Pigsy will fly again: cult Eighties TV show Monkey to be rebooted by Netflix

Hiii-ya: Masaaki Sakai in the original Monkey
Hiii-ya: Masaaki Sakai in the original Monkey

Fans of bad Eighties television will be overjoyed at the news that Netflix is rebooting cult action series Monkey, which entertained a generation of kids who mimicked high-kicks in their living room and pretended to summon a cloud with a easily-imitable warrior call.

For the uninitiated, Monkey was a Japanese fantasy series famed for its wacky plotting, dodgy special effects and bad dubbing, which saw English actors including Andrew Sachs and Miriam Margolyes imitate vaguely offensive 'Oriental accents'.

Masaaki Sakai was the face of an ancient Chinese warrior named Monkey who was, according to the show's disco theme song, "born from an egg on a mountain top," and was "the punkiest monkey that ever popped." Working with a randy pig monster named Pigsy and an ex-cannibal named Sandy, the trio fought all kinds of supernatural villains.

Monkey's powers included the ability to shrink himself to a miniature size and call upon clouds, which he used as a method of transport.

The cast of the all-new Monkey

Now Netflix are bringing the series back for a 2018 debut. Produced in collaboration with Australian network ABC and TV New Zealand, the reboot, titled The Legend of Monkey, will see the heroic trio joined by a plucky teenage girl.

It is currently in production in New Zealand, where the show has already attracted controversy for casting just one actor of Asian heritage. Reaction online has also been mixed.

The series, comprised of 10 half-hour episodes, will debut on the streaming service next year.

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