Thursday, July 19, 2007

Don't be a Slater Hater

To this day, the saddest moment of my life was when Kelly Kapowski dumped Zack Morris for that creep - Jeff the Jerk. In fact, from age 10 to 13, most of my life experiences were shaped by that lovable gang from Bayside High. I'm pretty sure the music video that Kelly, Lisa, and Jessie made for their singing group Hot Sundae single handedly pulled me through puberty. I can quote lines from every episode verbatim - and depending on the crowd, people find this incredibly awesome....or very sad.

When I was about 11 years old, I'd get off the bus and promptly head home for my favorite couch in front of the tv. From 4:00 - 5:30 everyday, it was wall to wall Saved By The Bell. The best part was that it would be on 3 different channels simultaneously - necessitating some careful maneuvering with the remote. I'd pick up the Chicago feed on WGN, then quick flip back to TBS on commercial breaks to catch a different episode. You might ask - 'shouldn't you have been outside playing with the other kids?' Well, they were all inside watching SBTB too. Only after all episodes were done would we convene for some Smear the Queer or kickball. (Do kids still play Smear the Queer? Or does it now have some PC name like 'tackle the alternative-lifestyle child'?)

Now in the 21st century - Saved By The Bell still lives on, and I've purchased the entire DVD collection. We've made a drinking game out of it in fact. For example, you drink every time Zack stops the space/time continuum by calling 'Time Out'. Or you chug whenever Jessie calls Slater a 'sexist pig'. You get the idea.

[Kelly Kapowski compilation. Was, and still is, my dream girl.]

Tonight I happened to come across the Saved By The Bell Wikipedia entry - and they had some fun facts I thought I'd share. Enjoy a walk down memory lane. If you're a true fan, you'll smile at most of these.

  • The Bayside Tigers school logo was actually a knockoff of the Detroit Tigers logo from the 1980s (it was colored maroon and said "Bayside" instead of "Detroit").

  • At the end of the opening credits Kelly completely misses the group high five.

  • One of the degrees in Mr. Belding's office is for kung fu. It is above the filing cabinet next to his desk.

  • The nerd characters usually have a last name that contains the word "nerd" or some synonym of it. ("Nerdstrom", "Poindexter", "Geekman", etc.)

  • Two classroom sets were used; each set was rearranged based on the subject of the class.

  • The episode "Day of Detention" was the last to be filmed for the original series. During the episode, Screech rigs the telephone lines for the radio station so he can take all the incoming calls in order to route Zach to the station lines to be caller number 10 to win a trip to Hawaii, however Screech fails to route the first 9 callers but the DJ states Zach is caller ten anyway.

  • Mark-Paul Gosselaar had to dye his hair blonde every two weeks while shooting the show.

  • The following are the SAT scores for the gang:
    Zack - 1502
    Screech - 1220
    Jessie - 1205
    Lisa - 1140
    Kelly - 1100
    A.C. - 1050
    **SATs are scored in intervals of ten which makes it impossible for Jessie and Zack to get the scores they got.

  • Lisa's favorite drink was a "Mango-Tonic with a Kiwi Twist."

  • Slater always sat backwards in his chair at the Max.

And to top it all off - here it is, the single greatest moment from all of Saved By the Bell. This was like porn for 11 year olds. I know that nerds older than me fixate their childhood lust on the Princess Leia/Star Wars bikini scene. But not nerds from my generation. Ladies and Gentlemen - I give you, Hot Sundae.


Anonymous said...

This is all amazing and SO true. I can still recite episodes word for word too...and I even knew that Lisa's drink was a mango tonic with a kiwi twist (thanks to the time she left her lipstick on the glass at the murder mystery dinner.)

Zach said...

I loved this entry. And I loved Saved By The Bell!