The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Staff Editorial: TV Spin-Offs are Neither Effective nor Popular

2 min read

A commercial for the movie “Elektra” aired on FX networks this morning. Consequently, that means it will be played every other day for the next two months.
It is odd that some directors, producers, writers, etc. can see a movie like to “Daredevil” and say to themselves, “Well, that movie was pretty terrible, but I bet if I take the lamest character in it and make a two hour movie about them, I can redeem it.”
The answer to that is NO! Of course, we at The Bullet are not omniscient, so I will say that there is seldom a spinoff that is even half as good as the original.
“No Mercy,” “Get him a body bag,” “Sweep the leg.” There are countless one-liners that encompass the glory of “The Karate Kid” movies. Ralph Macchio burst in to puberty right before our eyes and took down the dreaded cobra kais. The second and third movies, though epic in their own ways, we could have done without. But when “The Next Karate Kid” came out it made the first three look like academy award winners.
“Friends,” we all watched it for years and years and  we wanted so badly to like NBC’s “Joey.” But unfortunately it fell short of even one of Matt LeBlanc’s few starring film roles, “Ed.” A movie in which he is out-acted and out-played by a baseball-playing monkey.
Who doesn’t remember watching “Cheers” growing up? For 11 years, and still sometimes on Nick at Nite, the show warmed our hearts and made us all laugh, whether it be ex-baseball player “Sam” striking out with the ladies, or Rhea Perlman’s snarky comments. “Cheers” was just one of those shows where you “knew everybody’s names” and you wanted to see what happened the next week.
Many of you may think that you liked the “Cheers” spinoff “Frasier,” starring Kelsey Grammar. Unfortunately, you are wrong. That show was not funny, however it was so smart that you laughed because when the fake audience laughed you didn’t want to be left out when you didn’t understand what they were saying.
There are certain movies and TV shows that deserve a special commendation for writers and directors around the world telling themselves, “No, I’ll pass,” when it comes to a spinoff.
It’s not like someone told themselves that they could pick up where Larry David left off and create a show called “Kramer” or “George.” Some things are just left better in the past or at least in reruns.