We might have a nostalgia problem. The concept of embracing markers of a simpler time appeals to many, it’s why the Williamsburg area of Brooklyn thrives, it’s why vinyl records are sold in places as ubiquitous as a Barnes & Noble now, and why social media is something I value, but won’t let envelop me.
Television networks are looking to cash in on our appetite for nostalgia in the upcoming television season with reboots and remakes of cherished films and cult-followed television series. I get it, the past is cool. We enjoy revising it, sometimes with upsetting results.
As a recovering couch potato, I have seen many a television trend come and go. My biggest heartbreaks being the rom-com trend of the 2014 season (RIP:
Selfie, A to Z, Marry Me, and Manhattan Love Story) and the post Sex and the City network television not-quites of Cashmere Mafia and Lipstick Jungle. The reboot trend worries me more than the others. Not only is it unambitious but it also leaves less of an opportunity for fresh original content to find an audience. Here are a few examples of what we’ll see this year:
The Good: X-Files
Gillian Anderson’s work in The Fall (BBC) warms me to hearing the eerie X-Files theme again when its revival starts airing in late January.
The Meh: Fuller House
Even I couldn’t deal with the sticky-sweetness of Full House after age 10 and I gleefully watch Dog with a Blog on the Disney Channel last weekend. It’ll be interesting to see how the clean-cut sitcom has matured with its audience, if at all.
Gilmore girls (200-2007)
Duck Tales (1987-1990)
The Notebook (2004)
Cruel Intentions (1999)
Uncle Buck (1989)
Rush Hour (1998)
I’ve talked about the past a bunch in this post, but I can also predict the future. With this set of reboots and remakes, we should be prepared to be whelmed but not overly so. The reboots of Dallas, Girl Meets World, and even Arrested Development couldn’t quite capture their former glory and networks should take that as an indicator of what’s to come. Make peace with the past and give a great original show a chance.