Tonight marks the return of “Dallas” to the airwaves, with TNT offering viewers a look at the latest generation of Ewings while also giving original cast members Larry Hagman, Patrick Duffy, and Linda Gray an opportunity to get in on the fun. For what it’s worth, I quite enjoyed the pilot, but I’ll freely admit that the only reason that I was interested in revisiting Southfork Ranch in 2012 was because of those original cast members.
No matter how brilliantly or badly they turn out, I’ve always been a sucker for TV series revivals, be it as a “next generation” sort of series like this one or as a reunion movie, so I thought I’d throw together a list of some of my favorites for your reading enjoyment. The only caveats: I’m not counting occasions when a series jumped to the big screen, i.e. the not-very-good theatrical “Get Smart” movie, “The Nude Bomb,” nor am I including animated series in the mix…although if I did, you can bet the animated “Star Trek” series would be at the top of my list.
Okay, let’s roll…
When The CW first kicked off its return to West Beverly High School, the burning questions from virtually every TV critic who covered the series involved which of the original cast members would be returning. In the end, Jennie Garth (Kelly), Shannen Doherty (Brenda), Tori Spelling (Donna), Ann Gillespie (Jackie Taylor, Kelly’s mom), and Joe E. Tata (Nat, the proprietor of the Peach Pit) all ended up making it back to the familiar zip code for an episode or two, generally proving to be the most entertaining parts of those particular episodes. Since the show’s gone all new-school, though, I can’t be bothered to keep up with it.
This feels like a bit of a cheat, since it wasn’t so much a revival of an old series as it was an attempt to wrap up plot threads that had been left dangling when “Homicide: Life on the Street” departed the airwaves the year before. With that said, however, it still technically falls within the realm of a reunion film, and it’s one of the best ones you’re likely to find, so that’s why it’s here.
I always thought that the concept of this film, which posited that the Monkees continued to live together even after their series was cancelled, was an extremely clever one. I just wish the band’s reunion album, Justus, had been even half as enjoyable.
Tags: 90210, A Very Brady Christmas, Beverly Hills 90210, Dallas, Get Smart, Get Smart Again, Gilligan's Island, Halloween with the New Addams Family, Hey Hey It's The Monkees, Homicide, Homicide: The Movie, I Dream of Jeannie, I Dream of Jeannie: 15 Years Later, Leave It To Beaver, Mary and Rhoda, Mission: Impossible, Mission: Impossible '88, Perry Mason, Perry Mason Returns, Rescue from Gilligan's Island, Return to Mayberry, Rhoda, Still the Beaver, The Addams Family, The Andy Griffith Show, The Bionic Woman, The Brady Bunch, The Bradys, The Dukes of Hazzard, The Dukes of Hazzard: Reunion!, The Facts of Life, The Facts of Life Reunion, The Light from the TV Shows, The Man from UNCLE, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Monkees, The New WKRP in Cincinnati, The Nude Bomb, The Return of the Man from UNCLE, The Return of the Six Million Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman, The Six Million Dollar Man, The Wild Wild West, The Wild Wild West Revisted, Will Harris, WKRP in Cincinatti