Dirty Dancing and Pretty Woman are two of my all-time favorite movies. I’ve lost track of the number of times that I’ve watched each of them. Let’s just say that I know lines beyond Patrick’s, “Nobody puts Baby in the corner” and scenes less popular than the one where Richard snaps closed the jewelry box as Julia reaches toward it. Yeah, I know the casts so well that we are on a first name basis. That might help explain why I was so unhappy when I heard someone was messing with one of my favorites and why I reacted the way I did earlier this week. Nobody puts one of my classics on the remake list.
Let me start from the beginning. When I heard that ABC was remaking Dirty Dancing, I said it couldn’t be done. Sure, that might sound pessimistic, but I knew that some things were better left untouched and Dirty Dancing was one of them. Exactly what was the purpose of the ‘remake’? Was it to make it better? Different? Everyone knows you can’t make Dirty Dancing better and nothing needs to be different.
Fast-forward a few months to this past Wednesday night and ABC’s broadcast of the remake. Yes, I had a chip on my shoulder going in. In fact, I didn’t even know the remake was on that night-it just happened to follow the entertainment show that had just ended-so I thought I’d give it a try. A few minutes in, Twitter exploded. I found it more entertaining to read tweets than to watch the movie. “You can’t remake the connection between Johnny and Baby-that’s what made #Dirty Dancing,” was an early Tweet. Yeah, that was mine-I couldn’t help but let ABC know up front I was not on board with their idea.
Within the first few minutes of the movie, I decided the actress who played Baby looked too young for a part that involved being intimate with Johnny Castle. Instantly, someone tweeted and asked if she should call a parent and report what was happening. It was like my Twitter friend had read my mind. Yes, it was uncomfortable; like an accident scene where you look over to try and figure out what went wrong so that you can avoid a similar situation in the future. But the tweets-they got better. They grew more and more entertaining with each scene. Don’t believe me? Go check out #DirtyDancing on Twitter and read a few-there are a ton to pick from. Sure, some are downright nasty and those aren’t funny, but others are hilarious.
As I get right down to it, the tweets were the reason I kept watching the remake. I wonder how Nielsen records that in their rating system-that the show was horrible but people kept watching just so they could keep up with what was happening on Twitter? Regardless, I’ve determined that Twitter was the reason for the remake. ABC execs knew that people didn’t want a straight up remake, they wanted a Dirty Dancing experience and thanks to Twitter, they had one. Twitter saved my classic; but hey ABC, let’s not try this with Julia and Richard’s piece of art. You might not get lucky, twice!