ABC has set an instant rerun of its “All in the Family”/”Jeffersons” special, re-enforcing a key lesson:
Sometimes, old-time TV can (with a slight twist) become a new hit.
The ABC twist was to take old scripts from those classics and do them live, with new actors. Woody Harrelson and Marisa Tomei were Archie and Edith Bunker, with Ellie Kemper and Ike Barinholtz as their daugher and son-in-law; Jamie Foxx and Wanda Sykes were George and Louise Jefferson, with Will Ferrell and Kerry Washington as the neigboring couple.
The result was a ratings hit, reflecting other recent ones:
— A collection of Carol Burnett bits – mostly goofs and break-ups – scored big in the ratings.
— And old “I Love Lucy” and “Dick Van Dyke” episodes have become new hits, once color was added by computer.
We’re guessing there will be more foraging of the past. We’ll hope it stops short of “F Troop” and “My Mother the Car.”