Everywhere you look, it seems like there's another '90s classic being re-imagined and rebooted for our continued enjoyment. Television's nostalgia boom is nothing new. After all, this past year saw the return of The Muppets, The X-Files, Minority Report, Twin Peaks, and Heroes, and now, Netflix is bringing back Full House.
MTV News has screened the first six episodes of the multi-cam revival, and TL;DR: Fuller House should make fans of the original very happy. It's wholesome, lighthearted, and filled with plenty of '90s references and wink-wink nods to our collective obsession with nostalgia. At times, the show leans a little too heavily on knowledge of Full House's past life as a prototypical '90s family sitcom, but that's what it's there for. Let's be clear, here: Fuller House was created solely for the purpose of mining nostalgia from the streaming service's millennial users -- and it does its job very well, complete with friendly faces, a familiar laugh track, and catchphrases you've heard a million times. It's predictable, just as its catchy theme song suggests.
The cheesy family sitcom follows D.J. Fuller, née Tanner (Candace Cameron Bure), now an uptight, recently widowed veterinarian and mother of three young boys, as she fills the role originally taken on by her father, Danny (Bob Saget). Her wacky friend Kimmy (Andrea Barber), now an eccentric event planner, is a divorcee and mother of one herself. Kimmy, who still looks like the walking embodiment of a Lisa Frank folder, is a natural stand-in for Danny's best friend, comedian Joey Gladstone (Dave Coulier). And then there's D.J.'s younger sister Stephanie (Jodie Sweetin), who easily steps in as John Stamos's Uncle Jesse -- a young, reckless musician who isn't so good at all of this family stuff. Now, she's an internationally famous deejay who spins under the name DJ Tanner and sometimes has a British accent.
With a premise as identical to its predecessor, it seems only fitting that Fuller House would be as cookie-cutter as they come, which isn't necessarily a bad thing if '90s sitcoms are your golden standard for comedy. So, without further ado, here are 13 things you need to know before binging Fuller House on February 26. [Consider this your BIG FAT SPOILER WARNING.]
It keeps with tradition.Netflix
On Full House, family patriarch Danny Tanner got the first and last lines of the entire series, so it's no surprise that everyone's favorite neat freak gets the first word on Fuller House. Some things never change. Although, we're curious to see if it's Danny or D.J. who gets final say in Episode 13. By the end of the first episode, the torch has been passed, rather literally with an aww-worthy homage to one of the most memorable moments from the Full House pilot.
You want catchphrases? You got it, dude!Netflix
Have you ever wanted to hear Stephanie Tanner say "how rude!" again for old time's sake? Well, prepare to have your ears assaulted by the full gamut of Full House catchphrases. Oh, and Uncle Joey's Bullwinkle and Popeye impressions? That's just the icing on the "fleek" funfetti cake. (Yes, there's an entire, minute-long bit on "fleek"... shudder.)
The cast's chemistry is great.Netflix
There's a general easiness in the way the cast interacts with with one another on screen. Even when the jokes are forced, the chemistry is not. The way Barber, who hasn't acted since Full House wrapped back in 1995, charges into a room and looks at D.J. suggests a real kinship, one that was forged nearly 30 years prior. When Stephanie reveals a heartbreaking truth to her sister in the show's fifth episode, the emotion feels authentic. It's palpable. However you feel about the show's corny jokes and cheesy feel-goodness, you can't deny that this cast has real chemistry. They feel like a family. A lot of things have changed over the last 20 years, but their relationship has not -- that's the entire foundation of the show -- and in many ways, it's just like coming home again.
Mr. Woodchuck is alive and still kickin'.
As if Uncle Joey would every retire Mr. Woodchuck. Now there's a brand new baby to give nightmares to. (Sorry, Tommy. We promise it gets better with age.)
The OG cast members are around.Netflix
Aside from the first episode's cast reunion -- even Aunt Becky and Uncle Jesse's twin sons, Alex and Nicky Katsopolis, played by Blake and Dylan Tuomy-Wilhoit, now 25, are part of the fun -- the OG Tanners and Katsopoli are used sparingly, which is probably for the best because how many times can you listen to Joey's Popeye impression before you need to be committed? Mainly, they're there to teach a life lesson or impart some kind of sage advice to one of the girls. (Or, you know, to say "have mercy" or "cut-it-out!") They pop up every-so-often in subsequent episodes -- sometimes you wish it was more, other times less -- and your mouth will betray you by grinning like an idiot every time they do.
Michelle's absence is addressed in a major way.Nick
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen broke a lot of hearts when they opted not to reprise their shared role as Michelle Tanner on Fuller House. But it's creator Jeff Franklin who gets the last laugh. In the very first episode, when D.J. says Michelle couldn’t make it back to San Francisco because of her fashion empire in New York City, the entire cast turns toward the studio audience, and affects a knowing frown. Unsurprisingly, the audience cackles.
There are some dirty jokes that will absolutely make you cringe.Netflix
For the most part, Fuller House doesn't seem all that interested in tinkering with its formula for modern audiences, so in many ways, it still feels like a '90s sitcom, complete with wholesome family antics. However, that doesn't mean it revels in its squeaky-clean image all of the time. It's a fine line between attempting to ~ grow up ~ with your audience and tarnishing said wholesome image with jokes about Uncle Jesse's semen and Kimmy practicing Kama Sutra, and yet, here we are. The masturbation joke in Episode 4 is still burning a hole into our brains.
There's a lot of singing and dancing.
The third episode alone features not one, but four choreographed dance sequences, including one that would make Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey roll their eyes. At any given moment, Uncle Jesse can still break out into song. (Spoiler alert: The entire cast sings Jesse & The Ripper's "Forever.") And just in case you're wondering, Stephanie, who now uses the moniker DJ Tanner (because she's a deejay, duh!), is still a dancing queen who will grab the mic away from Macy Grey any chance she gets.
The kids are cute.Netflix
But they're not quite as memorable as D.J., Stephanie, Kimmy, and Michelle. Those kids had their own catchphrases and quirks! These kids are just kind of... there. However, at times, D.J.'s anxious young middle child Max (Elias Harger) steals the show with his overzealous reactions. Only time will tell if "holy chalupas!" catches on. Though, this really isn't a show about the kids, even if they do attend Van Atta Junior High. Fuller House plays directly into its target demo's yearning for the all-hugging, feel-good brand of TV that they grew up with, with familiar faces and situations. It's a move that sets the show apart from its closest cousin, Disney Channel's Girl Meets World, a family-friendly sitcom revival that's aimed at modern-day teens and not the grown-up fans of its source, Boy Meets World. Although, where Girl Meets World tends to push the envelope with groundbreaking episodes like "Girl Meets STEM," Fuller House is happy in its generic, '90s bubble.
D.J. + Steve = ❤️. Maybe.ABC
Steve is not just hungry any more; he's thirsty AF -- and he's thirsting for D.J. Fuller House makes it apparent from Episode 1 that D.J. and Steve's happily ever after is still very much a possibility, and we're not entirely sure how to feel about that. Sure, high school sweethearts D.J. and Steve were the seminal relationship of the show, but we'd like to see the show earn this ending first. We want to watch D.J. and Steve rekindle their romance, not just stroke the flame we're supposed to believe has been there all this time.
"I think it's fulfilling every young girl's dream of meeting up with their ex-boyfriend who they loved but it wasn't the right time or they were too young," Candace Cameron Bure told us back in August. "I feel like I'm doing this for America. And I think fans will be happy with it."
For whatever reason, there's no Game of Thrones in the Fuller household.
How wack is that?!