Are there a lot of original series on TV right now? Sure, you can point to plenty. Would networks rather just bring back more and more old shows anyway? Also yes! Lots of news about the future of television came out during the Television Critics Association press tour this month, and that future is going to involve a lot of reboots if the networks have their way.
Let’s start with Fox, a network that seems really into the reboot thing after having some success with bringing back The X-Files, 24, and soon Prison Break. Next on the list could be King of the Hill — Fox Television Group Chairman and CEO Dana Walden told Variety “We have had preliminary conversations with Greg [Daniels] and Mike [Judge],” referring to the co-creators of the animated series that ran from 1997 to 2009.
NBC is, let’s say, being a little more active about it all. Now that they’ve got the original cast of Will & Grace back together, NBC is getting all up in people’s digits about making comebacks, per Deadline. NBC Entertainment Chairman Bob Greenblatt talked about bringing back 30 Rock, ER, The West Wing, and The Office on the TCA press tour, although none of the above are moving forward yet.
In fact, with some of the responses Greenblatt is getting, I’m starting to wonder. Here’s a sampler platter! Of a 30 Rock reboot, Tina Fey said, “I don’t know maybe.” Aaron Sorkin, creator of The West Wing, gave a resounding “You know I love that show and some day I’d love to revisit it, but it’s not going to happen right now,” while Greenblatt usually gets a ‘maybe some day but not now’ from U.S. The Office creator Greg Daniels.
As a Californian, I feel the need to jump in here. Everyone involved in this stuff is or should be well-steeped in Hollywood culture by now, and that means everyone should know what a California No is. When you get a maybe, or a delayed response suggesting that the other person will “circle back in a couple weeks,” or a “right now isn’t the best time,” that’s usually a no! No one likes saying no because no one likes hearing no, but that’s a no. I’m not saying all of these responses are definitely California Nos, but I am saying that they all sure look a lot like what a California No would be.
Does that mean these reboots will never happen? I don’t know, we’ll wait, mull it over and revisit this in sometime in the next few months!