“Everything old is new again.” That seems to be the mantra for television in recent years. Reboots of series have been occurring several times but recently, a new wave has begun: TV shows brought back with original cast members and continuing right where they left off. It began with TNT’s revival of Dallas and continues on with returns of Arrested Development, 24 and Heroes, as well as continuations of Boy Meets World and Full House with The X-Files and Twin Peaks soon coming back. It’s easy to see why, as there’s instant name recognition with audiences and it’s fun to see how things have developed for these characters as time has gone by.
With so many past series coming back, there’s naturally discussion of what other shows could use a return. The “limited series” format helps as creators don’t have to drag things out but really dedicate themselves to giving their all. Getting past cast members to return is a must but some shows can help crafting new tales with new folks. While some series are looked back on more fondly than others, a reboot can lead to more popularity. Some shows aren’t as fit due to truly great finales but for shows that ended on a cliffhanger or other sudden stop, it can be intriguing to see some closure at last. Here are fifteen series that can truly benefit from a limited series return and provide some good times for fans old and new.
15 Veronica Mars
In the role that launched her career, Kristen Bell starred in the 2004-2007 series as the title character, a teenage private eye investigating everything from minor school scandals to the murder of her best friend and with fantastic humor and drive. The critics always loved it, the ratings low but any doubts in his fan appeal were blown away when the fund for a big-screen movie got over a million dollars on Kickstarter in just a few hours. That film was a good success, showing an older Veronica getting back in the groove and providing an ending perfectly setting up more adventures.
11 Young Justice
7 Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
6 The Middleman
4 Sports Night
HBO is acclaimed for their fantastic series but many still haven’t forgiven them for cancelling this fantastic Western series. Before Justified, Timothy Olyphant was the perfect cowboy as the stern sheriff of this frontier town fighting for acceptance in the U.S. Meanwhile, Ian McShane was fantastic as Al Swearengen, the foul-mouthed, conniving crime boss of the town. With a supporting cast of Kim Dickens, Molly Parker, Brad Dourif, W. Earl Brown and many more, the show was gritty and hard with more cursing than you can imagine not to mention some truly wonderful writing.
2 Pushing Daisies
Its first season was cut short by the 2007 writer’s strike and its second by network bungling. But Bryan Fuller’s series remains an example of all that is right about television. It’s the magical tale of Ned (Lee Pace) who can bring the dead back to life for 60 seconds and works with a sardonic private eye (Chi McBride) to solve crimes. Ned soon brings his childhood sweetheart, Chuck (Anna Friel) to life but because another touch will kill her for good, they can’t be together. Throw in Chuck’s eccentric aunts (Swoosie Kurtz and Ellen Greene) and waitress Olive Snook (Kristen Chenoweth in her Emmy-winning role) along with a fantastic visual presentation and you had a show so amazing that perhaps it makes sense it didn’t last.
Perhaps it’s been elevated a bit too much by fans but Joss Whedon’s 2002 series remains one of the biggest “cancelled before its time” shows in history. The cast may be older now and moved on to other things (most notably Nathan Fillion on Castle) but you just know that if Whedon came calling, they’d drop everything to take part in this again. The story of a gang of low-level crooks making do in a corrupt galaxy mixed sci-fi with Western and presented a great cast of characters with whip-smart dialogue and fun situations that pushed the edge more than other sci-fi shows of the time.
The 2005 movie ended with them back flying and on the run and it would be interesting to see how the galaxy has gone on, the various relationships (Mal and Inara, Kaylee and Simon) and more of the galaxy after they expose the Alliance’s works. It would be a fun ride to go back to this space and with Whedon even hotter than ever thanks to the Avengers, he can finally give fans the space adventure they all wanted back then and never got.
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