Unbeknownst to all but the most dedicated of TV viewers, NBC tried making a TV series out of director Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho in 1987. That aborted version of “Bates Motel” starred Bud Cort (Harold and Maude) as Norman Bates’ roommate at the lunatic asylum, who gets out and reopens his kill-crazy pal’s old roadside haunt. For better or worse (mostly the former), the pilot movie (still unavailable on DVD) never got picked up for a full series. Now A&E is trying again, rebooting writer Robert Bloch’s familiar oedipal plotline as a weekly cable series.
On the list of all-time crimefighting debacles, I’d say hiring Steven Seagal to headline his own cop reality show ranks somewhere between giving guns and badges to Erik Estrada, La Toya Jackson and Wee Man on CBS’ aborted “Armed & Famous” and the four Police Academy movies that didn’t star Steve Guttenberg.