When Fox decided to bring Family Guy back from the dead, after its success of reruns on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim, fans were intrigued by this new concept. Since, there’s been the return of such shows as Heroes and Dallas. Then there were shows, like Coach, that tried, but couldn’t get out of Development Hell. Lets take a look at those who either have, will, or should get a second life, whether on streaming services such as Netflix or Amazon, or back to the network who put them into the perils of cancellation in the first place.
Did or Will Return
While Matt Groening’s first venture in animation is still running after almost thirty years, his other showed up on the same channel as The Simpsons, then went away, Cartoon Network played reruns, Comedy Central picked it up for a few more seasons, and now it’s gone again. Groening has stated that he still wants to shop it around for another networks to pick it up. But really, I think this last series finale was a good note to end it on. Everyone froze in time, except Leela and Fry, where they were able to grow old together.
For years, fans have clamored for a Tanner Family Reunion. The actors have stated that they have a reunion every year – they just don’t film it. But since they get together anyway, and fans wanted to see it, John Stamos (Uncle Jesse) has wrangled them all up, and did a whole season just for us. Well, almost all of them. Just like Mathew Perry did with the Friends reunion, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen skipped it, for personal reasons. But that didn’t stop them from chastising the girls for doing so. But that’s okay, because she was virtually the only one who didn’t. Not only did John Stamos, Bob Saget, Lori Loughlin, Candice Cameron, Jodie Sweetin, Andrea Barber return, but also Scott Weinger, who played DJ’s boyfriend Steve, Blake and Dylan Tuomy-Wilhoit, who played Jesse and Becky’s sons, Nicky and Alex, and even Michael Sun Lee, who played Harry Takayama, the boy Stephanie married in the back yard. Well, Gail Edwards didn’t return either. Looks like Danny dumped Vicky for Eva LaRue (George Lopez, CSI: Miami).
This new Muppet show on ABC isn’t really a continuation of the original Muppet Show. If you’re fan like me, you’ll notice that none of the shows or movies follow any canon. Like In Muppets Take Manhattan, where Kermit and Piggy get married. The Muppets (2011) is probably better canon to The Muppet Show than anything else. In the movie, Kermit and family are long since retired. Fozzie even has grey hair. Jason Segel and his Muppet brother, Walter, get the gang back together. Walter joins the gang, and sticks around for the sequel, Muppets Most Wanted.
In this show, Walter is nowhere to be found. But as this is set up as sort of a reality show, behind Miss Piggy’s late night venture in the style of Jimmy Kimmel or Conan O’Brien, we explore the relationships that were only subtle throughout the years. Kermit and Piggy have moved on from each other, yet there’s still something between them. Even Camilla returns to Gonzo after a hiatus in their relationship. Also, new flames have lit, such as Sam the Eagle’s crush on Janice. But Rowlf has remained a single dog, while he lives peacefully, doing what he does best: running a bar, and playing the piano.
The countdown opening of 24 was something that so many people loved because what followed was the intense life of CTU Agent, Jack Bauer. Each season gave us a full 24 hours of s#!t hitting the fan. Although, not every hour was thrill seeking and amazing but it was something definitely worth watching. This show lasted for eight seasons but also featured a two hour event and another event that changed the formula from 24 episodes to 12, so that the story wasn’t stretched beyond its limit.
The 12 hour event was something that was exciting and harkened back to what we loved of the show but ended on a thud just like at the end of the 8th season. But no matter what the critics said, the viewership spoke another season of 24 has been commissioned but with a new Jack Bauer type character and a new cast.
J.J. Abrams rebooted the franchise with the Chris Pine/Zoe Saldana summer vehicles. Now it looks like they want to return to television and do the same. The franchise had gotten so far with spin-off after spin-off, that it created a universe for fanboys to indulge themselves into. But with the franchise rebooted, is there chance for a new generation to enjoy a new universe?
A new series is in development that is rumored to focus on Kirk and his crew as they travel the cosmos. Though will this be a reboot even from the Abrams movies? Surely, Pine and Saldana wouldn’t reprise their roles. But maybe Zachary Quinto, as he is a TV alum with Heroes.
But before the success and popularity of these new movies, another series had been in Development Hell; a series that would indeed continue the original franchise of spin-offs. Michael Dorn himself has been writing a show that would focus on his character, Worf. He would be the captain of his own ship, while surely, the Klingon race would be dug into further.
Animation has a very strong amount of potential for comics adaptation. Done correctly, and an animated show or movie could very well present a comic book come to life. Young Justice is one of those shows, one that was gone all too soon. It was very popular with fans, one of those true quality shows where both kids and adults could watch and enjoy. However, Cartoon Network decided to discontinue it, despite open plot threads that hadn’t been filled that went towards driving fans crazy. With several voice actors and production members of Young Justice speaking out to fans to get them to binge watch episodes on Netflix, it is very likely that the show will get an opportunity at resurrection to finally have a proper ending, and it very well should. Young Justice was one of the best animated comic book shows of recent times, and in general. With a strong story, characters, voice acting, and action, it was very near perfect, and it deserves a proper conclusion and ending. Keep binging, keep watching, and hopefully the efforts of fans everywhere finally pay off.
If I was to holler “Spoooooon!,” ’90’s kids would know exactly what I mean. The Fox Kids cartoon that ran from 1994 to 1997 was based off the comic book by Ben Edlund. Then in 2001, Edlund brought his superhero out of retirement for a new take. Patrick Warbutron played the blue rubber wearing, antenna sporting, oblivious hero of “The City.” Unfortunately, the Fox sitcom was short-lived. While Warburton was spot-on, and added to the fish out of water persona, there was something missing. However, the colorful villains, such as Chairface Chippendale and Brainchild, probably couldn’t translate well into live-action; especially with the technology of 2001.
But now that superheroes are more popular than ever, and are even cool to be campy again, Warburton announced that he wanted to bring the show back. Hopefully, with what they can do with shows like The Flash, there will be better technology to finally bring these kooky villains to life – and not just mention them, like Apocalypse Cow.
Sadly though, Warburton will not be reprising his role, and will only remain as an executive producer. This making the show a reboot instead of a continuation. Any case, however, we will get some Tick for this generation, as well as the last generation, to enjoy.
X-Files was a thing of beauty that had its ups and down for nine seasons on television and even a short lived spin-off featuring the Lone Gunmen. It came back in 2016 with a six episode mini run that gave the audience that classic feel to the show. Comedy, drama, paranoia, and a story driven with its two original leads that left the door wide open for potentially more to come. Season ten was something the fans had been clamoring for since the end credits of the final episode of season nine and even before that god awful second movie. The tenth season was good to remind us of the glory years of the X-Files but seemed a little out of place in a time where the rabbit hole of conspiracies is two clicks away on your computer.
So with that being said, do the X-Files warrant an eleventh season? Yes. Come on, it’s the f*#cking X-Files. People love Mulder and Scully and the chemistry that they bring to the show. Especially after that cliffhanger, questions still need to be answered. Chris Carter has said himself that he would definitely be open to doing another season if the timing for all the cast members was just right. Let’s just hope it doesn’t take another fifteen years for the questions left unanswered.
With rumors of a reunion season a couple years ago, and the psuedo cast reunion (minus Chandler), fans have been teased enough with their return. Matt LeBlanc’s next show, Episodes, where he plays himself, even teased us more, as his former cast members have made appearances. If they can bring back Full House, then why not this other beloved sitcom from the ’90’s?
What would such a reunion look like? Their kids, which were only babies when we last saw them, would be at least teenagers by now. Ross’s son, Ben, would even be about the same age they were when they first started the show. We certainly saw the actors who played him, Cole and Dylan Sprouse, grow up as they moved on to shows like The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, and its sequel series Suite Life on Deck. Also, we could see cast members from the spin-off, Joey.
Anybody who’s seen the film incarnation, Serenity, will be aware of the huge potential that was contained in Joss Whedon’s canceled sci-fi series, Firefly. The movie easily juggles intense action scenes with deeper character development and subtle employment of a larger unfilmed story-arc, culminating in an epic space battle that puts Star Wars to shame. Rarely have I felt such empathy for the characters of a TV show who have suddenly and unfairly experienced the loss of one of their own.
Whedon was able to successfully visualize and create a new and vast narrative galaxy for the crew of the Firefly to move about, successfully employing an overwhelming antagonistic force to pursue them. Its blend of western and fantasy was something reassuring and fresh in a market becoming crowded with lazier and more formulaic offerings. The show’s writing skilfully avoided the usual cliches and pitfalls that dog the genre, and all the hints and signs of a compelling and exciting future were all there.
Where the series let itself down, alas, was in terms of its budget and practical effects. Whilst the script and acting were compelling, viewers were not rewarded with the slick visuals and large open landscapes that a successful sci-fi project needs to keep an audience coming back for more. So the numbers dwindled away from the poky and restrictive sets, and less sumptuous CGI filler shots.
Whilst a hardcore of fans have continued to push for a return, and all the main players have remained open to the idea of a reboot, the success of the show’s creator has done little to further the cause. Which is a crying shame. If The X-Files fan return for a limited run after a 20 year absence, then surely this is equally as deserving?
Kevin Smith’s universe of films that involved stoner favorites Jay and Silent Bob, may not have been a cultural phenomenon, but it did land a place in many hearts. Back when this first film in the cineverse was fresh, an attempt was made to bring it to television. But that incarnation was without the hands of its creator. And rightfully so, Smith held onto Jay and Silent Bob from the massacre that may have happened. Therefore, whoever thought it was a bright idea, created a copy of Jason Mewes’s character, named Ray. Jim Brewer would have played Randall. And Keri Russell was set to run a nail place that was added to the Quick Stop/RST Video “mini mall.”
Though we thankfully dodged that bullet, Smith himself turned his beloved characters into cartoons about a decade later. Clerks Animated was drawn by Stephen Silver, the same guy behind Danny Phantom and Kim Possible. But it was canceled after only four episodes, leaving two more unaired.
With a new generation of the View Askew Universe, including a sequel to Mallrats, and a third sequel to Clerks, I would welcome another stab at this cartoon. And instead of just the characters from Clerks, or even part II or III, such as Elias and Becky (Rosario Dawson), I’d like to see some from the rest of the Askwewniverse: Bartelby and Loki, the archangels Ben Affleck and Matt Damon played in Dogma; or Jason Lee’s Brodie from Mallrats, who went on to run a comic book store in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. Clerks Animated did have Steve-Dave and Fanboy (Walt Flanagan and Bryan Johnson from Comic Book Men), who weren’t in Clerks, but in Mallrats, and a deleted scene in Chasing Amy. There was also a scene, animated with Silver’s style, on the Clerks X special edition DVD, that gave us the funeral/wake scene we didn’t see in the movie, and had Joey Lauren Adams reprise her role as Alyssa from Chasing Amy. Also, there are “inaction” figures you can buy from ViewAskew.com, designed by Silver, like Will Ferrell’s character from Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.
This show had a great following, and millions of signatures on petitions to keep it alive, (#SaveConstantine). Even a number of celebrities expressed their interest in making appearances: William Shatner as Dr. Fate; Stephen Amell as that character we know and love him as. However, that didn’t stop it from falling short a full season.
He did get a little taste at a second life, however, when Matt Ryan reprised his role on Arrow. Since then, there’s been clamor to bring Constantine back, where it would live in the Arrowverse, on either CW or its sister station (in the form of an app), CW Seed.
The most upsetting part of the show’s cancellation was that it was setting up characters that could have eventually lead to a Justice League Dark. Emmet J Scanlan played detective Jim Corrigan, who would become the Spectre. While the rest of the team consists of Zatanna, Swamp Thing, and Deadman, a prototype team on the show could have had Manny, an angel who annoyed the crap out of John; his chauffer, Chas (played by Shia Lebouf in the Keaunu Reeves movie); his assistant, the lovely Zed; and even the side-switching Papa Midnite. I hope to God that John Constantine will at least return somewhere within The Arrowverse shows, where there’s the possibility of Zatanna teaming up with him.
Roseanne ended on a rather weird note. The matriarch of the family revealed that she had been making it up from the moment, in the early seasons, where a writing office was set aside for her in the basement; an alternate dimension if you will. Dan died from his heart attack. Her sister, Jackie, was actually gay, instead of their mom. The girls were with the opposite guys: Darlene with Mark, and Becky with David. And obviously they didn’t win the lottery.
A resurrection could go one of two ways: from the dimension that really was, or continued from the crazy shenanigans whom we actually knew from the Connor family. Or, we could see a parallel of both, every other episode.
The story that continued from what we know, could take stabs at what the actors did in real life: Roseanne running for president; Dan’s career as a movie star; Darlene and David’s comic book taking off, now surrounding themselves with a bunch of nerds. Like Last Man Standing pulls from Home Improvement, and Grandfathered pulls from both Full House and Drake and Josh, they could feature cameos from the shows or movies they went on to: such as Jim Parsons, Steve Buscemi, and Donald Faison. We could even drop in on couple, Martin Mull and Fred Willard. But sadly, we wouldn’t be able to see Mark, as actor Glenn Quinn, who went on to Angel, passed away in 2002.
Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes
Like their movies, Marvel’s current cartoons live in a shared universe: Ultimate Spider-Man, Avengers Assemble, Hulk and the Agents of SMASH, and Guardians of the Galaxy. But just like with Spider-Man, the previous Avengers cartoon was much better.
The series began with mini episodes introducing the show’s original lineup: Captain America, Iron Man, Hulk, Ant-Man and Wasp, Hawkeye and Black Widow, and Thor. Soon, they started recruiting more members like Black Panther, Ms. Marvel, and The Vision. By time the second season rolled around, there were so many other heroes, the original team needed to be rescued by a team of New Avengers: Spider-Man (voiced by Ultimate Spider-Man‘s Drake Bell), Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Wolverine, and The Thing.
Cutting short at only two seasons, there were still characters and story lines that could have been explored. It never introduced Scarlet Witch and her brother, Quicksilver. Wonder Man never saw his character develop past villain. Falcon was was even still a villain by the show’s end. Why, we could have saw that whole love triangle between Vision, Scarlet Witch, and Wonder Man. More Avengers could have been assembled, such as Tigra, Hercules, Jack of Hearts, and Black Knight (albeit a glimpse via news footage). They could have also featured stories such as the Civil and Secret Wars.
This miniseries employed the talents of Matt Dillon (There’s Something About Mary, The Outsiders), Toby Jones (The Captain America movies), Terrance Howard (Iron Man, Empire), Melissa Leo (Red State), and Carla Cugino (Spy Kids, San Andreas), and it was produced by the M. Night Shyamalan. Several episodes in, you realize that Dillon’s character, Ethan Burke, and his family, weren’t really kidnapped by the sheriff (Howard) of this creepy town, but rather frozen by Dr. Jenkins (Jones), and thawed out in the far future, where morlock-like creatures have taken
over; Abbies, which were what humans that weren’t frozen evolved into.
The plot thickened to where Burke became sheriff, and tried to expose the secrets of reality to a community who’d rather stay ignorant. It ended where the adults were all put back into stasis and the kids took over the town, which was a compound heavily guarded from these creatures. Another season would have put Burke’s son, Ben, played by Charlie Tahan (Gotham, I Am Legend), as the lead. But I would have liked to see Ethan take a crew of renegades out into the wilderness to explore this post-apocalyptic world, and perhaps discover other tribes like Wayward Pines.
Farscape was a beautiful collaboration between Jim Henson Productions and Hallmark Entertainment…yes, that greeting card company. It was part of Sci-Fi Channel’s venture into creating original content and it was amazing. The story followed astronaut John Crichton as he is sucked into a wormhole and shot out to an unknown region of the universe. There, he’s taken aboard a living prison and meets its crew of alien species not seen by anyone from Earth. This show lasted for four seasons and a miniseries that brought everything from drama to action to comedy and everything in between. The show was canceled abruptly at the end of the fourth season but the fans cry of proper end was loud enough to warrant a miniseries that gave us ending the fans wanted.
Once viewed as the Star Trek of this generation, the show is primed to return in this world of geekdum that’s in full swing and shows no sign of slowing down. News as of 2014 has come from creator Rockne S. O’Bannon himself that a new Farscape movie is planned but is in the very early stages of development. So, here’s hoping that Farscape will come back to its eager and awaiting fans.
What other show do think should return? And if they do, how do you think they should? Let us know in the comments below!