Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Hollywood Babble On & On #1085: Two TV Tidbits

Today we're going to take a look at two television tidbits. One is an adaptation, the other is a remake. Let's start with the adaptation.


The CW Network is looking at bringing Golden Age DC Comics hero Hourman to the small screen in a new television series.

For those unfamiliar with the character the original Hourman was Rex Tyler a pharmaceutical scientist who invents a concoction of vitamins and hormones called Miraclo.  

One dose of Miraclo gives him superhuman strength and reflexes, but only for 1 hour at a time.

That's right, he's got the deadline for his powers in his name. So all villains need to defeat him is a good watch.

And by the way Miraclo is addictive, and ultimately destroys him.

I can't really see Hourman as the star of his own series. I see him really as a supporting player in a Justice League/Justice Society type team situation. But maybe that's just me.

I do have a suggestion for DC and the CW network.

Let me have The Question to develop for a TV series.

Think about it, he's perfect for television. He's a street level crime fighter, dealing with gangsters, crooked politicians, and shady businesspeople, so it won't break the bank in the special effects department. Also, some interpretations of the original character of Randian journalistic turned vigilante Vic Sage, also taps into our current obsessions with surveillance and paranoia.

Action, drama, and some black humour. Who could ask for anything more?

Plus, he doesn't have his weakness in his name.


The History Channel, flush from the mega-success of The Hatfields & McCoys miniseries have announced that they're going to do a remake of Roots.

For those who may be too young, Roots was based on the novel by Alex Haley that dramatized his family's history. The first nine & a half hour miniseries in 1977 covered the taking of family founder Kunta Kinte from Africa into slavery in America in the 1700s and the lives of his descendants through to the end of the civil war and their liberation.

A fourteen hour sequel series Roots: The Next Generations came in 1979 and covered the family's saga from the post Civil War period, through to the life of Alex Haley himself in the 1960s.

Roots was a massive ratings smash, and helped solidify the miniseries, or "novel for television" as a television staple through to the early 1990s.

Which makes me ask a question.

Why not just rerun the original?

I remember seeing it as a kid, and remembering that it was pretty solidly made, with good production values and a top flight cast that would be hard to replicate today. Maybe all they really need to do is a top flight High-Definition remaster, with a little digital polish added to the special effects.

They might also want to digitally recast OJ Simpson's cameo role with another actor, and possibly correct some of the historical inaccuracies that some historians thought hurt the miniseries as a teaching tool.

It would be cheaper and probably easier than starting all over from scratch.


  1. As much as I admire old school super heroes I think they should come up with some kind of new super heroes as they did too many adaptations as it is. They should instead do adaptation of Italian comic book heroes. Something in lines of Dylan Dog which was attempted, but rather poorly.

  2. No new superheroes, we have enough already. Don't worry about hour man if it works they'll figure out a way to extend his abilities without killing him or they'll beat the dead horse until thee show collapses.

    With CGI being what it is, it's probably possible to do a good Captain Marvel. He was as popular as the big names once upon a time. A show aimed at three generations like Smallville would be a good fit. Superheroes don't nneed to be all grim all the time.