Since this blog is all about me and my obsession with Pop Culture, I figure I'm allowed to tell the networks and TV audiences where they fucked-up.
Today's choice: Freaks and Geeks.
For those who don't know, Freaks and Geeks was an hour long show (that balanced comedy and drama very well) on NBC during the 1999-2000 season. It was killed before all the episodes were aired. The next year it's reruns were picked up on cable (where I obsessively watched them) and then disappeared when the network changed owners.
It was about the people in high school who are not popular, hence the name. The Geeks are three boys in their freshmen year who know more about Star Wars and Star Trek than anyone else their own age. The Freaks are three guys and a girl who hang around smoking, making fun of everyone, and avoiding school at all cost. And then there's Lindsey, a Geek who is looking for more and has found her way into the Freaks by having a wit that could shave a persons head. These are who the show focused around with some interference from teachers, parents, and a guidance counselor. Oh, and it all took place in the '80s.
The more I think about this show, the more I wish it had been kept on the air. These were the people who I was and who I liked to hang out with in high school. It was nice seeing people like me getting the starring rolls on a show, for once. Sure, some of the people on the show were good looking, but they weren't made up to look perfect. Just compare the make-up on the two main girls and then the girls who played the cheerleaders.
Here are a few episodes that were my favorite (although I don't have titles, just the action):
Lindsey's first use of pot was perfect. She's babysitting high and starts to get paranoid and asks her old friend (from when Lindsey was more of a geek) to help. I love the moment when she sees the dog sleeping and asks, "What if we're all just this dogs dream?"
Nick (a major rocker with the worlds largest drum set, something like 23 pieces) meets a girl into disco and joins disco dancing contests with her and on his own. There's an appearance from Joel from MST3K that surprised me.
Bill harasses the PE teacher by prank calling him and telling him he's "a butt-patter!"
And finally, the episode where Lindsey and Sam's parents are concerned that the music Lindsey is listening is ruining her. They randomly choose The Who, The Who By Numbers, and play "Squeeze Box." Their mother enjoys the tune, humming along, but the dad freaks out and only hears that it's about sex. "It's dirty!" he cries when he hears "She goes in and out and in and out and in and out and in and out."
My desire for a second season died over three years ago, but there is new hope. Over on FreaksandGeeks.com the producers are trying to get people to sign up promising to buy the series if it's released on DVD because they need to be sure enough money will be paid so they can get the rights to all the amazing music that's appeared on the show. Here's hoping it'll be soon.