Thursday, March 6, 2008

Class of 1993: Bayside vs. West Beverly

As you may know, I'm slightly obsessed with Beverly Hills 90210 reruns.  A few days ago, we had the bedroom t.v. on while getting ready in the morning and I realized that the classes from 90210 and Saved by the Bell both graduated in 1993.  I then got to thinking about all of the differences between the characters who were supposedly the same age.  Here are some of my comparisons:
Zack Morris vs. Brandon Walsh
Zack, the heart throb, was labeled by Slater as "Preppy."  He was always after Kelly and seemed to be somewhat of a troublemaker in Mr. Belding's eyes.  Despite his slacker reputation, he scored the highest of the group on the SATs... boy was Jessie mad!  Zack attended Cal U after high school.
Brandon was sort of "the good guy" on 90210 despite his run-in with sports gambling and alcohol.  He too was smitten for a Kelly (and Nikki and Emily and...).  Brandon was popular and class president.  Like Zack, he attended California University... I wonder if they had any classes together?
A.C. Slater vs. Dylan McKay
These guys were the studs of the shows!  Slater was a jock.  He becomes the school's star athlete, excelling as a wrestler and the quarterback of the football team.  In the beginning, Zack and Slater were competing for Kelly's affection, whereas Dylan had Brenda and Kelly in a huge battle for his heart.  Slater's dad was an Army major. Dylan's was a con-artist that was eventually killed... or was he??  Did I mention Dylan was a multi-millionaire heir who lived alone and drove a BMW... not to mention a teenage alcoholic and heroine user.  Didn't Slater have an issue with pain killers for a brief second due to a knee injury?
Samuel "Screech" Powers vs. Steve Sanders
Class clowns yet SOOOO different!!  Screech was a scrawny nerd (like Zack and Slater would have been his friends in real life, yeah.) who was always after Lisa.  He was very comfortable with his geekiness and thought of himself as a ladies man.  He attended Cal U.
Steve was a charmer.  He dated Kelly for a short time but was secretly in love with her for a while after they broke up.  Steve wasn't so much a geek like Screech.  He was an adopted spoiled rich kid who was always seeming to get into "sticky" situations.  He was a "KEG" boy at Cal U.
Kelly Kapowski vs. Kelly Taylor
Both the girl to get... only Kelly Taylor was the one to have.  She seemed to be at the end of all of the rumors and gossip.  Kelly Taylor had a problem with eating disorders, drugs, pregnancy, cults, rape, murder, you name it!  She roomed with Donna and David in a beach house and attended Cal U.
Kelly Kapowski was your good girl.  She was a cheerleader and considered the class's nicest and most squeaky-clean.  I guess you could describe her as Kelly Taylor's opposite... yet she actually appeared in 90210 as Kelly Taylor's friend... maybe it was her evil twin or closet rebel.  She roomed with Zack and Screech at Cal U.
Lisa Turtle vs. Brenda Walsh
Lisa is trendy and intelligent. She is the clique's fashion expert and the gossip queen of Bayside High. She comes from a wealthy family; her father and mother are shown to be surgeons.  Lisa always has access to the latest fashions and knows when something is in and when it's over.  Lisa's goal is to become a world famous fashion designer.  Upon graduation she receives acceptance into the Fashion Institute of Technology after a successful fashion show.
Brenda was the twin of Brandon; one-time girlfriend of Dylan; generally a good girl, but is known as the rebellious twin. Was held up at gunpoint by an armed robber; had both breast cancer and pregnancy scares; fell-out with best friend Kelly over Dylan; arrested for breaking and entering an animal laboratory at the university in protest of animal rights, but was not charged; moved to London after first year of college to pursue an acting career.
Jessie Spano vs. Andrea Zuckerman
Jessie is the show's resident know-it-all crusader. She's often seen pursuing a variety of environmental and generally liberal causes while keeping up her position as Class President and one of the smartest students in her class.  Jessie's parents are divorced. She has a step-brother named Eric from New York. Jessie also struggled with drug addiction at one point on the series, taking caffeine pills in order to stay awake for longer study hours. Jessie fully expected to be crowned valedictorian, but finished a fraction of a point behind Screech, and reluctantly settled for salutatorian status. Upon graduation, Jessie attended Columbia
Andrea was a "do-it-all" like Jessie.  Her short list included Class Valedictorian; school newspaper editor; secretly commuting to Beverly Hills from Van Nuys; Brandon's best friend while harboring a not so secret crush on him; teen hotline volunteer worker...  Like Jessie, she applied to Yale and eventually landed there but only after going with the gang to California University.
90210 also had another couple; Donna and David.  Donna, in my opinion was only on the show because her dad was the producer.  She over-acted quite a bit, but was MUCH BETTER on 90210 than when she dated Screech as Violet on Saved by the Bell.  David was a cool guy.  He was kind of a tag-along to the group before dating Donna.
Bayside vs. West Beverly
Saved by the bell was a wholesome teenage show that younger kids could relate to.  The gang enjoyed Max Burgers at The Max and controversial topics, although not pursued as in depth as 90210 included drug use, drinking and driving, homelessness, financial issues, divorce, first love and love lost, graduating, college, sibling rivalry, taking responsibilities for one's actions, being bullied, death, and environmental issues. Notably, sexual relationships were alluded to but not actually dealt with.
90210, on the other hand, took on such topics as date rape, alcoholism, domestic violence, gay rights, drug abuse, teen suicide, AIDS, and teen pregnancy.  The crew from West Bev hung out at the Peach Pit and enjoyed Mega Burgers. 
It's weird to me that these two groups of people were supposed to be the same age.  Both from California, I find it hard to believe that they lived such opposite lives.  I think it would be fun to see them interact.  Can you imagine if Dylan McKay was transferred to Bayside?  Or what if Screech Powers went to West Beverly?  Just something to think about...

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