I published the final podcast of the decade yesterday.
I discuss several things on my mind. I reflect on why I created the podcast. I hope it encourage everyone to read.
I talk about my TNFro’s writing retreat which I wanted to write and post on board a train trip to San Antonio, the Kevin Hart Netflix Docuseries…Really, and the rise of intolerance of the past decade.
But I also reflect on why there will or will not be a Living Single Reboot please share the hashtag #LivingSingleReboot if you also believe there should be and this blog post is an expansion of my opinion on the necessity of a #LivingSingleReboot.
TV of 90s and the Season of the Reboot
I have been binge watching classic TV over the last couple of weeks and I realized there are several shows from the 90s that I never watch while they were actually live, what exactly was I doing? I was actually in school for most part of the 90s. I was stressing over mid-terms and finals first, as an undergraduate student at Mary Washington College, and then in medical school at the University of Florida Gainesville. Finally, rounding out the decade I was completing my post graduate pledging or training for residency in Dallas at Children’s in Dallas. With the exception of my beloved, Star Trek, the shows I have binged and then re-watched, Frazier, Friends, Sex in The City, Mad About You were on air the whole entire decade.
The only show from the 90s that is still on air is the original Law and Order which premiered in 1990 with SVU still on NBC. My beloved Star Trek, the original series premiered in 1966, with half a dozen spinoffs which I have watched all, several movies which I have seen, and I’m looking forward to 4th season of Star Trek Discovery on CBS All Access as well as first season of Picard which I will be chatting about on my Nerdy and Proud Podcast, with the other Trekkies.
The Networks Played Us
Why all of the chatter? I have binged watched and re-watched all 5 seasons even last truncated season of Living Single which was shortened by 13 episodes, the landmark series, Living Single, was twice as funny but spent less time on air than those before mentioned episodes. Living Single was about 6 professional African American living in Brooklyn all gainfully employed but still removed from air after some dispute which I still don’t understand. According to reports TC Carson, the actor that played “Kyle” stated in subsequent interviews about his firing and then the subsequent cancellation of the show, was he was too “Black” for the network, WB at the time? WB the now defunct network, bought out or became CW in 2006, prided itself on presenting diversity or a version of diversity to America at the time. It seems like no one knew how to promote and capitalize on this novel idea.
The answer to the show by NBC the next year was Friends also about a circle of 6 white all semi-professional friends in Manhattan, living really well even in rent controlled apartments, Monica’s apartment, and as out of work actors, the character Joey. The Friends cast were virtually unknown at the time of the pilot and you could see them develop as the series progressed. That entire cast of Living Single had been working professionally for years’ in comedy, as rap stars, on Broadway, other long running series and in my opinion, the cast of Living Single was more talented and seasoned than that crew on NBC.
Friends would dominate sitcoms of the 90s for 10 seasons, twice the length of Living Single, the actors of Friends making over 1 million dollars an episode than the far more talented professionals on Living Single. I want to see the middle age successful version of Living Single, but I haven’t seen any traction in the press in this season of reboot fever. I have heard about a reboot of Friends for almost 3 years now and has picked up steam with the release of Jennifer Anniston’s show on Apple TV; I have seen the reboot of Mad about You which lead me to watch the original, not as funny series. I am still mad at Spectrum Cable because I can’t be reimbursed for my time watching and mocking the original series. I don’t like Jamie’s (Helen Hunt) sociopathic sister, Lisa, (don’t know her name) and I think Paul Reiser’s character is dumb. And I feel sorry for Murray the Dog being forced to be with this crew of the least talented. They have released another 6 episodes on December 18th. I am still not so impressed with this middle aged crew and the nightmare their fictional child that is Mabel. In this episode I am currently watching I am struck by the ineptitude of their marriage counselor, she recommends they split after 25 years. She recommends a Marriage Boot Camp but they end up at a team building Real Estate seminar due to the couple still not listening to each other. I am more distracted about why Helen Hunt’s face doesn’t move, lots of Botox, and she must have had fillers and a face lift…her immobile face is confusing me and I still bad about Walter, the new family dog. Is is animal abuse that he is subjected to this low talent crew?
If you haven’t picked up on my tone, I didn’t like this series, I’m mad at the Mad About You reboot. I am the same age as the cast members but still have no connection on a deeper level of relatability as I have with the original Living Single Series and I am sure I would have as a middle aged African American female professional and sure to have with a reboot of that series if it ever comes to fruition. For someone like me it makes more sense to reboot a series I am more likely to relate. Why wouldn’t you reboot Living Single, now?
6 Considerations to Reboot A Comedy Series
Is there an interest for the series Living Single? Yes, I want a series I loved when it was live in 1994 and I think we need positive images of people that look like me. The psychology of it all is very simple. But I know there are other considerations, like finance, availability and interest of the cast, writers, production company will to produce the series, location or where it makes sense to record.
Takes money to make money. What does it cost to reboot a show? At their peaks the cast members of of each show, Frazier, Friends, Seinfeld, Sex and The City made almost 1 million USD per show probably a fraction of what the cast of Living Single made but who are even more talented. The Living Single cast should not be bought back for less than $500,000 per episode. I was researching photos for this segment and I was struck of the beauty of each one of these characters. They were genuinely a beautiful collection of Black Beauties.
There should be an effort to bring back all original cast members giving them opportunities to have a re-create their characters, style, and contributing to writing with the supervision of the writing dream team.
Obie and Sinclair Characters. They are the parents of the Twins playing in the NFL for the Seahawks and their only daughter manages the apartment buildings her parents own and she is a Fix It Girl.
Khadijah James, Queen Latifah Like a fine wine she is absolutely beautiful…CEO and President of Flavor Entertainment. Max is assisting her fighting internet trolls led by her ex-boyfriend Scooter coming for a piece of Flavor. Her husband could be Rick Fox, ex NBA Star the only equal to the urbane Khadijah.
Regine, Kim Fields Freeman. Natural gray dreads and all, consider writing in her return to Brooklyn after a stint on the Real Housewives. Struggling to redirect her spoiled daughters exact replica of the original Regine character. Kim Fields becomes a vegetarian during the series. And a new naturalistic approach to lifestyle and role reversal with the earthy and flaky Sinclair character with going to yoga, natural makeup and running the high end local Whole Foods like Vegetable collective would give her character more dimensions which run head on with the superficiality of her daughters.
Erika Alexander, has to reprise her role as Maxine Shaw Barker. She does become a state NY State Supreme Court Judge by her 40th birthday. How she and Kyle manage not to kill each other and their son who is the age they were in the original show. Supermodel, comes out??
And last but certainly not least, TC Carson. TC Carson could come out and record Max’s reaction. Would the audience accept his coming out? I think so. The show dealt with it softly with Max’s college roomates marriage to her wife. It would be an interesting story line…
About Us, For Us, Written by Us. There are many African American writers in our country, to reboot for this specialized show, you have to bring together a country of intelligent writers I think we need to gather riders that truly understand what it means to be middle age African-American male and female. We don’t need writers familiar with our experience or have an inflated sense of writing about what they think our experience should be. The creator and executive producer of the original series, Yvette Lee Bowser, would have to be Executive Producer since the characters were based on her friends. I wonder what are they up to now? If she still has a relationship with any of them their new middle aged relationships and how stardom influenced it could be a source of the story as well. Consider bringing together the writing chops of talent such as Orlando Jones, Lena Waithe, Essa Rae, who have a proven track record of verbalizing the Afrocentric experience. It’s cool to be black again we need the talent that knows what it means to be African-American because they are African-American.
Location, Location, Location…Made In Brooklyn I think for authenticity the episodes should be shot on location in Brooklyn or Brooklyn Heights. Consider taking over and revitalizing one of the streets of Brooklyn or re-creating one of the major streets in Brooklyn like William Street etc. Or recreating the street in Tyler Perry’s massive production studios would be amazing boon but bringing that revenue to Brooklyn to continue the re-growth and continued revitalization of Brooklyn.
Production Company, who has the juice?
Eva Duvernay, Jay-Z, Spike Lee, Tyler Perry, Oprah all of whom have the financial backing and clout to actually produce a production of this magnitude. They have the connections to negotiate reasonable rates and giving the cast freedom to contribute and create and buy into the success of the show. Consider having a consulting life coach or psychologist to talk through conflicts, making the set a NO-Passive-Aggressive Zone. This may have been the contributing factor to the show’s demise initially with the termination of the TC Carson and suspected contract non-renewal of Kim Fields.
They should consider a limited release of several episodes on Hulu, Netflix, iTunes, or Freeform to test the audience and general response of the public with positive response and sliding scale increase to salary of cast, writers, and crew if new episodes are bought. This series has the massive appeal to people of my generation, their children, and grandchildren it can be groundbreaking representation of where we are now as a society and as a people.
The time is now, we need genuine positive representations of being African Americans, we don’t need any more fake opinions or exotic replicas in essentially black face. We have the companies, financial backing, available talent to do it. So I ask, what time and where is the first production meeting?
#tnfroisreading #newyears2020 #livingsinglereboot #NoPlaceForHate
#intoleranceNO #blogging #aboutusforus