Content Shifter: nine upcoming TV reboots
New versions of old TV shows aren’t always a bad idea – have you seen the Children in the room to restart ? Perfection.
But most of the time, it’s just media conglomerates throwing revamped IP at the wall to see what sticks. who asked Expert: Vegas? Bel-Air? Walker?
Here are nine reboots currently in the works that will be supreme wastes of time and money, or mildly watchable, or maybe even – dare to dream – good.
Beavis and Butthead by Mike Judge (Paramount+): This has already started. Monitoring of Beavis and Butthead make the universe film from the start of the year (which didn’t suck – please note, South Park), Paramount+ has rolled out the all-new Beavis and Butt-Head by Mike Judge August 4. They’re the same dumb teens, but now they got hot plugs running pop culture and music videos. B&B will not survive the “WAP”.
Criminal minds (Paramount+): CBS’ Criminal minds ended after 15 seasons and 324 episodes just two years ago – the dismembered body in the Chick-fil-A dumpster isn’t even cold yet. Most of the cast and creatives are back for the reboot; this time around, they’ll be hunting down a serial killer who set up a network of chop-shops during the pandemic (again, too early). Yeah, I’ll probably watch it.
quantum leap (NBC, Peacock): Time-traveling sci-fi comedy quantum leap was never a ratings winner in the ’90s, but NBCUniversal still owns it, and they’re going to squeeze every penny left. At least the new quantum leap follows the positive reboot trend of making these shows less Caucasian (relax, whitey, you’re not “replaced”) with a Korean-born lead actor. But essential? No.
Ally McBeal (Hulu): Ally McBeal, which aired from 1997 to 2002 on Fox, was a “quirky” and “sexy” legal comedy-drama that would likely be considered “problematic” and “hyper goofy” today. Still, that won’t stop IP’s proprietary studio from dusting off Calista Flockhart and the rest of the cast for some “limited series” nostalgia. Good luck for Ally McBeal the former Robert Downey Jr. back.
fraser (Paramount+): Star Kelsey Grammer is everywhere, but the rest of the 1993-2004 comedy cast fraser is completely in the dark about rebooting. Can we (re)make Frasier without Niles (David Hyde Pierce), Roz (Peri Gilpin) and Daphne (Jane Leeves)? No way. The reason why the 2017 will and grace the reboot worked so well was the OG set. Can you name a Grammers solo hit? No.
true blood (HBO, HBO Max): Southern Gothic Vampire Soap true blood produced perhaps three decent seasons, even though it lasted seven. HBO announced a reboot almost two years ago, but has provided little new information since. If the true blood the reboot is happening, it really should come back as a goofy vampire comedy, à la What we do in the shadows. I’ll watch out for that, and you will too.
Maximum height (CMA, AMC+): WTF? the original Maximum height ran for two mid-rated seasons in the late ’80s, but it’s been off the pop culture radar for over 30 years – why a reboot now? old Maximum height episodes don’t exactly explode on Tubi, but since we’re now living in a dystopian future populated by AI-powered TV personalities – the Kardashians aren’t real – why not?
night yard (NBC, Peacock): Most original comedy stars from 1984 to 1992 night yard are dead (except Yakov Smirnoff, according to Satan’s plan). Wait, John Larroquette is still alive and co-starring in the reboot? Eh. New night yard will also star Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) as Judge Abby Stone, the daughter (of course) of the late Judge Harry Stone. May work, may not. (See fraser above.)
To party (Starz): Speaking of recasting, the reboot of the 2009-2010 cult comedy To party miraculously retained stars Adam Scott, Ken Marino, Jane Lynch, Martin Starr, Ryan Hansen and Megan Mullally, but not Lizzy Caplan. The satire of the Hollywood caterer has always Children in the room comeback potential, even without Caplan… I’m not crying; you are tears.
Recent reboots that worked: The Equalizer, Fantasy Island, The Kids in the Hall, Kung Fu, Perry Mason, Twin Peaks, Veronica Mars, Will and Grace.
Recent restarts that sucked: Bel-Air, Charmed, CSI: Vegas, Class Leader, MacGyver, Magnum PI, Murphy Brown, Punky Brewster, Saved by the Bell, Walker.