When you think of actor Tom Hanks you think – “nice guy”, “affable”, or “likeable”.
Hanks won’t win any beauty contests, but at the same time he isn’t ugly. In that regard he’s considered harmless by most men. They wouldn’t mind their wife or girlfriend hanging out with him. There would be no fear of infidelity.
Hanks plays nice guy roles. You don’t see him competing with Danny Trejo as the evil thug or Brad Pitt as the sex symbol. He plays Walt Disney in Saving Mr. Banks, Mr. Rogers in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, and voices everybody’s favorite faithful good guy Woody in the Disney/Pixar Toy Story animated film franchise.
If you had to compare Tom Hanks to an actor of the previous generation it would Jimmy Stewart. He possesses the same qualities – a nice guy who won’t steal your girlfriend.
It is because of these qualities that I offer up the hypothesis that Kermit the Frog is the Tom Hanks of Muppets.
Let’s face it, Gonzo is the lady’s man of the Muppets. Whether it was longtime squeeze Camilla or just another foxy chicken on The Muppet Show set, Gonzo was always a favorite of the ladies.
Fozzie Bear is the jokester, even though his jokes usually aren’t that funny. Fozzie is comic relief., not a leading man.
Miss Piggy is the leading lady, the girl with big charisma and a hunger for the spotlight. Her hair and makeup must always be just right.
But it is Kermit that always acts as the central character. Aside from Miss Piggy, girls don’t fall all over themselves for Kermit. He’s just a nice guy they see at work. He doesn’t do amazing stunts. His characters don’t have one-night stands. He is the everyman, the friend, the loyal faithful companion.
In this day and age where Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian can become celebrities because of the popularity of their sex tapes, it’s nice to know that there is still a place for the good guy. Not the Tom Cruise good guy who always gets the girl, but the type of good guy that would stop on the side of the road and help a stranger change their flat tire.
I love the Muppets. Is Kermit my favorite? No. But I like him. The same way Tom Hanks isn’t my favorite actor, but I like him. Heck, just about everyone likes Tom Hanks and Kermit the Frog.
Maybe that’s why the Muppets have been so popular for so long, to so many generations. Kermit is the figurehead, and having the Tom Hanks of Muppets as your spokesperson is going to make you very popular for a long time.
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