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Weekend Earworms: Holidays Are Best With MUPPET-ized Songs

Weekend Earworms: Holidays Are Best With MUPPET-ized Songs

An estimated 92% of us experience earworms. Despite the annoying times we can’t get a chorus or a hook of an overplayed pop song out of our heads, getting a really good earworm stuck can be one of the best things, ever. We here at Nerdist are dead set on bringing you those types of songs—even if only for the weekend. So shove this into your grey matter!

Well, it’s that time of year again. A time when people from every walk of life, of any number of varied beliefs, and infinitely different outlooks on the world can come together with one thing in common: Being annoyed at holiday songs. We’re still a couple weeks away from both Hanukkah and Christmas, but have been deep in the holiday music trenches since just after Halloween.

Holiday songs tend to lose their luster with me except for those performed by Muppets. I will unabashedly sit through and absolutely love anything in the world if the Muppets are involved. It may not seem too drastic considering the fact that I write about TV, comics, and cartoons for a living, but my love of all things Muppet has somehow never really been tarnished in the 30+ years I’ve been alive and the 20+ years I’ve been a cynical snarky idiot asshole (see below for ad nauseum examples). So as each holiday season rolls around and songs become inescapable, my brain tends to go to its happy place and forces most songs through a “Think of the Muppet version” filter.

“Carol of the Bells”

Though only an excerpt from “Carol of the Bells”, a song that has an astounding variety of versions, putting the three Muppets famous for their inability to speak normally in charge of singing the song is just plain brilliant. The panicky nature of Beaker as he speeds through the tune hoping to avoid whatever escalating energetic mayhem Animal causes might make for the most pure depictions of those two characters in existence. And come on, what can you say about Swedish Chef? He’s perfect. Even when wanting to commit Muppet homicide.

The Christmas Song

Before we get to the criminal nature of the Muppet’s resident chef, know that most of my fondest holiday memories come from watching a recorded broadcast of A Muppet Family Christmas on VHS. The songs in it are some of the first I ever committed to memory and the commercials during it will always bring me back to the days of feety pajamas and sippy cups at my aunt’s house. Whatchoo know ’bout Crispy Critters, son!?

I have extremely strong opinions on why A Muppet Family Christmas is the superior holiday Muppet movie. Folks will say it’s A Muppet Christmas Carol, but those folks are dead wrong. It’s a fine film, but nothing can compare to the mind-melting combination of The Muppets, Sesame Street, and Fraggle Rock. That said, watching as an adult brings up some worrisome thoughts that I’d like to go into annoying detail about at this time, before the next song.

1. As stated before, the Swedish Chef has an alarmingly casual outlook on what and who he’s allowed to cook. He’s been nonchalantly committing Muppet murder for years and sees no wrong in it. Swedish Chef has been having intelligent conversation with the things he eats for decades. He shouldn’t be let around anyone precious… oh dear god, no!

2. I’m pretty sure that this entire Muppet/Sesame/Fraggle crossover may only exist in Doc’s head. He pretty much Airbnb’d that whole house and is entirely too cool with the owner cancelling her trip, staying home, and inviting at least 100 more creatures to stay. He is an absolute stranger to everyone there but is like “Oh, owner’s staying? Well, me too I guess.” Talking animals, talking food, penguins outside their natural habitat, literal monsters, and the creation of sentient comedic snowmen does not phase this man one bit. At the climax of the special, he goes out in a blizzard looking for someone he’s never met, finds her, changes clothes she somehow just happened to have in his exact human size and then dog-sleds her home. Piggy also had a spare dogsled hanging around too. This man is either insane and is a “Doc” of mind-altering drugs or we’ve got ourselves a Jacob’s Ladder scenario where he’s on the brink of death frozen in a car or back in his shed near Fraggle Rock. Speaking of…

3. Fraggle Rock is another dimension. It has to be, right? Their home cannot physically exist underneath everything. If it’s under Doc’s workshop, then fine. But it can’t also be under Fozzie’s Grandma’s house unless Doc was weird enough to rent a neighbor’s home for the holiday. He’s fine with changing into a servant’s costume for a anthropomorphic pig lady so, maybe? It’s also apparently under a recording studio in Los Angeles where Ben Folds records his albums. Either Fraggle Rock is another dimension or the crust of the earth is some sort of backward TARDIS situation where it’s really smaller on the inside.

Alright. I’ve vented those thoughts out into the world. I can finally let go of these dumb thoughts… unless someone wants to build further nonsense off of them because I am totally on board for that too. However, it is now time for my favorite holiday song ever created.

“Pass It On”

It occurs to me that this is probably the very first earworm to ever actually dig into my brain. I’m sure I knew songs and nursery rhymes before this but none hold such a special place in my heart as “Pass It On.” It’s an anthem to sharing and self-sacrifice without any motivation beyond the ideas that giving gifts is fun, trusting that generosity can be reciprocal, and loving those around you. Man, The Fraggles are really wise.

There are a lot of Muppet holiday songs I left on the table, so what are some of your favorites? Let’s discuss in the comments below! We can also discuss if the Muppet’s janitor Beauregard is a Fraggle on some sort of surface H-2A guest worker program.

Image: The Jim Henson Company/Disney

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