7 iconic characters ripe for a reboot

Mad Max: Fury Road proved a reboot can be awesome, just like Batman Begins and Casino Royale before it. What’s the secret? Fuck the original story and embrace the original character.

A good reboot doesn’t remix all the same old ingredients like a brand new item on the Taco Bell menu. No winks at the audience. No pandering to nostalgia. Otherwise all you’ll end up with is high-budget fan fiction (Terminator: Genisys, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) or a sad attempt by middle-aged producers to shove their favorite movies from high school down the throats of today’s teenagers (Red DawnPoint BreakTotal Recall).

You’ll never recapture the magic of an old movie by imitating it. The story and style were products of their time. Let them go. Only characters are timeless. That’s why we’ll still be lining up to watch Bruce Wayne battle the Joker on the big screen 20 years from now, but any attempt to recreate The Dark Knight is destined to suck.

With that in mind, here are seven iconic characters who have spawned sequels in the past and are just begging for a full reboot.

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1. Connor MacLeod (Highlander)highlander

Broody immortals may be a dime a dozen these days, but this one doesn’t have to avoid sunlight or date high schoolers, so that’s refreshing. However, his immortality does come with a catch: whenever he comes across another immortal, he’s compelled to fight them to the death. After five centuries, he’s got PTSD like you wouldn’t believe, but he’s determined to keep fighting or else one of his evil brethren will be the last immortal standing and dominate all of humanity.

What to throw away:

Everything else.

Who to cast:

Hugh Jackman

Who not to cast:

Ryan Reynolds

2. The Man with No Name (Fistful of Dollars)45843_the_good_the_bad_and_the_ugly_the_man_with_no_name

Yeah, yeah, Clint Eastwood may well be irreplaceable in this signature role. But whatever, the character is already a rip-off of the wandering samurai from Yojimbo anyway. It’s time to roll the dice on someone new to viciously glare at ruffians until they whimper while making the ladies swoon through the power of pure, unadulterated gruffness. Also, I’d really like to see ponchos come back in fashion.

What to throw away:

Everything else.

Who to cast:

Tom Hardy

Who not to cast:

Jai Courtney

3. Neo (The Matrix)matrix

Thomas Anderson is an office drone sleepwalking through a conventional life, just like you! Only he discovers a battle between good and evil going on just outside everyone else’s realm of perception. Now that he knows his everyday “reality” isn’t real, he can defy physics and challenge the godlike being who keeps humanity in ignorance. It’s a superhero wish fulfillment sundae with a metaphysics cherry on top.

What to throw away:

Everything else. Especially all that Zion crap.

Who to cast:

Liam Hemsworth

Who not to cast:

Josh Hutcherson

4. Nick & Nora (The Thin Man)the thin man

Two fast-talking private eyes who are perpetually drunk, acerbic, bickering, and married to one another. Seriously, how has nobody resurrected this couple for modern audiences yet?!

What to throw away:

Everything else. Except the dog. He’s pretty awesome.

Who to cast:

Robert Downey, Jr. and Amy Poehler (or Jason Sudakis and Jennifer Aniston)

Who not to cast:

Jim Carrey and Cameron Diaz

5. The Terminator (The Terminator)terminator-008

That’s right, the Terminator. Not Sarah Connor. And absolutely not John Fucking Connor. Who cares who’s being chased down by the unstoppable, indestructible, remorseless killing machine? The more the movies got into the Connor family drama and the overlapping time travel shenanigans, the further the audience got away from giving a shit. Like all great horror movies, the heroes are irrelevant; it’s the Terminator that’s compelling and timeless here.

What to throw away:

Everything else.

Who to cast:

Jason Mamoa

Who not to cast:

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson

6. Fletch (Fletch)fletch

Somewhere between an investigative reporter and a con man is Fletch, who bamboozles the targets of his newspaper journalism with a relentless cascade of bullshit until he’s right in the middle of their inner circle with no way out. Chevy Chase portrayed him brilliantly as the closest thing to an American Dirk Gently.

What to throw away:

Everything else.

Who to cast:

Kevin Hart

Who not to cast:

Adam Sandler (but that should go without saying, right?)

7. Wolverine (X-Men)thewolverine2013.0101

Who in the hell thought, “You know what’ll simplify and straighten out our messy, convoluted, too-many-wrong-turns universe? Time travel!” Amazingly, it almost worked. But one film later, the one-dimensional characters and extremely repetitive “friend turned evil turned partner-of-necessity” relationship between Professor X and Magneto resurfaced again and reminded audiences why they’d lost patience with this cinematic superhero universe to begin with. Fortunately, after 50-something years of X-Men comics, there’s plenty of depth to Logan and pals to explore if we could just wipe the slate clean with a genuine reboot. With real costumes this time, dammit!

Who to cast:

Richard Armitage

Who not to cast:

Mark Wahlberg


Who else deserves another spin on the big screen? And who should play them? The only rules are they must have appeared in multiple movies in the past and it must be a full reboot!

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