Saved By the Bell: The College Years
I grew up with Saved By the Bell. In fact, I'm not ashamed to admit that I wished I was Kelly Kapowski. So when the College Years came out, I was thrilled. I'd watched every episode of the original show at least four times and it was time for something new. So without further ado, let me introduce you to some of the fun and cheesyness that was Saved By the Bell: The College Years.
The cast of characters
When the pilot of the show aired, viewers saw that Zach, Screech, and A.C. Slater were the only remaining characters. Bummer. No Kelly Kapowski? I think millions of fans felt that way too and the producers wrote her character into the show!
So we had Zach, Screen, and Slater in one dorm room with a common living/kitchen area connecting them to a girl's room. Living in that room were Lesley Cole, Alex Tabor, and Kelly Kapowski. Much like the old show, the six friends find themselves in all sorts of silly situations and must answer to the teachers and dorm advisors. Three other regular characters were Jeremiah Lasky (a professor), Dean McMann, and Mike Rogers (the resident advisor).
Watching it now, I realize how absurdly unrealistic the whole thing was. I can think of many college students who don't have houses as big as the set. But alas, we all watch the show because we want to see Zach and Kelly finally get together. Does it happen?
Cute, blond trouble maker.
When he realizes he wants to be with Lesley AND Kelly.
Big buff wrestler with a great heart.
When he makes his girlfriend Alex feel special at the Halloween party even though she looks like an idiot with her costume.
A girl chooses him over Zach!
The beautiful and slightly ditzy cheerleader.
The heartbreaking scene when Professor Lasky breaks up with her.
Brilliant and bossy. A lot like Jesse from the original series.
When she breaks free from her crazy controlling parents.
Wanna-be actor. Funny and insecure.
When Slater and Alex start dating.
Old pro-football player turned dorm advisor.
When he adopts a lab rat.
Handsome mysterious professor.
The moment when he kisses Kelly in his office.
Get the episode guide here!
You can watch it on Amazon...
It's short run on television
The series only lasted a year- just a mere 23 episodes. The last four episodes were actually a movie, which you can still occasionally find on TBS- should you watch TV at 7:00 in the morning. When the show was cancelled, the producers wanted to give some closure to the characters so they planned a special Wedding in Las Vegas movie for Kelly and Zach. Finally!
Guests from the original show appeared in the final adventure with Kelly and Zach. Lisa Turtle, Jesse Spano, and Mr. Belding are all in attendance at the wedding. For young girls who watched the series, the final wedding was a long awaited finale.
The end of each episode was the best!
When they rolled the credits, they gave the audience a peek at some of the bloopers. This was always my favorite part of the whole half hour! I think many others feel similarly because some of the humor during the show was just downright awful.
The best episodes
There weren't too many to choose from, but here are a few highlights...
The episode when Alex, Lesley, and Kelly are trying to make a "Men of Cal-U" calendar is hilarious. Of course, poor Screech is too weak to be a part, but he gets his moment.
There were two episodes with Kelly and her professor romance. In my opinion, these two episodes were the best of the season. There is lots of drama and Zach is always at his best when he is trying to thwart someone else. He dresses up as Zorro (the same costume that the professor is in) in hopes of getting to kiss Kelly at the costume ball. He succeeds but she doesn't become his just yet. Thankfully for Zach, the professor breaks up with her anyway.
Zach finally proposes to Kelly in one of the last episodes. Of course, he's terrified of losing her to a semester abroad program so he does it right in her dorm room with the others watching. She doesn't give him a good answer right then and there, but at the very end of the show, she says yes and forgoes her semester abroad.
Was the show even worth watching?
Ultimately, the original was better
I think the reason the show even had an audience at all was simply because the original was good. People were hooked on the characters and so it managed to stay alive for a season. If I had a choice between the original and the college years, there would be no contest....
The original was a classic 90's sitcom that will live in infamy for any child born in the 80's.