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Freaks and Geeks

How can cultural elitists like ourselves put TV in the Culture category? Well, where the hell else is it going to fit?

Freaks and Geeks

Postby crevice beatle » Fri Aug 22, 2008 5:19 pm

I was late and discovered this show a few months ago, long after it went of the air. I have seen and rewatched every episode a number of times now. Everyone I have introduced to it has fallen in love with it...all the while my obsession with pushing the show on everyone has grown.
Who else out there is a fan? Anyone have any suggestions for anything remotely similiar? Netflix recommended "Friday Night Lights" to me based off my high rankings of "Freaks and Geeks" but I find it hard to believe it is comparable.
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Re: Freaks and Geeks

Postby El Chifa » Fri Aug 22, 2008 7:46 pm

My experience with this show is pretty much identical to yours. And I believe there's no other show even remotely like it.

For some reason, people I know like to give me TV series on DVD as gifts. "Freaks and Geeks" is the only one I've continued to watch over and over.

The only show about high school that's worth a damn. Everything else is swill.
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Postby Beer Moon » Sat Aug 23, 2008 12:06 am

The true tragedy is how Judd Apatow was so completely ignored after this show went down.

The world will never know what kind of gifts he had to give. Such a shame.
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Postby buckyor » Sat Aug 23, 2008 9:11 am

Beer Moon wrote:The true tragedy is how Judd Apatow was so completely ignored after this show went down.

The world will never know what kind of gifts he had to give. Such a shame.


Damn, you beat me to it.

Whatever did happen to that guy anyway?
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Postby Shipley » Sat Aug 23, 2008 9:16 am

Immediately following F&G's cancellation, Apatow did "Undeclared" for Fox, which was also quickly cancelled. its on DVD as well.
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Postby boston_jeff » Sat Aug 23, 2008 10:40 am

Both F&G and Undeclared are excellent shows, and showcase many of the talented players we see in Apatow produced films today. Friday Night Lights is also a very good show, but a very different kind of high school drama focused on small town Texas h.s. football.
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Postby pulseCzar » Sat Aug 23, 2008 3:15 pm

Count me in as a Freaks & Geeks fan. I especially enjoyed the pilot (Lindsay dancing with Eli) and the final episode (Lindsay & Kim's deadhead plot and Daniel enjoying himself playing D&D with the geeks). If I were forced to pick a worst episode it would be the one in which Ken thinks he's gay because of what Amy tells him. It's a bit out there but hardly over the top. This show has so many "yes!" moments that many fans can completely identify with. Freaks & Geeks was just SO well done; the opening, the music, the wardrobe, the locations, and the cast (love, love, love Busy Phillips!).

I've only seen a handful of episodes of Undeclared but really enjoyed them. Maybe that'll be my next DVD purchase.

Regarding Friday Night Lights, I just can't get myself to call it "must see". It's well written and produced, to be sure but I don't record it or go out of my way to watch it. My biggest problem is the casting of the players. Here we have yet another show that casts guys who are almost all old enough to be NFL players portraying high school student athletes. It's not uncommon but given the point of the show, film and book, focusing on how young the players actually are would really highlight the contrast between small-town football frenzy vs. "the big time". Granted, this wouldn't do much for the gratuitous shower scenes but are those even necessary on a show that constantly touts itself as Emmy-worthy, high-quality viewing?
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Postby crevice beatle » Sun Aug 24, 2008 5:41 pm

buckyor wrote:
Beer Moon wrote:The true tragedy is how Judd Apatow was so completely ignored after this show went down.

The world will never know what kind of gifts he had to give. Such a shame.


Damn, you beat me to it.

Whatever did happen to that guy anyway?


I thought you guys were being sarcastic at first --- didn't Apatow's career take an upswing after the cancellation of Freaks and Geeks? He had his hand in writing, directing, and producing 40 Year Old Virgin and Knocked Up. He also was involed with SuperBad. All successful films.
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Postby El Chifa » Sun Aug 24, 2008 8:40 pm

pulseCzar wrote:This show has so many "yes!" moments that many fans can completely identify with. Freaks & Geeks was just SO well done; the opening, the music, the wardrobe, the locations, and the cast (love, love, love Busy Phillips!).


The thing about this series that allows me to enjoy it over and over again is the arc of the story over the course of the series. The growth of the characters and their relationships is so convincing that it plays like one long and well written movie. In a way, I'm glad it only ran for a season, preventing it from becoming a parody of itself, an unfortunate fate for many other TV shows that otherwise began with a lot of promise (like Twin Peaks).
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I know all those freaks!

Postby artsifartsi » Sun Aug 24, 2008 10:00 pm

What timing! My husband and I, both in high school in the early 80s, just finished watching the complete season last week. I had been planning to watch it for some time, but didn't get around to it until we saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall and wanted more.

We can't remember watching a more enjoyable show -- something we both looked forward to every evening. How many times did hubby say "that's on my iPod" when the soundtrack featured his favorites? He loved Lindsay, and I related to her. And we both thought Bill stole the show. Couldn't get enough! Was a downer when we knew the 18th show was the last.

As famous as Seth Rogan has become, it was surprising how little his character got developed as compared to the other characters.

Yes, we'll try Undeclared next. I remember seeing the first episode when it aired, but never got around to watching more. Hope it can stand up to F&G.
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Square Pegs

Postby lolagirl » Mon Aug 25, 2008 8:14 pm

Freaks and Geeks was great. Another show that (at least to me) was similar was called Square Pegs. It was on - briefly - in the early 80's. Similar to F-n-G, it featured a look at high school focused on the unpopular, odd kids.

The show starred a very, very young Sarah Jessica Parker. I can't remember for sure, but believe it also had one of Ricky Nelson's daughters in it.

I don't remember too many details, but do remember that I really, really liked this show.
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Re: Square Pegs

Postby mrak » Mon Aug 25, 2008 8:33 pm

lolagirl wrote:Freaks and Geeks was great. Another show that (at least to me) was similar was called Square Pegs. It was on - briefly - in the early 80's. Similar to F-n-G, it featured a look at high school focused on the unpopular, odd kids.

The show starred a very, very young Sarah Jessica Parker. I can't remember for sure, but believe it also had one of Ricky Nelson's daughters in it.

I don't remember too many details, but do remember that I really, really liked this show.

Square Pegs was a fun show, the brainchild of National Lampoon alumnus and SNL writer Anne Beatts.

Yes, Ricky Nelson's daughter Tracy played an archetypical Valley Girl. Jami Gertz (Less Than Zero) played a preppie girl.

I just discovered the 20-episode run of the series was released on DVD this spring. I may have to revisit it.
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Square Pegs

Postby artsifartsi » Tue Aug 26, 2008 8:03 am

I was a HUGE Square Pegs fan back in the day. Couldn't wait to watch it again when it finally came out on DVD.

I must warn all other fans . . . it's terrible. Painful to watch. Definitely does NOT live up to the memory. Would be curious to hear what others have thought.
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Postby pulseCzar » Tue Aug 26, 2008 8:53 am

I saw a few episodes of Square Pegs recently. It has definitely not stood the test of time. While I found it interesting in a "time capsule" sort of way, Square Pegs doesn't really hold up. TV has moved onward and upward in quality. That's not to say Square Pegs doesn't deserve it's place in moving TV quality forward. At the time, wasn't Welcome Back Kotter the most "realistic" high school-based comedy to date? Despite featuring a number of one dimensional characters, there was a lot of smartness and charm. Part of the fun in watching the old episodes was all the early 80's fashion, catch phrases, and pop culture references. Didn't Square Pegs lead right into the whole "Valley Girl" craze? It's probably worth renting for curiosity sake but definitely not worth purchasing. The "re-watchability" factor that would lead one to buy Freaks and Geeks is not there for Square Pegs.
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