The history of American television networks remaking popular British shows is fraught with flops, bombs, nightmares and otherwise forgettable junk.
There was “Coupling” — you know, the show that was supposed to replace “Friends” for NBC? Canceled after less than a season.
“Men Behaving Badly” was a hit for more than seven seasons across the pond but lasted about a year in the United States. Turns out, no one is clamoring for a sitcom starring Rob Schneider. Who knew?
For every hit like “The Office” and “America’s Got Talent,” there’s three shows like “Life on Mars” and the woeful “Elementary,” CBS’ blasphemous new take on the BBC’s terrific “Sherlock.”
So, I was understandably reluctant when I saw that, of all networks, MTV was remaking the iconic British teen sitcom, “The Inbetweeners,” less than a year removed from the trainwreck that was its stab at Americanizing the racy British teen drama, “Skins.”
I watched it on a whim and, to my surprise, fell in love.
Not only is the show incredibly faithful to the original in plot, it is as brilliantly cast as its predecessor.
The producers have managed again to find a quartet of interesting-looking and weird-yet-affable misfits who feel every bit like a group of friends thrust together by the social tumult of high school and a single common interest: girls.
The writing, though vulgar, is some of my favorite on any television show this year and is more clever than it has any business being.
“The Inbetweeners” is the best scripted show MTV has ever aired. Here’s hoping it lives longer than “I Just Want My Pants Back.”