A Not So Perfect Return Home

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“Whatever happened to predictability?” Well, in “Fuller House”—the sequel series to ’90s cult classic “Full House”—not much.

Twenty-nine years after the finale of its predecessor, “Fuller House” sees DJ Tanner-Fuller (Candace Cameron Bure) coping with the death of her firefighter husband and trying to parent her three young sons.

In a role reversal of the original series, Stephanie Tanner (Jodie Sweetin) and the occasionally irritating Kimmy Gibbler (Andrea Barber), her now grown daughters, move into their childhood home to help DJ.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXuGLswn2l0

Nods from the original series cover the entire first season, from the same couch in the middle of the Tanner living room (a fact the first episode repeatedly points out) to the not so subtle nods to each character’s catchphrase. Despite the absence of “Full House”’s Michelle Tanner (Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen), characters repeatedly spout out her long-beloved “You got it, Dude!” saying.

Using one or two running jokes from “Full House” would be understandable, but “Fuller House” takes all of them and subsequently somehow ruins every single one.

Though I was a mere 7-year-old when I finished watching the original series, I don’t recall ever hearing more than about 11 mentions of Steve Hale (Steve Weinger), DJ’s high school sweetheart, continually eating and taking food from the Tanner family. But in “Fuller House,” almost all of Steve’s appearances involve him at a minimum holding a sandwich. Show writers overuse jokes, exaggerating their nostalgic value to the point of exhausted cliche.

The only two redeeming qualities of “Fuller House” are the return of the original’s classic couple, Jesse Katsopolis (John Stamos) and Rebecca “Becky” Donaldson (Lori Loughlin), and DJ’s 7-year-old son, the ever-clever Max Fuller (Elias Harger).

In “Full House”, Jesse and Becky are the only steady couple, lasting from when they first appear in season two to the series finale. This relationship remains in all of its glory throughout “Fuller House.” While every other character rides a romantic roller coaster, Jesse and Becky continue to be the strongest relationship.

As one always for a romantic moment, the the arguably best episode of the season was episode nine, “War of the Roses,” where the strength of Jesse and Becky’s relationship is truly exemplified as Becky, DJ, Kimmy and Stephanie attempt to discover who sent a thousand roses to the Fuller household.

While Jesse and Becky’s relationship remains one of high points of the series, Max shines as the most refreshing character of the season.

Wise-beyond his years, Max fulfills the role played by Michelle in the original, while not reusing any of her specific catchphrases. From sassing his Aunt Stephanie to loaning money to the irresponsible Jackson and Ramona, Max provides the show’s only humorous content, in which I laughed with the laugh track, not at it.

While any reboot must make reference to the original, “Fuller House” takes that a step to too far. Already renewed for a second season on Netflix, the show must stop relying so much on its predecessor and flesh out a more original series niche that continues the story from “Full House,” rather than merely recreate it.

All 13 episodes of the first season of “Fuller House” can be found on Netflix.

Commentaries are the expressed opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect that of The Fourcast staff, its adviser or any member of the Hockaday community.


– Katie O’Meara – Asst. Photo and Graphics Editor –