The acclaimed E4 sitcom The Inbetweeners might be due for a reboot soon, if those who own the brand get their wish.
Peter Langenberg, the Chief Operating Officer of Banijay UK – the company that produced The Inbetweeners – has said he’s keen to revitalise the brand, returning the show to television once more. Of course, Langenberg has also pointed out that it’d be unfeasible to bring the main cast of the show, now in the 30s, back for a return of the show – meaning that he’s now looking towards a reboot.
As ever, fans of the show are… sceptical, to say the least. Digital Spy has already decried the potential reboot as a show that no-one wants, as well as the Radio Times. The very idea of a reboot is being dismissed purely on principle.
Admittedly, there’s prior form here that gives reason to be sceptical of remaking this particular show – after all, MTV tried their hand at this, giving the world an American iteration that nobody wanted to needed. To be blunt, it wasn’t very good; it’s understandable, then, that one would fear the same happening again. Much of what made the show work the first time around was the chemistry shared by the four leads – if you don’t have that, what’s the point in making yet another show about four teenage guys?
Answer: Don’t make it about four teenage guys. Make it about four teenage girls.
The original Inbetweeners was always focused quite explicitly on four guys; in many ways, that’s a huge part of its identity. There never really was any significant female presence on the show (though arguably it would have benefitted from one around the third series) – this is the most obvious way to differentiate The New Inbetweeners from the prior version of the show.
Further, in many ways it just makes sense; we’re at a point where both drama and comedy are starting to focus more and more on female voices, with shows like Fleabag, Clique and Drifters all featuring women in lead roles. There are some things that a television show about four women could do that the original Inbetweeners never could.
Some will ask the question, of course, that if you’re going to make a show focused on four female teenagers, why not use a different name? The possibly cynical answer is simply that this brand recognition provides a potential female Inbetweeners with a much stronger platform to work from, and a greater chance of catching people’s attention. (And, obviously, it’s not just as simple as revamping the show with four young women – as ever, there’s a need to get a talented creative team working on the show – but this would be the starting point from which to make the show something distinct.)
So why not? You can keep many of the trappings of the show the same, of course – Greg Davies can return as Mr. Gilbert, Rudge Park Comprehensive can stay as the setting, and perhaps one of the original boys could return for a careers day talk – while providing a fresh spin on the premise that offers the potential for some great new comedy.
In that respect, it seems like a no-brainer; this is one reboot that could well prove to be an unqualified success.
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