Still, it should be noted that women are not being left out entirely. The CW is toying around with an adaptation of The Notebook, while Fox is eyeing both Monster-In-Law and Hitch sitcom adaptations. What’s immediately apparent, however, is that when television networks seemingly actively try to cater to women — or at least include women — the networks go straight for the romantic-comedies, rather than try to think a little out of the box about what women want (and it’s not a TV adaptation of What Women Want).
Sure, some of these rom-coms have great potential; Hitch could definitely work as a television series, especially if it ramps up the laughs and provides a lengthy will-they/won’t-they scenario. But most are basic, and things that we’ve seen plenty of time before — Monster-In-Law is just a typical family sitcom about someone not getting along with their in-laws. They aren’t original, and we deserve better. “We” as in women, definitely, but also “we” as in the general television community.
Does television really need to pack in another police drama to a lineup that’s already full of blue uniforms? Why not go in the opposite direction and dig through some classic movies for women — after all, Clueless’ television adaptation ran for a successful three seasons, easily beating about 99% of NBC’s new sitcoms the last few years.
Isn’t it about time we get a television version of The Craft? An hour-long dark comedy-drama about a group of high school outcasts balancing algebra with witchcraft, falling deep into the occult, causing supernatural harm to the men who have hurt them would be on so many people’s must-watch lists because of how many built-in fans the movie already has. Cast Willow Smith in the lead, and you’ve got a hit. It would undo the disappointment of The CW’s Secret Circle.
In fact, there are a number of successful movies that were marketed to women and have great potential to become a similarly successful television series. TV is sorely lacking in a great roller derby series; we were teased with Melanie’s plot in Bunheads, so maybe ABC Family should snag the rights to 2009’s Whip It. Since TV will keep on churning out legal drama after legal drama, a network should go the Legally Blonde route, which could definitely be a fun, comedic, law procedural (and yes, with rom-com elements). A Sister Act adaptation could fill the musical hole Glee left on Fox (and would be miles better than TV Land’s Impastor) while Syfy could pair 12 Monkeys with an adaptation of Lucy. And isn’t it obvious that a Mean Girls series could be television’s next best teen drama?
There is no doubt that television is going to continue making these sequels, reboots, prequels, whatever so the very least networks could do is search for something beyond a generic male-led and male-centric action thriller and give us ladies something to look forward to in the fall.