Tuesday, November 3, 2015

More New Old TV: Greatest American Hero, Van Helsing, and X-Files

First, GAH - Article here. The guys behind the Lego Movie are behind this too and I'm going to say that's a plus because that was a much better and funnier movie than I ever expected. Considering how popular superhero movies have been for the last decade and a half I am a little surprised that it took this long. Much like the Trek announcement yesterday I think writing and casting will be the most important things here. Assuming the concept remains similar you need a good everyman for the lead, a hard-bitten cop sidekick, and a good comedic actress to play the wife.

Of course there's a pretty good chance they decide to change something up - what if the main character is female? Part of me says "keep it mostly the same" but there would be quite a bit of comedy there too so who knows? The basic concept is so ripe with potential, and TV effects are good enough now, that this has a lot going for it.

Next, Van Helsing - Article here. Ah, so it has really nothing at all to do with any traditional take on Van Helsing at all? It's Van Helsing's daughter (not a problem) who's resurrected (OK) five years in the future (from ... now? Is that right?) to fight against the vampires who have taken over the world.  Yeah ... so no Victorian era, no early 20th century era, it's now... ish. Oh and it's being handled by SyFy - HAH!

This sounds closer to Underworld or even the Walking Dead than previous movies and stories about the character. I'm not opposed to someone doing a modern take on it but I think they're pushing it pretty far out. Making a female lead character is fine. Making it modern is fine. But doing both and then having vampires in control of the world - that might be too much. Also, it doesn't read like it's some covert cabal ala the Masquerade from the RPG or the Authority from True Blood, it reads like it's post-apocalyptic in a way. Heck, you'd think they might try and tie in to the Steampunk thing that's out there and seems to be popular enough to latch on to, but apparently not. You could do it in the 20's/30's/40's similar to Agent Carter or Boardwalk Empire. I know "modern/near-future" = "cheaper to produce" but c'mon - you're only talking about doing 12 episodes!

Yep, that pretty much puts a ... puts the final ... oh you get it ...

This one is definitely a "wait and see and prepare to be disappointed", at least based on what I see now.

Also, don't forget the X-Files is coming back in 2016 too. I really liked that show, especially the first 5 years or so. It's one of the cardinal examples of a show staying on too long, but when it was good it was really good. With a nice long gap I'm hoping the creative team has rechanged their batteries and have some new stories worth telling.

I'd just like to see someone aiming high on some of this stuff. There is so much good TV out there now, even sci-fi/fantasy TV like Walking Dead, Flash, Daredevil, and Doctor Who that "OK" isn't going to cut it anymore. I like to think that a lot of us aren't going to settle for simple, cheaply produced shows featuring generic situations with cardboard characters and cardboard sets just because it's on the air. There are fan-produced films and shows that cover some interesting ground nowadays. If at least half of these new shows measure up to he new standard then I will be happy to call that a win.

No comments: