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V for… Version II?

Wow, things are really heating up, remake-wise. In the past week we’ve had confirmation that Robert Rodriguez will be doing The Jetsons and that Liam Neeson will be Hannibal in the A-Team remake. Couple that with the upcoming remake of V that will soon be hitting our screens (giving Elizabeth Mitchell a welcome home after the Lost finale), and it got us thinking: are there any television shows that actually warrant a remake?

I hate it when the neighbours come looking for sugar...

I hate it when the neighbours come looking for sugar...

V was perfectly adequate for what it was. I’ve watched the vintage miniseries twice – once when I was small and again when I picked up the DVD for Mom and Dad a Christmas or two back. The special effects were amazing for the time and the acting and story were a lot better than we’d come to expect from a miniseries at the time (keep in mind that this was before the era of HBO). The point is, if I want to watch V again, I can simply pop the DVD into my player.

Hollywood has a disturbing lack of creativity, that is true. What really ticks me off about re-imagining television shows is that most attempts rarely even try to get the mood right. Yes, Starsky and Hutch was light, but it wasn’t a buddy comedy. Yes, Land of the Lost was kitsch, but it was not a vehicle for a comedian. I honestly think that remaking those pieces in a different genre might have alienated some of that precious fanbase that the studios were trying to court.

Sometimes a man just likes to hold a sawn-off shotgun while standing beside his parked car and wearing a pink shirt...

Sometimes a man just likes to hold a sawn-off shotgun while standing beside his parked car and wearing a pink shirt...

I found this list of television shows that might do well by an on-screen reboot (since Hollywood is so intent on not attempting anything original) and one or two jumped out at me. I think that a modern-day Miami Vice could work, if reimagined by way of The Wire. If Baltimore was visibly decaying along with its social structures, imagine what you could do with Miami’s fluorescent lights and pastel colours. I actually think it could work as a HBO drama series, provided you got the right leads.

I don’t know. What really gets me about the spate of reboots and remakes is not necessarily that they are bad – the US adaptation of Life on Mars was quite good, and the film adaptation of State of Play was grand if condensed – it’s just how utterly unnecessary they are. I suppose I enable the studios in their bad habits though – I will likely check out V and the new A-Team. Sure, I might not like them, but by that stage Hollywood doesn’t care. It’s already got my money.

Still, I suppose that the amount of recycled garbage on our screens means I’ll appreciate the original stuff a bit more… right?

2 Responses

  1. They already did a re-make/re-imagining of ‘Miami Vice.’
    Michael Mann, who actually created the original series, directed the film/
    Most people panned it because they were expecting the old series but I loved it because they really made it work in a new context.

    • Yep, I saw that one and I actually enjoyed it – though I thought it suffered from not being set in Miami. The bulk of the plot took place overseas, as I recall – and I think the plot was a lift of “Smugglers Blues”, right down to the mole (but without the 80s popstar gueststar).
      But yep, I think it demonstrated that the show could work in the present day. The movie wasn’t great, but that had nothing to do with how it was adapted. It was adapted quite well, actually.

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