The 1980 musical Fame , based on the lives and dreams of students at a performing arts high school in New York City is a classic. In 2009, Hollywood decided to reboot Fame for the current generation.
The staff was played by the likes of established actors Kelsey Grammer, Megan Mullally, Bebe Neuwirth, Debbie Allen (known for being in both the movie and TV series Fame) and Charles S Dutton. The students, played by up and coming actors Kay Panabaker, Naturi Naughton (who sang the title track) and Kherington Payne.
Were the critics wrong?
I could lean toward yes. With the right audience who has no knowledge or memory of the original movie or the television show that aired two years later, this movie is not that bad. But to those who are a little older and/or have fond memories of the original movie, this movie has all of the plot and promise, but something is not quite right.
In 1998, a new television show called Will and Grace premiered. The television landscape would never be the same again.
Will Truman (Eric McCormack) is a gay lawyer whose long term relationship has just ended. His best friend Grace (Debra Messing) is a straight interior designer who has just gotten engaged, but the engagement is off to a rocky start. Adding in Grace’s sometimes helpful assistant Karen (Megan Mullally) and Will’s initial guide to the gay world Jack (Sean Hayes), this foursome was an essential part of the must see TV lineup during it’s eight year run.
It is often said that good TV comes down to good writing and this show had great writing. The characters were flawed and human, but also funny and realistic. Without knowing it, Will and Grace broke new ground. Not just on American television, but in our overall society. We are a better country for having this show on the air.
I still love the reruns, they never fail to make me laugh.