Musings

It’s A Classic For A Reason…Right?

First, for those of you who missed the update yesterday, foot is not broken and pups not sick.  In even better news, insurance is going to pay for half of my roof.  And now on to my post.

Over the last couple of decades, Hollywood has displayed a really disturbing trend.  Despite the myriad of good stories out there, they keep seeming to gravitate toward remaking past stuff.  Now I know that there are really no new stories, only new spins on old concepts, but this is ridiculous.  Most are done under the auspices of introducing a new generation to the classics in a rebooted version that the young folks are more likely to understand.

Here’s just a smattering of examples:

Movies:

  • Bad News Bears
  • Clash of the Titans
  • Dawn of the Dead
  • Flubber (was a remake of the Absent-Minded Professor)
  • Footloose
  • Freaky Friday (okay, I admit I actually like this remake)
  • Godzilla
  • Halloween
  • King Kong
  • The Longest Yard
  • Friday the 13th

TV:

  • Melrose Place
  • Bionic Woman
  • Knight Rider
  • Teen Wolf (originally a comedy movie, now a rebooted TV series more in the vein of Vampire Diaries)
  • 90210

I’m sorry, the originals were classics for a reason.  You wanna introduce kids to them, show them the FIRST ONES.  Don’t go making new versions that hold none of the appeal of the originals.

But the other night I saw an ad for a reboot that may positively take the cake.  TNT is bringing back Dallas.  Complete with Bobby and J.R., the same house, same theme music.  Just everybody older and apparently with kids who want to drill on Ewing land because they are greedy SOBs (at least that was the gist I got from the preview).  Supposed to come back in the summer of 2012.

Seriously?  You’ve got a whole generation of people who have never even HEARD of the question Who shot J.R.? let alone give a darn about the answer.  Is this supposed to be a means to appeal to the aging baby boomers who were addicted to the show back in the 80s?  Or are they trying to usher in a new generation of viewers?

Doesn’t Hollywood read?  There are SCADS of fantastic novels that would make AWESOME TV shows and movies.  Why are they pouring money into these tired remakes that totally lose the spirit of the original show?  Are they deluded enough to think they’re going to get another Battlestar Galactica or Dr. Who? (the only TV remakes I can think of off hand that have been awesome).  Why are they so afraid to take RISKS on NEW and WONDERFUL STORIES?

I wanna see Jeri Smith Ready’s Shift made into a TV series.  And Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey series turned into movies.  And Susan Bischoff’s Talent Chronicles done by Joss Whedon in whatever format he’ll do because he’s Joss and he’s awesome–except he is not allowed to deviate from the actual romance in the books because he often breaks that rule and that’s not okay with me (the ending of Dollhouse was entirely unacceptable).  Anne Fortier’s Juliet would make a fabulous movie.  And who doesn’t want to see a movie or TV version of Raphael from Nalini Singh’s Archangel books?  There’s just…sigh, so much AWESOME out there and Hollywood is…lazy.  Or something.

What books do YOU want to see turned into movie or TV?

18 thoughts on “It’s A Classic For A Reason…Right?

  1. Rebooting Dallas is so stupid. That was a great show in its day, and I doubt anything new is going to live up to it.

    I’m like you, a TV series from the ArchAngel books would be very cool. I don’t read a lot of series, but I think some of Lisa Gardner’s books could make a good series …

    1. The other thing is that audiences are very different now than in the 80s. Because special effects weren’t great back then, shows had to rely on good characters. Today’s audiences want good characters but they want good special effects TOO and some of those original shows really suffer from that addition.

  2. My son told me they were remaking Total Recall. How weird is that? And I really, really don’t want to see a remake of Dallas. That’s just not right!

    I’m glad to see they are doing a movie from the first Stephanie Plum book, One For the Money, although I’m not sure the men they have playing Joe and Ranger are hot enough. We’ll see. But I agree that the Talent Chronicles would make great movies, especially if Joss Whedon did them.Of course, they need to make a movie out of the Mirus series. 😉 Stacey Wallace Benefiel is talking about trying to get a TV series from her Zellie book series. There isn’t enough time or space to list all of the good books, indie and trad, that would make great movies or TV series. Maybe Hollywood has forgotten how to read….

  3. Lol, this is really funny, because I just stumbled upon the new Dallas reboot posted about 10 mins before seeing your post. I thought it was a fanart done by some old Dallas-fan. I’m as shocked and puzzled as you as to why they decided to remake it: I mean yes, Dallas had its huge following back then, but why recycle a story already done for several years? I agree, there are so many original, fresh ideas and I think so often when reading books these days how much I would love to see this made into a series or movie, why can’t TV and movie productions broaden their horizons and read the books we do? That way they would find so many amazing stories that beg to be adapted 😀

    I would love to see these series made into TV series: Carolyn Crane’s Disillusionist series, Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assasin series, Gini Koch’s Kitty Katt series. And I absolutely agree: Susan Bischoff’s Talent Chronicles would be such a great fit to Joss Whedon’s style 😀 Would love to watch that one as well!

  4. A new version of Dallas is just plain lunacy.

    I am quite far behind with my reading at the moment, but have just read Garry Charles short stories ‘Twisted Imaginings’ Volumes 1-4 and a few of those would make excellent movies.

    Glad your foot isn’t broken, and great news on the roof. We are waiting to hear back on a house. Need to sort out the financing by tomorrow or we loose it. 4 bedrooms too so all the kids get their own place.

    Don’t forget to add the A Team movie to the list of bad remakes and also thte trend of taking good french and Spanish horror movies and remaking them in exact copy but with English speaking actors in palce of dubbing or yee-gads…. subtitles.

  5. As this is a constant conversation between my wife and I, we could not agree with you more. The conclusion that we have come to is that those that choose what gets produced have no creativity. This is why they are producers. If they were actually creative, well, then they would be writers.

    The other thought we have is, when will an “indie television” station pop up that starts to cater to the many other stories that are out their with great potential and smack the tired old networks out of their uncreative stupor. Much the way indie publishing is doing with books.

    Great post, Kait!

  6. Hmmmm…I agree. However the new Hawaii 5-0 is awesome. But then I think Alex O’Loughlin is VERY HOT so that could color my judgement there. 🙂

    I would like to see J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger series as a TV series. Probably would have to be an HBO show though what with all the bonding and sex, etc. ***whew is it hot in here?***

  7. 🙂 Thanks. I would totally say that Joss needs to call me, but we know how my end of that conversation would go. Gasp gasp thud.

    Generally speaking, I like song covers and reimaginings of old stories. Some great teen movies are teenified versions of old stories like 10 Things I Hate About You/Taming of the Shrew and Clueless/Emma. Actually, getting different authors’ and scriptwriters’ takes on vampire legends and seeing the set of rules they came up with was how I got so into the vampire thing (before it got way out of hand).

    But some of them…no. I liked Battlestar Galactica on its own, but it really was its own show. It had so little to do with the original show that there seemed to be no reason to borrow from the old and the classic could have been left alone in its own awesomeness. It seemed to me that the old one wasn’t such a popular show that the new one really benefitted from taking its name and not a whole lot else. So that’s one thing I don’t like: slapping an old name on a new story like you’re just trying to get viewers from the name.

    And let’s not even talk about the Bionic Woman fiasco. In fact, just the other day when my husband and I were talking about the Talent Chronicles TV series, he said, “Just don’t let anyone involved in that Bionic Woman thing get near it.”

    I think people are craving new but that Hollywood seems to think bringing things back is a safer bet.

  8. Being huge movie and TV fanatics, my Mini-me (daughter) and I talk about this constantly. If it’s not the horrible writing (dialogue) then it’s bad casting that’s killing the thrill of giving new shows a chance or enticing me to part with hard-earned money for a new release in the movie theaters (need I say G.I. Joe?). Lately there have too many instances to count where I’ve been so close to asking Hollywood for many hours of my life back. So I’ve just been watching my favorite movies and TV shows on DVDs when I’m not writing or working my full-time job.

    Now although I completely respect the commenter’s opinion on seeing J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood (BDB) series on the screen, I’m going to have to vehemently object to it. In my opinion and to her own fault, the Warden has done an excellent job with describing the heroes of this series. So, naturally, I’ve added to these perceptions of what they look. And with the abysmal rate Hollywood has been casting lately, the possibility is too high that they will ruin my daily BDB fantasizing sessions. And NOBODY messes with my fantasies. 😉

    However, although a bit similar to the BDB series, I wouldn’t mind watching Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed series. See, I’m willing to compromise. 🙂

    1. I figure if they made BDB into a series, they’d ruin it by focusing JUST on the sex (that’s what ruined True Blood for me) to the exclusion of plot. So no, I don’t wanna see that made either.

      1. You know now that you say that, Widow I agree about BDB. That’s part of why I didn’t like True Blood either…all the sex and the lack of really good looking guys to play the parts (yes I have my own perceptions as well so yeah don’t muck with that!) I had forgotten about the Midnight Breed series…yep that would be nice too. But once again only if they have the right characters and follow the books as close as possible. Another reason I didn’t like True Blood was they totally went off in left field on that one. I hate that!

  9. Okay, Kait and Anya, you’re going to have to forgive me for this, but I actually like the True Blood series. But, in my defense, I’ve never read anything from the Sookie Stackhouse series. I just walked in blind and oblivious, with only my curiosity about this new TV show.

    Anya, I’m with you when it comes to staying true to the book, romance books especially. (I’m using romance because that’s what I read.) The plot, the romance, the characters, the dialogue, the bulk of the work is done. Writing a screenplay for a romance book shouldn’t require a bunch of unnecessary tweaking if the screenwriter sticks with the story the way the author wrote it. I mean, we wouldn’t have fallen in love with this world if the AUTHOR hadn’t welcomed us into it in the first place. Now if it’s paranormal/fantasy romance then I think it’s safe to say a little CGI might be needed to kick it up a notch. 😉 Lord of the Rings, anyone?

    Lately, it seems as if movies/TV shows adapted from books have completely missed the mark. Eragon, Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, and Legend of the Seeker are prime examples, in my opinion. The screenplay for Twilight, on the other hand, was nicely done. No disrespect to the author but, to me, the movie was much better than the book. New Moon? Definitely shouldn’t have followed the book on that one.

    I haven’t read Game of Thrones books yet and am still catching up on the TV series. Did Hollywood do the books justice and did it “screw the pooch” yet again?

    1. I haven’t actually read any of the True Blood books, so I don’t know what they’re really like. I just don’t like a lot of graphic nudity in what I watch. Hubs and I tried to watch the new Game of Thrones series too and I just couldn’t handle it. Boobs! So many unnecessary BOOBS. It just seems that when Hollywood adapts stuff that’s supposed to be sexy, they focus on the sex in such a way that it’s totally objectified and doesn’t actually ADD to the plot. Because in the books, the sex MEANS something (usually). It’s emotional and advances the plot. Boobs and bare butts don’t actually advance anything and definitely don’t say a thing about the emotion that SHOULD be in the scene.

      1. The True Blood series is very loosely based on the books. Every once in awhile I say to my husband, “Hey, that actually happened in the book!” I agree that it has way too much sex. I’m so tired of seeing Jason Stackhouse naked., But I just can’t seem to stop watching it! It’s like a train wreck. You don’t WANT to look, but….

        The books are actually lighter and funnier than the HBO series. The books are much better. And I agree with Anya that the actors playing the parts aren’t how I pictured them in the books.

  10. Virals. I actually liked that novel–the woman and her friends turned to have canine abilities after the dog infected them.

    Also, The Uglies. This one is about how a kid had to receive surgeries when she’s fifteen-sixteen and turn into a Pretty… Only the pretties become stupid because of the brain lesion. Let’s see the backlash of the entire cosmetic surgery industry on that one. 😉

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