Dr Teeth and the Electric Mayhem Get Their Own Series on Disney+!
After the success of the most recent Muppet production on Disney+, the Halloween special Muppets Haunted Mansion, fans of Jim Henson’s legendary fuzzy characters have been wondering when we’d next see Disney release a project with them.
That answer has come sooner than expected in the form of a brand new TV series for Disney+ called The Muppets Mayhem, which will centre on Dr Teeth and the Electric Mayhem, the house rock band that has been part of the Muppet universe ever since The Muppet Show first launched in the late 1970s. It will be the first Muppet production to ever focus on this group, who are usually more on the sidelines.
According to Deadline, the show will “follow The Electric Mayhem Band as they go on an epic musical journey to finally record their first studio album”. Joining them in a regular role will be Canadian comedian Lilly Singh, who will take on the role of a junior music agency exec whose job is to try to manage and wrangle their chaotic lives. Deadline says that with her help, the Electric Mayhem will come “face to face with the current-day music scene as they try to finally go platinum”.
The Muppets Mayhem has been developed and will be written by Adam Goldberg, who created the cult hit sitcom The Goldbergs for FOX, along with Jeff Yorkes and Bill Barretta, who has been a Muppet performer for years. He is best known amongst Muppet fans for creating and playing Pepe the King Prawn and Bobo the Bear, and now for playing a number of characters that Jim Henson used to perform, such as Dr. Teeth, the Swedish Chef, Rowlf, and others.
This is an excellent sign for the show, as one of the biggest complaints against many of the Disney-run Muppet productions, including their ABC sitcom, The Muppets, in 2015 and the recent Disney+ show, Muppets Now, is that the people who ran it didn’t understand the characters or their humour the same way that the actual performers did.
In the words of Jonnie Davis, the president of ABC Signature, who is producing the new show along with The Muppets Studio, “Adam F. Goldberg is our resident Muppet enthusiast…and getting to play in the sandbox with Bill, a longtime Muppet performer, as well as these beloved characters was a dream come true for him, Bill and Jeff…Their take is fresh, fun, musical and of course, hilarious. We couldn’t be happier to be the studio that is helping them get the band back together.”
For those who aren’t as hip to the Muppet lingo, the Electric Mayhem are made up of Dr Teeth, the lead vocalist and keyboardist, Janice (lead guitarist and vocalist), Floyd Pepper (bass and vocals), Zoot (sax), Lips (trumpet), and of course, arguably the most famous, Animal, the furry, crazy red drummer. They are currently performed by Bill Baretta, David Rudman, Matt Vogel, Dave Goelz, Peter Linz, and Eric Jacobson, respectively. All but Goelz have taken over from the iconic original performances by Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, Jerry Nelson, and Frank Oz. Goelz has always been Zoot, and is the last remaining of the original Muppet performers. Most of the others have since passed away, whereas Frank Oz is no longer affiliated with the Muppets.
There’s been a great deal of anticipation for a new Muppet project from Disney+, especially since the network’s last announced attempt at a pilot for the gang, Muppets Live Another Day, ultimately wasn’t picked up, and Muppets Now didn’t last long. Here’s hoping this opportunity to spotlight a group of Muppets not often in the spotlight provide the inspiration for a fresh take on the characters and material, and that it’s just the first of many more Muppet projects from Disney in the future!
There isn’t yet a release date or production schedule for The Muppets Mayhem, but hopefully we’ll know more soon!
Featured Image Credit: Muppet Wiki
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