Netflix has triggered a viral outbreak of “TGIF” flashbacks by announcing that the Olsen twins may participate in Fuller House, the upcoming reboot of the show that made them famous. Despite previous reports they would not return, Netflix exec Ted Sarandos, speaking at the TCA press tour, said the two are “teetering whether or not they’ll be around” for the new series.
Before this announcement, the new series’ casting strictly paralleled the original, with a recently widowed Tanner (D.J., the eldest sister played by Candace Cameron Bure) enlisting the help of a relative (Stephanie, the middle child played by Jodie Sweetin) and a friend (Andrea Barber’s Kimmy Gibbler, who was D.J.’s best friend on the original). The purpose of this unholy union? To help raise three children—two being D.J.’s, one being Kimmy’s. Presumably the children will echo the original series’ near-total absence of lasting trauma over their dead parent. Will the addition of the Olsens upset this delicate balance? Will this show anger Gen-X nostalgia fiends across America by delicately tweaking the formula? Will the shoehorning in of a third sister make Fuller House—dare we say it—too full?
The Olsen sisters shared the role of Michelle, the youngest member of the Tanner family, and the cause of the show’s “awwwwww” sound effect getting more use than the laugh track. The duo went on to fame and fortune in the surprisingly lucrative tween direct-to-video market, but as adults, the Olsens have been quieter. Since the two last starred together in 2004’s New York Minute, Mary-Kate had a recurring role on Weeds, and appeared in The Wackness and Beastly, but Ashley has only had a walk-on in the Joaquin Phoenix debacle I’m Still Here, and a role as “Kissing Girl #3” in The Jerk Theory. Will they be able to shake off the rust, and manage to demand “don’t touch my ice cream” with conviction? And perhaps more importantly, how (and why) would two 29-year-old women share the same character? The arrangement made sense when they landed the role of Michelle at age 1, and were legally prohibited from working more than a few hours a day. But can they simply resume that arrangement as adults? It remains to be seen how Fuller House will manage to stay out of…wait for it…double trouble.