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Nullo's avatar

Do you think that any of those old TV shows could be successfully relaunched?

Asked by Nullo (21973points) September 23rd, 2010

I got the first eight episodes of McHale’s Navy on DVD for my birthday and I love ‘em. I’ve seen one episode of Gilligan’s Island, and rather liked that, too. Same for Beverly Hillbillies, I Dream of Jeanne, and the like.

If someone were to take those shows, re-shoot them, perhaps update the setting but keep the same general tone, would they stay afloat?

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22 Answers

BoBo1946's avatar

I’m going to get some flack from this, but Amos and Andy! Love that show.

Seek's avatar

I certainly hope not.

For one – Gilligan’s Island is a horrible show in every sense of the word. Empty plot, empty characters, completely unintelligent so-called comedy. Actually, it reminds me a lot of Survivor.

Beverly Hillbillies was good enough the first time – and I think the plot really depended on the time period in which it was set. No one in America would call a swimming pool a “Cement pond” anymore, and Grandma isn’t old enough to be a Moonshiner these days. If anyone learned how uneducated Jethro was, Pa would be thrown in jail for child neglect.

I Dream of Jeannie might work. That was a legitimately good show. As was Bewitched.

M*A*S*H and McHale’s Navy were excellent. I’d love to see a good military comedy-drama, but it would be hard to pull off without causing a huge political issue – It was much more acceptable in the ‘70s to crack jokes about Asians than it is to crack Muslim jokes today.

If anyone tries to bring back anything remotely resembling I Love Lucy, I will declare war on American television.

john65pennington's avatar

Have you ever heard a remake of an old song that just crusified it? i have. in order to make a remake of an old tv series, the producer would have to have the same feeling and flavor of the writers intentions, for that period of time. i honestly do not believe this is possible. the computer would remake backgrounds that have looked fake in the past.

I say, no, it should never happen. just continue to buy and watch the genuine article. this is why we have our memories and not remakes.

J0E's avatar

I don’t think they could. Back then people just wanted to be entertained, all it took was a very simple plot, and few quirky characters, and that was enough. Most didn’t even have storylines that lasted more than a couple episodes. It was cheap, easy, entertainment. Nowadays people have shorter attention spans, many more options, and higher standards. It wouldn’t work.

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

F.R.I.E.N.D.S. because that show is timeless.

BoBo1946's avatar

@Aesthetic_Mess one the best ever!

Seek's avatar

@Aesthetic_Mess You know, I was just watching some old Friends reruns the other day, and couldn’t help but think how much they relied on the culture of the time period to carry their plots. In 20 years, nothing on Friends will be funny. For example – our kids are going to have no idea what a TV Guide is, or why it’s funny that Chandler’s is addressed to “Miss Chanandeler Bong”.

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr I never thought about that.

erichw1504's avatar

When has it ever worked? Besides maybe one or two, usually TV show remakes are terrible and barely last one season.

TexasDude's avatar

They should re-do The Brady Bunch, only updated to reflect the new paragon of white, middle class existence.

Instead of wood paneling, they would have Thomas Kinkade paintings on the walls. Instead of Tiki idols and footballs, their shelves would be adorned with Precious Moments figurines. Instead of going to Hawaii, they would take the kids to Disney World, or soccer practice.

And instead of taking in their autistic cousin Oliver, they would sponsor a cute, non offensive Ethiopian child or take in a struggling student athlete, to help him believe in himself.

anything to wash away the nebulous guilt and sorrow they feel for their peppy existences

Seek's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard But, would they dare to cast the new Alice as “Alicia, the illegal Guatemalan immigrant they pay $10 a day in cash?”

TexasDude's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr, oh god, I lol’d.

I dunno. I kindof just described a certain part of my family, and as far as I know, they don’t have an illegal indentured Guatemalan cleaning lady, though in the context of the postmodern American Brady Bunch, that would be an interesting twist, that fits perfectly with my idea.

JLeslie's avatar

I like Brady Bunch and Bewitched as possibilities. I really liked Leave it to Beaver, probably would never fly today. Maybe Lost in Space?

ipso's avatar

I’m big on Rockford Files right now. I think that would redux just great.

Lots of ideas for that one.

I hear there was a terrible remake pilot made this year, that was not picked up by the networks.

aprilsimnel's avatar


There’s always going to be greasy spoons and divorced women who need to make a living as waitresses. Plus, TV will always have need of a sassy white Southern lady with an anachronistic hairdo and a handkerchief pinned to her chest, saying:


mrentropy's avatar

I think a lot of shows are products of their time and that makes it difficult to bring them back.

I’m going to disagree with @BoBo1946 about Amos ‘n Andy but only because I think the show is a piece of history and it’s almost criminal how those great actors and actresses are not household names today.

Other shows aren’t quite old enough and still have such a huge following that people wouldn’t watch a new version just out of spite.

Shows from the 1970s and 1980s that were based around computers, like Automan and Max Headroom probably won’t work just because everyone is savvy to computers now and it’s harder for that suspension of disbelief to kick in.

I would probably look more towards the smaller shows that didn’t quite make it in their time, or are kind of forgotten today. Welcome Back, Kotter may or may not work. People can probably still relate to inner city high schools. Bosom Buddies is an idea that can always work, but the premise is a gimmick with a limited life span.

X-Files appears to have been brought back in Fringe and Haven.

So, I dunno. I honestly think every show has already been re-tooled in one form or another. Or flat out copied.

JLeslie's avatar

I watched the new Hawaii Five 0 yesterday, and I thought it was good.

talljasperman's avatar

the Smurfs has been remade… as well as the Care Bears

BoBo1946's avatar

@mrentropy could not agree more!

Tomfafa's avatar

I vote for Gilligan’s Island, so that i could see the professor build a computer out of coconuts.

Nullo's avatar

@Tomfafa Actually, I don’t think that it would be all that difficult -provided that you knew what you were doing – to make an analogue computer like that.

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