When The Beginning Isn’t A Very Good Place To Start

When The Beginning Isn't A Very Good Place To Start

By Source (WP:NFCC#4), Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=48120255

According to the musical the Sound of Music

Let’s start at the very beginning/a very good place to start

However when adapting/remaking/re-imagining a famous property it often isn’t.  Last week I sat down to watch Emerald City, the Game of Thrones style TV remake of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. It is everything you’d expect from such a description (minus the pointless female nudity) yet the opening episode was often boring as the usual plot points came and went. Spoilers from here on out so click below to read more.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is one of the most famous stories of the modern world. Whether it is through book, film or stage musical we know the story of Dorothy and her little dog. A quick check of The Wizard of Oz Wikipedia page reveals five film adaptations, five TV productions and eight musicals – excluding Wicked. With this in mind do we need to sit through Dorothy in Kansas, meeting Toto and her family etc. Why not start with her landing in Oz and show us Kansas in flash back.
One of the smartest moves of Marvel’s The Incredible Hulk was showing the Hulk’s origin story in its opening credits rather than giving up the first hour of the movie to man getting hit by a ton of gamma radiation. The rumours are this summer’s upcoming Spider-man reboot Spider-man: Homecoming is also skipping Peter Parker’s origin story as we’ve seen it twice in the last fifteen years.
One movie that has done my suggestion recently was Finding Dory. While the Finding Nemo franchise has yet to reach the cultural heights of Oz and Spider-man, we know from the first film that Dory is alone and has memory issues. The spin-off sequel drip feeds Dory’s origin story throughout the film by flashbacks rather than doing what Finding Nemo and showing us everything at the start of the movie. Mode importantly it works and improves the film.
For me this is the way forward for ‘well known properties’ such as The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and big name superheroes. Do you agree? Let me know in the comments below.

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