Top Ten Books I Would Love To See As A Movie/TV Show



Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

#1-4: This Would Make a Great Movie!


Dracula by Bram Stoker

Bram Stoker's Dracula has been adapted or appropriated for films more times than I have the patience to count. However, I'm not aware of any that stay true to the book; of the three (arguably) most famous adaptations, Bela Lugosi's Dracula stayed closest to the novel--assuming I'm recalling the movie correctly--but it's obviously quite outdated in 2013 and definitely overdue for a remake. Nosferatu, meanwhile, invented the "vampires die from sunlight exposure" cliche that so many people erroneously attribute to Bram Stoker. And Bram Stoker's Dracula tried to make the story appeal to its 90s audience by inventing a completely unnecessary and obnoxious "love story" aspect.

So I would love to see a 2010s adaptation of the Dracula story as Stoker wrote it. Given how different the modern vampire genre is from its origins, a faithful adaptation would seem somewhat fresh and new.

The Saga of Darren Shan by Darren Shan

In 2009, a movie called Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant came out. When I first heard about it, I was excited. I'd loved Darren Shan's creepy twelve-book vampire series, The Saga of Darren Shan, so I was hoping for an awesome adaptation. What I got was this blasphemy.

And I was horrified. I decided to wait for the DVD, and sure enough, it was complete shit. It made absolute mockery of the wonderfully creepy book series and spoiled the twists of the final books in what was ostensibly an adaptation of the first few.

The mere existence of this abomination makes me angry. Saying I would love to see a respectful adaptation of Shan's horror series (that HORROR, Hollywood, not kid's fucking comedy) is an understatement. Seriously, throw up a Kickstarter for that shit and I'll jump right on it.

The Miserable Mill by Lemony Snicket

In 2004, the first three books of Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events were adapted into a movie called, fittingly enough, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. It wasn't the best movie I've ever seen, but it was pretty great as far as book-to-film adaptations go.

Unfortunately, it never got a sequel, which disappointed me greatly. I'd love to see an adaptation of the fourth book, The Miserable Mill. Now, it has to be said that the child actors are obviously too old to pass for a young teen, a preteen, and a toddler anymore, so either the script writer would have to get creative with the plot and its timeline or the roles would have to be recast.

I'm not sure which of these I favor, but if the roles are recast, I'd definitely rather see them remake the first movie. Perhaps animate it this time, guys?

Trapped by R.L. Stine

R.L. Stine's Fear Street series was an 80s/90s YA horror series of vastly varying quality. Some of the books were genuinely terrifying when I was of the target age group. Most of them are laughably terrible through the eyes of an adult.

One of the few that holds up to nostalgia, however, was Trapped. It starts out heavily evocative of The Breakfast Club--a group of somewhat stereotyped teens end up in detention together and are clearly on the path to gaining a better understanding of one another. Of course, then they all end up dying horribly thanks to the Shadyside curse. Well, that's an exaggeration... but I won't spoil it with specifics.

When I read Trapped as a preteen, I couldn't finish it; it legitimately terrified me. When I reread it as an adult, it was still pretty frickin' creepy, and I recall thinking after I finished reading that it would make a pretty great horror movie.

#5-10: This Would Make a Great Kid's Show!


A to Z Mysteries by Ron Roy

As far as I can recall, Ron Roy's A to Z Mysteries was the first chapter book series I ever read, and it was almost certainly the first I ever loved. In it, third graders Dink Duncan, Josh Pinto, and Ruth Rose Hathaway get involved in twenty-six alphabet-titled adventures that range from helping to catch a bank robber to busting a ghost to searching for their kidnapped friend, the Prince of Socotra.

I'd love to see these twenty-six short mysteries adapted into a cute, twenty-six episode cartoon series. It even comes with its own, pre-made twelve-book spin-off for a younger audience, Calendar Mysteries.

Seriously, give me a first season of books one through thirteen, a second season of books fourteen to twenty-six, and a third season focusing on Calendar Mysteries. I'd watch the hell out of that.

Magic Tree House by Mary Pope Osborne

Mary Pope Osborne's Magic Tree House series was another childhood favorite of mine. While I learned just today that it was made into an anime film in 2011--though I'm not sure if it's yet been translated into English--I think it would definitely make a great kid's television show.

In the series, elementary schoolchildren Jack and Annie of Frog Creek, Pennsylvania find a magic tree house in their neighboring forest and begin going on magical, reading-themed adventures through history and fiction at the instruction of (a benevolent) Morgan le Fay and Merlin. Their adventures take them everywhere--and everywhen--from Camelot to ancient Egypt to the Titanic to modern China.

It's currently at fifty-one books, so I'd love to see a twelve-episode-per-season cartoon (anime, maybe?) program get rolled out when it reaches sixty. (And I'll definitely be trying to get my hands on that anime!)

The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids by Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thornton Jones

In Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thornton Jones's The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids, elementary schoolkids Liza, Howie, Melody, and Eddie get carried away with Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane plots. With teachers who may or may not be vampires, karate instructors who could be angels, presidential candidates suspected of lycanthropy, and a soccer coach who just might be a zombie, Bailey City definitely has some weird adults... and some imaginative children.

There are fifty-one books, excluding specials, so there's room there for at least two seasons of a mystery/comedy cartoon!

The Amazing Days of Abby Hayes by Anne Mazer

The Amazing Days of Abby Hayes is a book kid's chicklit series of twenty books. While I definitely don't appreciate the direction the later books of the series took, I think it'd make a pretty great middle-school-girl-aimed cartoon program, as long as they kept to the themes of the original books.

Warriors by Erin Hunter

Warriors is a looong anthropomorphism series from a group of women writing as "Erin Hunter". I've only read a few of the books and haven't read any of them for a number of years (I intend to get back into the series, I swear!), but from what I recall, I think it'd be a pretty great source material for an anime adaptation. From what I've heard, it has a reasonably large and somewhat rabid fanbase to take advantage of, so I'd say it's worth a try!

Replica by Marilyn Kaye

I haven't read the Replica series by Marilyn Kaye for a number of years (and I intend to read it again when I can get my hands on the books), but I remember that the central premise was the the main character, Amy Candler, turned out to be a clone. Given the recent success of BBC's Orphan Black, a teen-aimed adaptation of the Replica series could get traction as "Orphan Black for kids" (as Flight 29 Down got a rather unwarranted reputation as Lost for kids) and hopefully interest more preteens and children in the science fiction genre.

4 comments:

  1. Dracula is going to be a TV Series this fall on NBC. I think it's a British collaboration. No idea if it will be any good, but I'm intrigued by it. Great list! -Cailey

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    1. Oh, really? I haven't heard anything about that! *goes to look it up*

      Thanks! :)

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  2. I love your list - and now I need that Magic Tree House anime movie!!! :) Replica would make a great TV show - it almost read like one anyhow. It would be a good fit for ABC Family, if they could stick faithfully to the books (they seem to have a problem with that). And yes, that Cirque Du Freak movie makes me die a little each time I think of it. What an utter piece of trash! Great list!

    My TTT:

    http://diamondinroughcoal.blogspot.com/2013/09/top-ten-tuesday-8.html

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  3. Thanks, Anna. Glad to hear I'm not the only one who would watch some of these hypothetical adaptations! ;)

    ReplyDelete

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