With the unlikely success of Better Call Saul, cut from the mighty rock of Breaking Bad, its time to compile a list of ten even better and more timely spinoffs that we’d all like to see broadcasting, say, by Christmas.
7. Ring My Stringer Bell – Idris Elba reprises his role as The Wire’s smoothest criminal intellect, but this time Stringer has dropped the Life in favor of becoming everyone’s favorite math teacher at Ronald Reagan High. Jeff Lynne of ELO plays Principal Cummers, and Tiffany-Amber Thiessen heats up the screen as The Field Hockey Coach With A Dirty Secret.
6. When Sally Met Saul – After years of trying to get Better Phone Joan, How I Met Duck Phillips, or Chillin’ With the Cosgroves off the ground without success, Sally Draper returns to AMC. She’s just graduated from prep school and landed a job ghosting Lena Dunham’s next book about being-groped-but-not-really by the campus Republican. Sally runs headfirst into Bob Odenkirk and the just-canceled Better Call Saul, which saw ratings plummet when, in a contract dispute, the Mike Ehermantraut character was replaced by veteran comedic presence Bob Sagat. Turns out Saul Goodman is representing Dunham’s mystery-Republican, who isn’t much of a mystery after Sally identifies him in four minutes of internet sleuthing.
5. Yo, Adrian! – Sure, she was murdered in the woods by Steve Van Zant’s toupee during the last season of The Sopranos, but the ghost of Adriana La Cerva, played by the wonderfully method Drea de Matteo, returns in this hilarious comic set up where Adrian haunts Talia Shire’s son, Jason Schwartzman, through most of an abandoned Wes Anderson project called The Terrarium Life With Cuff and Link.
4. Schillinger’s List – J.K. Simmons’ Aryan Brotherhood leader Vern Schillinger from OZ returns for this existential meta-thriller in which Schillinger sits in 23-hour isolated lockdown for two full seasons. We watch, riveted, while he makes pruno, tosses his excrement at guards, and attempts to explain the concept of “Schroedinger’s Cat“.
3. Flight of the Perpetual Dischord – Kirsten Schall expands on her Conchords role of “Mel,” now teaming with former Virginia governor Bob McDonnell, the family that owns Hobby Lobby, a sentient case of magnum-sized Trojans, the entire Quiverfull movement, and Newt Gingrich’s third wife, to lead a weekly roundtable discussion on reproductive rights and other women’s issues.
2. Uncle Nuck – Steve Buscemi’s disembodied Boardwalk Empire teeth, currently floating in a mason jar full of saline and Alka Seltzer, reprise John Candy’s beloved roll from Uncle Buck. Look at how much those disembodied teeth swear! Look at what a lousy role model those disembodied teeth are! You wouldn’t think disembodied teeth were so rude! Hey, why won’t Uncle Nuck come outside and play tennis with us in a tracksuit?
1. The Real Housewives of Having an Unexpected Embolism and Dying on the Couch During an Illegal Botox Party – Veterans of various Housewives franchises meet in a Newark garage to play “mystery vial” with random hypodermics. Chris Walken’s Deer Hunter character shows up to demonstrate various chamber-spinning techniques and hand out nihilist headbands. Barbara Hershey’s bottom lip emcees.
PLUS BONUS SPINOFFS:
Two and a Half Kriegers – Jon Cryer plus an animated scientist and a healthy dose of the 1988 Cosby Show laugh-track show up on set every day to graze craft services, muff desultory Viagra jokes, and pocket another hundred million dollars.
The Yellow King of Queens – the freak who turned out not to really be the serial killer in True Detective comes out of retirement to marry former Scientologist Bebe Neuwirth. After getting his mail-order dental degree, the Yellow King moves into Neuwirth’s mom’s attic apartment above an Astoria bodega, then opens a thriving practice focusing on preventative gum maintenance. Every now and then McConaughay shows up in his Wooderson character for a little deep molar work.
Honey Choo Choo – Choo Choo from Justified returns in this reality featurette in which a brassy, overbearing Walton Goggins preps Chooch for a run at America’s Least Likely Child Pageant Winner + Guy Most Likely To Punch Vanna White in the Head.