up in an elevator with the friendly frog, and just when they started hitting things off — Gonzo crashed the party. As much fun as the elevator ride would have been, the fates are clear: Get Miss Piggy and Kermit back together!