In a world where Fuller House is a thing that happened (and is happening for another season), being wary of reboots is understandable, even expected. It also begs some interesting questions: Are these stories that need to be told? Do these shows exist because nostalgia is so in right now? What do you think Arnold and the gang are up to? To answer, in order: No; yes; and we’ll find out sometime in 2017, when Hey Arnold! returns to Nickelodeon.
We first heard rumors of the project last year, when Variety reported that the two-part TV movie “will feature a storyline that picks up where the original series ended and resolves unanswered plot lines — including the whereabouts of Arnold’s parents, long missing from the program.” Now it’s official, largely thanks to the efforts of Chris Viscardi. He’s the senior vice president of content development for Nickelodeon Franchise Properties, but you might know him as a co-creator of The Adventures of Pete & Pete, one of the few quintessentially “’90s shows” that’s as good now as it was then.
Mashable spoke to Viscardi about the TV movie, which he assures isn’t an unworthy cash grab (series creator Craig Bartlett is also returning).
“It was a really sweet, lovely, funny show — all those qualities were extraordinarily appealing when the series first aired, and those qualities we know will translate now,” he says. “And deeper into that, Arnold is a great, relatable, somewhat kind of underdog kid.”
Viscardi understands what makes Doug, Rocko’s Modern Life, and Hey Arnold! so timeless. “Everything wasn’t always tied up with a nice bow,” he said, “like they are on certain other networks and their shows. There was just something ragged and beautiful and poetic about the best of those Nickelodeon shows.”
Does the world need more Hey Arnold!? No, but at least it’s in the right hands.