One day, two maybe ill-advised reboots: It was reported this morning that Ed Helms would be stepping into Leslie Nielsen's shoes in a new Naked Gun movie, and this afternoon news broke that Matthew Perry was going to be developing a new version of The Odd Couple for CBS as a vehicle for himself.
The Helms news, first reported by Variety, was not met with much enthusiasm. Writer Maura Johnston tweeted "this is why we can't have nice things." Matt Singer at The Dissolve wrote: "I would never remake The Naked Gun under any circumstances (all three movies, along with the six Police Squad! episodes, still hold up great), but if you held a (naked) gun to my head and forced me to, I’m not sure I would cast Helms as Drebin."
Nostalgic attachment to The Odd Couple may not be quite as strong perhaps since it's a) older and b) already been through a number of various incarnations. Deadline's Nellie Andreeva reported that Perry will co-write the pilot with Danny Jacobson, and that Perry will play Oscar Madison, a.k.a. the messy one.
The more recent history of Neil Simon adaptations is not too promising. Michael Schneider recalled: "'Odd Couple' remakes are like 'Fawlty Towers' remakes. TV keeps trying them." Schneider specifically referenced The New Odd Couple, which was a short lived series in the 1980s. Vulture's Margaret Lyons also had practical concerns with a reboot: "Hope the new Odd Couple is about an actual couple, because otherwise…just get a different roommate? You're a 45-year-old man."
Perhaps the biggest question in the Odd Couple reboot, however, is whether Perry will ever have another hit show.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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