The Creator of ‘Designing Women’ Is Working on a Reboot of the Feminist Sitcom
The Hollywood Reporter recently announced that Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, creator of the ’80s and ’90s-era feminist sitcom Designing Women, has been working on rebooting the series for the last few months. Sony Pictures Television Studios would produce the Designing Women reboot, but it’s searching for a home. Perhaps the Designing Women reboot will end up on a streaming service like Netflix or Hulu as opposed to a major network.
We’re loving the return of so many women-led shows. We were initially excited about the Roseanne return, Will and Grace got renewed for two more seasons, and shows like Sabrina and Murphy Brown are slated to come back soon too. And that doesn’t even go into the shows that are rumored to be returning, like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Clarissa Explains It All.
In May 2018, original series’ actress Annie Potts said she’d love to see a Designing Women reboot. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Potts said she’d “love” to see a new version of Designing Women.
The long-running CBS sitcom aired from 1986 to 1993. It was created by Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, who created a number of hit shows for CBS back in the ’80s and ’90s — including the Burt Reynolds vehicle Evening Shade and Hearts Afire, starring John Ritter and Markie Post.
Designing Women, focusing on four women and one man at an interior design firm in Georgia, was one of the prestigious line of issue-sitcoms. Episodes dealt with homophobia, women’s health issues and even HIV stigma in an 1988 episode nominated for two Emmy awards. Potts says this political drive of the show is the perfect reason to bring it back:
“Every Monday night was a MeToo moment for us, and we were talking about it; we were very political,” Potts said. “I’m sad that there’s not such a strong voice, I don’t think, in any singular show. Nobody is doing what we did then. So yeah, if [creator Linda Bloodworth-Thomason] wanted to write six episodes and do it in my hiatus, I would be there in a minute.”
One potential problem is that two of the leads — Dixie Carter and Meshach Taylor — have since passed away. Likewise, two of the three leads, Potts and Jean Smart, are quite busy — Potts with a role in Young Sheldon, the Big Bang Theory spinoff, Smart with Legion. The show’s other lead actress, Delta Burke, is free, having steered clear of television since 2012.