Why, oh why, is there going to be more Full House? It’s the worst 90’s throwback since the invasion of Iraq. Never in my wildest dreams did it occur to me that there would ever be more of this shit. And yet, here we all are.
Starting next week, I’ll be reviewing every episode of Fuller House, just like how I reviewed all of the original series except not ten years after the fact. I thought I ought to write an initial post to get back in the groove and give y’all a heads up that FHR would be coming back (I sure do get asked that a lot, even in comments on posts where I explicitly state that, yes, I will be reviewing Fuller House. I bet that this post gets at least one comment that asks that) and a look ahead seemed like the best way to get back in the saddle. At the time that I’m posting this, Fuller House should have just become streamable on Netflix, but I’m happy to say that I haven’t watched it yet. Maybe this post is really just me holding on to those brief final moments of my life before seeing the Full House revival. I’m just holding on to this moment, before things get bad again.
It goes without saying that this 20-years-later return to the worst sitcom of all time will be terrible. The question is not about what level of quality we can expect, but rather just what the particularities of the awfulness will be. Here are my speculations about what we should anticipate as we emotionally prepare ourselves for the return of the greatest atrocity in American history:
1) It Will Be Bland
Remember that Boy Meet’s World follow-up, Girl Meet’s World? I decided to check it out for the sake of curiosity, and because it was streaming on Netflix. I only made it through one episode, and only managed that because I was reading stuff on my phone the whole time (ironically, the episode was all about the folly of smart phones and how those damn kids these days should be going to the library instead). My point is that, once you work past the initial intrigue or curiosity that’s built into these kinds of throwback shows, there’s usually not much there. Sure, I’m curious to see just how poorly Dave Coulier has aged, but after that 2-second intake, what more will this show have to offer? If I want to see Uncle Joey do his stupid fucking Bullwinkle impression for the ten millionth time, I can just watch an old episode (I mean, I don’t, and I wouldn’t, but I could if I did). A lot of these nostalgia cash-ins seems to be more of a reminder to revisit the old thing rather than an incentive to see what’s currently being made. Unfortunately, most people who will find themselves checking out old episodes of Full House for the first time in a decade will very likely be horrified to realize what a pile of garbage they wasted their youth watching. Full House has aged as poorly as Dave Coulier’s withered mug.
Fuller House will fail to fully establish itself as either Full House Season 29 or as a whole new show. It will be self-referential, but it wont be self-aware enough, it wont update any old ideas (I mean…what ideas?), it wont say or do anything new. It will probably be less obnoxious than the old series, but more hollow as well. That overbearing, confrontational arrogance was pretty much the only stand out quality the original series had. Instead of grating moments that makes you want to tear your hair out, Fuller House will have bland scenes that you wont even remember.
Ultimately, Fuller House will underwhelm, and most people who bother to check it out wont make it past the second episode.
2) No People of Color
Full House is a show by, for and about white people. It takes place in the Bay Area, one of the most ethnically diverse places in the world, and yet it is a total cracker fest. Back in the 90’s you could get away with having an all white cast on tv (you practically had to) without any criticism. Well, those days are over. I’m really curious to see what the twitter hashtag that condemns this show for being nothing but a collective of super lilly white honkeys will be. My guess is something like #FullofWhitePrivilegeHouse. I can’t wait!
Full House is a show about white privilege, so much so that it fails to recognize that any other kind of person exists. Even the token ethnic friends that showed up every now and again were at least half white. Think about this, you guys: the blackest person to ever set foot in the Full House was Urkel. That’s right, Urkel.
3) No One Will Have Made Any Personal Progress
As we revisit the Tanner family and the hangers-on who have managed to leech off of their success (Joey, Jesse), we will be met with no surprises whatsoever in regards to how anyone has changed in the years since we were last subjected to their antics. This won’t be played for laughs, and it wont be a sobering reflection on how people don’t really progress and are bound forever to make the same mistakes and do the same annoying shit. This will happen because these are tragically underdeveloped characters, and there’s just not that much else that can be done with them. Danny will still be an obsessive compulsive cleaner because what else could he possibly do? Joey will still do a bunch of terrible impressions all the time, and it still wont make any sense at all why he’s involved with this family. Wouldn’t it be nice if Joey returned to television having learned not to spit in people’s faces all the time? Or if any of these people came to the realization that they are not in fact the center of the universe? Like, just seeing any of them wait their turn in line for something or go anywhere without needing to become to the focus of the whole crowd’s attention would just be amazing to me.
Jesse’s lack of personal progress will be most dissatisfying because we all know a guy like him-an aging fuck up with a shitty band and no regard for anyone else-and most of us have seen that guy go to jail. Not Jesse, though. There will be no repercussions whatsoever for his lifetime of selfish worthlessness, I can guarantee you.
4) Still No Exploration of the Theme of Alternative Families
Another thing that bugs me about the underutilized San Francisco setting is that San Francisco is the gayest place on Earth and yet, somehow, this show about three gentle, sensitive men who live together to raise kids as a family, seems completely unaware that gay people even exist. Just look outside! I guarantee you that people are having butt sex in that park across the street from the full house at pretty much any given time. Inside the house, there will be occasional hilarious misunderstanding where someone walks in on Joey and Jesse wrestling in their underwear or something and it sure is funny when it’s taken out of context, but no one is ever like, “hey, this show is totally about gay dads!”
Rather than some half-baked, tacked on 20-years later sequel, I think that Full House could really use a reboot. The world is ready to watch a show about a polyamorous unity between 3 men who are raising kids together. I’d watch that shit. Also, replacing all the actors would be a major bonus! Don’t bring the full house back, burn that shit to the ground, and maybe you could actually build something that’s worthwhile on top of its smoldering remains.
Unfortunately, based on that amazing time that Candace Cameron got told by Raven Symone on the View, I can only assume that she’d do everything in her power to prevent this from ever happening.
5) None of the New Characters Will Be At All Memorable or Interesting
I guess DJ and Kimmie Gibbler have kids now and maybe there will be new love interests or some shit but I can pretty much guarantee you that, after viewing all of these episodes, I won’t know anything more about any of those new characters than I do right now. That’s not because they wont have their own storylines. I’m sure that there will be obligatory episodes about how DJ has to go to her boring kids karate tournament at the same time as an important work meeting and how’s a working single mom supposed to make it in this day and age? And I’m sure that each new character will have some overly simplistic characteristics that define them, like the hungry kid or the fidgety guy that Kimmie Gibbler is dating or the kid that really likes science and says affirmative all the time, but none of the new characters will leave any lasting impressions. The worst part is, the new characters will actually make us miss the returning cast members when they’re not onscreen. I can’t think of a bigger offense than that.
If there’s one thing that’s guaranteed about this series, it’s that every returning character will be spewing out their most overused catch phrases from back in the day at the slightest provocation. They might as well call this shit, “Remember That Dumb Ass Catch Phrase From When You Were 12? The Series.” There will also probably be some attempts to bestow the new characters with catch phrases of their own, and all of them will fail. This will partially be because the new Netflix model of releasing everything all at once doesn’t allow for a shows creators to gage an audience reaction to something in order to make decisions about what to develop into “a thing” (one of my all-time favorite tv moments was in the E! True Hollywood Story for Blossom in which Joey Lawrence thoroughly explains the evolution of his catch phrase, “whoa.” So THAT’S how it happened!), but it’s also probably true that there will be no new or good ideas injected into this series, so it wouldn’t have worked anyway. Regardless, I’m willing to bet that the shows creators will do their best to make assumptions about what will get the audience all riled up, resulting in some new and misguided catchphrases. Here are my predictions for what some of them will be:
“I’m so itchy!”
“I made a doo doo in your bed”
“That’s not my problem”
“I don’t care about you at all”
6) There Will Be No Mention of Stephanie’s Fake Titties
The elephant in the room will not be addressed. There might be some gross, family-friendly references to how much Stephanie has “grown up” or something in response to all of the low cut shirts she seems to be wearing in all the promo stuff, but no one’s gonna just straight up be like, “damn, Stephanie, what’s up with them fake tittays?”
7) The More Successful Cast Members Will Smugly Phone In Their Appearances, While the More Desperate Ones Will Give It Their All, To the Point Of Making It Uncomfortable To Watch
John Stamos has done really well since the show ended, so much so that he seems willing to grease his hair up and neglect his wife on tv again just for the fun of it. It’s also possible that he’s doing it as a favor to the rest of the cast, or maybe even just because he missed working with them. Regardless of his reasons for showing up, he knows he’s too good for this show and this will be apparent in every moment that he’s onscreen. Bob Saget will also smugly phone in his performance, doing his best to communicate to the audience that he’s smarter and funnier than this show even though none his stand up has proven this to be true.
Jodie Sweetin seems to have had the roughest time out in the real world, so much so that I can’t help but wonder if this reunion isn’t some charitable deed by everyone else involved to try to help her get some work. Her biggest claims to fame in recent years has been a tell-all book about being a meth addict and a series of failed twitter campaigns where she lobbied for a spot on Dancing With the Stars. I think it’s a safe bet that her presence onscreen will be that of a person trying way too hard to prove her performance chops so that maybe, just once in her life, she might get an acting job playing someone besides Stephanie Tanner.
8) They Will Not All Die
Proving that sheer force of will cannot alter reality, and that nobody on the executive staff cares about all those letters I sent, the series will not conclude with all of the characters dying horribly. How great would it be, though, if the house collapsed or exploded or something and the family all died. That’s the only thing that would validate a return to the full house. It’s the only possible way anyone would end up saying, “this was worth waiting for.”
Tune in next week for Fuller House Reviewed Part 1. It’s gonna be real cranky! Also, feel free (or even obligated) to check out Saved By the Bell Reviewed, a weekly podcast where myself and 3 other real funny people talk about a way better show than Full House.