The Disney Junior reboot of Muppet Babies will begin airing late this coming March on the Disney Channel and the Disney NOW App.
Featuring the voice talents of Jenny Slate (Parks and Recreation, Bob's Burgers, Venom), Eric Bauza (Batman Ninja, Ultimate Spider-Man), and Dee Bradley Baker (American Dad!), the series will be a re-imagining of the beloved 1980s children's TV show. Unlike the hand-drawn original, the remake will use CGI. Each episode will be broken into two 11-minute stories. And like its predecessor, the 2018 version of Muppet Babies will focus on the wonders of imagination and its ability to solve problems.
Disney revealed in a press release that Disney Junior's Muppet Babies reboot will debut on Friday, March 23 at 10 a.m. EDT. Like the original, the show will combine animation and other media such as live action, collage, and the use of classic cartoons when the young main characters begin to use their imagination.
Gone from the principal cast of characters of the original series are Rowlf the Dog, Scooter, and Skeeter. Rowlf is slated to appear periodically along with Bunsen Honeydew, Beaker, Dr. Teeth, Rizzo the Rat, and Statler and Waldorf. No official word has been given on appearances by Scooter and Skeeter. The reboot will feature a brand new character in the Muppets universe, Summer Penguin, who will be voiced by Jessica DiCicco.
Fresh off filming the upcoming Tom Hardy Venom, Slate will be voicing the iconic character of Nanny in the show. In the remake, which transports the nursery to a New York brownstone with an expansive backyard, Nanny will be called Miss Nanny. It has also been revealed that Renee Elise Goldsberry, who won a Tony for her role as Angelica Schuyler in Hamilton, will be singing an updated version of the theme song. The original Muppet Babies aired for seven years from 1984 to 1991 on CBS. The cartoon was itself a riff on Miss Piggy's musical number dream sequence of a daycare romance with Kermit the Frog in 1984's Muppets Take Manhattan, and it was a certified hit and led to all sorts of merchandising - including a comic book series from Marvel.
The Muppet Babies reboot finds itself in an environment where another beloved 1980s cartoon, Ducktales, has found considerable critical and commercial success as a reboot for Disney. Ducktales, like Muppet Babies, had cast voice talent with credibility to the 18-35 demographic - David Tennant, Bobby Moynihan, Danny Pudi, Kate Micucci, and more - who had themselves grown up with the original. Muppet Babies just might find comparable success with its own reboot.
Source: Disney Junior