Digging up the past for profits. Entertainment has been doing this for ages, but today, it’s more prevalent than ever thanks to the interconnectedness of society and new technologies allowing us to relive the past more than we have ever been able to before.
Entertainment won't venture into new and exciting areas if the public gobbles up the same stale content.
We don't even care if it’s good as long as it's like it used to be. Dwight Schrute was accurate in his assumption that nostalgia is one of the greatest human weaknesses, besides the neck, of course.
Few things are more comforting than sitting around a table with friends and reminiscing about things in the past. However, there is a limitation on how many times the conversation can go back to the same well until the water becomes stale. The entertainment industry has seemingly forgotten that concept.
Ticket prices, subscription fees and other costs are just a means of trying to relive the past in entertainment, but it will never live up to the first time. People are chasing a high they can never catch again.
Reboots and remakes have been painted as a cash grab in many people’s eyes, and that’s not entirely wrong.
People love to see old things brought back to life but rarely are they even close to the quality of the original like 2016’s “Ghostbusters.” There hasn’t been a decent Terminator movie since the third one and Rambo hasn’t had a good film in over 30 years, and yet, both have sequels in 2019.
Remaking and rebooting old film franchises is not inherently evil, but it shows a lack of creativity. New classics won’t be made if consumers only pay to see updated versions of the old ones.
Disney is not only making remakes of their previous content; they are making near shot-for-shot remakes as well. When fans don’t get the same movie from the “good ‘ol days,” fans get angry and threaten boycotts, as is the case with the upcoming remake “Mulan.”
Netflix, Hulu and other popular streaming platforms bring the content of the past into the present. Netflix has produced shows which are shameless retreads of previous shows but slap an “er” on the end like “Fuller House.” They straight dig up the dead corpse of an early ’90s sitcom and revive it with poor writing. But, hey, Stephanie Tanner just said her catchphrase from 30 years ago, so that’s worth at least 5 seasons.
The greatest achievements in television, like “Breaking Bad,” “The Wire” and the first six seasons of “Game of Thrones,” are great because they are something people have never seen before. They push barriers and break new ground in entertainment. They created new worlds and new and exciting characters to invest in.
These shows focused on how they could give people something new and different, and consumers should continue to look for that in entertainment. Prequels and sequels are fine for a while, but eventually, we are going to run out of material to reboot and remake.
Living in the past, as far as entertainment goes, is as easy as ever and people should expect more of the same in the future. The past is like leftovers, there are only so many times you can reheat it in the microwave before it’s time to make some new food.