If you are a fan of anything pop culture related I'm willing to bet that at one time something you love has been remade. Now if you are anything like me, I'm going to assume that when you first heard the news about it you were overcome with the uncontrollable desire to choke a bitch. And let's be honest, more often than not there isn't a judge on earth who would have convicted you. Most remakes are maddening. They are unnecessary, dumbed down, and almost always a poor representation of the original work. The whole notion of a remake wreaks of laziness. When creators lack original ideas they stand on the shoulders of giants and "re-imagine" superior works. As upsetting as remakes are, I feel that, for my own health and other people's safety, I have to lighten up a bit. But it's not easy.
The mere mention of a remake drives my crazy. It never fails. Whenever a remake, or a cover in music, is announced my default mood is anger. Yet after the rage settles, and I sweep up all the hair I pulled out of my head, I step back and ask myself why I was so upset in the first place. No matter how many times a particular thing is remade, the original will always still be there for me to enjoy. I can easily go and experience the source material all over again. My memories are intact. My childhood has not been hideously abused. Everything is fine. Right now I can pop The Karate Kid in my DVD player and for an hour and a half forget that Will Smith and his son even exist. It's a beautiful thing. And yet it still bothers. But why?
Second, and I know this may be difficult to believe, but many of us geeks feel a certain connection to our favorite pieces of pop culture. We have very fond memories of when we first experienced it. Hell, we have very fond memories of every time we experienced it. Watching certain movies, reading certain books, or listening to certain songs takes us back to a very special place in our lives. Our memories are vivid and in many ways have made us who we are today. We don't just like things. We love them. Unconditionally. When something so near and dear to us is remade we take it personally. We love our favorite things just the way they are, and even though they still exist, we don't want them disturbed by some suit who knows nothing about the product they are tampering with. We have a certain "Go fuck up something else and leave my memories alone" type of approach. (This applies to you too George Lucas!!) When you enjoy something you want to share it with the world so they can enjoy it too, as it was originally intended. Not some bastardized version of it.
|Was this necessary?|
Unfortunately remakes are never going away. It's one of the sad facts of life (tell me you didn't just start humming the Facts of Life theme song), especially if they are successful financially. Though we don't have any control over whether or not remakes happen, we do have control over how we react towards them. For starters, we don't have to watch them. We can ignore and shun them like the fruits of the devil they truly are. But somehow I know most of will watch them anyway. We have to see the train wreck for ourselves. And no matter how bad they are, and how angry we might get, we need to take a step back and focus on the positive. They can never take away our memories, nor can they ever take the original work away from us. It will always be there waiting for us whenever we need it. And knowing that is enough to put me at ease.