January 18, 2005

Musty Re-See Tee Vee - Part I

Judging by the comments taking issue with my rant against the new Battlestar Galactica series, there apparently is absolutely nothing wrong with pillaging an old teevee show of its characters and plots, refashioning them and serving up the revision as a new series. I had thought this demonstrated a lack of respect for the original, a cynical desire to bait-and-switch its fans into watching the new version and a lack of confidence in the writers' ability to come up with their own ideas. My mistake.

In the spirit of No Hard Feelings, I've decided to start a new occassional series in which I offer similarly updated characters and plotlines from other tee-vee shows of my youth. Here is the first installment:

All In The Family - Now set in post-9/11 Queens. Archie Bunker was so traumatized by the attacks on the Twin Towers - which he witnessed from a near-by construction site - that he is now regularly visited by visions of the victims, who bring him prophetic wisdom. Unfortunately, his Cassandra-like warnings about "dem ferriners" are always ignored until it is too late. Edith, meanwhile, a gutsy woman with razor-sharp intelligence, has been elected to the Borough Council, where she fights an endless battle against anti-Muslim prejudice. This frequently brings explosive conflict to the Bunkers' living room. Meathead, in a burst of unexpected patriotism, has joined the Marines where he is now a top intel officer. And in a twist ripped from, well something, we learn that Gloria has been an Al Qaeda sleeper agent for years and has now been "activated" to perform a mysterious mission of cataclysmic proportions that Meathead has only thirty-six hours (inflation, you know) to discover and stop....

Lost In Space - Much darker than the original and at the same time much more sultry. (Critics are already dubbing it "Lust" in Space.) Judy, killed in a freak launch accident, is the ghostly narrator of the series. Major West is now a woman with a hard body and an even harder attitude. She also has a passion for both John and Maureen Robinson (both of whom are much younger than previously and black) and much of the series focuses on the ways in which the members of this love triangle come to terms with their relationships. In order to add political "spice" to the show, Penny is a radical environmentalist who has come to believe that Humanity is a virus that will fatally contaminate the pristine environment of every planet on which it lands. Will is a rebellious drug addict who finds solace in the wisdom of hip-hop. The tension between him and his parents makes for powerful drama. Dr. Smith is no longer a whiney, scheming weasel, but instead, as played by Whoopi Goldberg, is a font of oracular wisdom to whom the rest of the crew constantly turn for answers in time of crisis. And for comic relief, the Robot is a straight rip-off of Bender.

Hogan's Heroes - Instead of intelligence gathering and sabotage, Col. Hogan puts his enormous creative talents and energies into producing graphic porn. (Oops! That's been done already!)

Be sure to check your local listings.

Posted by Robert at January 18, 2005 11:18 AM

Ha ha ha ha. I haven't seen the new BG, so I have withheld comment to date. Based on how much I'm enjoying reliving Buck Rogers on DVD, I'm sure I would enjoy its contemporary, the original BG, just as much.

Other bloggers that I like and trust (like Will Collier and Timothy Sandefur) rave about the new Battlestar, so I'll just have to wait and see.

Are you gonna nominate any Dr Who babes?

Posted by: JohnL at January 18, 2005 11:44 AM

I just saw your post. Thanks for the link... we must have been typing at the same time.

Posted by: JohnL at January 18, 2005 11:46 AM

LOL "Danger. I say Danger. D-D-D-Duh-Danger Will. Duh-Danger Will Robinson."

Of course, by then Will is a goner but the Robot doesn't care, he's raiding the bar.

Posted by: Ted at January 18, 2005 11:54 AM

You have talent, man. I wish I could have my people call your people. 'Cept that I don't have people.

Seriously, all of this could be on the WB by Fall.

Posted by: Gordon at January 18, 2005 03:12 PM

very funny. ve-e-e-e-ery funny. no I am not in any way partial.

Posted by: mothe at January 18, 2005 03:39 PM

Ok, yeah, you've got a point. But...

There were times when in the original Battlestar Galactica the characters didn't act in ways that I would expect them to act, if their lives had really been destroyed and the cylons really were trying for the extinction of the human race. The new series, for all it's problems, seems to be trying to correct that one.

So, All in the Family, perfect and shouldn't be touched. Battlestar Galactica, has a chance for a clarifying vision of what this future really could be like.

Posted by: owlish at January 18, 2005 11:24 PM

And remember COMANDER ADAMA, APPOLO,STARBUCK,CASSIEOPIA,BOXIE,and his dagget THE CYLONS THE OVIONS and the trecerous BALTAR and the long long long long long journey to a shinning planet called EARTH

Posted by: mad heron at January 19, 2005 10:03 AM
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