I’ve been playing around with ideas for a Felafel TV series. Don’t get too excited because God knows I’m not. I’m just playing around with it in my downtime. There are many obstacles to adaptation, firstly finding somebody with a couple of million dollarydoos to pay for it.
Let’s assume somebody did drop a gigantanormous ward of the folding stuff on me, however. You still gotta get past the book having only two lines of dialogue and no characters who last for more than one or two pages. Most of them come and go within a paragraph.
Doesn’t make for much of a through-line.
The really knotty question, though, is when do you set it? Felafel came out in 1996, over 26 years ago. Yeah, I know, right? We’re all really old, and we’re going to die soon.
So do you set a TV series in that time, at which point it becomes a period piece? A sort of historical comedy-drama. Or do you update it to the present day?
I saw this on the Twitters last night, (in Kara Schlegl’s TL)
July 4th 2022
… and although it was a striking image that would make a great opening scene for a movie or a TV series, the thing that struck me was this comment.
Sort of gets to the heart of the question, doesn’t it?
I still believe Felafel was successful because it told universal stories, about half a dozen of them in all, that anybody who’s experienced share housing would be familiar with. I can’t imagine those stories have gone away. That stuff would still be happening: mad flatmate, bad flatmate, dirty flatmate, the flatmates who fucked each other when they shouldn’t have. But there would be a whole bunch of other stuff about which I would know nothing because the wheel turns and the world leaves us behind.
My inclination is to set it in the present day, just to capture the interest of a new audience. But perhaps that’s wrong. The larger audience might be those who’ve already lived the life and read the book. It’s not keeping me up at night, but it is a question I'd have to answer before anybody dropped a stack of money on the project.
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