TV execs are always on the lookout for a sure thing. And what could be surer than the return of an established hit? Right? Right?
That’s the only way we can explain the raft of remakes that’s threatening our TV screens. “The Munsters” is turning dark with the new pilot “Mockingbird Lane,” CBS is working on a new version of “Bewitched,” and Seth McFarlane was toying with a remake of “The Flinstones” for FOX.
Thing is, that sort of thinking only works if you ignore a whole lot of evidence. For every hit reboot like “Battlestar Galactica,” you find a dozen turkeys like “The Love Boat: The Next Wave” or “Charlie’s Angels.” And for every successful foreign transplant — think “The Office” or even “All in the Family” — we’re afflicted with stinkers like “Coupling” or (shudder) “Skins.”
What’s it take for a remake to work? Take a look at some of the shows that succeeded — and some that sunk without a trace — and make your own decision.