Twenty Three years ago, Beavis and Butthead, the show about two teenage slackers putting little attempt into being a part of society outside of their own couch, went off the air. In the ensuing two decades, the characters ostensibly never got smarter, but the country they exist in definitely did. Now, Mike Judge, the man who created the quintessential losers and would go on to create King of the Hill, Idiocracy, and Silicon Valley, is back to put the erstwhile duo into the present day. AND NOT A MOMENT TOO SOON!
Instead of a straight up reboot, the Comedy Central project will have Beavis and Butthead starring as fathers to Generation Z children. This shows an evolution of the show, if not necessarily the evolution of the characters themselves. The two are the essential burnouts from high school we all knew, at least in passing. More content to eat nachos and watch music videos on MTV (yes, that’s how long ago this show existed), they will now be in charge of kids in the time of internet, societal unrest, and music being entertained on all platforms EXCEPT for television.
This will not be the first time that the show is returning to television. MTV had a season made back in 2011 where the boys were kept the same age, but put into more modern times, and instead of exclusively making fun of music videos, they also took aim at shows such as Jersey Shore and Teen Mom. This iteration was more of a straight up reboot, with all of the same secondary characters, including Stewart, the dork in the Winger shirt.
While details are limited, the fact that Judge is back and involved is a good sign that the show won’t stray too far from it’s origins of using Beavis and Butthead to take a humorous, inward look at society as a whole. In the 23 years since the original went off the air, we have been through four presidents, the death of the music video, the rise of the Insane Clown Posse, EDM music, disease and outbreak, Napster, the return of Guns N Roses, a prolonged war in the Middle East, The Last Dance, Hamilton, high speed internet, Kanye West, the Red Hot Chili Peppers getting clean, Rick Rubin reviving Johnny Cash’s career decades after it had ended, Tik Tok, Post Malone, Y2K, Two and a Half Men, Bill Murray’s ascendance as random celebrity who shows up at things, Top Chef, the Lord of the Rings movies, that few months that people listened to Moby, Ken Bone, the death of the record store, legalized marijuana, and of course, all the shows that MTV airs instead of music.
While this has the chance to become just another reboot that fails to connect with the viewers that made the show popular in the first place, Judge’s presence and the fact that they are growing the characters up (relatively speaking) shows that this could be more than simply a ploy to drag in people who grew up on the show, then ditched their Slayer shirts for button downs, Camaros for Elantras, and ended up as just another suburbs dweller. With a little bit of luck, the two morons from Texas could shine a hilarious light on the world we are now living in.