Do you like riddles? Okay, here’s one for you. What do the following five television programs have in common? Star Trek, Hawaii Five-O, Knight Rider, Beverly Hills 90210, and Charlie’s Angel’s. I know what you’re thinking … oooh, I know this one. It’s on the tip of my tongue. Let’s see – they’re not all sci-fi related, scratch that off the list. They’re not all fantasy related. Hmm, this is getting difficult. It’s not about sexy fighting women is it? No. Could it be that they were all made in the seventies? No, that’s not it either. Alright, give up? Now don’t kick yourself, but the common theme among these five programs and many more not worth mentioning are that they’re all television show re-makes.
The question I have is why? Why did Hollywood feel the need to re-make these programs from the past? Was there an overwhelming desire to see the spoiled brats of Beverly Hills get some more toys? Maybe they missed watching a grown man talk to his car. Was Hawaii Five-O remade because the world missed Lost and some of the characters from that show refused to leave the island? Maybe, just maybe, Hollywood has simply run out of original ideas.
We’re now upon a new television season and as always a plethora of new programs are here and are trying to make their way into main stream society, but frankly I don’t care for any of them. Hey, Tim Allen’s back and he’s grunting like only a real man should, oh wait, we’ve already seen that one. Okay, well there’s the show about six friends who … come on, are you kidding me? Alright, how about the X American Idol Factor … puh-lease. Fine be that way. What about Terra Nova? Come on, you’ve got to give me Terra Nova. I could, but I won’t. The idea is great, but something was lost in translation from the idea to the actual show.
So I ask once again, why the lack of originality on television? Have all the good ideas been taken? Of course not, then what? I truly don’t have the answer. If today’s writer’s market had anything to do with it you would probably see a glut of new original ideas available. There are certainly more than enough unemployed talented writers dying for an opportunity to share their ideas. Unfortunately many of them will never get heard.
So what do we, as loyal viewers of television do? Boycott television? Let’s not go crazy here, it is just television. Alright, then what? Well, if we’re going to be forced to watch something we’re familiar with then why not make books and movies into television programs? Look at the huge success HBO had by taking a chance on Game of Thrones, or the True Blood series. Below is my top five list of book/movie themes that should be made into television programs.
1) Star Wars. Hey we’ve already had Star Trek and the re-boot to Star Trek, enough Star Trek. Give me Star Wars. They’ve written more than enough books on the subject matter, so you might as well turn those books into some top rate sci-fi programs. Let’s keep it prime time though, so no cartoons please and whatever you do, no Jar Jar Binks!
2) James Bond. Let’s face it, how many programs have tried to produce some sort of cool spy character and have failed? Why not go to the original, the master, the one and only 007 himself? The movies have been on a hiatus for some time, and there are a few books that haven’t been put into production just yet. It’s time to bring James to the small screen.
3) Indian Jones. People like action adventures, and everyone enjoyed the character. Why not bring a new younger version of Indian Jones to television? There’s a number of myths and legends you could tackle for years to come. This time, instead of the whip, I would change it up to something a little more modern like the Taser gun.
4) The Avengers. Okay, I know this might be a stretch, but with the excess of super hero movies hitting the big screen, why not bring back the classic super heroes to television? We don’t need another Cape, but Captain America would be cool. If you were to do it though, no cartoons and please don’t take yourself too seriously. You’re a bunch of grown men running around in spandex, have some fun with it.
5) Harry Potter. Let’s face it, Potter fans are going through withdrawal, they need their Hogwarts. It’s magic, its school, it’s seven years of programs at the minimum. If anything, give the idea to CW and make it a teeny-bopper show. Hey, if Smallville can go ten years, imagine what Potterville, the teenage years could do?
In the beginning …
Where would we, true believers of fantasy and sci-fi, be without the worlds we live in? Whether you’re talking about life on Middle Earth, Pandora, or Tatooine, each one of these wonderfully created planets help to take us away from the mundane and into the spectacular. Who among us didn’t imagine sharing a pint with the hobbits at The Prancing Pony, or joining Luke and Han in the Mos Eisley Cantina? I know I certainly have. The only difference was that when I was there, I was the dashing hero, getting drinks on the house, and turning down advances from all the ladies, err hobbits, and space aliens, but I digress. The point being, without the creation of these truly imaginative worlds, there would be no fantasy.
Imagine Harry Potter, not going to Hogswart, but to Harvard. Instead of taking a train departing from platform 9 ¾, he’d pull up to school in an old Volkswagen Beetle. Or imagine how you would feel if I told you that Batman didn’t drive the bat mobile and he didn’t have a secret bat cave. No, instead he drove a Hummer (he still is Batman after all) and his secret lair was a warehouse somewhere in Newark, New Jersey. Does this work for you? If so, you’re reading the wrong type of novels. It certainly doesn’t work for me. When I look to escape, I don’t want to see something that I can find right outside my window. I want to be taken to a world of mystery and explore the unknown.
One of the things that inspired me to write my novel, Mayhem’s Fountain, was being able to create a world of my own. Now granted, I kept my world on good old mother earth, but I placed my world undersea. Inspired by the master originator, Plato, I decided to tackle the mythical city of Atlantis itself. In creating my world, I wasn’t interested in trying to create some lost ancient civilization that perished ‘in a single day and night of misfortune’. No, I wanted to create a living, thriving civilization filled with mermaids and mermen that not only existed, but also dominated the seven seas. I devoted myself into taking you into the lives of the Atlanteans as they live and breathe, (yes, they breathe). I did my best to bring you into their world, to show you how it would feel to cross an Atlantean.
Who am I to take such liberties? Why, I’m just like you … a fan of the genre with a wild imagination. As a matter of fact, most of my stories originate from my dreams, and boy do I have some wild dreams. No, I’m not trying to imitate the great J. R.R. Tolkien, George R. R. Martin, or even J. K. Rowling, although I do admire them all greatly. I’ll be the first to admit that I was truly inspired by their work. That stated, I’m just another fan of the written word trying to do his best at capturing an audience that has an interest in the lost city. A tale, in my opinion that has been long overdue of a remake for quite some time.