Sure, we'll take that Rome movie ... And while you're at it, why not go ahead and make a Deadwood movie too? I'm all for the further adventures of Lucius Vorenus and Titus Pullo (as long as the sultry Atia of the Julii is involved somewhere) ... news of a big-screen adaptation is music to my ears. And if a trend is brewing where HBO TV starts going to the big screen, count me in. Big.
We already had Sex and the City make the leap successfully. And yeah, I know those Tales from the Crypt movies didn't exactly go cha-ching. But who didn't love Run, Ronnie, Run? Everybody? Well, okay then. But we have some real potential here. In fact, I've done what anyone would do when an idea is floating in the air. I made a list, damn it.
Here are the top five non-Rome HBO shows that beg for a big-screen adaptation:
Forget The Sopranos, and massive apologies to the great and talented people of The Wire, because Deadwood is the best drama HBO ever produced and this miracle show's life ended prematurely; cut short due to expensive production costs and poor ratings. Bad mix. In the past, creator David Milch has talked of a movie or a miniseries to give the show the send-off it always deserved, but nothing has come to pass. I miss Al Swearengen. I miss Woo. I miss Doc Cochran. I even miss E.B. Farnum, the little weasel. This is the show that basically invented at least two (by my count) C-word curses. Or at least showed the rest of us how to use them.
Deadwood was a show about a town on the edge of civilization and about the people who liked it just the way it was. They abnegated the law as much as they were allowed and much of the show focuses on the town's struggles against both government and the forces of nature that are as true to life as a sunny day in May; forces like disease and men with last names like Hearst. It's heavy material, to be sure. It may only make five bucks in theater and Milch's refusal to dumb-down the language will certainly confuse the dodos in the audience, but some things should just happen for the good of mankind. If not nuclear disarmament, why not a Deadwood movie?
I actually don't want to see this. I like Entourage right where it is, thank you very much. And that's no diss. It's one of my favorite shows and this season has been pretty strong. But a big-screen treatment just strikes me as silly and gratuitous. Still, what's fair is fair and if the ladies get Sex and the City, the guys get a chance to hug it out, bitch.
The HBO animated show got right everything the movie got wrong. The "film" had Michael Jai White as the man once known as Al Simmons. White once played a heavyweight in HBO's Tyson, but was completely out of his weight class here. But really, he had nothing to work with. This movie is jam-packed full of garbage. He didn't just have garbage to work with, though, he had rotting, festering-in-the-sun-all-day-garbage. On HBO, we had the voice of God that is Keith David taking over Spawn duties and he was perfect. The series wasn't a complete home run, but Todd McFarlane was able to get away with a lot more with late-night animation than any movie studio would have allowed at the time. If they make another Spawn movie, let it be animated and let it be voiced by Keith David.
4. Fraggle Rock
Who's not down with Fraggle Rock? Tell me your names! Who do you associate with? Look, these puppets are three keg parties full of fun. They almost make me wanna eat radishes they're so infectious. Seriously, though. I wish Fraggles lived in my walls. We would get along. I wouldn't sic Sprocket on any of them either. Although, I am curious how a Fraggle would taste with some lemon-pepper action. In fact, I will grow a radish garden and allow it to flourish, but only if Fraggle Rock offered a yearly sacrifice of one of their citizens. That's all the radishes in the world for one lousy Fraggle a year. I could have Fraggle BBQ or Fraggle Parmesan. It would be a bigger event feast than Thanksgiving. Hell, it could be my Thanksgiving. The possibilities are endless. Come on, Fraggles. Give me your tired, your poor ... at least let me fry up Boober. He's a complete and utter mess.
Was it terribly pointless? Yes! Are people still trying to erase it from their minds? Yes! Will nobody go see it? Yes! But our options are limited at this point. The Wire is doing just fine ending things on its own. As for Oz, well, there's only so many man-rapes these eyes can take. On a side note, someone recently asked me where I'd rather live: Emerald City or Hell. Guess how I chose?
What other shows are out there? Well, there's Arli$$ but that starred Robert Wuhl. Now if you don't know my rule concerning Robert Wuhl, here it is: No Robert Wuhl. There can't be a Sopranos movie if Tony is dead (and trust me, he is). The Larry Sanders Show is too perfect a thing to mess with and there's just no need. And that's the point. John From Cincinnati was not perfect. It was the antitheses to perfection. It was actual anti-matter. It created black holes in the universe. People were all up in arms about that Big Bang Machine, afraid it would destroy the universe if it actually worked. But nobody was worried about the implications of John From Cincinnati. We have bigger fish to fry here people. If we don't set this thing right it could destroy us all. Do you want that? I sure as heck don't. And so we give David Milch a mulligan. A complete do-over. Could a guy as talented as Milch screw the pooch twice? If so, bring on G-String Divas. It's my safety.