Saturday, July 20Royal Holloway's offical student publication, est. 1986

Am I a Man or a Muppet?

What’s your favourite Muppet movie?

For me, it’s the 2002 TV movie ‘It’s A Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie’. For those who haven’t seen it, it’s basically an ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ pastiche. The Muppets are yet again trying to win back the Muppet Theatre (seriously, it’s like one of Lew Zealand’s amazing boomerang fish) while Kermit has an existential crisis and wishes he’d never been born, with predictable results. Plus Whoopi Goldberg is God, which is one of the best casting decisions of all time.

Now, I can tell that right now you’re thinking a) what is wrong with you Flic? Muppet Christmas Carol is clearly the best Muppet movie, and b) what’s the point you’re trying to make here? The Muppets are for kids.

So I should probably make an admission; I get anxious. In this context, anxiety doesn’t just mean ‘I worry about things’. It’s a medical condition that results in people finding it difficult to cope, sometimes with very simple daily activities. For me, it’s not severe and is something I can control, but like all people with anxiety I’ve had to develop coping mechanisms to get me through difficult days and one of the things that helps calm me down is watching The Muppets.

Here is where the problem lies. I’ve encountered people in the past who’ve told me that my – for want of a better word – obsession with the Muppets is childish or stupid. On these occasions, I tend to get pretty defensive and sad. Just because something is designed for children doesn’t make it is meaningless to adults. In fact, it might be the only thing that is getting someone through the day. So it’s worth remembering that just because something seems childish to you, that doesn’t mean it’s ok to diss it.

With Mental Health Awareness Week coming up from 16th to 23rd of January, just remember that it doesn’t cost anything to be nice. It might just make someone’s day that little bit less difficult.