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Revitalized, Revamped, and Re-Cancelled
Newer is always better.
Or is it?
It seems like every magazine advertisement, every commercial, every show is telling us that if it’s the newer choice, it’s the better choice. Which in some cases may be true (you can’t watch the latest Winnie the Pooh movie on DVD if you only have a VHS player), but when it comes to bringing back updated versions of television shows and movies this sentiment is very rarely proven true. Why is this? Because so often money-hungry Hollywood producers like to take things that were once popular before and try to update them and add new-fangled technology like pocket-sized cell phones (gasp!).
Sure, not all reboots stink like moldy cheese on a hot summer day, but let’s face it — a vast majority do. Don’t believe me?
What about that recent “Charlie’s Angels” reboot on ABC? I can tell you right now that it was doomed from the beginning. Was it because of bad acting? There were ups and downs. Poor storyline? It did have a little action, mystery, romance — all the fixings of a hit TV show. Not even the built-in brand recognition could help save this show, however.
The reason why the new “Charlie’s Angels” failed to reach success is because this was the second time that some money-hungry Hollywood producers have completely ruined the “Charlie’s Angels” franchise by deciding it would be a good idea to try and bring back the popular ‘70s show. Yeah, remember that horrible Cameron Diaz movie with Drew Barrymore and Lucy Liu? I won’t even give my opinion on the sequel, either.
Of course, Charlie’s Angels isn’t the only show that I wish my eyes could un-see. Remember when CW brought back “Melrose Place”? Or when NBC brought back “Knight Rider”? Which, by the way, personally I think “Knight Rider” would have proven a greater success had they brought back David Hasselhoff. Who doesn’t love the Hoff?
Both of those rightfully only lasted one season, and, while I’ve never seen any episodes from the original Melrose Place, I promise my brain will never be able to erase the unfortunate memory of Ashlee Simpson’s acting. I thought we were free of her “acting career” after “7th Heaven,” but I guess that just wasn’t enough, now was it?
Occasionally, there is the reboot that is well-received by television watchers. Take “90210” for example. That show is crawling with bad actors and over-used plotlines. It should have been cancelled after the first episode, but it still held strong. And then Jennie Garth left, the only remaining tie with the original version besides the school it’s shot in. Her departure should’ve been a note to end the show, but no, it still was renewed for more episodes. It’s now four seasons into the series, and I still can’t find a reason to watch it over the original. I’m sorry, but Liam is no Brandon.
Then there is the more PG Nickelodeon version of “90210” — Degrassi: The Next Generation. This is the second reboot of Degrassi Junior High, and they frequently reuse story lines. Did anyone else notice that not only did Liberty and Jenna both give up their babies for adoptions, but Riley and Marco both were afraid to come out to their parents and Peter and Anya both lost loves to missions work in Kenya? And all of these were numerous seasons apart.
Maybe it’s because there is something to compare it to that makes it so hard for these shows to compete in the world of modern television. Maybe it’s how the characters seem to pale in comparison to the shiny new shows with new characters and new plots that intrigue us.
Sure, there may be upgraded technology that does something that makes the show supposedly better, but how can you expect a show to compete when all it’s doing is taking an old concept and continuing it, if not playing the same storyline all over again? A super-fan might enjoy that, but for the majority of the viewership, especially in the 18-49 demographic that makes up the biggest group of viewers want something different to watch.
Honestly, Hollywood needs to just cut out the remakes. They’re a cute little idea, but it is most likey a waste of your money and a waste of our time. Instead of reminiscing on what was popular 20 or 30 years ago, let’s start putting out some new matierial.
And who knows? Maybe one day they’ll be wanting to do a remake of “SpongeBob”. In the meantime, let’s pray that day never comes.