Around Christmas this last year I saw a deck of Muppet-themed playing cards that had a picture of Kermit the Frog wearing a suit and trying to look smoothly into the distance. Immediately I launched into a rant on how I hate it when cartoon characters and puppets are made to look smooth or sinister or studly (think about how Looney Toon characters used to be made to look like gangstas). When I was recounting my hatred of smooth Muppets (and I'm not talking about smooth like those stoned Muppets in the band -- I'm talking about Kermit as pictured below), I just realized that "hate" is a really strong word.
Actually, I remember something that Mister Rogers said in that great Esquire interview:
"Mister Rogers always worries about things like that, because he always worries about children, and when his station wagon stopped in traffic next to a bus stop, he read aloud the advertisement of an airline trying to push its international service. "Hmmm," Mister Rogers said, "that's a strange ad. 'Most people think of us as a great domestic airline. We hate that.' Hmmm. Hate is such a strong word to use so lightly. If they can hate something like that, you wonder how easy it would be for them to hate something more important."
I think "hating" smooth Muppets is the definition of using a word lightly and I should probably just get over it.