Busted Out Of Mothballs: Yesterdays Heroes, Today

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by M.A.C.O., Jan 26, 2018.

  1. M.A.C.O.

    M.A.C.O. Commodore Commodore

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    With the recent resurgence of classic IPs, remakes, reboots, sequels etc. We've seen a number of heroes from yesteryear make a return. With the recent debate of Luke's handling in The Last Jedi, it got me thinking.

    Is this a good thing and a course that should be repeated, or is it something that is better off avoided?

    Some recent examples of this.

    Luke, Han and Leia: Star Wars
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    Indiana Jones
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    Spock: Star Trek
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    Kevin Flynn: Tron
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    Diego De La Vega (Mask of Zorro)
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    Mulder and Scully from the X-Files
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    Rocky Balboa is another legend. He has come out of retirement twice so far. Soon to be back for a 3rd return.
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    How do you feel about this?
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2019
  2. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I've been pretty happy with most of the ones we've gotten in the last few years. I think the big thing for me is that they do something different with them, and so far most of them have.
     
  3. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The idea of catching up with these characters decades later was pure fantasy for a long time. I think it's amazing that we've actually gotten to dip back into these worlds.
     
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  4. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Commodore Commodore

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    Can be good or bad, depending on handling. How credibly it's done seems more important than to just haul them onto the screen for a cheap money shot.

    Spock was just a metaphor for a bridge to the reboot cast...

    Luke, Leia, and Han arguably got the best treatment: The trio subverted the dripping cliché that they all must be together on screen in the same scene for all sorts of scenes. For all the criticisms TFA and TLJ have received, for which some are fair, one has to admit that not having them reunite was pretty bold.

    Indeed, Luke's eventual story told in TLJ is sufficient character development and took rather an unexpected but worthwhile turn (no more Gary Stu/Mary Sue/Gary Gnu/whatever from him, he's an actual character now and helped create the hot mess that is Kylo Ren) but some of the movie's criticisms aren't entirely unfair... Also, Han had already been given the treatment that Harrison Ford wanted as far back as 1980 and they used the dramatic moment well in TFA. Carrie Fisher... Definitely awesome to see Leia back, though she doesn't do much. At least in TFA, her role in TLJ has a few great moments and she had written some of the dialogue as well, making it that more interesting. RIP. :( Long before her time and it's more to honor her by leaving all her footage in than to have done a complete reshoot (there are one if not two moments in the film where Leia could have been killed...)

    Flynn was kinda cool, even if the 1982 original Tron didn't fall into the huge plot hole mistake that "Legacy" had (assuming both our universe and computerland there both ran at the same speed, which they don't.)

    But it depends on how it's all done.

    The 1990s Brady Bunch movies had some cameos. If nothing else, those movies used to be funny but now I see where JJ got his inspiration for his Trek reboot (callbacks, plot uplifting, style, etc).

    The Ghostbusters - bunch of pointless little cameos instead of being a proper sequel. Also see "The Brady Bunch Movie" (and its sequel) for doing similar cameos (though they had already done sequels on TV in the 80s and early 90s).

    If "Blake's 7" ever got green lighted for a new season/soft reboot, getting the surviving cast to reprise their roles might or might not work. A proper sequel with soft reboot is probably preferable to an entire reboot/premise change (e.g. Wonder Woman now being from World War 1 for no reason, though BSG and its premise alteration also ends up acknowledging "Galactica 1980" and using one of its concepts (human cylon) far more effectively...
     
  5. RJDemonicus

    RJDemonicus Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    I think catching up with older characters is great-- X-Files is another contemporary example-- and I wish there was more of it. If we're talking about movies and TV, the original actors must be used, of course, and the revival must respect the source material. But with that in mind, I'm all for it.
     
  6. M'rk son of Mogh

    M'rk son of Mogh Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    My brother and I have had this discussion more than once, and we generally agree that there's something about our heroes riding off into the sunset, "immortal" as far as our memories and expectations go, as opposed to getting final stories that essentially end what our imaginations have come up with.

    For example, I'm glad Picard is out there doing his thing being a hero while seeing Kirk die added an unfortunate finality to the legend. Just showing the death was probably worse than being told about it or assuming it occurred. Sure, that's life, but for these fictional legends, I don't think we necessarily need to complete the circle. Maybe it's strange, but it's how I feel.
     
  7. Serveaux

    Serveaux Tasteless and unnecessary Premium Member

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    Well, Harrison Ford's Solo was what I enjoyed in The Force Awakens.
     
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  8. PhotoBoy

    PhotoBoy Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think it depends on whether you're bringing back old characters because you've got a story to tell with them or if you just want to bring them back as a token gesture and then kill them off to get them out of the way.
     
  9. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    At least with most of the examples, they haven't done them out of spite, but moved the timelines forward and in some cases given us closure. I would feel it unnecessary if they were to have gone back on them. There has to be some sort of reward or gain to be had, otherwise it feels like idle pandering. The other thing is, we get so attached to these characters and our memories of them, that I think sometimes there's a danger of seeing them in ways that we don't agree with, and that can be a hard thing to deal with. Sometimes we think we want something when subconsciously, we really don't. And to that end, sometimes it's better to let those sleeping dogs lie rather than wake them up again.
     
  10. Gaith

    Gaith Vice Admiral Admiral

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    When bringing back an old, beloved hero, my preference is that the new movie/series evolve/ do something new with the character. Though I don't much like TNG's "Unification" or the Kelvin Timeline movies, Old Spock is a perfect example of this: the first officer from TOS moves on to become a diplomat/non-military scientist. Also great: Spielberg's Lincoln (2012). Who would have guessed that the small-town lawyer from Young Mr. Lincoln (1939) would someday become a hugely consequential wartime US President? :p

    Han/Leia/Luke in TFA/TLJ, OTOH, are, to me, the opposite of this in that Han and Leia are pretty much exactly back to their ANH roles (to say nothing of Ackbar and Nien Nunb), and Luke is repeating the self-exile arcs of Yoda and Obi-Wan. Which isn't to say that all dark evolutions/devolutions are bad: Zorro, aka Don Diego de la Vega, spends most of The Mask of Zorro a bitter, revenge-focused old man. But to have him struck down and imprisoned for twenty years in his relative prime was a wholly new twist on his merry prankster bandit character, and unlike Han/Luke/Leia, that movie gave de la Vega as much time and development as it did Alejandro Murietta (the new Zorro). Meanwhile, Indy in Crystal Skull is up to the exact same old stuff as before. Snooze.
     
  11. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    That's a good point, and I feel the overall issue is with how big blockbusters are now produced; style over substance. Dazzle them with light and they'll be happy. I feel like I got to know the OT better on screen than I am with the new trilogy, because far less time is being spent on character development. In the OT, I could feel they were a good group of friends that cared about each other and would follow each other through adversity. By the end of the second movie, I'm not getting any better idea where these new kids are situated, and I'm not really getting any sense that they're good friends. They feel more like pawns drawn into a rebellion than any characters who care about why they're actually fighting. Where's their trajectory? The overall nature of these movies feel less like they've been well thought out.

    Mask of Zorro was pretty awesome. I remember being really impressed the first time I saw it. Anthony Hopkins gave a really great performance.
     
  12. M.A.C.O.

    M.A.C.O. Commodore Commodore

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    He didn't become King of the Jungle, but he will be King of the Ring!

     
  13. flandry84

    flandry84 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Happens all the time...how many iterations of Robin Hood,the 3 musketeers and Sherlock Holmes have there been?
    Dick Tracy is about to return in comic-book form too so eventually if a character is strong enough or beloved enough they will have an afterlife.
    I have never understood some ‘fans’ hostility toward reboots and recasting.
     
  14. The Realist

    The Realist Vice Admiral Admiral

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    One obvious answer is that the examples you cite -- Robin Hood, Holmes, the Musketeers -- were literary characters first. Ditto many other characters that have seen multiple recastings and reboots over the years -- James Bond, Superman, Batman, and many others.

    It's understandable that characters who are created for the big or small screen -- who are defined in audience's minds as an initial proposition not just by the writing and concept, but by the actors who portray them -- are more inextricably bound to those specific actors.

    That's not to say those characters should not or cannot be recast or rebooted -- I'm a big fan of the Abramsverse TOS cast, for example -- just that it is not quite the same situation as with the characters you reference.
     
  15. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    Heck, Dumas even wrote a novel, Twenty Years After, that reunited the Musketeers decades down the road.
     
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  16. Dry Bones 37

    Dry Bones 37 Admiral Admiral

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    Spock and Flynn are two of my favorite ones in recent history.
     
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  17. M.A.C.O.

    M.A.C.O. Commodore Commodore

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    More heroes from yesteryear. More sequels to classic movies.

    Sam Neil, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum set to return for Jurassic World 3.
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    Arnold and Linda Hamilton returning for another Terminator movie.

    Ghostbusters 3 is a said to be happening now. With the original crew.

    I can say I'm only intrigued about Jurassic World 3. If Billy Murray's Vankman returns for GB3, I may be able to must some excitement.
     
  18. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    Meanwhile, Nancy Drew returns to TV tonight on the CW.

    Still going strong since 1930 . . . .

    (And, yes, I'm absolutely going to watch the new version.)
     
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  19. Noname Given

    Noname Given Admiral Admiral

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    And I bet they'll roll Pamela Sue Martin in for a Cameo somewhere. ;)
     
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  20. Yossarianator

    Yossarianator Commodore Commodore

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    Gotta confess, I've lost count already how many times JP's assorted actors have returned to the franchise. Everything old is older again.

    Michael Biehn said at at least one convention he'd be willing to return to the TERMINATOR neverending story if asked. But since he never had a quality catchphrase he could run into the ground, it's still not to be.