High school is a rough time for pretty much everyone. If you don’t fit in with the popular crowd (or even if you do) there is still a sense of alienation that creeps into the self-doubting minds of teenagers all over the world. Sometimes all it takes is immersing yourself in a televised world to make you feel like you belong. So let’s get right to it, here are my Top 5 high school shows:
8 Simple Rules For Dating My Teenage Daughter
8 Simple Rules (AKA Kaley Cuoco: the early years) was one of my favorite shows in high school. It appeared as part of ABC’s TGIF Friday night lineup, and after cancellation was quickly added to my DVD collection (and to this day still appears in syndication on ABC Family). Created by Tracy Gamble, the show is an adaptation of a book by the same name, concerned with a father raising his teenage daughters. Everyone has a different relationship with their parents in high school, but mine was a pretty great one and I related to the hilarious banter between Cate and Paul Hennessey and their daughters Bridget and Kerry. This show was often a favorite of mine to watch with a cup of coffee in the morning while I got ready for school.
Favorite Episode: 1X08 “By the Book”
One Tree Hill
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, One Tree Hill holds an extremely special place in my heart. During high school it was my comfort, and accompanied me during many insomniatic nights as I redecorated my bedroom. I wanted desperately to be Peyton Sawyer, and have a love like Nathan and Haley. My DVD box sets of the show are well loved and falling apart. One Tree Hill made me fall in love with music in a whole new way, and introduced me to the fact that it’s okay to not always feel like you fit in. Beginning most episodes with a quote from literature, each carried a strong message regarding the struggles of growing up and facing high school.
Favorite Episode: 1X02 “The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most”
Freaks and Geeks
I didn’t watch this show for the first time until it popped up on Netflix my senior year of college, but it’s definitely one of those shows that I wish had been on my radar during my high school years. Although it only lasted one season, it made being uncool in high school okay, and had me relating to Lindsay Weir more than you could possibly know (let’s just say I immediately went out and bought an oversized army green jacket). With amazing cameos from stars before they were famous, and seriously relatable situations, this show definitely lands a spot in my top 5.
Favorite Episode: 1X04 “Kim Kelly Is My Friend”
Friday Night Lights
I grew up in what I considered a football town. High school football was important to a certain extent and signs with players named littered yards with sayings like “Hard Work Pays Off”. I thought we were a football town until I watched Friday Night Lights, and then I found myself wishing I lived in Texas, in a small town called Dillon that lived and breathed football. This show was my introduction to the genius that is Jason Katims, and his original style of program that led to my current favorite show Parenthood. The relationships of the characters rival those of most high school shows and the casting is on point. Just trust me and go watch it. CLEAR EYES. FULL HEARTS. CAN’T LOSE.
Favorite Episode: 1X20 “Mud Bowl”
The O.C. is one of those shows that people love to hate, but I have two words for you: Seth Cohen. Seth Cohen was my ultimate crush. He was cute, nerdy, and sarcastic, and I was obsessed. I also have a thing for unconventional family situations and the Cohen’s taking Ryan in truly warmed my heart. Sandy was the perfect strong and loving family patriarch, and as the daughter of a public defender who emulated Sandy in many ways, I found his relationship with his boys to be comforting throughout my high school years. Most importantly, it has a killer soundtrack and catchy theme song!
Favorite Episode: 1X13 “The Best Chrismukkah Ever”