Americanizing the British cult classic Peep Show has long been one of television’s white whales: an impossible pursuit that can only lead to disaster. Many have tried, and many have failed; the last attempt came, and went, only two years back. But the TV Ahabs are at it again: Deadline caught the news that FX is hard at work on a gender-flipped remake.
The news was revealed in The Guardian by Sam Bain, one of the three creators of the heavily gif-able show, which concerned odd couple flatmates Mark Corrigan and Jez Usborne (David Mitchell and Robert Webb). Mark was uptight; Jez was not, to a fault. Over nine series, they acted terribly, or at least thought terrible things, which we could hear via the narration track. In one typically bleak episode, Mark helps Jez discard of a dog he accidentally ran over, all so Jez can get on with its owner.
Despite the long, long tradition of American remakes of British shows — from All in the Family and Sanford and Son to The Office — attempts to bring the El Dude Brothers across the Atlantic have always capsized. One version, from 2005 and starring Johnny Galecki as Mark, never made it past the pilot stage. (Watch it here, if you dare.)
This latest stab will reportedly be written by Karey Dornetto, of Portlandia and Superstore. Back during the last aborted Peep Show remake, Bain was skeptical that it could ever be redone. But now he’s changed his tune. “What would Peep Show have been like with women as the two leads? It’s a great question – and it’s one I’ll shortly have the answer to,” Bain wrote in his Guardian piece, in which he refers to Dornetto as a “top comedy brain.”
Of course, if his answer is that, no, even that doesn’t work, then at least he knows that warm copies make everything better.
Peep Show is streaming on Hulu, by the way.