Monday, September 10, 2012

Meat Puppets

One of the things in life that creeps me out the most is the "wearable puppet". Whereas your normal, run-of-the-mill puppet is typically a piece of cloth with googly eyes pasted on and controlled by a person's hand, a wearable puppet is basically a costume worn by some cretin who dances around like an idiot making minimum wage. Some examples of this ilk are Snuffleupagus, the Teletubbies, Barney the dinosaur, and the Banana Splits. Just typing these names out makes me want to call the name of Ralph (if you know what I mean). Why do people in costumes pantomiming around make me so queasy, like chewing a ball of aluminum foil? I cannot say for certain. Perhaps it is because they are so annoying or because I can guess what the inside of those heavy fabric costumes must smell like after being worn under those hot studio lights day after sing-songy day.

For many years, I have kept my feelings on this topic to myself, lest I inadvertently cause trauma to another. However, a recent headline caught my eye and I knew that I was far from alone in my distaste of this foul breed. The producer of the Teletubbies was responsible for a recent movie release entitled "The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure". Over its first 3 full-days of release in 2160 theaters, the movie earned $448,000. That amounts to about $70 in ticket sales per theater per day, or less than 10 folks added up over all showings. At a cost of more than 60 million dollars to make and distribute, I sense we shan't be seeing any more movies featuring this sort of "puppetry" any time soon. Whew!