Retro TV reboots and movie sequels are all the rage in today’s entertainment, but producers are missing some key fan favorites. Find out audience opinions on which movies and TV shows should be brought back and which reboots shouldn’t have ever been made.
Who doesn’t love a good throwback?! That’s why we’re in the middle of a massive wave of on-screen reboots and sequels that offer fresh takes on our favorite characters.
Producers see the built-in audience of these fan favorites and want to capitalize on the nostalgia. While some of these reboots have been embraced, others have fallen flat, making execs think that it was an epic mistake to bring back certain shows.
Are you wondering what TV shows or movies they should have brought back instead? Survey data reveals which on-screen favorites people would most like to see rebooted. Do you agree with the crowd selections, or would you like these picks to stay in the past tense?
TV Shows That Should Be Brought Back
Nostalgia is a significant force in today’s culture. Last year alone, there were 34 TV spin-offs of old franchises, reports Quartz. However, despite this resurgence, some fan-favorite TV shows have not yet been brought back.
Survey Respondents Want to See These Reboots
|Parks and Recreation||22|
|Law & Order||20|
|The Golden Girls||13|
|The West Wing||12|
|How I Met Your Mother||11|
|Friday Night Lights||9|
|Buffy the Vampire Slayer||9|
|Freaks and Geeks||2|
According to the data, fans of some shows had strong reasons why they want the show brought back. For example, 39 percent of the people who wanted to bring back M*A*S*H said it was because it made them feel nostalgic. For ER, 42 percent of those who wanted to bring it back said it was because they liked the storyline. Fans of Parks and Recreation are passionate, and 58 percent said they want to bring it back because they think it’s the best show ever!
The characters are important too, and liking the characters was the reason cited by 40 percent of Seinfeld fans and 31 percent of Friends fans to bring back the shows.
The most requested TV show reboot was M*A*S*H, which dates back to initial airings in 1972. However, shows from the ‘90s are strongly represented, which speaks to how hot nineties culture is right now.
Mars Hill University professor Hal McDonald says, there’s ”usually a 20-year lag for movies, music, and memorabilia to come back into style.” He explains, “People feel closeness to the things that remind them of their childhood.”
Movies That Should Have Sequels
As of 2017, sequels and prequels make up nearly one third of the top 100 highest grossing movies in the U.S. However, there are some missed opportunities for movies that fans wish had sequels.
Survey Respondents Want to See These Movie Sequels
|The Princess Bride||26|
|The Big Lebowski||20|
|The Breakfast Club||12|
|The Fifth Element||8|
|No Country for Old Men||7|
|Little Miss Sunshine||4|
|La La Land||3|
The top choice for a movie sequel is Mrs. Doubtfire, which, of course, is a sad reminder that we’ll never have another new Robin Williams movie. In the recent Jumanji sequel, Williams doesn't have a part, but the movie included homage to the late actor through commentary from Nick Jonas’ character. The movie’s cast members agree with public opinion that Mrs. Doubtfire would also make a strong sequel.
For other movie sequel picks, there's a strong generational preference. Not surprisingly, 65 percent of those who chose The Breakfast Club are Gen X-ers. Of those who chose Forrest Gump for a sequel, 43 percent were Baby Boomers.
For Fight Club, it’s possible that a sequel may be very similar to the first because while “The first rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club!,” Tyler Durden reiterates that, “The second rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club!”
About 20 percent of survey respondents wanted to see The Big Lebowski brought back, but as The Dude would say, “Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man.” Even though the Coen brothers “definitively shot down the possibility of a sequel to the 1998 cult classic,” competitive bowler Jesus Quintana will be the subject of a 2018 spin-off movie called Going Places with John Turturro revisiting the character as actor, writer, and director.
Which Character Is Your BFF?
Some classic TV friendships have been so strong that viewers may start to wish that the on-screen character were their real-life best friend.
Character from a Canceled TV Show That Would Make the Best BFF
|Rose (The Golden Girls)||22|
|George Costanza (Seinfeld)||17|
|Monica Geller (Friends)||16|
|Ted Mosby (How I Met Your Mother)||14|
|Eric Cartman (South Park)||8|
The ditsy but well-loved Golden Girl, Rose Nylund, was the top choice for a BFF. Of course, who wouldn't want a sassy Betty White in their life, saying such hilarious things.
The second most popular choice was Seinfeld character, George Costanza, whose neurosis was key to classic episodes. Other top choices for BFFs were Monica Geller of Friends, Ted Mosby of How I Met Your Mother, and Eric Cartman of South Park.
TV Reboot Fails
Some TV shows should just stay in the past tense. Despite having initial success in their first airing, these attempts at TV show reboots were not welcomed by fans.
TV Shows That Shouldn’t Have Been Brought Back
|Will & Grace||27|
American Idol took the top spot with 40 percent of survey respondents saying that the show shouldn’t have been brought back.
Viewership of the show peaked in 2006 when 31 million tuned in. In 2018, the show has nearly 10 million viewers. It’s a different television landscape than when the show was initially on the air. Not only is there competition from shows such as The Voice and America’s Got Talent, but previous American Idol winners Kelly Clarkson and Jennifer Hudson have performed on The Voice rather than American Idol.
TV Show with the Worst Series Finale
How a TV series ends has a big impact on how it's remembered, and a bad finale can make viewers much less nostalgic about the show.
The most hated TV series finale was from the show Lost. After fans spent six years dissecting clues from the show’s 121 episodes, the final resolution unfortunately didn't meet fan expectations.
Surprisingly, the show almost had a different ending, but studio execs pulled the plug on that plot because it would have been too expensive to shoot.
Movie Sequel Fails
Some movie sequels are so bad that they shouldn't have been made at all.
|Blues Brothers 2000||37|
|A Very Brady Sequel||30|
|The Hangover Parts II and III||21|
|Fifty Shades of Grey Sequels||21|
|Pirates of the Caribbean Sequels||33|
|Star Wars Prequels/Sequels||9|
|The Godfather III||5|
For those who consider themselves “cinephiles” or movie buffs, the top choice for movie sequels that shouldn’t have been made was a choice among the Pirates of the Caribbean sequels. For movie watchers who consider themselves to be “on trend,” the Ghostbusters sequel was the top pick for movies that shouldn’t have been made.
There are some generational trends with these movie sequel fails. For example, Jaws sequels were the top pick among Millennials. However, actor Michael Caine said of Jaws: The Revenge: "I won an Oscar, paid for a house, and had a great holiday. Not bad for a flop movie."
The top pick by Gen X-ers was Blues Brothers 2000, and Baby Boomers’ top choice was a choice among The Hangover Parts II and III.
When Business Insider analyzed the box office revenue of movie sequel franchises, there was little pattern to be found in the numbers. Yet, box office figures are only part of the formula for movie sequels. The merchandising opportunities are tremendous for movie franchises, often generating more revenue than ticket sales. For example, The Force Awakens made $2 billion in ticket sales and nearly $6 billion in a single year of merchandising. Similarly, the Harry Potter movie series made $8 billion at the box office and has a merchandising franchise that’s worth about $15 billion.
Jeff Bock, an analyst with Exhibitor Relations, speculates that a longer time span between sequels gives a chance for moviegoers' nostalgia to kick in. He said. “Hollywood is not good at being patient, but maybe it needs to learn to wait a little longer, because these films are suffering under the weight of not being given enough time.”