Last year, a fan favorite, the X-Files, returned to the small screen. Fox took David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson out of storage and reunited them in what seemed like a short encore, followed by an announcement that an eleventh season of the series will be produced. Aside from the return of UFOs to the small screen, we’ve seen it invaded by demons (The Exorcist), mysterious quantum anomalies (Frequency), blusterous cops (Lethal Weapon), and the world’s best-known jack-of-all-trades, MacGuyver, return to the small screens. It almost seems like, after Hollywood, TV producers also ran out of new ideas (or grew tired of seeing their otherwise excellent shows be canceled by network executives) and reached out to tried-and-tested stories. There is one major exception, though, that doesn’t remake or reboot a story but merely finishes it in a meaningful way: Twin Peaks: The Return. The original series was – unfortunately – canceled by ABC before the story could be finished. Now, the revival reunites creators Mark Frost and David Lynch with most of the original cast, even the late Don S. Davies, who reprises the role of Maj. Garland Briggs (through archive footage, of course… but in Twin Peaks, you never can tell).
There are a handful of shows that seem to resist all attempts to revive them, though.
One of the best examples would be Firefly, the “space opera meets Western” show canceled after just three months by Fox (and spawning a fan favorite big screen version a few years later). At first, it was Fox that resisted the idea of rebooting or continuing the show despite the numerous petitions initiated by the fans. This year, news of a potential revival has started circulating but the passing of Ron Glass last year, and the resistance of the original cast will likely make it impossible. And fans wouldn’t want to see the Firefly get another crew, that’s for sure.
2004’s Battlestar: Galactica is another TV series that made history. It was a huge success, it gathered a loyal fandom, and it had a massive impact on popular culture, spawning a short-lived prequel series (Caprica), a prequel web series (Blood and Chrome), books, comic books, video games, even a successful video slot machine you can try at the Royal Vegas Casino. The game, a favorite among Royal Vegas players, comes with three game modes, a ton of cut scenes from the series, all this against Bear McCreary’s powerful background music. A movie version of the series has reportedly been in the works for years, with Michael De Luca, Scott Stuber and Dylan Clark attached as producers, Lisa Joy writing, and Francis Lawrence (The Hunger Games, Constantine) directing, but that’s all we know so far.
The fever of remakes, reboots, and reimaginations has seemingly infected the world of TV after taking over Hollywood. Is it a good thing?