Hollywood’s Summer Reboots

Illustration by RJ Michaels


The beloved arachnid swings again, with a fresh young cast and a retelling of the superhero’s origin story. Watch for the point midway through the film when all of the principals are quietly replaced with a group of even younger and buzzier actors. For the benefit of those viewers who were not paying attention during the movie’s first half, Spidey’s origin story is repeated, too.

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three
As in the original film, a gang of ruthless criminals hijacks a crowded New York City subway car and holds its passengers for ransom. In this telling, the plan backfires once it is determined that the hijackers are running the train with an efficiency that far outpaces that of the MTA. The city offers to pay the ransom, provided that the hijackers stay on as consultants for the beleaguered subway system—a plan with devastating consequences for the hardened criminals, who are quickly driven to madness through their dealings with Albany.

Jill Soloway, of Transparent and I Love Dick fame, helms a remake of the classic sexploitation film. Remarkably, the reboot features even more lecherous and gratuitous nudity than the original, but, for some reason, here such scenes are considered perfectly acceptable by polite society. Other elements, such as the southern town’s Derrida-quoting sheriff and surprisingly ample community of trans-people, will be less recognizable to older Porky’s enthusiasts.

Police Academy
The new film takes place entirely inside the fabled Blue Oyster Bar; Kirk Cameron stars.

Your Childhood

At last, Sony is rebooting the ’80s franchise you have been most ravenously craving. In a bid for a broader audience, your character will receive a significant update, becoming more brooding and tortured, yet at the same time far more likeable. Similarly, many of the characters around yours have been given new roles, most dramatically Debbie Swindon. As in the original, the reboot casts her as your school’s beloved, curvaceous prom queen. But whereas the Debbie role was formerly limited to one memorably-delivered line—“Can you give this sheet to Mrs. Berkowitz?”—the new work grants her co-billing as your character’s fiery love interest. Note that the numerous fantasy sequences involving Debbie will be excised from the new version, which is aiming for a family audience.