It’s not easy to revive a 20-year-old television show — much less turn it into a movie — and have it still feel relevant and fresh, but Absolutely Fabulous’ writer Jennifer Saunders is going to try. The British comedy, which originally aired from 1992 to 1995 but has since been revived several times (usually in the form of television specials), will now become a movie. Deadline reports that Saunders is working on a feature-length film, aptly titled Ab Fab: The Movie.
Normally, I’d be wary of news like this. Saunders and her co-star Joanna Lumley (the two play Edina Monsoon and Patsy Stone) have aged 20 years and their characters’ ability to get away with 15-hour workweeks in high-profile careers may not be that accurate anymore. There’s no way Patsy would be able to write off a vodka expense account that big in today’s economy. But Ab Fab has always been a great work of cultural satire, and there’s still plenty of excess to parody today. (Recent reboots have tackled the panic room, spray tans and celebrity reality shows) As for their advancing age? Well, Patsy and Edina were always supposed to be out-of-shape and long past their prime; they won’t ask us suspend our disbelief as much as the casts of Friends or 90210 did. (Let’s be honest, no one in high school has that many forehead wrinkles). Patsy, in particular, somehow managed to spoof Sex and the City’s rapidly aging Samantha before there even was a Samantha to make fun of.
(MORE: That Old Feeling: Ab Fab Forever)
Their bedizened outfits and shouts of “Lacroix!” aren’t out of date yet, although they may want to change their outburst to “McQueen!” to keep the reference current. In fact, these drunken, garish one-percenters have evolved from an exaggerated parody of our consumer culture to a more accurate depiction of what people actually do. (Case in point: we now turn retail stores into shrines.) With a few tweaks, Saunders could make Ab Fab more relevant than ever.
Ab Fab: the Movie will reportedly begin with the hungover middle-aged duo finding themselves adrift on an oligarch’s abandoned yacht. I don’t know what happens next, but I’d love to see Patsy and Edina travel through a financially disintegrating Greece. Or stumble upon one of Berlusconi’s parties. Or on a Real Housewives-esque reality show. Or they just can return to London, get drunk and make fun of Saffy. I’d be fine with that too.
Can’t wait for the movie? Three new 30-minute Absolutely Fabulous TV specials will air on BBC (and BBC America) this Christmas.