When MTV announced plans a couple months ago to remake/reboot the Michael J Fox film Teen Wolf, I assumed the intent was to create a feature film. That evidently isn’t the case, as the network has ordered a pilot for a television series. What the hell does MTV plan to do with their high school lycanthropes?
THR reports that execs liked the script that was cobbled together, and ordered the pilot. (Thanks, THR…we guessed as much.) This version will once again be a high school drama that has horror and werewolf lore, and there will be a romantic angle as well. The latter being a given if the network is going to draw out a series.
Liz Gateley, MTV’s senior VP of series development, tries out her comedy act while talking up the series: “It has a fresh take and is very different from the original. It has more of an ‘American Werewolf in London’ feel to it. It’s a dramatic thriller with two best friends in the center who provide a great comedy element: They are two very relatable characters on the outer circles of popular cliques.”
The emphasis there is mine. Why, when talking about your Teen Wolf series, would you push a thin thematic relationship to a totally different film? And why do I feel like she just described a Buffy clone? Not that any of this is a surprise, once you think about MTV making this as a series and not a feature. With a feature remake it’s easy enough to just go back to the basic story, with a few updates. But a series requires a lot more open-ended story work. Oddly enough, if I forget the whole comparison to American Werewolf, I’m more interested in what MTV can do with this as a series than as a feature. By which I mean ‘barely interested, and only in the most passive sense’ rather than not at all.