Over the last 4 years, Netflix has cemented its place as a worldwide entertainment giant. Part of this has been due to their extensive catalogues but almost anyone can amass content in this day and age. What has set Netflix apart is their lack of fear in not only commissioning expensive new shows, but also reviving old favourites that the networks bailed on.
There was a collective cheer from millions of fans when Arrested Development's revival was released. Binge-watching became a way for cancelled shows to be revived as event shows. Most recently, Wet Hot American Summer: First Day Of Camp has brought back some of America's A-list back to the characters that gave them a break. While not as loved as Development by the masses, it showed that Netflix, and the stars themselves are not averse to taking a risk on an older property.
Here are 3 that Netflix could revive that would immediately get people not only excited but increase their reputation as a home for great properties.
Life On Mars
First aired on the BBC in 2006, Life On Mars is one of the hidden gems of Netflix. With very little fanfare and pre-advertising, the show quickly became a phenomenon on UK TV, garnering millions of viewers who fell in love with Sam Tyler (John Simm), Gene Hunt (Phillip Glenister) and the nostalgic, mind-bending 1973 world they occupied. For many it spoke to their childhood, to others it was a first glimpse at the life their parents or grandparents had led.
When the show ended after 2 seasons, many were left desperate for more. A follow up series, set in 1981 followed in Ashes To Ashes, which also gained monster ratings. Enough to convince ABC to make a US version of the show.
On paper it couldn't miss with Harvey Keitel taking the mantle of the brash and boorish Hunt. Somehow...they did fail and it became a mess by the time it was cancelled at the end of the first season.
As the show is one that really shouldn't be spoiled, I won't mention any spoilers but suffice to say within the shows canon is a perfect chance for Netflix to revive the show with the original cast or at least some of them.
We only ever got to see 1973. There is a lot of time that can be covered, for example the drought of 1976 or the Silver Jubilee of 1977. While the eventual outcome may already be known, there is still room to play with the formula or even change the future entirely!
A move to Netflix would also open up the options a little bit more. While the show wasn't overtly violent or sweary, at times it felt a little restrained, arguably due to it's primetime BBC home.
While a full on F-bomb tirade from Hunt would ruin the magic, the odd extreme cuss or moment of violence could make the show must-watch again. There's also a lot of scope to add in more of the magical nods to childhood shows like the amazing Camberwick Green sequence.
Most importantly, it is a way for Netflix to produce something that the UK audience would lap up, even if it was just a one off.
There is also the option of a late 80's/early 90's installment, where another young copper meets Gene Hunt and potentially a rookie Sam Tyler!
Yep, you read right... if there is one TV property that is ripe for a Netflix reboot it is the tale of Hannibal, BA, Murdock & Face! Well let's not even go as far as reboot because the plan has come together already.
Joe Carnahan's remake in 2010 was a VERY good film and version of the show. Arguably it suffered the most because of massive pirating of the movie. This was not the bomb many thought it was, it made a decent profit but too many people watched it free to make the kind of money a sequel needed.
With Bradley Cooper and John Hamm being part of Wet Hot American Summer, Liam Neeson starting to age and Sharlto Copley's career beginning to stall a bit, it could be the perfect time to make a 13 episode A-Team series.
The end of the movie saw the team fully formed and the original format in play...and that's all it needs to be.
The A-Team, helping a different person/family/guest celeb each week, just as the original show was. The budget would be a bit higher than the original, there'd be a few more people die perhaps but the essence of the show could be just the same as 30 years ago and NO flying tanks!
It's the sort of thing the actors can film relatively quickly, in between other engagements and put enough in the can to either release the whole series or do it in blocks of 6 or even as Netflix original movies if they need to.
Get Carnahan back, he did a great job, maybe even get Patrick Wilson and Jessica Biel back for smaller roles with Hamm's Lynch being the guy chasing. Of the 3, this is the biggest no-brainer, for everyone involved. The leads all had great chemistry... as shown below.
This was one of the most successful shows of the early 1990's with good reason. While it was wholesome family fun, it wasn't afraid to touch into dark places and was the perfect vehicle to give good old fashioned drama.
For Netflix, Quantum Leap would be a chance to do a sci-fi show with a heart, that would attract original fans and perhaps gain new ones (if done correctly).
A lot of the originals success was down to Scott Bakula and Dean Stockwell and while I'd love to see them involved, sadly both are really too old to make it work. So it's a reboot... the essence of the story remains the same and we keep Sam Beckett as the main character, but this time Al is a woman!
If I were making this, I'd go right out and get Chris Pratt to be Sam Beckett... sadly that's probably not going to happen now Jurassic World is so big.
They do have the next best guy already on the team perhaps & a more than cordial relationship with his major employer... Paul Rudd.
Rudd is a perfect Sam Beckett, he has the comedic chops that Scott Bakula showed and the acting ability to make the show's drama work.
Dean Stockwell's Al was the heart of the original and his female equivalent would have to be someone equally likeable and sleazy in equal measure.
The easy out would be to get Amy Schumer, but we don't need easy. The two choices that leap out would be Rashida Jones or Elizabeth Banks, both have strong, proven chemistry with Rudd and can play funny and serious when they need to.
Sure 2 of these ideas are time travel shows, but it's something Netflix hasn't really gone for yet.
If I had to choose one?
My heart goes with Life on Mars as it is close to my all time favourite show and there is a lot more scope for it to be a long term project, but my head says the surefire hit is the A-Team!