Friday, May 20
Bottom line: It's back to the land of Oz as the ever-endearing Muppets take over a classic family story and make it theirs.
For sure we're not in Kansas anymore, not with this adaptation of L. Frank Baum's utilitarian and still enchanting story "The Wizard of Oz," here remade for ABC under the guises of Muppetdom and looking (and behaving) wonderfully goofy for it. It's odd that no one thought of this earlier: one of the world's best-loved family stories reimagined by the universe's all-time favorite group of live-action critters, the Muppets. Kansas, and Oz for that matter, have a pixilated look, and it definitely works.
"The Muppets' Wizard of Oz" has singer Ashanti playing the ever-worried-about-others Dorothy (though she doesn't seem quite as concerned about the world as Judy Garland did), a teenager who wants desperately to be a rock star but whose life in Kansas severely limits that possibility. One day the Muppets come to town looking for young talent, and Dorothy, despite opposition from Auntie Em (Queen Latifah), manages to slip the creatures a demo CD of her singing. Well, that's a start.