Arrested Development’s fourth season was so popular and
commercially successful, even though it received a mixed
reception, reassured networks, cable, and streaming services that
there is a market on television for revivals and reboots.
These revivals, reboots, and continuations are becoming
more and more prevalent as film and television industry executives
realize that the American viewer becomes more deeply entrenched
in a love affair with nostalgia each year. The pattern is evident in
the success of series that recall previous times (see Stranger Things
and the 1980s), but it also plays out in how 1990s sitcoms and
2000s dramas are given new life and often resurrected with the
same creative teams that helmed the originals. It is a pattern
repeated in film as well as television. Year around, multiplexes are
filled with sequels (like the new Star Wars films), prequels (also the
new Star Wars films), reboots (Ghostbusters), and movies based on
intellectual property (almost any superhero film). In the weeks
leading up to this volume’s release, announcements have come that
CBS wants to reboot The Honeymooners (a problematic sitcom from
1955 about a blue-collar family), Disney plans to reboot Ducktales
(an animated series about the misadventures of Donald Duck’s
nephews and their wealthy uncle Scrooge McDuck), and that
Disney plans to produce a Fuller House-style continuation of That’s
So Raven (a sitcom about a teenage psychic navigating her social life
with the power of premonition) featuring the eponymous Raven
(Raven Symoné) as an adult who has a psychic child of her own.
When networks are reaching back to the 1950s for some of their
reboots, it is clear it is not a passing trend. The origin of a series
has no direct impact on quality, whether it is a revival, reboot, or
continuation. Some examples are exceptional Star Wars films,
many of the revived sitcoms (Arrested Development, in this author’s
opinion), and rebooted series (Fargo, a limited series loosely based
on the Coen Brothers’s film) fall into this category while other
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