MTV Is Rebooting ’90s Faves ‘Daria,’ ‘Aeon Flux’ and ‘The Real World’
A modern update of our blessed lady of ’90s teen eye rolls? A live-action reboot of an animated sci-fi hero who lives for latex? All this and more, on this installment of Sick Sad World! Like a middle-aged corporate accountant desperate to return to the glory days of his youth, MTV is launching a new studio to reboot several of their ’90s classics — returning the channel once known to us olds as “Music Television” to its former, and some would say best self.
MTV has announced the launch of MTV Studios, which will gear its programming toward SVOD in an attempt to compete with Hulu, Netflix, et al. That programming includes a live-action reboot of the dark sci-fi animated series Aeon Flux (which was previously adapted into a live-action movie starring Charlize Theron and directed by Karyn Kusama, lest ye forget), as well a modern reboot of Daria — which will remain animated, so we have that to be thankful for, if nothing else.
The new studio will also attempt to reboot The Real World, the reality show progenitor which went from being a series about a group of twenty-somethings that are picked to live in a mansion and show us what happens when people stop being polite and start getting real…to a blatantly engineered “reality” series where a group of barely legal a—holes get wasted and yell at each other.
A reboot of The Real World is the most interesting prospect of the bunch; olds such as myself will remember a time when one of MTV’s flagship series was actually compelling to watch. (I think this stopped somewhere around the New Orleans season.) I’m mildly curious about Aeon Flux, which will be co-executive produced by The Walking Dead and Terminator’s Gale Ann Hurd.
As for Daria — this feels like blasphemy, the only upside being that maybe MTV will finally restore the original soundtrack to the classic animated series (those songs were replaced with generic tracks over rights issues when Daria became available on DVD). Daria is quintessential ’90s teen girl ennui, like My So-Called Life. It remains as perfect, hilarious and relevant now as it was then. The new series, titled Daria and Jodie, will focus on Daria’s friendship with Jodie Landon as the two navigate high school and social issues. I think the intention is fine, but why not make a new animated show with new characters? Why you gotta trade on Daria’s name?
In addition to all of the above, MTV is plotting a handful of other new, “original” series, like The Valley (basically The Hills, but in Arizona for some reason) and Straight Up Ghosted — the latter of which follows people as they confront the family members and significant others who abruptly vanished from their lives. It could easily replace Catfish, which was recently suspended due to sexual harassment allegations made against co-host Nev Schulman.
Here’s the full rundown of MTV’s new programming, with official synopses:
Daria & Jodie
The iconic animated franchise is reinvented through the eyes of heroine Daria Morgendorffer and one of her closest friends Jodie Landon. These two smart young women take on the world, with their signature satirical voice while deconstructing popular culture, social classes, gender and race.
Writer: Grace Edwards (“Unbreakable Kimmie Schmidt,” “Loosely Exactly Nicole,” “Inside Amy Schumer”)
This cult anime classic is back for a live action remake, as the badass heroine assassin Aeon Flux teams up with a group of biohacking rebels in the not too distant dystopian future to battle a brutally repressive regime and save humanity.
Executive Producers: Jeff Davis (“Teen Wolf,” “Criminal Minds”), Gale Anne Hurd (“The Walking Dead,” “Fear the Walking Dead”)
The Real World
The show that invented modern reality television returns to its roots. This reconnection to innocence for the trailblazing series strips away the polarization and cold anonymity of social media, the din of the 24-hour news cycle, and the facades of the instafamous culture to find out what happens “when seven strangers are picked to live in a house…stop being polite and start getting real.”
The groundbreaking, Emmy-winning life makeover series returns. In a world of 2D Instagram transformations, MADE pairs talented young underdogs with experts for face to face coaching for total life, real life reinventions.
In the spirit of “The Hills” and “The City,” this new show follows a group of 20 somethings in a classic coming of age docu-series featuring first loves, relationships and life decisions – with a twist. This group of young people is living in “The Valley” of Nogales, Arizona, a town along the border of the United States and Mexico. This is the real life story of friends who are growing up on the edge of two countries, two cities as they share one Valley, their youth and common bond.
MTV’s Straight Up Ghosted
While social media has connected the world more than ever, it has also undercut our ability to deeply connect and communicate. Today, critical relationship-ending conversations and confrontations have faded into digital dialogue or worse “ghosting.” This series explores real stories of real people who vanished by blocking them, and unlocks the reality and uncomfortable truth to satisfy the ultimate question–why did you leave me?
And here’s the new opening sequence for MTV Studios, which incorporates the classic astronaut dude: