When you’re lost out there, and you’re all alone. A light is waiting to carry you home! These are much more than lyrics to the TV series Full House which ran from 1987-1995. It appears to also be the way current television and movie executives see all of us. Or at least it is hopefully how they see us as opposed to seeing us as just wallets full of money waiting to be sucked dry. Those are probably the most drastic edges of the spectrum, but probably the reality of the current television and movie industries whose current business strategies seem to center around rebooting and remaking movies and television series.
With the explosion of reboots and remakes the cynical look says that they are remaking all of these beloved TV series and movies because the executives know that even if they are bad they will still draw crowds or viewers. And this is because they know that we will be curious about the new offering. And they also know that with product placement, even if there is a bad turn out or low viewership, the most probable worst scenario is that they will still break even.
But it would be nice if those lyrics from the Full House theme is how they see us. That the executives see us all as lost and all alone and in need of a light to carry us home. And that light that they use to bring us home are the television and movie touchstones that we all care passionately about in our collective hearts. Most of these attempts in my eyes have been failures, especially the multitude of attempts in the 90s including Leave It To Beaver and My Favorite Martian, though The Little Rascals attempt was decent and can be watched multiple times. And most recently the TGIF classic Boy Meets World was given new life from ABC Family. BMW was moved forward to the modern day and while bringing back the Corey and Topanga characters it shifted the focus onto their daughter and rebranded the show Girl Meets World. Though the show is seemingly a success to me it is a failure. This is because to me they completely threw away what made the TGIF show so great. They seemed to drop the heart that was in every episode and decided to stop appealing to both kids and adults. And instead decided to just go full steam after a kids only demographic. I tried to like it, I wanted to, but all the overly goofy situations and poorly written characters did it in for me.
But when it comes to Fuller House, Netflix seems to have hit most of the marks. At only thirteen episodes long it is possible to churn and burn through in a single day, but I took a slower approach and watched it over a four day period and enjoyed nearly every bit of it. Unlike GMW, Fuller House keeps itself balanced appealing to both adults and kids. One nice surprise offered up was how the director seemed to keep the acting from the younger actors as much as they could in a normal style as opposed to what seems to be plaguing younger demographic shows like GMW where the order of things seems to be to overact and nearly yell all of your lines. Which I suppose is meant to make the shows funnier?
But I do know one thing, Fuller House was an enjoyable watch for the most part starting with the first show which was more of a reunion show giving us all an update on what everyone is up to and with special guest appearances by The Rippers and Alex and Nicky. Unfortunately neither one of the Olsen twins seemed to want anything to do with the show as they appear in none of the episodes but some of the best moments are when the characters take little jabs at them. Fuller House is actually named after DJ’s married name, Fuller, which was actually a brilliant idea for a name choice since it also makes the tie in to the original easier to see. They managed to weave flashbacks of some of the more memorable moments from Full House into the new series nicely, with the modern story lines and new memorable scenes such as a scene between Danny and Kimmy which I won’t spoil and let you experience for yourself.
While I did enjoy the show I must admit I was let down at points here and there throughout it. Primarily with some of the later episodes, but they still were better than most modern family oriented shows. This was never more the case than in a specific scene in the “Save the Dates” episode in which a full size manicure chair has somehow made it into an upstairs bedroom. But the little deviations from realism are slight and not running rampant throughout the show, so they don’t really take away as much from the experience.
In all honesty, anyone that thought this first season of Fuller House was going to be as good as Full House has no room to complain if the show did not live up to expectations. There was truly at best only a slim chance for Fuller House to be as good as its predecessor. Full House was one of the cornerstones of the late 80s and early 90s family programing and any expectations or hopes that Fuller House would be on the same level was truly unfair to the new show.
I must say at this point I would have to give Fuller House a 3.1 out of 5 stars. My rating is for what this show is on its own merits and not what it is compared to the original show. Now while the show wasn’t fantastic it was in my opinion head and shoulders above a large majority of the current offerings in the category of family oriented television. I have hope that Netflix will continue to release fairly decent episodes while striving to better the show and without falling to the level of the family programing airing on broadcast television today.