It’s the show that turned Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Tiffani Amber Thiessen into teenage heart throbs.

It was the Gen Y’s answer to Glee minus the random breaking out into song.

Saved By The Bell was a US sitcom set at Bayside High School. The series is a re-tooled version of the 1988 series Good Morning, Miss Bliss which was itself later folded into the history of Saved by the Bell. The series followed the exploits of several students along with their principal.  

The Baysiders were made up of the usual suspects:

  • Cool kid trouble maker Zach Morris
  • The jock AC Slater
  • Resident nerd Screech Powers
  • Teen dream Kelly Kapowski
  • Gossip queen Lisa Turtle
  • Feminisit & straight A student Jessie Spano

The show brought fame to the SBTB kids however many were typecast for many years to follow. No surprise there.

The show often incorporated dramatic elements into episodes by dealing with real teen issues such as friendship, drug use, driving under the influence, homelessness, financial issues, divorce, graduation, college, sibling rivalry, bullying, death and environmental issues.  

The show’s popularity allowed for two spin-off series: SBTB: The College Years, a prime time series which followed several of the original characters’ college experiences and SBTB: The New Class. 

The series also spawned two TV movies and a short-lived comic book series. Although it received extremely negative critical reception, it became the highest-rated show on NBC.

Is there nothing TV can’t teach us? SBTB opened the doors for more risque shows like 90210, Dawson’s Creek and The OC to introduce young target audiences to critical moral matters.

SBTB had me rooting for Slater and Jessie to live happily ever after.

After the piss poor attempt of a movie about Zach & Kelly’s Hawaiian wedding I knew it was the end of the era.

Especially the fact that Elizabeth Berkley only had a few scenes due to her big screen commitment to Showgirls which flopped. No surprises there.


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