Back in 2013, a little show re-entered our lives after a prolonged absence brought on by network executives claiming no one cared about it. The show was Arrested Development, and the show that once got canceled for low ratings immediately proved that TV revivals are big business, no matter how holy and untouchable the original run of the show is regarded as. Since Arrested Development’s Season 4 debut on Netflix, it seems as if every other show – revered and forgotten alike – has followed suit, reviving, retooling, and reuniting for more. Aside from Fox pretty much reviving anything that was ever popular in their prime time lineup – 24, Heroes, The X-Files, Prison Break – we’re also getting more Full House, Twin Peaks, Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Gilmore Girls, and so much more.
With Fuller House debuting this month on Netflix, we’ve decided to take a look back at our favorite shows that aren’t on TV anymore, and could live on in future episodes without skipping a beat. We decided to stay away from a list of shows that were “canceled too soon,” and rather are primarily looking at shows with a decent amount of episodes and a stellar cast that could step back into their famous characters and bring new storylines to fans old and new alike. Here’s Screen Rant’s 12 TV Series That Need A Netflix Revival.
11 Being Human (US)
Perhaps more than any show on this list, the US remake of Being Human had the most likable cast with the best chemistry, and it was a joy to hang out with them; even when the proceedings got dark as hell as everyone was constantly contemplating their own horrible humanity. But we miss them and want them back, even if it’s only been two years.
SyFy’s Being Human was an underrated gem of a genre show – as funny as it was cripplingly depressing – and it was a shining beacon of basic cable television. Packed with some of TV’s best cliffhangers, coupled with the fearlessness to try new things and shake up the entire show whenever the story called for it, Being Human deserved more than its four seasons, and a smaller, more condensed revival season on Netflix would allow for the extremely talented cast – consisting of Sam Huntington, Sam Witwer, Meaghan Rath, and Kristen Hager – to pursue other projects while still living together forever in a crazy undead house while they all try not to kill each other even more than they’re already dead. And if that doesn’t make sense, you clearly haven’t been watching enough Being Human.
10 Flight of the Conchords
Here’s the truth of the matter; our lives are totally empty and meaningless without Brett and Jemaine and Murray in them, and no amount of indie movies starring Jemaine Clement or Oscar-winning songs written by Brett McKenzie or guest-appearances in The X-Files by Rhys Darby can rectify that. Only more Flight of the Conchords can fill our hearts and souls and hair-helmets with joy and folk music, so let’s get this going.
While Brett and Jemaine are reportedly working on a Flight of the Conchords movie – and we’ll take anything we can get – we humbly suggest they go the Arrested Development route and turn that movie into a Netflix season, which then turns into another Netflix season, which then leads to a few more seasons before ultimately culminating in a movie or five. Yes, we want infinite more Flight of the Conchords, because from the first time we saw them their rhymes really were so potent that they made all of us pregnant. Pregnant with a desire to never live without new episodes of Flight of the Conchords. And we will not give the cup – or ourselves – a rest until that desire is met.
Judd Apatow has been teasing us on this front lately, joking that “it could happen,” but us Freaks and Geeks fans don’t have time for jokes. We all had a friend who made jokes once. But you know what happened to him? He died.
While many people say that a revival would never happen, it’s hard to give up on a show with the theme of “don’t give up” so ingrained in its DNA. Apatow still works with many of the people from Freaks and Geeks, and he has the power and influence to make whatever he wanted whenever he wanted. And Freaks and Geeks fans aside, if there was a TV show starring James Franco, Seth Rogen, Jason Segel, Martin Starr, and Linda Cardellini, people would watch. The rest is easy to figure out. We just want to see our favorite freaks and our favorite geeks together again.
9 Friday Night Lights
Oh Matt Saracen, where are you now? How is your art coming? Did you and Tim Riggins end up opening an artisanal bakery together with Landry as the manager? It seems that the only way we’ll find out the answers to these burning questions is if this Jason Katims-created show comes back for another go around on Netflix.
Since Friday Night Lights went off the air in 2011, our eyes have been dangerously murky and our hearts have been suspiciously empty. But the good news is that this criminally under-viewed show has picked up a legion of fans since its days as a low rated NBC/DirecTV show, and it would fit right into the Netflix landscape as a limited series that catches us up on the town of Dillon, Texas and its former inhabitants. Any amount of episodes will do, as long as we get to spend more time with our favorite Panthers and say “clear eyes, full hearts, let’s binge.”
Mark this in the “never in a million years column,” especially according to every cast member and writer who has ever been asked if a Friends reunion would happen and have always responded "never in a million years.” Except Gunther. But who would ever trust Gunther?
The only reason we have to think a Friends reunion would be in the cards one day is that Netflix picked up the streaming rights to the series a year ago, and it would make perfect sense for Netflix to foot the insane bill and pay all the costs that it would certainly take to get all six friends back together in their huge apartments for another go-around. Sure, TV has changed and the multi-camera format that friends existed in might feel dated to today’s audience, but if any show can endearingly stay ageless and provide a handful of new episodes that update us on whether Ross and Rachel are still on that break, it would be Friends. And it would do it with grace and skill and humor and heart and it would be delightful.
C’mon Fox, you’ve revived pretty much everything else of worth that has ever aired on your network; where’s House? This is why we can’t have nice things, Fox. This is why Netflix has to take things like Arrested Development from you. And hopefully, if they’re reading this, they’ll take House.
Hugh Laurie doesn’t seem too busy these days. We know Omar Epps is available. Jesse Spencer probably isn’t doing much. Lupus is still around. Let’s get this one going again so we can relive the glory days of the only procedural that’s ever been worth watching. Let’s bask in the witty side-stories, the occasionally gripping predictability of the five act structure, the banter between House and Cuddy, and let’s flip it all on its head. Because House would be on Netflix now, baby. All rules would be thrown out the window, and we can finally see the series as a gritty character drama that comes wrapped in a beautifully serialized package. Let’s begin the surgery.
Did you know it’s been 10 years since Lost first aired? That’s crazy. We were all so young and naive and we were totally unaware of how royally we were getting f*cked by the writers. We didn’t know that six years would go down the drain, all to culminate in a meaningless finale that we had been promised would not be the final twist. But hey, that’s life as a TV fan, and that’s why we want to give Lost another chance and have the opportunity to be heartbroken all over again.
A Netflix revival could be just what fans need to forgive the show for its slight of an ending, and this time we’d know not to expect answers going in. Now that TV, such as Lost-showrunner Damon Lindelof’s The Leftovers, has taught us that we can enjoy mysteries without expecting answers – as long as we’re warned ahead of times – we’d accept Lost for what it is and be able to enjoy it again with open arms. We’d even pretend the last few seasons never happened, and we’d travel with Jack and Sawyer and Kate and Locke back to the island again, and we’d even be content if they just tried to figure out how to build a golf course all over again. Honest. We’re ready. We’ll be good this time.
5 Malcolm in the Middle
Who would have thought that out of the entire cast of Malcolm in the Middle, nearly all of them would quit acting completely, except for Hal? Because Hal went and became one of the greatest actors of this generation. And what did Dewey do? We have no idea. He probably chased a balloon down a street and got lost somewhere. Classic Dewey.
Bryan Cranston has gone on record admitting that he’d love to do a revival of Malcolm, saying that “It’s been 10 years since we went off the air and it’d be fun to pick up that guy’s clothes again and be fun and sweet and adorable and hapless and clueless and afraid of everything.” And as much as Bryan Cranston wants that, we want it too. We want it real bad. Knowing Fox, they probably want it. And Frankie Muniz can’t live off his Agent Cody Banks money forever, right?
It’s only been a year since Parenthood wrapped up its six year run on NBC, but creator Jason Katims has gone on record a few times saying he’s almost ready for a revival. And what’s more, he wants to do it Boyhood style, picking up on the exploits of the Braverman family every few years for, hopefully, ever.
Parenthood was consistently the best show on network television and one of the most compelling, nuanced, and well-acted series on TV; period. For its entire run, Parenthood tackled the themes of everyday life and made the hard to watch impossible to look away from, right up until it delivered one of the most perfect series finales in recent memory. But the thing about Parenthood is that the concept of family is forever, and the story of the Braverman family will never wrap up, because in our mind they’ll just keep on living their lives. So why not televise those lives and bring us endless stories full of smiles and tears; this time without worrying about ratings or time slots.
3 Pushing Daisies
Pushing Daisies was a brightly-colored and over-saturated delight, packed with perfectly absurd performances and a concept that could generate new stories for seasons. It’s fondly regarded as a noir detective show, minus the noir and maybe plus a few shades of pastel. It’s lovely and romantic and funny and dramatic and despite it lasting for only two seasons and not igniting the same fan following as many other shows on this list, it deserves a Netflix revival as much as any of them.
While we choose to believe that network constraints pushed Daisies into overly-procedural territory, while another, more wholly Bryan Fuller tone was trying to push through to the forefront. With a revival, Pushing Daisies would finally get the creative freedom it deserves and it could push the envelope in any way it would like, and we’d all eagerly come along for the ride. Whether it be as a serialized dramedy or a Netflix branded pie of the month club, any way to get Pushing Daisies back from the dead would be fittingly appropriate for a show about a pie maker who brings people back from the dead.
2 Sports Night
Sports Night will never be forgotten in the minds of those who are lucky enough to have seen it. The first show from writer Aaron Sorkin, Sports Night was deceptively simple and endlessly endearing, smart, and important. The concept – following a bunch of co-workers at a sports talk-show – is one that doesn’t need refreshing or retooling for today’s audience, and seeing Dan and Casey back behind the anchor desk after 15 years would bring us all joy beyond belief.
Starring Peter Krause, Josh Charles, Felicity Huffman, and Joshua Malina, a Sports Night revival is one that could be shot in Aaron Sorkin’s garage for only the price of the sandwich that Josh Malina would probably request, and it would still be delightful to no end. We don’t need any fancy sets or exterior shots; we’re fine with a low-budget affair that re-introduces us to Dan’s New York Renaissance, Casey and Dana’s confused groping, and Jeremy’s crusade against hunting and for electronic-mail sending. We will not forget Sports Night, and we refuse to believe that its day is done.
1 The West Wing
Politics have changed a lot since The West Wing first aired in 1999 – not necessarily for the better – but that’s why we need The West Wing to restore our faith in the American political system. Aaron Sorkin’s magnum opus, The West Wing changed television by giving an all-star cast and an all-star writer the space to create challenging and engrossing television that doesn’t talk down to the viewer. While we’ve lost some ground in that fight since the show went off the air, thanks to networks and content creators like Netflix, we’re now firmly in The New Golden Age of Television, and that’s an age that West Wing deserves to be around to see.
While shows like Netflix’s own House of Cards are clearly influenced by West Wing, The West Wing would stand out as a revival by bringing back its trademark optimism and peddling it to a modern audience used to cynicism and darkness. The cast – minus the tragically deceased John Spencer – would be a delight to see together again, and there’s no shortage of political stories worth telling in 2016; as long as they have an Aaron Sorkin-created West Wing spin to them.
Which of the above shows do you think most deserve a revival? Are there any we missed? Let us know in the comments, and as a result, let Hollywood know, and then maybe they’ll do it and you’ll be happy again!
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