by Graham Pierrepoint
It’s a classic Simpsons joke that’s done the rounds for years now – ‘Remember ALF? He’s back – in POG form!’ – and while the cat-eating alien may not be heading to circular cardboard discs any time soon, it seems that Warner Bros are keen to bring the 80s sitcom star back to our screens it what seems to be the thirtieth reboot of an existing property announced in the past week alone. While that may seem like an exaggeration, reports have been running rife that 90s staples such as Rugrats, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and even Frasier are being eyed-up for the remake treatment – and with reboots and remakes having largely performed well over the past few years (let’s forget about Ghostbusters for a moment), it seems like this is a trend that’s going to be followed for quite some time.
And why not bring back ALF? Gordon Shumway to his family, the Alien Life Form was an oddly persistent feature on TV back in the 80s, having spawned a huge array of merchandising and even his own animated TV series off the back of what may now seem to be a fairly odd sitcom premise. While we are these days more enamored with watching adults behave like children in a flat-share format, it was fair game in the 1980s to watch a normal American family adopt a sarcastic, feline-munching alien for over 100 episodes. ALF hasn’t been a part of the entertainment landscape for almost 30 years – so is now a good time to consider a re-imagining?
▶ Possible ‘ALF’ Reboot Finds New Life
Warner Bros are reportedly looking to recruit writing talent for a prospective new series, and while it’s unclear quite which direction a new take on the character will be heading in, it may come as some solace to die-hard ALF fans back in the day who were left with the mother of all cliff-hangers. In the final episode of the original series, Shumway found himself intercepted and detained by government agents – and after that, the show was cancelled outright. What happened to ALF?
In any case, the character’s importance in pop culture has never been understated – and it may well be time for alien-based sitcoms to start making a comeback in the streaming age. What will a new take on ALF look like? A complete redesign? A continuation of that cliff-hanger? Who’s to say – stay tuned, in any case.