It’s time for another round of Muppet Casting, where we take a famous movie and ask, if Jim Henson’s Muppets made their own version of it (in the vein of The Muppet Christmas Carol and Muppet Treasure Island), which Muppets would you cast in the lead roles?
This week, it’s the 1985 comedy Clue, by far the best movie ever to be based on a board game. Be warned that there will be SPOILERS for all three of the film’s endings. Let’s go!
Gonzo the Great as Wadsworth – While there’s probably no one who can match Tim Curry in the role, Gonzo is definitely the Muppet who comes closest. When it comes time to dash around the mansion delivering a motor-mouthed recap of the plot so far, Gonzo’s the only one I can see bringing the right balance of manic energy and just-slightly-offness needed for it.
Kermit the Frog as Mr. Green – Three things make Kermit the ideal choice for this role. 1) They have similar personalities, being mostly nice guys who can occasionally lash out in frustration due to the craziness around them. 2) If you subscribe to the “But here’s how it really happened . . .” title card, Mr. Green is ultimately the hero of the movie, just as Kermit is usually the hero of any major Muppet production. 3) The character is called Mr. Green.
Fozzie Bear as Professor Plum – I went back and forth between Fozzie and Pepe the Prawn for this role. Pepe probably suits the professor’s lecherous side better, but I wanted to make sure Fozzie had a role in the main cast. Plus, Fozzie would be great fit for this specific Professor Plum moment: “Wait a minute, then who did I kill?” “My butler.” “Oh, shucks.”
Miss Piggy as Mrs. White – There really was no other choice here. I ran through every Muppet there is, imagined them saying Mrs. White’s lines, and Piggy’s the only one who feels right delivering her acerbic comments, dim views on the male gender, sense of wounded pride, and of course: “I hated her SO MUCH! I . . . I . . . flames! Flames . . . on the side of my face . . .”
Sam the Eagle as Colonel Mustard – The colonel needs to be played with a certain amount of dignity and self-importance, so that those traits can be skewered throughout the film. No Muppet but Sam has the right gravitas to get a big laugh by saying, “I came into money during the war when I lost my mommy and daddy.”
Rizzo the Rat as Miss Scarlet – Clue has four female lead characters, plus a couple women in bit parts, so obviously some of the Muppets are going to need to cross dress, and Rizzo has just the right hard-bitten, streetwise attitude needed for Miss Scarlet. Besides, if any of the Muppet’s is going to operate a brothel, it’s gotta be Rizzo.
Janice as Mrs. Peacock – Janice is not a good fit for Mrs. Peacock, I’ll admit that right up front. But with Miss Piggy already cast as Mrs. White, and Sam as Colonel Mustard, none of the remaining Muppets are really quite right. However, Mrs. Peacock is probably the guest who has the fewest funny lines in the movie, so it might actually improve the role if all her lines were delivered with Janice’s hippy-dippy cadences. She could do Mrs. Peacock’s sudden, rambling speech at dinner well, at the very least.
Pepe the Prawn as Yvette – I know Pepe’s accent isn’t French, but it’s close enough. And the idea of the camera lovingly gazing at Pepe and treating him as a sex symbol is just hilarious to me.
Uncle Deadly as Mr. Boddy – He’s about as close as the regular Muppet cast comes to a villain, and Mr. Boddy’s role requires him to seem threatening from the moment he arrives up to his untimely death.
The Swedish Chef as The Cook – Because, c’mon!
Scooter as The Motorist – Scooter’s kinda my go-to Muppet for a nice-enough guy who really only shows up to get killed.
Rowlf the Dog as The Cop – Rowlf’s the sort of friendly, easy-going sort to, after being locked in a room and seeing everyone acting strangely, take the time to assure Wadsworth, “There’s nothing illegal about any of this.”
Wayne & Wanda as The Singing Telegram – Their bit on The Muppet Show was starting to sing a song, then falling victim to some painful disaster before they can get more than a line or two in. It would be a great continuation of that to have them show up, sing “I am your singing telegram!”, then Wanda immediately gets shot and Wayne runs for the hills.
Our Very Special Guest, Mr. Steve Buscemi! as The Evangelist – I just got to thinking about who is the funniest possible person who could show up in the middle of the climax to say, “Have you given any thought to the Kingdom of Heaven?” Mr. Buscemi’s what I came up with.
Those are my picks for a Muppet rendition of Clue. What are yours?