Voices of the Syndicate: To Adapt or Reboot?

As some of you long time visitors may remember that we used to run a feature called ‘Voices of the Syndicate’. The point of VotS was to pose a question to the Geek Syndicate team to get their their feedback and then use that to do a feature for the website.

With the release of Star Trek into Darkness last month and Man of Steel this month this week’s question was one that has been asked many times before but always bring some interesting answers. So with the adaptation/reboot train rolling on with no signs of stopping what one property would you love to see either adapted or reboots for either TV or film?

Luke Halsall – I’d like to see Green Lantern rebooted or given another shot.


Geek Adventure – I’d love to see Tove Janssons creation ‘The Moomins’ adapted in some way. When I was a kid the TV cartoon had such an effect on me that my imaginary friend was Moomintroll.

I would worry though that in the wrong hands it could just become another merchandising opportunity that just happened to be a TV show. I think whomever adapted it would need to stick to the original source material which is so wonderfully dark and also genuinely thoughtful. I think this generation of children deserve to be as transported away by it as I was.


WedgeDoc – I’d normally come straight out with “Masters of the Universe”, but that had a (short lived but actually good) re-boot in 2002 and is currently re-vamped in DC Comics’ new Masters of the Universe series. Which is great so far – the original mini-series was interesting and the ongoing has just started.

With that in hand, I’d turn to another of Filmation / Mattel’s joint properties: Bravestarr. This series was set in a futuristic world on a mining planet. It was a quintessential Space Western, with a touch of mysticism. Out hero (a descendant of the native American Indian analogues) could draw forth the Eyes of the Hawk, Ears of the Wolf, Strength of the Bear or Speed of the Puma to aid him in his mission. He was a trained Marshall, a member of an interstellar law-keeping organisation stationed on New Texas. His partner was the best thing ever: A horse who could turn Humanoid and carried a massive shotgun named Sarah-Jane.

The series was excellent and had some darker episodes amongst the usual Saturday Morning adventures. I’d like to see a new (2d) animated series, but it would work live action, as a movie or in comic form too. For those who haven’t seen it, check out the original!


Dean Simons – Hmm… As much as I’d like to see a Flash movie or a Green Lantern revival (perhaps with Hal dying and passing the torch to a young John Stewart), I would like to see something that moves away from “superheroes”. Perhaps an adaptation of DMZ as a TV series.


silverfox1967 – I’d like to reboot (probably as a mini-series to avoid them going stale):
– The Time Tunnel (including a trip to the grassy knoll circa 1963)

– The Man from Atlantis (with a focus on Atlantis – give it a “Fathom” angle)

– Manimal (with today’s CGI he can expand his zoological repertoire beyond just a panther!)


Dion – I’ve always said the best things to remake are either those with brilliant concepts that were handled poorly at first (Battlestar Galactica as a case in point) or those that were great but have been largely forgotten.
On the comic book side I would love to see Daredevil and the Fantastic Four handled by Marvel, and a proper Wonder Woman film to bring DC into the game.

Tv badly needs another swing at proper Sci-fi, and what better world than Mega-City One to fill it? Dredd didn’t blow the box office but he would kick serious arse as an ongoing police procedural show!

Nothing bugs me more than painfully contracting a property that needs room to breathe. Imagine Game of Thrones as a single film? It would suck. Well, Ursula LeGuin’s Earthsea was treated criminally on the small screen and the large with two shoddy attempts. Now that we’ve seen dragons can be done well, let’s have a full blown tv series.
Finally please, PLEASE can we have The War of the Worlds done properly, set in the original time period. Give them the threat level they deserve!


Dave W – I’d love to see Ultraviolet (the classic Channel 4 don’t-call-them-vampires thriller not the Milla Jovovich abomination) get another outing. Fifteen years later it remains in my Top 5 of greatest TV shows ever and its run was painfully short with a mere six episodes. The cast was stellar, including an early turns from Idris Elba, Jack Davenport and Stephen Moyer, and the plot was years ahead of its time.

Part procedural, part supernatural drama I think this could continue to be amazing with either a return of the original cast or a continuation with the same down-to-earth tone of the original.

They seem to be sneered at by a lot of fantasy fandom but I’d love to see David Eddings Belgariad or Elenium given the Game of Thrones treatment…minus the naughtiness of course


Vichus Smith  – With all the talk of Quicksilver being shared between Fox and Marvel Studios, I think it would be a great time for a Flash movie to come around. All we’ve had so far are a lot of Batman and Superman films, a detested Green Lantern film, and a Wonder Woman film that has never even made it to script. So why not adapt The Flash?

It’s pretty simple: guy gets the power to run really, really fast. He also has a flashy set of villains with visually impressive gimmicks. I think that this would be one instance where multiple villains would work well together. Usually, villains with no history with each other are thrown together. The Rogues have to work together to try and take down someone who runs faster than the speed of sound.


Ian Simpson – I’d love to see a modern take on Battle of the Planets – maybe even a live action version, written properly from scratch. But I’d really, really love to see, in the spirit that it was never shown properly in the UK, is Science Ninja Team Gatchaman! So ideally, a Gatchaman film with a Battle of the Planets TV spin off.


Natasha M – Honestly, I wouldn’t shed a tear if the reboot train crashed catastrophically and was thereby utterly annihilated- I mean, they’re remaking The Crow. THE CROW. Is nothing sacred?! I’m pretty irritated by the fact that reboots more often than not exploit fandom for a quick buck, in addition to the fact that the very act of rebooting implies an originality deficit.

Having said that: I would whole-heartedly approve of any reboot that brings new dimensions of insight to an existing franchise; raising valid ethical/socially significant questions, accompanied by more thoughtful characterisation.

X-Men in particular has *so* much potential, but it seems that film-makers are just too greedy for the profit that stereotypical “superhero” type depictions bring about, and so they completely ignore the depth that is clearly accessible within the principle themes of the franchise: social alienation, scientific progress versus ethical considerations, the nature of power, prejudice, etc. These have certainly been touched upon, but not really given their due.

I’m not sure if this counts as a reboot exactly, but I would love to see a television series based on the Drizzt novels- he’s a fascinating character, made complex as a result of his belonging to two places and yet neither, and the Underdark is a really atmospheric setting, with a particularly interesting theological angle!


Leo Johnson – Personally, I would love to see a Captain Marvel/Shazam movie, as long as it’s done right, of course. He was the first superhero to get a movie way back in the 40s, after all, so why shouldn’t he get one now? If it kept the same sort of sense of fun as the older comics and didn’t try to go all dark and gritty, it could be a great movie that’s fun for everyone.


Casey Douglass – I would quite like the film Strange Days adapted into a tv series format. I understand that the film wasn’t a commercial success, but it did win some critical acclaim. The ability for the SQUID device to record someones experiences and then to be traded/abused is still very interesting to me, and I could definately see it becoming some sort of futuristic crime series.

You would have all kinds of scope for legitimate recordings downloaded via something like iTunes which might be of things like what being famous feels like or the feeling of skydiving. Or there could be black market recordings downloaded illegally from shady places which might encompass the experiences of murderers and rapists. I think there would be a great back and forth between policing the files and using the black market ones to track down criminals. At some point someone might be able to alter the recording and a whole new world of “is it real or fake” would appear.


Matt Farr – I’d like to see an “in period” War of the Worlds adaptation, although I sort of understand why a very risk-adverse industry would avoid something like that. On the comics front I’d love to see DC get their act together – they seem to be holding their breath waiting to see how Man of Steel does, but past form makes me concerned they don’t actually have a lot of faith in their own properties and thats a shame. I can’t believe that making a decent new Wonder Woman film or TV show would be that hard, but apparently it is.


Jess Hawke – I agree with Matt- Wonder Woman needs a film. She’s such an iconic character that it seems odd that DC have had so many failed attempts at films and TV series. Maybe now they’ve seen Marvel’s winning streak, they’re too worried that they can’t compete? It’s a possibility. But there need to be more films where the focus is on a strong female superhero. There is talk about a possible Black Widow film, which would be a good move for Marvel in my books.

Also I think I’d like to see new Buffy. A remake with newer technology in CGI and special effects could be pretty cool!

To hear Dave and Barry’s discussing some of these answers and giving their own to this week’s VOTS tune in to episode 210 of Geek Syndicate podcast coming soon.

Join us next Monday for another Voices of the Syndicate and if you want to submit a question to the team then just put yours in the comment section. If we pick your question then you may win yourself a prize!

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