That Netflix ‘Full House’ Revival Is Officially Happening
Everything old is new again, as TV goes back to the well of what worked in the 90s, hoping nostalgia will allow you to overlook the inherent silliness of a 20-year-old show being revived. Case in point: that Full House revival that John Stamos and Warner Bros. have reportedly been planning is now official.
Netflix has given a 13-episode order to Fuller House, a multi-cam sequel series to the classic 90s sitcom (well, it technically debuted in the 80s, but let’s not split hairs). The show will feature Candace Cameron-Bure returning as D.J. Tanner-Fuller, Jodie Sweetin reprising her role as Stephanie, and Andrea Barber coming back as Kimmy Gibbler, with John Stamos guest starring as Uncle Jesse. Stamos will also executive produce the show, whose greenlighting he confirmed on Jimmy Kimmel Live last night:
Interestingly, the sequel series has a premise that closely mirrors the original. In the original series, Jesse and Joey move in with their best friend, Danny Tanner, in order to help him raise his three daughters after the death of his wife (Jesse’s sister). Here, D.J. is a veterinarian who has been recently widowed herself. She has two boys (12-year-old J.D. and 7-year-old Max) with a third baby on the way, as she became pregnant shortly before her husband’s death. And so, in order to help with the kids, it’s friends and family to the rescue: aspiring musician Stephanie and best friend/single mom Kimmy move in with D.J., along with Kimmy’s rebellious teenage daughter Ramona, helping D.J. navigate the tricky waters of single motherhood. If nothing else, the title of the series is a cute play on words, since D.J.’s married name is Fuller. (Yes, I’m easily amused)
That said, it’s kind of strange that Netflix is going with a premise that so closely mirrors the original, since I imagine it’d mostly be a case of diminishing returns. Sure, Jodie Sweetin hasn’t been around much to give us any kind of idea what sort of actress she’d be as an adult, but I don’t know how well the show will work with her in the Uncle Jesse “ambitious musician” role. That said, I do think Barber will be good in the Uncle Joey “lovable goof” role. That said, I’m a bit nervous about the prospect of a multi-cam series on Netflix. Do they get a live studio audience? A laugh track? Will they use the same cheesy music for emotional moments, complete with the requisite “awwww” from the audience? I almost feel like this could be awesome if they talk a total tongue-in-cheek approach to it, turning it into a send-up of 90s sitcoms.
It’ll also help the series a lot if they can get some more of the Full House cast back on the show. Bob Saget, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Dave Coulier and Lori Loughlin are reportedly in negotiations for guest appearances on Fuller House, which is definitely a good sign. As Stamos explains in the interview with Jimmy Kimmel, they’re going to try and get everyone back for the kickoff hour-long reunion special/series premiere, which will then spinoff into the regular series.
The show has no premiere date just yet, but the binge-watch model Netflix thrives on seems like it could help out a hit-or-miss series like this. No weekly commitment means there’s no pressure to try and stick with it from week-to-week. It also means the nostalgia high won’t have time to wear off before you’re done binge-watching the whole thing. Fuller House could actually benefit from the Netflix model in ways that other upcoming revivals might not. I mean, the Twin Peaks revival on Showtime, FOX’s upcoming revival of The X Files, and NBC’s revival of Coach (of all freaking things) really could use a binge model, I think. The iffy performance of last season’s 24: Live Another Day seems to suggest that there’s a ceiling on nostalgia-driven revivals. The only one I think will benefit from a week-to-week model is NBC’s Heroes Reborn, which feels more like event television than your standard limited series. Then again, Fuller House has the potential to become a major event in itself.
What do you think? Are you excited for Fuller House? Is this show a great idea or a misfire waiting to happen? Sound off in the comments!