George R. R. Martin recently said that he thought that there was plenty of room for television spinoffs of Game of Thrones. It’s true that there are a lot of different stories set in Westeros, and a spinoff would allow for more stories to be told.
Spinoffs have a lot of potential – but they also can be hit-or-miss. In some cases, like Pinky and the Brain (1995) or Better Call Saul (2015), a spinoff is successful because it balances what viewers loved about the original show with new material and innovation. But for every great spinoff, there is one (or three?) spinoffs that simply try to capitalize on a show’s popularity: Joey (2004) of Friends (1994) fame, The Brady Brides (1981), Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior (2011), Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (2013), and five too many spinoffs of Dance Moms (2011).
The spinoffs that appear on this list are not confirmed spinoffs; they are a list of hypothetical spinoffs that we would actually watch. In some cases, they focus on specific characters that have the potential to carry a show of their own; in other cases they feature worlds, like Westeros, that have room for more stories to be told in them.
Just in case you’re a Hollywood producer looking for ideas, here are 12 Spinoffs We Would Love To See:
12. Claire Temple, NP (Daredevil/Jessica Jones/Luke Cage)
The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s partnership with Netflix has proven to create great television – and there is clearly both the market and the money to create more shows. Daredevil (2015), Jessica Jones (2015), along with the upcoming Luke Cage (2016), Iron Fist (2016), and The Defenders (2017) create an interlocking tapestry of small-time heroes with extraordinary powers in New York City. One spinoff show is already in the works for he The Punisher (Jon Bernthal), a violent vigilante bent on revenging his murdered family.
One common thread between all of the seasons that have come out so far is Claire Temple (Rosario Dawson), a nurse at Metro-General Hospital who encounters and helps Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox), Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), and Luke Cage (Mike Colter). On multiple occasions, it’s Claire and her medical expertise that saves the day. Giving Claire her own show would prove that not all heroes have superpowers.
11. Rogelio’s Telenovela Life (Jane The Virgin)
Jane the Virgin (2014) balances the drama of a telenovela with humor that falls somewhere between parody and homage. The show both acknowledges and embraces the over-the-top elements that telenovelas are known for. One of the best – and most hilarious – examples of this is Rogelio (Jaime Camil), Jane’s (Gina Rodriguez) sometime-estranged father who turns out to be a telenovela superstar with a fondness for hashtags.
Rogelio’s drama, on and off the camera, has given audiences some of the best subplots in Jane the Virgin, and Camil manages to make the self-absorbed and ridiculous actor both endearing and laugh-out-loud funny. His most recent show, Tiago a Través del Tiempo, has given Jane audiences a window into how Rogelio (er, Tiago) would act throughout major events in history. Giving Rogelio his own spinoff show, whether it was based on Tiago’s adventures through time or focused on the ups and downs of the life of a telenovela star, would give audiences what they want: more Rogelio.
10. April & Andy Go to Washington (Parks and Recreation)
Parks and Recreation (2009) introduced the world to a cast of ragtag and beloved characters from Pawnee, Indiana. The show ran its course, showing the ups and downs of the small-town Parks and Rec team, and the final season did a nice job of tying up loose ends and giving the characters all the happy endings that they deserved. However, because these endings jumped into the future, it also created some in-between time that could make for an interesting spinoff.
April (Aubrey Plaza) and Andy (Chris Pratt), happily married, move to Washington, D.C., so that April can pursue a new career. Traveling from Pawnee to the nation’s capital can only be described as culture shock, and the adventures that April and Andy would go on together would be equal parts hilarious and heartfelt. Unfortunately, given that Chris Pratt is off guarding the galaxy and starring in Hollywood blockbusters, this small-screen spinoff seems pretty far-fetched.
9. Worf (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
Star Trek has gotten a number of makeovers since the original series, including the current cinematic reboot and the upcoming television show helmed by Bryan Fuller. If Fuller’s reboot is successful, then there may be more opportunities for Star Trek on television, paving the way for the reintroduction of some of Star Trek‘s most beloved characters from Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1993).
One possible contender for a new show main character is Worf (Michael Dorn), the Klingon who graduated from Starfleet Academy and was an officer on USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-D), which Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) commanded. If the new Star Trek films have created an alternative timeline that parallels the original series, then there is also a “new universe” Worf who is ready and willing to go on adventures and not smile at people.
8. Thack’s Origin Story (The Knick)
Clive Owen’s Dr. John “Thack” Thackery is one of the most interesting characters on television. Thack is the chief of surgery at the Knickerbocker Hospital (or “the Knick”) at the turn of the twentieth century; he is both an innovative and talented surgeon and a troubled drug addict whose vices jeopardize the very people that he is trying to save.
While one of the great joys of The Knick (2014) is watching Clive Owen, an origin story that explores how John Thackery became Thack in the late 19th century could be a fascinating period piece that explores the dangers and revolutions in medicine that were occurred during the time. If the spinoff maintained The Knick‘s production value, director-fueled ingenuity, and brutally bleak tone, it could paint a picture of antebellum America that we rarely see on television.
7. The Howling Commandos (Agent Carter)
Agent Carter (2015) may have been taken from us too soon, but its brief time on television showed how innovative and fun a “superhero” show could be. Agent Carter‘s historical setting made it unlike any other show on television, mixing a variety of genres to create a truly unique product. The Howling Commandos, who appeared in Agent Carter, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013), and the first two Captain America movies, are a band of combatants who fought for the Allies in World War II under Captain America. After the apparent death of Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), the Commandos continued to help to stabilize Europe and fight HYDRA under the command of Dum Dum Dugan (Neal McDonough).
A spinoff show that focused on the Howling Commandos would create a chance to bridge the gap between Agent Carter and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. by showing the formation of S.H.I.E.L.D. over the course of the Cold War.
6. Papania & Gilbough (True Detective)
The critically acclaimed and popular first season of True Detective (2014) told the story of Detective Marty Hart (Woody Harrelson) and Detective Rust Cohle (Matthew McConaughey) as they hunted for answers in the bayous and backwaters of Louisiana. But Hart and Cohle weren’t the only detectives – another set of partners were investigating a cold case of their own: Detective Thomas Papania (Tory Kittles) and Detective Maynard Gilbough (Thomas Potts).
Papania and Gilbough are two hotshot detectives who don’t really get to the bottom of their case in season 1, getting played by Hart and Cohle. However, following the continued partnership and police work of Papania and Gilbough would not only allow them to grow as characters; it would also create an opportunity to continue the story of the Southern Gothic Louisiana landscape that made the first season of True Detective so striking and compelling. Additionally, a spinoff show would have the potential to explore race, religion, culture, and the relationship between the police and the people in the American South.
5. Blood & Chrome (Battlestar Galactica)
Battlestar Galactica (2004) has spawned a number of spinoffs, including Caprica (2009), the TV movie Razor (2007), and direct release movie The Plan (2009). A webseries, called Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome, was originally meant to launch a spinoff series about the early life of William Adama (Edward James Olmos), but SyFy ultimately decided to have the webseries culminate in a TV movie.
However, Blood & Chrome could be an idea worth revisiting, as it would be the perfect prequel to BSG, simultaneously able to tell the events leading up to BSG while creating an independent and original story, set at the height of the Twelve Colonies. Watching a younger Admiral Adama as a pilot aboard a Battlestar rather than as its commander would be a springboard for new adventures, and would enrich fans’ understandings of his character in BSG.
4. Columbus (Jericho)
While Jericho (2006) was short-lived, it amassed a cult following during its time on air – its fans would love to see a spinoff in the post-apocalyptic nuclear landscape. There are ample opportunities for spinoff shows for Jericho because it told a single story within a rich and complex world.
While Jericho told the story of a small town in Kansas after twenty-six cities in the United States were attacked with nuclear weapons, then Columbus could explore the effects of this attack on the residents of the city of Columbus, Ohio and New York, which both had failed attacks on them. Columbus becomes the new capital of the United States, which is forced to face off with the newly formed Allied States of America and the Republic of Texas. Jericho‘s story could be continued in a spinoff series, even if none of the characters from the original show were able to return.
3. Troy and Abed in the Morning! (Community)
Everyone’s favorite television bromance deserves its own show. Troy Barnes (Donald Glover) and Abed Nadir (Danny Pudi) were the real couple that everyone rooted for in Community (2009). The two students met at Greendale Community College, and even though they seemed to be opposites at first (Troy was a total jock in the first season), they quickly became a comedic duo that invented imaginary worlds and a seemingly unlimited supply of increasingly metafictional inside jokes.
One such joke was Troy and Abed in the Morning!, a pretend talk show that the two friends put on in their study space. While other characters make fun of Troy and Abed for playing make-believe (they don’t record the show in any way, and sometimes don’t have any audience whatsoever), the characters, format, and jingle could easily be made into a talk show/comedy that could companion (and riff on) Community. Plus, who doesn’t want more Troy and Abed?
2. Shang-Chi (Iron Fist)
Iron Fist (2016) isn’t even out yet, but the show opens up an opportunity for potential spinoffs. Specifically, the show could lead to the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first Asian superhero, which feels long overdue. Shang-Chi is rumored to appear in Iron Fist, but giving Shang-Chi his own show, much like The Punisher, would give fans more Marvel shows on Netflix (always a good thing) and allow Shang-Chi to have his own origin story and adventures, rather than having him just play second fiddle to Iron Fist (Finn Jones).
Shang-Chi is a Chinese-born master of martial arts, and with the right creative team and fight choreographers, he could star in a kickass kung fu television show that could complement the other Marvel shows on Netflix.
1. Dr. Fünke’s 100% Natural Good-Time Family-Band Solution (Arrested Development)
Honestly, pretty much any Arrested Development (2003) spinoff would have the potential to be absolutely hilarious: Bringing Up Buster (starring Tony Hale as Buster Bluth), The Adventures of Annyong (starring Justin Lee as Annyong Bluth), Prison Break: Orange County featuring George Bluth, Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor), these spinoffs literally write themselves. Perhaps the most exciting potential spinoff could chronicle the acting misadventures and malpractices of Dr. Tobias Fünke (David Cross) – but it’s difficult to pick just one!
The best part of having a spinoff (or spinoffs) would be that the production of new seasons of Arrested Development is constantly slowed because of the many conflicting schedules of the many talented (and apparently employable) actors who make up the Bluth family. A spinoff would be a chance to have more Bluths sooner, with cameos and shorter appearances for actors who might be tied up in other projects.
Are there any spinoffs that you think need to be made? Come and talk about them in the comments!
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