ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Muppet Treasure Island: Musical Pirates

Updated on December 2, 2019
One of the posters for the movie Muppet Treasure Island.
One of the posters for the movie Muppet Treasure Island. | Source


The Muppets have been around for a long time. As a result, some hilarious movies have been made over the years. One good example was the 1996 movie Muppet Treasure Island, which was based on the 1883 novel Treasure Island. Produced by Jim Henson Productions and Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Muppet Treasure Island combined the action and adventure of the original book Treasure Island and the whimsical comedy of the Muppets. Telling the story of one boy's adventures in the high seas to look for treasure, Muppet Treasure Island managed to maintain the drama of the original novel despite including Muppets like Gonzo and Rizzo the Rat as the constant companions of the boy during this adventure. In addition to the inclusion of Gonzo and Rizzo as the characters who were arguably the main protagonists of the story, the viewer got to see other popular Muppets act as significant characters from Muppet Treasure Island. You had Kermit the Frog as Captain Smollett, Fozzie Bear as the district squire Trelawney, and Miss Piggy as the female Benjamina Gunn. In addition to adding Muoot characters to the plot, there were some interesting songs in Muppet Treasure Island. You had a song that basically established that the pirates in this movie were not trustworthy folk, a song that showed a comedic interpretation of the effects of isolation at sea, and a song that subverted the pirates' villainy with a more positive interpretation. Muppet Treasure Island was a fun movie to watch as a kid, and possibly get certain songs stuck in one's head.

Darker and Edgier

Muppet Treasure Island began with a song which, in the context of the novel Treasure Island, explained how the treasure which set this whole story into motion began. The narrator talked about an expedition carried out by a man named Captain Flint. The narrator was Captain Flint's first mate, and he made sure that the viewer knew that this was a dark tale to tell. And if the viewer was unsure whether or not Muppet Treasure Island would be as dark a tale as the narrator implied, the song Shiver My Timbers made the darkness of Muppet Treasure Island very apparent. With lyrics like:

And those buccaneers drowned their sins in rum!
The devil himself would have to call them scum!
Every man aboard would have killed his mate.
For a bag of guineas or a piece of eight!
A piece of eight!
A piece of eight!
Five, six, seven, eight

Hulla wacka! Ulla wacka! something not right!
Many wicked icky things gonna happen tonight!
Hulla wacka! Mulla wacka! Sailor men beware!
When de money in de ground dere's murder in de air!
Murder in de air!
One more time now!

The viewer had to come to accept the idea that this movie would involve someone dying. Of course, once the story shifted to the perspective of Jim Hawkins, Gonzo, and Rizzo, there was still death, but shown in a darkly hilarious manner.

And with this death, the adventure to find Captain Flint's treasure could begin. Of course, with the warning that the three adventurers had to avoid certain people, the danger within Muppet Treasure Island was something that hung on the air.

What a jolly group. And trustworthy, too.
What a jolly group. And trustworthy, too. | Source

The Adventure

While there was a bigger sense of danger in Muppet Treasure Island compared to other movies starring the Muppets, Of course, there were some comedic moments that helped retain the child friendly image the Muppets have gained over the years. In the original novel Treasure island, Captain Smollett expressed distrust of the crew that were on the ship at the time. Kermit the Frog in the same role expressed a similar sentiment, but in a more overt manner. For instance, in one scene Kermit and Sam the Eagle, playing Mr. Samuel Arrow, had a scene where a roll call was held. Essentially, the movie emphasized that almost all of the people who were not well known Muppets going on this voyage, be they human or Muppet themselves, were obviously evil, looked like they would be cast as villains. or were already cast as villains in other cinematic examples. Especially Big Fat Ugly Bug Faced Baby Eating O'Brien. In typical Muppet fashion, Muppet Treasure Island poked fun on this aspect of Treasure Island's story by blaming Fozzie Bear's friend who lived in his finger.

But even if the crew in Muppet Treasure Island was filled with obviously evil people, that did not mean that they could not participate in the shenanigans of this movie. At one point in the movie, it was implied that the voyage to Captain Flint's treasure took a very long time. So much so that apparently everyone just spontaneously burst into song. Titled Cabin Fever, this song was basically everybody going crazy and making a song about how crazy they were going. With lyrics like:

Cabin fever has ravaged all aboard
This once proud vessel has become a floating psycho ward
We were sailing, sailing headed who knows where
And now though we're all here
We're not all there

It was obvious that everybody was completely nuts during this sequence. Thankfully, the voyage was nearing its end at this point before any lasting damage could occur.

Fun and In-Character

Muppet Treasure Island was a movie that took some artistic liberties when it came to the story, but it at least tried to make the movie as accurate to the books. For instance, Jim Hawkins was one character in the story, but in the movie he was accompanied by Gonzo and Rizzo the Rat. And while the viewer was already aware that Long John Silver, here played by Tim Curry, was the bad guy, the viewer could relate with Jim in that we actually grew to like the character because it seemed morally ambiguous in regards to his level of villainy. And while Long John Silver was accompanied by Muppets who confirmed that they were the bad guys in this movie, they were still comedic even when they did something like torture Gonzo. Mostly because apparently Gonzo liked getting his limbs elongated. Even the song Professional Pirate tried to make the pirates less villainous by saying they they were misunderstood. With lyrics like:

Long John:
Some say that pirates steal and should be feared and hated
I say we're victims of bad press; it's all exaggerated
We'd never stab you in the back, we'd never lie or cheat
We're just about the nicest guys you'd ever want to meet!

Hey, ho, ho
It's one for all for one
And we'll share-and-share-alike with you and love you like a son
We're gentlemen of fortune and that's what we're proud to be
And when you're a professional pirate

Long John:
You'll be honest, brave, and free
The soul of decency
You'll be loyal and fair and on the square
And most importantly—

When you're a professional pirate
You're always in the best of company!

The viewer ends up kind of liking the villains of this movie. And while they do get defeated in the end, it was somewhat relieving that none of them suffer fatally. Except Dead Tom. But he was already dead.

You don't have to wear a suit!
You don't have to wear a suit! | Source


Muppet Treasure Island was a great movie. Old, but still something people will still enjoy watching for many years.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)