Thursday, September 22, 2011

Musing 13 - Books Into TV Series...Why Not?

Just watched the premier of the remake of the Charlie’s Angels series and I have to admit I thought it was pretty good.  Considering some of the comments I saw I began to wonder if the critics were watching the same show.  One old dude complained about the dialogue and gave it a one star.  It all seemed fine to me, then again I got the impression this man had never seen the original show.  Not only did he use the words, “fluffy” and “campy” to describe the original (well it was a little campy) but he completely forgot to mention Jacklyn Smith, citing Kate, Cheryl and Farrah as the original Angels.

But I’ve always liked shows about kick-ass women so maybe it’s a personal preference.  Drew Barrymore, who incidentally had a lot of Cover Girl commercials during the showing, exec-produces it but hey, she has every right to indulge in some shameless self-promotion.  After all, we writers do the same thing.

But on to the topic of this Musing.  One of the main complaints I saw on various message boards and forums was that people were tired of seeing remakes of old shows.  I have to go with them on that, despite the fact that I liked what I saw, so far anyway.  It’s been a big pet peeve with me.  I mean, really, can’t you big TV producers think of something original?  But of course, that raises the question, is there really anything original?  I’ve heard it said, no.  There are no original ideas, just the unique spin you put on the tried and true ones (if you disagree feel free to comment) but I can’t but wonder why the producers don’t ever take advantage of that place that can provide a wealth of ideas.  I am speaking of course of a writer’s favorite place.  The library.
Yes, within these hallowed halls are hundreds – nay, thousands of a wonderful invention called BOOKS.  And believe it are not, these have been known to be adapted to TV and movies with reasonable success.  Not always, but sometimes it works.

So what books or series of books would you like to see adapted to a TV series?  Well for me, I’d love to see Beverly Jenkins do something with her works.  She is my FAVORITE, author of African-American historical romances.  When was the last time we had a historical or a show based in the Old West?  I actually caught an episode of Dr. Quinn tonight and thought, what aren’t Westerns popular anymore?  Dorothy Garlock is known for her writing books that take place in Depression-era America among other earlier decades.  Why not something along those linesof her works or ask her to co-produce a series?  I also would like to see something based on Sharon Sala’s works. And I hear a lot of people like Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series.

I figure if HBO can do A Game of Thrones, can’t someone else do a fantasy based series?
Let me take a moment to peruse my 300+ books.  Ah – how about Tamora Pierce?  She’s written some very intriguing and popular series with strong female characters.  I’m also partial to Gail Z. Martin and Maria V. Snyder.  And let’s not forget Jane Yolen.  I think I e-mailed her a long time ago.  Another one of my favorites. 
So tell me what do you like?  What books or series of books would you like to see made into a TV series and why or why not?  And as an extra added incentive here’s a little secret contest – I’ll pick a random commenter and give you a choice of one copy of a book from my back list.

Peace.

CJ

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