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US remakes of British sitcoms.

  • 04-12-2022 8:24am
    Registered Users Posts: 4,749 ✭✭✭

    There's a long tradition of the Americans doing their own versions of British sitcoms. Steptoe And Son was remade as Sandford And Son, dont think that was shown on this side of the Atlantic.

    The superb One Foot In The Grave was turned into a lame Bill Cosby vehicle called, um, "Cosby". I remember TG4 showing it in the early 00s.

    A US version of Dads Army didn't get off the ground beyond the pilot, which was a reshoot of the Deadly Attachment episode. Besides being an almost unworkable idea to begin with the clips I've seen of it are cringeworthy.

    Any decent ones?



  • Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 11,411 Mod ✭✭✭✭icdg

    The Office is the only one, I think, to eclipse its U.K. protogeniter in terms of popularity and recognition. I know lots of people who hate the U.K. version (which lives or dies on what you think of Ricky Gervais’ act in it) whereas the US version is more of an ensemble piece.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,685 ✭✭✭✭Igotadose

    Benny Hill was remade as the Republican Party. I call that a draw./s

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,442 ✭✭✭bad2thebone

    American comedy is good when they have dry humor, such as Chevy Chase, Gene Wilder and similar but the new comedy is absolutely shocking.

    The Americans were good with dry nonchalant comedy, while the British were good for shock and awe in your face humor.

    Neither could emulate the other.

    Woke and cancel culture have killed humor, I've yet to see someone who's woke funny...

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,484 ✭✭✭Xander10

    Did some other country do a version of Fawlty Towers?

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 36,787 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    As has been said, The Office is probably the best example of eclipsing its UK counterpart in terms of quality. Nothing else springs to mind.

    American comedy feels very tame compared to UK stuff. The Office UK's characters are much less likeable than their American counterparts. The majority of US stuff is quite bland as well IMO. That said, there's still a solid amount of quality like Community, The Good Place, Parks & Rec and Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,749 ✭✭✭Hangdogroad

    Thought the US version of Dear John was quite decent, will always prefer the original but other than the Office I think its up there as one of the better examples.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    The best example of humour not working abroad is the inbetweeners “bus ****” that line was a classic and you hear it now and again and see it in memes etc

    in the failed US version it was “bus turds” which isn’t funny at all

  • Registered Users Posts: 28,677 ✭✭✭✭CastorTroy

    I haven't watched either version but Ghosts seems to get good reviews.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

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  • Subscribers Posts: 40,566 ✭✭✭✭sydthebeat

    I lasted about 45 seconds before I turned that drivel off

  • Registered Users Posts: 176 ✭✭robbie67

    Yes it was called Amanda,s

    Its starred Bea Arthur in the main part

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,749 ✭✭✭Hangdogroad

    There was another remake called Payne from 1999. Remember seeing a couple of episodes shown on a graveyard slot (on RTE ?). It was fupping awful.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,806 ✭✭✭✭silverharp

    The American Inbetweeners was an abomination , Its interesting to watch some of the scene comparison analysis videos on YT, whatever about cultural differences causing it to be bad, it looked like it failed 101 writing standards

    A belief in gender identity involves a level of faith as there is nothing tangible to prove its existence which, as something divorced from the physical body, is similar to the idea of a soul. - Colette Colfer

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    One of my absolute favourite shows ever from ch4 , destroyed by prime 😂

    Truely amazing tension and real acting in the original compared to the US spelling it all out for you

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 35,208 CMod ✭✭✭✭pixelburp

    It seems rather insane to take something often containing unmistakeable Britishisms or cultural footprint, and transplant it to an American context. So much is just immediately lost in translation. I do get the curiousity and desire to take a success from the UK and see if it would work in an American context - but it rarely does.

    Enter the failed attempt to do a US Red Dwarf. Can't remember if this was ever actually broadcast but whatever on thinks of the original show it was so, definitively, English in its DNA.

  • Registered Users Posts: 28,677 ✭✭✭✭CastorTroy

    Another I didn't watch either version of but the American version seemed to do well is Shameless.

    Or another example of a bad one is Red Dwarf. That was not good. Pretty sure Lister isn't meant to look like Hugh Jackman.

    Of course, it works both ways with UK remakes of US shows. Days Like These being a version of That 70s Show.

    I do remember there being talk of a US remake of Father Ted.

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,796 ✭✭✭✭Fr Tod Umptious

    I may be misremembering this but I recall hearing that the first attempt at the US Office was a carbon copy of the British one and that it got panned by the industry critics for being far too negative.

    So they changed it to be the version that it became and ended up a great success.

    I've never really watched much of the US Office but from what I recall all it had in common with the original was the name.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,031 ✭✭✭OU812

    Ghosts is an excellent remake, Both series work extremely well & independently.

    There was an attempt at the IT crowd which was dreadful

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  • Registered Users Posts: 483 ✭✭Stevolende

    Has been going on for decades Alf Garnett from Til Death Us Do Part became Archie Bunker in All In The Family which i think was popular over there and also had the actor playing the main character needing to distance himself from the character. People taking his bigotry as literal not satire.

    Steptoe and Son was remade as Sanford and Son where the characters became black. Steptoe/Sanford sr being played by Redd Foxx who was a lot cooler than Wilfrid Bramble.

    Man About The HOuse was remade as Three's Company. Not seen either in a long time so they may be pretty dated,

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,865 ✭✭✭DoctorEdgeWild

    The Office is a great example to show the difference in taste for comedy between the two audiences.

    The Office - Sharp, understated comedy with realistic characters that are written to be believable. Occasional moments of crazy but all intended to be possible in the real world.

    US Office - Nothing subtle, very obvious jokes and characters that are parodies. Lots of 'zaniness'. Written to appeal to as wide an audience as possible.

    Both work for their intended audiences. The Red Dwarf and Peep Show examples above need to be burned out from my mind. Never seen anything miss the mark so widely.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    nail on head, uk /Irish do some of the heavy lifting in our imaginations whereas everything in the US has to be spelled out

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Something that riled me a little is all the praise heaped on scorsese and Damon for the departed on an artistic level when it’s “just a remake “ of an already brilliant film

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,053 ✭✭✭wilkie2006

    Really disagree that US Office eclipsed UK's "in terms of quality". Popularity? Probably, but not quality.

    Two very different programmes and agree with DoctorEdgeWild's summation.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,685 ✭✭✭✭Igotadose

    US has to appeal to a broader less educated audience with a mix of puritanical didpositios - UK ads and dialogue can be surprisingly crude especially to American ears and eyes.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,615 ✭✭✭✭martingriff

    Didn't the US do a version of shameless or was it the other way round but ya as others have said is the office

  • Registered Users Posts: 443 ✭✭Bodan

    It's not a sitcom but the us version of Who's line is it anyway is still going and gets good ratings. It has two of the original cast members from the uk version, Colin Mochrie and Ryan Stiles.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,749 ✭✭✭Hangdogroad