The first-look images for the upcoming Doogie Howser reboot series reveal story details and gives a look at the genderswapped lead role.
Entertainment Weekly has published first-look images of the Doogie Howser reboot, Doogie Kameāloha, M.D., revealing its genderswapped lead and story detials. The original sitcom, which followed a teenage doctor and ran for four seasons between 1988 to 1993, starred Neil Patrick Harris in the title role. The series became a pop-culture phenomenon that propelled the fresh-faced Harris to stardom. Disney+ ordered the rebooted 10-episode series last year, and at the start of 2021, cast Andi Mack star Peyton Elizabeth Lee as the female Doogie.
The new series, created by How I Met Your Mother writer Kourtney Kang, follows Lahela “Doogie” Kameāloha, a Hawaiian 16-year-old mixed-race teenage genius, as she juggles both her medical career and high school life. Doogie’s family will also be a focal point of the show, with Kathleen Rose Perkins as Doogie’s mother – who is also her supervisor – and Doogie’s father, who struggles to see his daughter grow up. As the series gears up for its release on Disney+ this September, details of the series are beginning to be released.
Speaking with EW, Lee has provided new information on the story of the new series, including how the show has been updated for a modern audience, the medical and personal storylines of each episode, and how Doogie’s relationship with her mom is at the heart of the show. EW has also published four exclusive images from the series, showing Doogie at work with her colleagues and an image of Emma Meisel as Steph, Doogie’s best friend. See the images from EW and read what Lee had to say below:
“One of the really cool parts about this reimagining is that we take this iconic story and bring it into the world we’re living in now. So it’s a female lead instead of a male, and she is biracial, and it’s in Hawaii so we have this beautiful backdrop.”
“She and her mom have this very special connection where her mom is also her boss, and so she has to navigate when she’s her mom’s daughter and when she’s her mom’s co-worker. But at the foundation of the relationship it’s all love.”
The first-look images and story details make it clear that this will certainly a modern update on the Doogie character. The images show a diverse cast, reflecting the diversity of Hawaii where the series is set. Compared to the original series, where Doogie’s father was a doctor who helped inspire Doogie to get into medicine, the reboot reimagines Lahela’s mother in the parent-doctor role, who Lahela has to deal with in both her personal and professional life. There also seems to be a change in tone from the original series. Whereas the original much-loved show was a cheerful ‘dramedy’, the rebooted series is described by Disney+ as a family medical drama. As Lee’s interview seems to suggest, the reboot looks to focus more on the dramatic storylines found in family and medical dramas, compared to the original series’ comedic tone.
Disney+ will be surely hoping the Doogie reboot goes well, as they have more reboots of beloved movies and TV on the way. As always with reboots, it will be interesting to see how the new series compares to the original and how fans who grew up with Harris as Doogie will respond to Lee’s. One thing is for sure: viewers won’t have to wait long to see what the new Doogie has in store.
Doogie Kameāloha, M.D premieres September 8 on Disney+.
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