IP Picks 🔎: Fond Memories & Red Meat
Some serious early aughts nostalgia, plus a murdered reporter, drug smugglers on the Texas plains and a new YA fantasy series
Welcome to The Optionist! As always, thanks for reading.
I was struck by the number of promising IPs this week that mined early aughts nostalgia (two out of five finalists, plus a few more that narrowly missed the cut).
At first that realization amused me. It seemed maybe a bit premature. But then I realized that the span from the early 2000s to today is about the same as it was from the mid-1950s to the premiere of Grease and Happy Days. Apparently, it takes only two decades after the fact for a pop culture moment to be cycled back as legit nostalgia.
The audience that was raised on a regimen of Shrek and Anchorman, Britney and NSYNC has just about reached middle age — the perfect moment to relive one’s youth on screen.
For those who were young in the early aughts, the nostalgic vein runs particularly deep, because theirs was the last generation to come of age unburdened by smart phones and social media.
It’s an era that also has natural appeal to many of their kids — tweens and teens uneasy about their own too-close relationship with Instagram and TikTok, simplifying their daily lives with Internet-free flip phones, and thirsting for a world without all those apps.
Alongside potential properties from the way-back machine, we’ve selected a few helpings of dependable Hollywood genre, including:
A true crime thriller ripped from the headlines involving a half-billion dollar con and murder
A YA fantasy featuring teens who yet again band together to save themselves and the world from unspeakable evil
The debut of an action series, centered on one brave man, ex-military, who’s dead set on taking down the bad guys who’ve invaded his Texas town.