For a show that came out nearly two decades ago, The O.C. has aged remarkably well -- even with its off-the-rails story lines. Seth Cohen (Adam Brody) is still the whiny, Ben Gibbard-stanning nerd teenagers dream of, and Sandy Cohen (Peter Gallagher) remains our favorite TV dad. But a current-day version of The O.C. with a gender swap would still be something worth watching.
Imagine: Seth is a teenage girl who enjoys the same kinda things, like comic books, video games, and toy horses -- but with a more expansive taste on indie rock that isn't all white guys with guitars. Perhaps instead of Death Cab for Cutie, her go-to band is Rilo Kiley (a band which was also featured heavily on the show). The male version of Summer could be a pretty, popular guy who takes a bit of time to warm up to how different this version of Seth is. It would also be a good change to see Ryan as a rebellious, queer female character who begins a romance with the new Marissa. That way, fans who felt there was much left to desire from Marissa's queer sexual orientation can see what an expansive exploration of that would look like.
We've pretty much come to terms with the fact that the cast and creatives of Friends will probably never reunite, and the chances of getting a prequel series about Monica (Courteney Cox) and Ross' (David Schwimmer) handcuff-happy grandma or Phoebe Buffay's (Lisa Kudrow) wild and confusing backstory or even a present-day spin-off centered on all the kids seem very slim. But the show's original concept of having six twenty-somethings converge on their favorite coffee shop to share in the malaise of modern life is still very solid and ripe for a reboot.
Technologies have improved since our last stop at Central Perk, so some of Friends' most iconic story lines would be rendered moot -- or "moo," as Joey (Matt LeBlanc) would say -- by today's landscape, but the basic struggles would still work. Consider the theme song. "Your job's a joke, you're broke." Still true, but with the added difficulties of student loan debts and dwindling work perks. "Your love life's DOA." Also evergreen, especially when it comes to the messiness of dating apps. At its core, Friends was about that window of time when a person's friends are the most important relationships in their lives, and with all of the extra challenges of today's world, from social media to intense political divisions, a simple show about friends trying to boost each other through it all would be a welcome addition to the sitcom scene. -- Amanda Bell
Before becoming Ryan Murphy's spooky starlet, Emma Roberts had her start on Nickelodeon as Addie Singer, a teenager who, as her name hints, is musically-inclined and feels so misunderstood, yet manages to date the most popular guy in school. It was cute, but not exactly relatable. Now that it's been 15 years since it first aired, why not update the show with a more realistic look at what high school is like? A rebooted version should be more akin to Lizzie McGuire pre-movie, with Addie finding herself through life's awkward and uncomfortable moments, rather than just sulking over a cute boy.
Freaks and Geeks is a cult classic that can never be remade. But Judd Apatow's other sitcom, Undeclared, didn't fare as well. Like Freaks and Geeks, it only got one season, but the writing doesn't quite leave you with a warm, fuzzy feeling of seeing your teen years accurately represented onscreen. A reboot could bring in similar yet finely tuned characters that capture all the chaos that comes with college, with a modern spin.
A lot has changed since Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Samantha (Kim Cattrall), Miranda (Cynthia Nixon), and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) took the New York City dating world by storm. Brooklyn is cool now! Tutu dresses are not! But I couldn't help but wonder what Sex and the City would be like if it was rebooted for a modern era of ghosting, Tinder, and obnoxious Brooklyn musicians. The Twitter account Carrie on Tour re-imagines our beloved antihero as a musician, giving a glimpse of what Carrie's life would be like if she was a millennial Brooklynite in a different industry. It would make perfect sense for Sex and the City to be brought back with that career change, making it more sense for Carrie and the rest to experience their fair share of New York City's finest -- and worst -- men.
Many of our Nickelodeon childhood favorites have come back. Rocko's Modern Life got its own Netflix special. Hey Arnold! returned with a movie sequel a couple of years ago, too. And Paramount has a live-action Rugrats movie in the works. But there are other more obscure Nickelodeon shows that could use a second life. The Adventures of Pete & Pete is one of the network's most underrated sitcoms, focused on two lovable ginger brothers with the same name. It combined normal teenage woes with surreal moments, including a mysterious tattoo on Little Pete named Petunia, an eccentric superhero of sorts called Artie, the Strongest Man in the World, and Mr. Tastee, a masked ice cream vendor. Nothing can replace the original Pete & Pete, but it would be interesting to see how a new version would be embraced, considering how audiences have a new appreciation for off-kilter comedies like Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Big Mouth.
In many ways, Living Single felt like a "woker" but vastly underrated predecessor to Friends, focused on an all-black cast consisting of four women and two men living in Brooklyn. It's about time we brought back this great sitcom with a modernized take. A reboot could explore how Khadijah would be able to grow Flavor as the journalism industry grows more unstable. Plus, Régine would have definitely ended up becoming an influencer, Max would be vocal on Twitter with Kyle being her reply guy, and Tripp would be a SoundCloud rapper.
For TV fans of a certain age, Nickelodeon's The Secret World of Alex Mack was the kind of show you'd reserve a VHS tape to record. Alex Mack (Larisa Oleynik) was an everyday teen until she got doused with a chemical that gave her some extraordinary abilities, like zapping things with her finger tips and turning into silvery goo so that she could slip under door cracks. It wasn't just that it was fun to watch her engage in all her subsequent sleuthing adventures -- it was also refreshing to see her grow into those powers and strengthen her relationships with the friends whom she could trust with her secrets. The visual effects might now be dated, but the heart of the story is still very solid, and it'd be fun to explore some of Alex Mack's reluctant heroism in the present-day. -- Amanda Bell
The Brothers Garcia was the first English-language sitcom to focus on an all-Latinx cast, following a Mexican-American family living in San Antonio, Texas. But a lot has changed since the show premiered in 2000. The current presidential administration has intensified the social climate for immigrant families, bringing in distressing fears such as deportation, ICE detention, and racially-charged violence. Bringing back The Brothers Garcia in the Trump era would become a vital take on immigrant families that we rarely get to see on TV.