The Muppet Christmas Carol remains the definitive film adaptation of Charles Dickens’ classic novel, as it manages to stay true to the source material while infusing some classic Muppet absurdity and heart to make it a bonafide Christmas classic. And as millions sat down to watch the movie this Christmas season, some noticed that Disney+ had made a few subtle changes.
Shane O. Keating, a self-described “Muppet-liking guy,” pointed out on Twitter that the streaming service seemed to have removed the arm rods of some of the characters in a few scenes, most likely to try and get the viewer to forget about the fact that they are watching puppets.
— Shane O. Keating (@sokdrawer) December 8, 2021
This is not the first time that Disney+ has subtly made “alterations” in an attempt to enhance the experience of the viewer but in most cases, the reactions have been mixed, at best. And in this case, it feels wholly unnecessary, as part of the charm of the Muppets is that you are watching the puppets interact with the rest of the world.
“Disney seems to think our faces will melt and our heads will explode if we see any arm rods, but honestly, they’re erasing our ability to see the artistry in the art itself . . .” Joseph Scarbrough wrote in response to Keating’s tweet.
Disney seems to think our faces will melt and our heads will explode if we see any arm rods, but honestly, they're erasing our ability to see the artistry in the art itself . . . it's like how Aardman never bothers to smooth out the fingerprints from their clay models.
— 🎥 𝗝𝗢𝗦𝗘𝗣𝗛 𝗦𝗖𝗔𝗥𝗕𝗥𝗢𝗨𝗚𝗛 🎬 (@ScarbroughProd) December 8, 2021
It’s hard to disagree with him. Plus, in a movie where Michael Caine employs a group of rats and a frog in Victorian England, is the viewing experience really going to be dampened all that much if you happen to see the occasional arm rod? If anything, it might help you appreciate just how impressive these movies really are.
But ultimately, it’s a minor change that doesn’t take away from the movie’s overall quality. So just sit back, relax, and remember that where ever you find love, it feels like Christmas.