Bryan Paul Sullo

TV Series that Need Reboots or Revivals

In Arts & Entertainment on 6 October 2015 at 5:32 pm

I started compiling this list a few months back, but recent events have made me realize that I need to get this out there before they actually start coming to fruition.

Some of these shows were cut down in their prime, victims of poor timing. Others had great premises, but suffered from poor execution. Several had long, full lives, and deserve to be remade for today’s audiences.

Star Blazers

The TV show, Star Blazers, was an English dub of a long-running, much-cherished, Japanese cartoon, Space Battleship Yamato. SBY had many incarnations since its 1974 debut, including a live-action movie in 2010.

Apparently, there’s a live-action Star Blazers movie in the works for American audiences as well.

The basic premise is this: In the future, Earth is attacked by a militant alien race who bombard the planet until the surface is a barren, uninhabitable desert. What remains of humanity has moved underground, and all seems lost until a friendly alien sends plans for a new type of propulsion system and weapon. Having no suitable space ship for this system, the humans secretly resurrect the WWII battle ship Yamato, turning it into a space battleship.

Advances in CGI would make this economical to produce as a weekly live-action series.

The story line in the original series was always very character-driven, and there’s a lot to pull from the source material.

Land of the Lost

Land of the Lost was a children’s show about two kids and their father who become lost in a sort of pocket world where dinosaurs and ancient, alien technology exist alongside one another.
An attempt was made at rebooting Land of the Lost, once, in the ’90s, but it didn’t do well. (I won’t even comment on the recent movie.) The original show had a rich, detailed mythology and some great storytelling, which is surprising, seeing as it was a kids show. With updated effects, this could be a prime-time family show.

I wouldn’t try to incorporate the original show canon into the new one. Just start fresh, with a new family, but keep to the same mythos as much as possible.

ALF

ALF was so ridiculously and obviously a puppet, but somehow we all bought it. It was a funny show about a snarky alien who lived with a normal, American family. ALF has been making a bit of a comeback lately, and I think he’d do well to find a new family to annoy.

MacGyver

If MacGyver doesn’t come in near the top of your list of favorite TV shows of all time, there’s something wrong with you. A reboot could have the exact same premise as the original, but with Angus MacGyver’s heretofore-unknown daughter in the title role. Richard Dean Anderson could provide occasional cameos.

Update: It looks like there is a MacGyver reboot on the horizon.

The Equalizer

Edward Woodward played a very bad-ass ex-spy in this 80’s drama. The Equalizer was the unassuming guy who could kill you in thirty different ways. Fortunately, he was on the side of the poor and oppressed. He was kind of like a more-serious A-Team of one. We could all use a guardian angel like the Equalizer, and TV could use a remake of this show.

The Fall Guy / The Rockford Files

The down-on-his-luck reluctant hero is a classic trope we haven’t seen much of lately. Add a classically awesome intro song into the mix and you’ve got a hit.

 

Mission: Impossible

One of the best TV shows of the Cold War. Keep the 60’s time period, up the realism for today’s audience (but keep it to a PG rating) and this would fly.

 

M*A*S*H

Remaking M*A*S*H would be nigh on impossible, but there are a lot of veterans with stuff they need to process, and a lot of civilians who need help relating to them. A show that offered a lighter look at military life might just help.

Sanford and Son

Shabby chic is in again. Sanford and Son was actually already a remake of a British show, Steptoe and Son. (Yes, the British have weird names.) It was essentially a vehicle for comedian, Redd Foxx, and finding an actor to fill those shoes would be a task, but it would be worth it.

The Muppet Show

Change it from a vaudeville theater production to a talent/reality show. Keep everything else the same.
Update: It looks like ABC has destroyed The Muppets by making it a remake of The Office.

Welcome Back, Kotter / Head of the Class

It’s time for a sitcom that shows teachers in a good light.

 

The Addams Family

But not “the” Addams Family. That’s been tried, and no one could replicate John Astin’s iconic performance as Gomez Addams. Something in the same vein would be good though. A steampunk sitcom, perhaps.

No explanation was ever given (nor is one needed) for why the family members are the way they are. They’re just the ultra-weird family next door.

The Avengers

(Not the Marvel Avengers)

The Avengers was a slick, 60’s, British spy duo. Assuming Agent Carter continues to team up with Jarvis, I might accept this as a suitable replacement (which would sort of make it the Marvel Avengers, I guess).

Police Squad

The short-lived show the Naked Gun movies were based on. There is too much seriousness on TV. We need a good parody.

 

The Twilight Zone / The Outer Limits / Amazing Stories

TV needs a weekly speculative-fiction anthology.

 

The Lone Ranger

No gimmicks. Just a classic western with good guys and bad guys.

 

Perfect Strangers

Here’s my pitch: A thoroughly western, third-generation Indian-American (Mindy Kaling?) has her life turned upside down when her provincial Indian cousin arrives on her doorstep.

 

The Dresden Files

This was an awesome show, based on some excellent books. Just pick up where it left off.

 

Legend / The Adventures of Brisco County Jr.

Sure, sci-fi westerns never last long, but they’re fun while they do.

 

Outsourced

This was a ridiculously funny show, cut down in it’s prime. Another one that could just pick up where it left off.

 

Voyagers!

The adventures of a kid who gets caught up with a time traveler and has to help fix history on a weekly basis.

 

Jericho

Jericho was one of the best TV series in recent memory, and it was canceled before it had a chance to finish its arc. The premise is that the US has suffered a series of nuclear attacks on its major cities (presumably by terrorists, but that’s one of the mysteries). The story of the people of Jericho, KS, trying to survive is set against the backdrop of a nation torn apart and trying to rebuild.

It’s been seven years since Jericho went off the air. They could do a quick recap of what has gone on and then drop us into the current timeline.

Your Turn

Did this list stir up some memories? What did I miss? Any TV shows you’d like to see remade or re-imagined? Some of these shows were definite products of their time. Which ones should just be left well-enough alone?

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