Not that I don’t love me some Dollhouse, but other shows deserve a chance, too. With Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Arrested Development, and Veronica Mars all returning, let’s take a look at some other shows that would be practical to resurrect. And marvel at how Toddlers and Tiaras is now in its FIFTH season but certain others were cancelled after less than one. So. Much. Rage.
Mystery Science Theater 3000
Suddenly I have a refreshing mint flavor.
A decade and a half after its cancellation, you will find MSTies “circulating the tapes” and debating their favorite host’s attributes in the same vein as the Kirk/Picard debacle. This show ranks as the longest running on this list, with ten seasons (11 if you count the KTMA years) and a full-length feature that was ironically shorter than the television episodes.
Am I biased? Yes, because I seriously love this show. I love this show so much I built my own working Servo who now graces the bar in our man cave, and shoots snarky glares at my husband while he plays BioShock. I also convinced a group of friends to dress as Mike, Dr. Forrester and Crow (that’d be me) for Halloween. Pics or it didn’t happen?
The best episodes in my opinion are from season 8 (post movie) and beyond – Space Mutiny, Overdrawn at the Memory Bank, Pumaman. Yes, I like Mike Nelson a smidge more than Joel Hodgson, because the bots had zero respect for their non-creator and taunted him relentlessly. (Mike broke the Hubble! Mike broke the Hubble!) Before we breach the hull and all die, understand that Joel chose Mike as his replacement, a fitting selection since Mike served as head writer and occasional guest actor for most of the series.
Whaddya think, Sirs?
Why it’s practical: Here’s the thing – voices for the most part don’t change. Three-quarters of the show is made of puppets for Crow’s sake, and the Henson empire is now into its seventh decade built on this premise. Although Joel and Mike have both continued with their own versions of film riffing (Cinematic Titanic and Rifftrax, respectively), a reboot could easily be developed inserting a naïve new Deep 13 janitor. If a couple of droids could end up back on the same damn planet in the same damn family, there’s no reason Servo and “Art” wouldn’t find themselves back on the Satellite of Love being pursued by a deranged scientist or his mother.
Welcome to the Circus of Values!
What the Hell Michigan happened to this show? Unique concept, brilliant writing and casting, and a truly refreshing spin on the battle between good and evil. It was Assassin’s Creed goes to the Circus, minus the guy in the big yellow hat. That smell? Sawdust, popcorn, carnies, and fear.
Dark and gritty and powerful – a combination HBO seems to excel at, but often cancels way too quickly. Carnivàle ended up being an opening act rather than a three-ring circus – originally planned as a six season series, the show was given the HBOot after merely two, wrapped up with a Mockingjay-esque abrupt ending that left fans unsatisfied. It was a premature jump to a forced climax; after reading what Daniel Knauf had actually planned as the extended story arc, I cried a big ol’ big top tear for what might have been.
Every prophet in his house.
Why it’s practical: Um… it’s a traveling circus – limitless possibilities for cast, setting and plot lines. While I enjoyed 1930s Dust Bowl setting, I was disappointed we didn’t get to explore an epic Avataric battle and its implications in the impeding World War – or beyond. I would love to see this series rebooted and expanded from its original time frame – take it back further and examine Ben and Justin’s ancestors, or accelerate into the future and explore the lives of their descendents. And then the producers wouldn’t have to worry about tracking down occasional rehab resident Nick Stahl. Awww…
What are you all looking at???
Yes, I’m aware they sort of wrapped up the series with a film after being cancelled, but *cough* so did Firefly, and not exactly by original intent. If Battlestar could be resurrected successfully after 20 years, so can Farscape. If Star Trek can put Scott Bakula in the captain’s chair, why can’t we have Crichton and Aeryn back? Or take it a step further and continue the story with a new cast in the same universe. Sigh… I just really miss my Farscape…
Alas, rumors of the show’s return have been shot down for years, with sets being dismantled after financing fell through. I’m not going to say it didn’t have a good run, but like everything else that was denied the ability to reach its full potential, it could have been so much more.
Still one of my favorite episodes.
Why it’s practical: Again, puppets and makeup, people! Aliens and characters that don’t age! This show had/has just as many people clamoring for it’s return as Firefly, and SciFi even retracted its original claims of a drop in ratings and a rise in production costs after fans revolted over its abrupt cancellation. If it wasn’t expensive and yielded great ratings, why the cut-off? Farscape was ultimately the victim of network negotiations and takeovers – go here for an in depth explanation as to what exactly happened. It makes my head hurt.
Uh, turn around there, Skeet…
With the continuing threat of possible nuclear war (or at least media-incited public paranoia), this premise will always have its own niche. Most of the story didn’t center around CG effects or even the total destruction of the major cities – it was the interpersonal relationships following the catastrophic events that proved to be the driving force. A fan-based support movement brought it back from the brink of cancellation after the first season, and there has been talk of a possible revival on Netflix.
Martial Law & Disorder.
Why it’s practical: When this one first came to mind, I dismissed it thinking there’s only so long they can extend the storyline past the initial events. At the risk of negating the title however, why not take it on the road? Explore how larger cities handled the fallout? The similarities, differences, new societies? I enjoyed traipsing around with the Greens, but bringing in some fresh new faces wouldn’t be difficult – and would keep Jericho going beyond its own walls.
My Name Is Earl
I’m just trying to be a better person.
Again, biased because, again Halloween costume. The fact that I get my husband to shave his beard and go along with my schemes every year is a testament to a bond of mutual geeky devotion.
I realize I’m pushing it here. But like so many suddenly suspended shows, this one got left on a cliffhanger, leaving us wondering just who Earl Junior’s father is (hint: not Earl). It was great shut-your-brain-off entertainment. The obvious morality tales left you smiling instead of feeling like you just endured a boring lesson. And getting to see all the bad things that lead up to the karma-recovery missions was pure bliss – Earl stole a girl’s prosthetic leg, racked a rich guy, got Catalina deported, ruined Joy’s wedding/Christmas/life.
Hey, our ‘COPS’ is on! No, our OTHER ‘COPS’ is on!
Why it’s practical: The biggest factor here is that most of the original cast is still available and willing, although Randy (Ethan Suplee) is literally half the man he once was following his continual weight loss through cycling. Jaime Pressly even has a legit mugshot to add to her resume. Awww…
These are my favorites – what other shows do you see as being realistically revived?