Among the vast multitudes of animated TV shows being developed for both the airwaves and the digital space, a good percentage of them are retooled versions or continuations of classic properties. Cartoon Network will be reintroducing The Powerpuff Girls for a new generation (complete with a new voice cast) while also doing the same for Ben 10. Disney will tell a new chapter in the world of The Lion King with Disney Junior’s The Lion Guard, while Disney XD will serve as the destination for a reboot of Ducktales. DreamWorks Animation Television and Netflix will also be bringing a beloved Jay Ward creation back to the small screen with The Mr. Peabody & Sherman Show.
Now, another high-profile name in TV animation is also thinking about spinning fresh takes on some of its older properties, and they are thinking out loud.
Variety recently reported that Nickelodeon is actively considering full-on reboots of classic shows, most of them from the 90’s era of Nickelodeon. The shows in question could range from beloved animated hits like Rugrats and Hey Arnold to even live-action material like You Can’t Do That on Television and Clarissa Explains It All.
Confirming this development to Variety was Russel Hicks, president of content and development at Nickelodeon. In his words: “We are looking at our library to bring back ideas, shows that were loved, in a fresh new way.” Hicks has declined to comment on which shows were actually in consideration.
There is an interesting wrinkle to this development, believe it or not. Some of the shows may not come back as actual TV shows, but they could be resurrected in other formats (movie, special, etc). They also aren’t likely to constitute the bulk of the networks’ development efforts, which consist of original programs like Breadwinners, Sanjay and Craig, Harvey Beaks, and Pig Goat Banana Cricket along with mainstays like SpongeBob SquarePants, The Fairy OddParents, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Lastly, Hicks stated that part of the reason for bringing these characters back was due to the fact that the generation that used to watch those shows back in the day now have children of their own. “We are getting ready to bring back some of the ones they’ve told us multiple times they want to have brought back,” said Hicks.
It was only a matter of time before the nostalgia bug would bite the Viacom-owned TV outlet in the same way as it would with its competitors. How the results shake out remain to be seen.
What do you think? If you grew up watching 90’s-era Nickelodeon, which shows would you want to see rebooted for today’s audience (if at all)?
Edited by: Kelly Conley