Give 'Em A Hand! The 15 Coolest Muppets

With everybody's favorite puppets returning to theaters with Jason Segel in The Muppets, we count down the best of them.

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Image via Complex Original
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15. Kermit

Kermit is the coolest frog we know. And that’s not saying much, since we don’t usually roll with amphibians. While we respect Kermit’s popularity, professional hustle as a performer, and status as head honcho of the Muppets, his swag with the ladies is far from on point.

After years of Ms. Piggy going after the green, he allows her to trick him into marrying her, which makes him a p-whipped pushover in our books. Mrs. Piggy has got him by his tadpole-makers, and she knows it! She constantly karate chops him and is never put in line. Kermit needs to frog-up and fire that crazy-bacon-broad and maybe then we can give him the plentiful props he deserves.


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14. Janice

Janice was a straight Valley Girl, and we usually don't support "Blossom"-type bitches. But when a chick rolls with the band, especially one as cool as Electric Mayhem, and only plays the tambourine, you know she's great at...keeping dudes' instruments tuned.


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13. Beaker

Beaker may look an index finger, but he doesn’t push anybody around, he gets pushed. The perpetual test subject, Beaker’s been blown up, amputated, and cloned, and has an inferiority complex we could easily mock, but we're not going to.

The way we see it, Beaker is the wind beneath Dr. Bunsen Honeydew’s wings, a scientific wing man if you will. Without Beaker, the doc's hypotheses would be unproven and unsuccessful. Plus, we have a feeling that Beaker is one of those nerds that are secretly cool. After all, he can beatbox and do this. Beaker: Making meeping cool since 1977.

George the Janitor

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12. George the Janitor

George is like the ugly, unfunny friend you always take with you to the club because he makes you look that much cooler in comparison. Only, George isn't uncool, he's just weird. OK, we'll just come out with it: George had a strange fetish for cleaning implements. Kinda makes your kinks seem vanilla, doesn't it?

Unlike many people who have to rely on Dan Savage and hours of Googling to get in touch with their inner sexual beast, George had an intervention by none other than Mia Farrow, who pointed out his unique relationship (she calls it "love") with his perpetual sidekick, his mop. Not until Steve Carrell's character in Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy, Brick Tamland, convincingly proclaims his love for a lamp, had we seen such deep affection for an inanimate object. But George is a janitor, so don't act like your surprised he brought the dirty.


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11. Fozzie Bear

Fozzie Bear is an unequivocally untalented comedian, and he'd be the first one to admit it. Yet he refuses to abandon his act, and thus, is an inspiration to comedic wannabes everywhere. Loaded with lame puns and faulty punch lines, Fozzie's every bit is a fail-in-the-making, but he works that washed up comedian thing to the point that it's (almost) entertaining.

Or is it all a bad comedy shtick, the Muppet embodiment of Norm MacDonald or Andy Kaufman? Who knows. Either way, it's enjoyable to watch, but also undeniably embarassing and a little sad—just like the majority of stuff in our browser history.

Statler and Waldorf

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10. Statler and Waldorf

Statler and Woldorf are the critical curmudgeons we hope we one day grow up to be. All these dudes ever did was talk shit from the balcony. Which, of course, is the best way to hate—from afar. 

The Swedish Chef

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9. The Swedish Chef

To be honest, we have no clue what Chef is saying, ever. If we had to guess, we’d say they swapped his script with the latest Ikea catalog. But there’s nothing wrong with being a man of few, unintelligible words. Especially when the chef’s limited lingo was totally jacked by Emeril. Act like “Bam!” isn’t the Italian translation of "Børk!" 

Our Ikea chef also wins bonus points for his fowl attempt to cook Big Bird for dinner. We’ve always seen Popeye’s written all over that tender bird. But then again, we only watch Sesame Street when we’re stoned. 

Pepe The King Prawn

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8. Pepe the King Prawn

Pepe makes it clear right out of the gate that he’s no shrimp, he's a king mutha-effin prawn. Pepe gets busy: Blessed with four arms, he's a multitasking machine to be envied, and he even admits to impregnating his girl with 1,500 children, which means his shrimp cocktail must be pretty powerful!

Potent shrimp-juice aside, Pepe is also a business-savvy. He not only penned It's Hard Out Here For A Shrimp, but he also was once the spokesman for the seafood chain Long John Silver's. That makes him a crustacean cannibal, but whatever. He’s gotta provide for those brine babies!

Rowlf the Dog

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7. Rowlf the Dog

Rowlf has always been the underdog, and we're not just saying that because of his pedigree. Maybe it was that dopey, "man's best friend" gaze that threw everybody off, but Rowlf was never really given true props for the unique element he brought to the table: class. 

A true entertainer, Rowlf played at least eight instruments, from violin to ukulele, and was bilingual (he spoke dog and English). And despite his cultural clout, he was the kind of dog that took himself for a walk, and never needed a treat. Maybe he wanted you to scratch his underbelly but he was to suave to beg for it.


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6. Clifford

Clifford is on some crazy Parliament/Funkadelic shit, and we're not gonna lie, we've always kind of admired him for that. Rocking the red Rasta dreads and sunglasses at night takes balls, and we're sure he had those in spades. Um, you know what we mean.

Clifford's skills at slappin da bass, and his part-time hustle as bouncer at Poppyfield's nightclub are also very respectable. He also once admitted he like being spanked on The Arsenio Hall Show, which we can.... Actually, wait, he kind of lost us there.



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5. Sweetums

Real talk: His bottom lip looks like a uncooked hot dog, but we ain't mad at him! It was his shaggy, unwashed-puppet look that turned us on to monsters and single-handedly inspired the likes of Chewbacca, James Gandolphini’s character in Where The Wild Things Are, Joaquin Phoenix’s beard, and Eugene Levy’s eyebrows. That's an unmatched legacy for his hairy visage, and for that, we owe dude our utmost respect and our retired razors.


Miss Piggy

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4. Miss Piggy

Miss Piggy is undeniably the H.P.I.C. She's got an ego bigger than any other Muppet, but she talks that shit 'cuz she can back it up. She's a tough bitch and she knows it—she can go from karate chopping to riding a motorcycle and never lets her love for Kermit get in the way of her hustle.

It's all about moi for Miss Piggy, which is why we're not even going to hate on her for selling out and doing the bacon commercial. We like a pig that can handle her own, and she's got that indepdence thing on lock. And yeah, we'd ordinarily be freaked out by a woman (err, pig) who tries to force a man (err, frog) into a commitment but her love games really get us going. She's crafty...and she's just our type.


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3. Gonzo

Gonzo is the biggest freak in the Muppets crew, and we’re not just saying that because his nose looks like a semi-erect penis (which, by the way, we’re equally parts disgusted by and jealous of, because you know the ladies love it). We’re saying it because Gonzo chases after animal tail like bestiaity ain’t no thang. When Miss Piggy shuts him down, he moves on to a live (as in, non-muppet) cow before finally setting on Camilla, a chicken. Which, we assume had nothing to do with the allure of what she could do with her chicken legs and more to with her, uh, other chicken skills. Amiright, fellas?

Rizzo the Rat

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2. Rizzo

We’ve always related to Rizzo. The rodent embodiment of a true New Yorker, Rizzo has slice of pizza perpetually in hand and an ego that could make Kanye look humble. Not since Splinter has a rat been this badass. Even Splinter’s illest karate skills ain’t got shit on Rizzo's razor sharp sarcasm! Plus, like any true resident of Empire state, Rizzo is naturally skilled in the fine art of scheming. But hey, we’re not hating on his shady hustle—we’re taking notes! 


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