Nothing New Here, Move Along

April 1st, 2018 by

Networks are rebooting or reviving past successful shows in order to claw back viewership that has been trickling away to either streaming media or more obscure television channels that suit their tastes.

Will & Grace, Full House, and now Rosanne have been rebooted. Full House was rebooted on Hulu, and must be doing good enough to warrant more seasons. I never watched Will & Grace, so no worries. Rosanne did well in the ratings, about 10% more than the show’s finale nearly 20 years ago. I only saw a few episodes, and it was not enjoyable, so I moved on.

Rebooting or reviving a television show after a long time can be very tricky. There has to be some form of balance between modern and nostalgia. Nostalgia being a very funny thing. The Brady Bunch was revived and rebooted multiple times. First the Brady Brides, which did not last more than eight episodes. Then “The Bradys” which was not going to be a half hour sit com, but an hour long drama. The intent was to deal with more serious subjects. It lasted only eight episodes as well. People who loved the Brady Bunch wanted the same campiness and timelessness that surrounded the original.

The whole apolitical concept behind the Brady Bunch and family focused humor made it palatable to many people. A competitive show, the Partridge Family was not as apolitical, so it became very grounded in it’s time, and at some point unfunny to viewers who had viewed it originally with fondness. I wrote about this in a previous blog.

Reality television took over for the most part. It is cheaper to produce. People watched it because it was entertaining. Yet, you can only watch so many shows based on similar things before becoming bored.

Most networks fail to connect with the fact that people want to just be entertained by the program. There are certain mitigating factors, and when a show becomes too preachy, it turns off people. Whether it is politics or religion, people do not want things shoved in their face. This is why many shows fail. Right from the start, the overboard attacks on someone or minor details about someone become the major issue. Who cares? People at the networks, so the next greatest show ends up a failure.

Seinfeld was extremely successful. As shows became more political or in people’s faces about certain subjects, Seinfeld remained apolitical. Even joking about certain political concepts, and making fun of how serious people took them. Not that there is anything wrong with that.

As I go through my DVD Collections of shows, I noticed that many are shows I had some nostalgia for, some stand the test of time, some don’t. For sure, many of those shows are still more enjoyable to watch than some of the stuff out there. Now a “Sanford & Son” revival might still be possible. Lamont could be the old man, and his son someone else.

Thanks for stopping by.



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