Walter

a muppet by any other name/the muppets

There’s no denying it: I am more excited about the opening of the new Muppet movie than my kids are. Both girls are petrified of Animal (“He’s too loud,” “Why does he always scream,” they ask me. I could ask the same of them, actually…). I don’t expect I’ll be ordering 4 tickets to “Disney’s The Muppets” on Fandango this week, but that’s quite alright by me. I want nothing to spoil this long-awaited moment, for a number of reasons. For a hour or so, I’d like to sit in a darkened theater with my Twizzlers and my childlike sense of wonder as I gaze at the life-sized characters I adored so much.  The little girl who never missed an episode of “The Muppet Show” is the same person who, today, still quotes Muppet movie one-liners to her family (“Is frog washing dishes? Is pig dancing? Is not restaurant–Is Zoo!”). Sometimes, that person gets buried under permission slips that need signing and clothes that need washing, but it’s the release of a movie like this that lets her see the light of day. I’m especially touched by the introduction of the movie’s newest character named Walter, my late father’s name. As we head into yet another holiday season without him, I realize how he may be gone, but could never truly be forgotten–like the Muppets themselves. It is my dad’s at-times strange sense of humor that I have inherited when I hear myself bringing those Muppet quotes to life again (“Let’s catch them while they’re red-handed!” “What color are their hands now?”…) Walter the Muppet is a character I’ll be keeping my eye on, and one I expect will have the future of the Muppets resting on his soft shoulders. With this in mind, The Talking Walnut gives a special nod to Walter and the rest of the Muppets plush toy collection, available at the Disney Store. It’s toys like these that will let me relive the magic of my youth, while remembering an old friend (or family member). Maybe now, the little girl in me won’t have to be dusted off at all…

In a Nutshell: Muppets fans, rejoice! Our movie moment has come, and toys like these can extend the good times, long after the popcorn has run out.

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