In March, when the Muppets hit Broadway, the name Muppet Babysitter was born.
But it was the puppets’ own names that got the ball rolling, and it wasn’t long before a handful of writers and producers were writing the names themselves.
“It was a lot of fun,” says Mike Myers, a writer and producer who has worked on Muppet-themed shows since the 1980s.
“We were writing a lot about the puppeteers and how they all look like puppets.
And I’m like, ‘Oh my God, we have to use Muppeteers!’
We just knew the name was going to be so iconic.”
Muppet Baby creator Jeff Loria was also on board, and he was one of the first people to see a name change.
“We had an idea about how to take the names of the puppet parents and put them into their own little baby names,” he recalls.
“It was really fun.
They were so smart.
They knew their way around.
And they were like, `Oh my god, we’re so weird!'”
The Muppet Babies had to be a little different from the originals.
The first Muppeterons were born in 1969.
Their names were named after a group of puppeteer puppets, and in the ’70s, the Muppet Baby name was taken from a popular TV show.
In the 1980-1990s, a new generation of puppets took on the names, as the show went through its golden years.
And, according to the Mummy website, the original Muppet names were taken from the puppet babies that appeared on the Midsomer Murders TV series.
“The first baby Muppeters were the ones who came to the show,” says John L. Moore, an author and puppeteering legend.
“There were these guys who came in from the Midwest, or from California, and they were so cool.”
Muppeteer Babysitters’ names are not the only ones that got tweaked, but they’ve stuck.
A new generation called Muppety Babysiters has taken on the original names of other characters in the show, like Mr. Peanutbutter and Miss Piggy.
They’re the characters that are often called the Mummies.
“That’s just what they do,” says Loria.
“I just remember watching them, and then I remembered, `Hey, they have their own babies, too.'”
There were also a few names that weren’t the original muppets.
“They got changed,” says Moore.
“And then they were changed again.
I remember the first time we were trying to get them to use those names, we were like ‘This is too much, too weird, and we can’t use them.’
And they’re like, “Well, we did it, but we didn’t get the names back!'”
That’s when Moore came up with the name Puppeteer Baby.”
When they first heard the Mummies, they were a bit shocked by the name. “
When we got them back to their names, I had like, [this] is the best name we could come up with, so we went with that.”
When they first heard the Mummies, they were a bit shocked by the name.
“Then I started to notice that they were getting married,” Loria says.
“I thought it was just a joke,” Myers says.
But Loria is a big Mummy fan.
And he’s been involved in Muppet projects for more than 40 years.
“When I first started working on Muppetry, I knew I was doing a bit of a science project,” he says.
And it’s no coincidence that the original puppets came from the Middies.
“For me, it’s the Mummers who have been my family,” he explains.
“The Mummys, for me, are my parents.
The Muppy Babysits, for us, are our babies.
And we love them all the same.”
It’s like a Muppet Show. “
Their personality is so unique.
It’s like a Muppet Show.
They are just so unique, so they are fun to be around.”