LB: “Which science fiction TV show do you wish you could personally reboot?”

That’s the question asked over at io9.Com a few days ago, complete with this photo of one of the worst TV shows ever made:

BuckRogersTVfiasco
Yes, it’s BUCK ROGERS, created & produced by a good friend of mine and taken over & produced by another friend who was actually the godfather of my 2nd son. Still sucked tho.

The question’s gotten a lot if answers, including:

  • BLAKE’S 7
  • THE INVADERS
  • DUNE (mini-series)
  • RIVERWORLD
  • BABYLON 5
  • WONDER WOMAN
  • STAR TREK

I’d like to throw in my two cents because as you all know, I’m that kinda guy. But I’m doing it here instead of the original website because I always get ignored when I comment at io9 and I really, really, really crave attention. (Hey, that’s a showbiz requirement, isn’t it?)

So. I wish that I could personally reboot:

  1. THE AVENGERS (The UK series, not Marvel’s Avengers. But only if I could still cast a young Diana Rigg and relatively young Pat McNee. Pat, incidentally, has been a great friend of mine since his BATTLESTAR GALLACTICA days and has great secret agent cred – including the fact that he was one of England’s most decorated heroes of WWII.
  2. AUTOMAN (because I’ll always regard it with great regret as a show I co-created and, yes, I cop to it, completely fucked up. One more shot. That’s all I want at it. Just one more shot…)

automan

automan-nebisher

I think the fact that the above are the best pics I can find is a good sign of how badly I screwed up this show. Sincerest apologies to a great cast and crew…

‘Phineas and Ferb: Mission Marvel’

Remember how comic books fans were all furrowed brows and sputtering talk back in ’09 when Disney absorbed Marvel? How the fans were worried that Disney would dilute/sully/demean/cheapen/totally screw the Marvel brand?

Remember how relieved fans were when the Marvel feature films stayed as fresh and exciting and authentic as the first IRON MAN had been after the new regime was in place?

How they/you/we heaved big sighs of relief and went back to cursing more important things, like the economy, Microsoft, and health care in the U.S.A.?

Well, it just might be time to start worrying again:

Or, in the words of MTV Geek’s Charles Webb:

Worlds collide as Dan Povenmire and Jeff “Swampy” Marsh’s kid characters cross over with the Marvel U…

Phineas and Ferb co-creator Marsh is providing redesigns to the Marvel Heroes and villains so that they’ll blend into Danville. No word on if the Avengers and Ultimate Spider-Man voice cast will be reprising their roles for the special event.

Now that Disney is embracing the inevitable collision between their stable of cartoon characters and the Marvel catalog, how long is it until we finally get a Disney/Marvel game mashup in the vein of Kingdom Hearts? Get on that, Disney.

As Jack Kirby’s mom might have said, “Oy!”

Disney Sends Out Feelers for an AVENGERS TV Series

The studio’s trying to get a reading on how this will go down with the audience. At least, that’s the only explanation we can come up with for this particular interweb speculation:

ABC And Marvel Eying ‘Avengers’-Themed TV Series – by Nellie Andreeva (Deadline.Com)

EXCLUSIVE: After scoring huge at the box office with its Avengers movie, Marvel is looking to explore the mythology on the small screen too. I’ve learned that Marvel’s TV division is in conversation with ABC and ABC Studios about doing a drama series in the Avengers world. I hear that the connection to the Avengers franchise would be light as the project is expected to be set in the universe and feature some of its themes and feel, but may not include any characters from Joss Whedon’s blockbuster.

I hear the project is in a nascent stage, described as “a kernel of an idea,” with a number of scenarios being explored, including a high-concept cop show. Marvel has already given the Avengers the animated treatment with Disney XD’s The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and the upcoming Avengers Assemble.

Establishing a primetime foothold has been a priority for Disney-owned Marvel. The company has developed several projects for ABC Studios over the last couple of years, one of which, a Hulk series, is still in the works. Search is under way for a new writer to pen the project.

Mighty Marvel fans that we may be (Our Boss, LB, was a charter member of “The Merry Marvel Marching Society” back in the day and still brags about the “No Prize” Stan Lee sent him), the floating of this concept isn’t affecting us much. Here’s what we have to say to whomever’s in charge:

“Yo, dood, we’ve heard a lot of good ideas from the Marvel branch of the Disney family over the years and have learned the hard way that it’s the execution that counts. Make the move. Commit. Get that writer the ‘search is under way for,’ and then we’ll see.”

EDITED BY LB TO ADD: Kind of a weak ending here, it seems to me. C’mon, minions, shorter and funnier next time, got that?

The One Plot to Lead Them All

As if writers didn’t have enough to worry about, now we have this excellent analysis to ponder:

The Avengers, Spider-Man, and Dark Knight Rises All Have Strangely Similar Climaxes – by Kyle Buchanon (Vulture.Com)

The AvengersThe Amazing Spider-Man, and The Dark Knight Rises have all offered distinctly different types of superhero thrills this summer: One’s a giant, crowd-pleasing mash-up of all of Marvel’s prior movies; one’s a rebooted origin story anchored by a tender teen romance; and one’s a dark, sprawling drama with Bat-trappings. So many different flavors to choose from … and yet, did you notice they all have weirdly similar third acts? What was that about?

Spoilers follow, obviously.

In The AvengersThe Dark Knight Rises, and The Amazing Spider-Man, the good guys are in possession of a scientific device, introduced early in the movie in a very conspicuous way, that the bad guys then co-opt to turn against the entire city (which is either New York City or its Gotham stand-in).

Even more specifically, in The Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises, the device is a clean-energy breakthrough … that can be used to destroy (or help destroy, in the case of Stark Tower) the world, if tweaked fairly easily. Whoops!

And in both The Amazing Spider-Man and The Dark Knight Rises, the good guys haven’t even been using the device (too dangerous!), but still, they kept it around for years instead of dismantling it because … well, just because.

Ultimately, with the city facing a countdown to destruction, both Iron Man and Batman abscond with imminent nuclear threats and fly away as far as they can, a moving act of self-sacrifice that saves the city and foils the villain’s plan. The other heroes in the movie are impressed and sad as the explosion goes off in the distance.

But it turns out, the hero actually survived. Psych! And in the silent codas that ends The Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises, we find our selfless hero reunited with his lady love.

Now, obviously superhero movies are bound to have a couple things in common. But this many things, in movies that span three different studios? Were the producers all bitten by the exact same radioactive script doctor?

Next year, the summer season will produce three more high-profile superhero movies: Disney’s got Iron Man 3, Warner Bros. has Man of Steel, and Fox is putting out X-Men spinoff The Wolverine. Could the studio executives compare notes this time, just to make sure they’re not all on the same page? Surely there are some new ways to save the world, right?

For what it’s worth, we think the problem is a genre thing. As in, “Hey, guy, this is the plot structure that comic books have used the most since, oh, probably since WWII brought us all those stories about Hitler and his quest for great, big, universe-shattering, mythic weapons.

It isn’t a matter of plagiarism in any way. Nor even of like minds, or minds that in fact know each other, coming up with an idea that’s, oh, “in the wind.” The story structure of all three films is the most common of tropes in the most inbred of media: superhero books.

But, oh boy, yessir, it sure would be great to change that. Hats off to ya, Kyle, for spotting the Emperor’s…skin.

 

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