When Actors Return to Play Their Most Popular Characters

MeTV posted an interesting piece called 9 Times Actors Revived Their Beloved TV Characters Long After the Show was Over.  It’s always interesting when this happens since it is like trying to recapture lighting in a bottle.  It is hard to recreate the magic.  Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.  Before you click over, here are my three favorites from their list and my thoughts to go with each…

  • Jackie Gleason as Ralph Kramden.  (I’m a huge fan of the original Honeymooners series from the 50s.  I fondly remember watching reruns of the show with my grandparents.  I have the original 39 episodes on dvd and still watch ’em.  I haven’t seen any of the Honeymooners reunion specials, but would love to… even if they don’t live up to the high bar set by the original series. – Craig)
  • Leonard Nimoy as Spock.  (I’m a fan of the original Star Trek series,  I’ve seen the movies with the original crew as well as the rebooted Star Trek featuring Kirk, Spock and McCoy.  I’ve not watched any of the Star Trek spin offs.  I loved seeing Leonard Nimoy return to play Spock in the  J.J. Abrams’ reboot! This was a revisit that worked! – Craig)
  • Peter Falk as Columbo.  (I’m not sure this should really count as a revisit since Falk continued to play Columbo in movies over the years.  I’ve seen all of the Falk Columbo‘s and what a joy it is to see the same actor play the same character over a span of 30+ years.  Revisit or not, it doesn’t get better. – Craig)

Although it didn’t make the list, The Wild, Wild West is perhaps my all-time favorite tv show,  It ran for 104 episodes over four seasons starting in 1965 and ending in 1969.  There were two tv movie revisits: The Wild Wild West Revisited (1979) and More Wild Wild West (1980).  I remember being disappointed in them, but plan to, uh, revisit them someday. – Craig)