Lately, the trend has been bring back this or that show or movie that was popular, but do this or that to it. 1980’s Ghostbusters got an all female group, 1990’s Power Rangers had their casts become even more diverse and extreme, and the 2000’s Teen Titans became chibi’s and extremely dumbed down. Each one of those, probably should not have happened.
When the Ghostbusters reboot was not doing well, and they blamed men for trolling on the internet, and not on the fact that the movie was mediocre and missed recapturing how the original movies felt, Paul Feig went on record saying that he would never re-boot another classic property.
When Jason David Frank of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers talked about how the new movie did not do well, he said that they should have made a movie with the original cast, because that was the only time people were really cheering in the audience.
But then there was Teen Titans Go, which has a movie out now, and despite not hitting the tone of the original show… has fans? I don’t get it, but Cartoon Network sure does show it enough… so I guess someone is watching?
In the next wave of reboot nostalgia bait, we have: Thundercats, She-Ra, and Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Each has set off their original fans, as they complain about it while others are arguing how stupid they are for it. ThunderCats? Don’t call it Cal-arts cause lots of other people use it who didn’t go! She-Ra? You man babies are mad cause she doesn’t have big breasts! Buffy??? Well… now that one is where a lot of people are actually just going ‘Umm… No? Please!?’
The problem with Rebooting Buffy The Vampire Slayer… is the fact that that show was very progressive for a 90’s/00’s show… and well… it lived on through it’s comics to this very day. Black Slayer? Kindra, who was awesome. Lesbians? Two… but one fell into the bury our gays trope. Gay guy? Andrew was fabulous! Sexy men? Every darn season. wait… that doesn’t count as progressive? Huh.
Buffy has never left the public’s eye really since the cancellation of it’s sister show Angel in 2004. Sarah Michelle Gellar, visually, is Buffy The Vampire Slayer.
Certain shows can be softly rebooted, such as Star Wars where they can include old cast members in the original’s world… where they just… well… keep dying every movie. Buffy is one of those given the mythos.
Heck, I’d even allow an entire ret-con of Buffy’s entire show, and have this new slayer be after the 1992’s original Buffy The Vampire Slayer movie! That’s right… they are rebooting a reboot!
Just have her be a new slayer that just shows up because the last couple of slayers have passed away…
Getting back onto the major subject at hand is… ThunderCats continued on past the original show just like Buffy did. There were comics… a lot of them. Lion-O even fought Superman… but who hasn’t? Seriously… he’s sort of a bad person.
There was a soft re-boot of the show in 2011 which failed to get a second season due to poor toy sales.
Voltron similarly had a CGI continuation of the original show, than a bad reboot, but then AN AMAZING REBOOT on Netflix!
Gargoyles had a bad 3rd season thus was canceled, but came back as a short lived comic and now Jordan Peel wants to reboot it, which makes Disney uneasy.
Reboot was… soft rebooted? It was just terrible though, and is more of a Code Lyoko reboot under the guise of being a reboot of the original 90’s show, as it threw just way too much of it out, and what was left in was just neutered and did not answer any of the questions that the cliff hanger at the end of the show asked.
While not a reboot but an adaptation all the same, Deadpool did extremely well considering that it was not in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. When asked why that was, Kevin Feige said this:
We’ve always said if there’s any ‘secret’ it’s respect the source material, understand the source material and then, any adaptation you make from the source material should be done only to enhance whatever the original pure spirit of the source material was.
Power Rangers has an amazing comic book out right now, and it is not really a re-telling of the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, but an alternate universe of it. When Kyle Higgins and his fellow writers were interviewed recently at San Diego Comic-Con 2018 by IGN, Kyle said:
… my approach was to not write Power Rangers as it existed, or as I remember it existing, but to write it as I remember it making me feel.
So what lessons can we learn from Paul Feig, Jason David Frank, Kevin Feige, and Kyle Higgins?
Adapting a classic property is hard to do, and may not be worth doing. People want what made them excited for the original property, as that magic is what will capture a new audience as well. No matter what, you have to respect what was, even if you are going to change it.