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Wanna Feel Old? Watch Maisie Williams, Other Modern Teens React to SAVED BY THE BELL

It’s the 25th anniversary of Saved by the Bell. Doesn’t that make you feel like, 100 years old? Want to really, really feel that age, complete with a bit of plotline needling from a bunch of out of the loop teens? Well then take a gander at the latest video from The Fine Brothers, because it’s got all of that AND a cameo appearance from Arya Stark herself, Maisie Williams.

Be it the sweet, sweet, styles, the ridiculous plotlines, the freeze-frame breaking of the fourth wall, or even the mere existence of Screech, there are plenty of things about Save by the Bell that make it simultaneously a nostalgia factory and confounding piece of television ephemera. When placed in front of a modern teen audience — the series’ key demographic back in the day — to see how it holds up? Well, comedy ensues folks. Comedy ensues.

Very nearly all of the teens, Williams included, had never previously seen the pinnacle of ’90s television before. But given the nature of these sort of things and also the fact that teens be havin’ opinions, we can finally put the age-old debate of Zack v. Slater to rest. (We’re fairly certain You Made It Weird podcast guest Mark-Paul Gosselaar will be happy with the kids’ findings.)

What are some of your favorite Save by the Bell moments? Ours is OBVIOUSLY Jessie Spano’s “I’m so excited! / I’m so… SCARED!” meltdown because caffeine pill jokes are the most nineties thing to have ever happened. Let’s discuss in the comments.

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15 comments

  • My friends and I bashed that caffeine pill episode when it first aired. But then we watched Degrassi Jr and Degrassi High. Where they did a whole lot better job with chemical dependency issues and other teen issues. But of course SBTB was a 30 min comedy not a drama. I still watch late at night/early morning if I can’t sleep as it was a fun show. As far as Zack vs Slater goes….Zack!

  • I actually thought their responses were genuine and natural, and quite intelligent for the information and life experiences that they have. They’re not “bashing” it, they’re just not coming at it with the warped nostalgia that older people have. The caffeine pill episode WAS over-the-top, of well-meaning. Fashion is ALWAYS silly-looking 20 years later. Trying to relate to something that was created 10 years prior to your birth will always include a culture gap. I mean, let’s look at some earlier sitcoms and react to them. We wouldn’t sound much different. 

  • I watched this almost religiously as a kid. What gets me is these teens bashing so hard on this show because it’s not what kids want to watch. Has anyone SEEN what kids watch? The acting on Disney Channel is more over-the-top than this. Not to mention that it really did hit on serious issues. Jesse abusing drugs (regardless of it being caffeine pills) is a serious issue. It irked me that these teens laughed at it.
    A lot of the shows that I’ve seen for teens now are either ridiculous or super dark. Most of my old shows were more like SBTB, Family Matters, Full House, where issues were addressed but at the same time not everyone was cheating on everyone else; people weren’t killing others and trying to hide it; and the pranks were fun and funny rather than life-threatening.
    I’d rather watch three days of SBTB than watch one episode of Secret Life or Pretty Little Liars or any of the other horrible shows they have now.

  • Can we just talk about how everyone is bagging on the styles/fashions in the clips, but the kids LOOK LIKE THEY’RE ON THE SHOW?  Was that intentional?  Or do they not see how they’re dressed exactly the same?

  • You showed the cheesiest story lines. There were lots of fun, relatable things that happened on the show, and yes, it was over the top sometimes, but would have been boring if it wasn’t. I think to get better reactions, a broader set of clips should have been shown to show more of what the show was about. These kids are arrogant, they are doing and liking things that are just as stupid now, but I think that’s how we all feel at that age.