Some news travels fast and jaws may drop just as quickly. Breaking today was the fact that Disney has done a deal and will 'reboot' the Miss Marple franchise. This involves the casting of Hollywood actress Jennifer Garner in the main role. And yes, it is the role of Miss Jane Marple to which I refer.
But the casting is not the main issue (as today's Daily Telegraph attests). It's the concept. For the Disney rebooted Miss Marple is a Marple revisited and redrawn.
- It's to be her younger self. Well that's OK then; sometimes the younger, formative self works well, see The Young Indiana Jones. (But it's also worth remembering that 'young' versions often follow massively successful originals and are simply made to extend the money-spinning bandwagon journey.) PLUS
- It's to be modern day. Again, this can work: think the BBC's recent and hugely successful Sherlock. PLUS
- It's to be set in America. Sorry, I can't think of one mitigating offering for this. It's like mangoes turning into olives. Taking such a big attribute of the stories is to change their nature completely.
And taking all three together is simply a step too far. It's like taking a step too far and walking over a cliff into the ocean, or stepping from solid ground into quicksand. It's just not recognisably the same.
Finally, back to that first point; it's to be a younger Marple. Surely the magic of Marple lies in the fact she's a wise old woman, a keen observer of humankind with many years of quiet practice behind her?