Is the world ready for a Pee Wee Herman reboot? By Judd Apatow?
Variety is reporting that Judd Apatow is trying to get another Pee Wee Herman film made. Boy was I wrong when discussing with some friends the recent episode of Geek Show Podcast, “What WILL NEVER be rebooted.” I was adamant that Pee Wee could not be rebooted because of Paul Ruebens’… ahhem…. pants problems. Sure, let’s call it that.I know Paul Ruebens has the Pee Wee stage show, but what you can get away with on stage vs. having an actor who will be pushing 60 by the time a film comes out pretending to be a child/childlike man– it just can’t work. And no one should be Pee Wee except for Ruebens.
Anyway, this intrigues me. Pee Wee’s Big Adventure remains one of my favorite movies of all time, (it is both my favorite Tim Burton movie and favorite Danny Elfman score). And there is still a great deal of magic in those old Pee Wee’s Playhouse episodes, and not just in knowing that they launched the career of Lawrence Fishburne. Ruebens has done some great non-Pee Wee work (his recent recurring role on the much-missed Pushing Daisies is one, playing The Spleen in Mystery Men is another personal fav) so it’s obvious he’s still got it– along with the boffo reviews of his LA stage show.
And then comes Apatow. Would he give the same salty-sweet treatment to Pee Wee as his previous work? I love Knocked Up, The 40 Year Old Virgin, etc. But does this mesh with the completely innocent and non-sexual world of Pee Wee? I have to say, if there’s going to be a Pee Wee reboot and it’s going to include the 7 words you can’t say on television, I’m not so interested. And in a world with South Park and The Hangover, can a sweet and only somewhat salty Pee Wee work? Or have our audiences become too jaded?
What say you all?