Hey kids, love Knocked Up and Superbad but want something a little less well-known to add to your collection of old prematurely-cancelled '90s shows? Add this to your repertoire between Twin Peaks and Popular: Judd Apatow's first creation, Freaks and Geeks. It's brilliant and hilarious, if somewhat cheesy-- something that perhaps characterizes all Apatow's creations.
I shouldn't get ahead of myself, though. Apatow produced it; the show itself was created by Paul Feig. And I lied-- it isn't really a '90s show (1999-2000 SO doesn't count). But it's remarkably well done. As always, the writing is sharp, the direction immaculate. And somehow it got me really nostalgic for high school. That, and re-awakened slight crushes on Seth Rogen and Jason Segel. This little show, with only 12 episodes aired on TV, launched the careers of these two as well as Samm Levine, James Franco, and others. And is it just me or does Linda Cardellini look like the clone (or original?) of Juno?
At first I related to Lindsay Weir, the main character pictured here in the green army coat, because I assumed she would somehow travel between the "freaks" and "geeks" of her high school, sort of like I did. In reality (or tv's virtual reality) Lindsay desperately wants to fit into the "freaks," who, contrary to city kids, are the stereotypical suburban bad kids (throwing keggers, trashing houses, egging little kids on halloween, absurd amounts of PDA...). But in my high school, the freaks and geeks often blended together. Then again, my mostly working-class CPS school isn't really typical of what most would consider an American high school. Maybe it's time to change that? The suburbs are over-represented in high school satires anyhow.