So, this week saw the end of Beverly Hills 90210 reboot 90210, with the series being officially canned by The CW. We weren't exactly huge fans of the show, but the news got us thinking about those teen TV dramas of old. Y'know those shows you'd set the video to record? And scream if someone else recorded over it?
Now, Beverly Hills 90210 may have gone on for about ten years, but it was in a league of it's own and, without giving the game away, a bit before my time (I grew up in the age of Clarissa, Sabrina, Braceface, Pepper Ann and Hey! Arnold). So, we're looking back at the TV shows that took us out of Beverly Hills and into the big bad world of teen screen angst. So, without further ado, we give you Ten of our favourite Teen TV Dramas...
Why we loved it: Oh Seth Cohen, I was never quite sure whether we loved you or your daddy more. In fairness now lads, Peter Gallagher's strong dark eyebrows would have been enough to bowl any young lass over, am I right? The O.C was all about the bromance between Seth and Ryan. As for Marissa? Meh, we could live without...
Who you may have spotted: Max Greenfield from New Girl played a young Sandy Cohen, while Marissa's little sister, Caitlin was originally played by Amazing Spider-Man 2 star Shailene Woodley. Willa Holland (of Arrow and Gossip Girl fame) eventually took over the role.
Why we loved it: A long time ago, before she became Gossip Girl, Kristen Bell used to be a sassy High School detective, on the hunt for her best friend's killer. Oh hello there Amanda SeyfriedI Veronica Mars was quite possibly one of the most beloved cult teen sensations and deserved far more than 3 seasons.
Who you may have spotted: Again, Max Greenfield from New Girl played Leo D'Amato, Veronica's love interest and her daddy's Deputy while Krysten Ritter of Breaking Bad fame also featured. Gossip Girl Queen B Leighton Meester popped up as Neptune High's gossip queen Carrie Bishop, Steve Guttenburg made an odd appearance, there was a bit of Ed Begley Junior, The Following's Aaron Ashmore, oh and did we mention the cast of Buffy? Alyson Hannigan and Charisma Carpenter both had pretty prominent roles.
One Tree Hill
Why we loved it: Between Chad Michael Murray and Sophia Bush's on again off again real life romance, the on screen love triangle between Peyton, Nathan and Lucas, Hayley and her baby, and big bad daddy Dan, we were never bored down in Tree Hill. It was also pretty awesome to see Nala from The Lion King kickin butt on screen for a change. Yup, if you didn't pick up on it, Nathan's mammy, or Moira Kelly as she's known in real life, played our favourite lioness from Pride Rock back in the day.
Who you may have spotted: James Van Der Beek proved there was life after the Creek when he popped up for a couple of episodes while Huey Lewis, yes, of Huey Lewis and the News, played Haley's dad. True Blood's Joe Manganiello played a bartender in season 5 while Tyler Hilton made a bit of name for himself playing Chris Keller to boot!
Why we loved it: It was all about Superman, duuuuh! Well, that and the fact that it was headed up by the likes of Tom Welling and Michael Rosenbaum, featured a brand new freaky mystery ala Buffy each week, and basically kept us glued to TV screens for 10 years.
Who you may have spotted: Christopher Reeve, Terrence Stamp, Supernatural star Jensen Ackles, and Ian Somerhalder of Lost and Vampire Diaries fame, who played another undead character for a six episode arc. Sean Connery's son, Jason played Lionel Luther's assistant and Kelly Brook got her name on the credits, playing Lex's one time love Victoria Hardwick. Did we mention James Marsters? Yep, even Spike himself made an appearance.
Why we loved it: Well, let's see... Hmm, it brought Joshua Jackson, James Van Der Beek, Michelle Williams and Katie Holmes into our lives, made us think about sticking a ladder outside our window and generally embodied the whole teen themed TV and movie craze that dominated the late 1990s. We weren't complaining.
Who you may have spotted: Glee's Jane Lynch played Pacey's mam, and Michael Pitt from Boardwalk Empire was Jen's one time love interest Henry Parker. Jenson Ackles, Chad Michael Murray and Jason Behr of Roswell fame also made appearances. Oh, and Dylan Neal, y'know, the fella Sabrina nearly married instead of Harvey, was in there too, along with Brittany Daniel of Sweet Valley High and Rachel Leigh Cook of She's All That.
Why we loved it: Smart women with smart mouths and a ridiculous ability to speak far too quickly. Didn't you just love Lorelai and Rory Gilmore? Nothing could keep these ladies down! And sure didn't the show introduce us to Melissa McCarthy too? Jury's still out on that one...
Who you may have spotted: Chad Michael Murray (serial offender), Heroes star Milo Ventimiglia and Jared Padalecki were among Rory's potential love interests. Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane made an appearance in Seasons 2 and 3 as an old school chum of Lorelai's, while Alex Borstein (who voices Lois) also popped up. You can also add Mad Men's John Hamm, Heroes' Masi Oka, Glee's Jane Lynch, Superman Returns star Brandon Routh and, of course, Adam Brody of The OC to that list.
Why we loved it: Who could forget the science fiction drama that introduced us to a rather young Katherine Heigel? (Wonder what she's up to at the moment...) Max, Isabel and Michael are human/alien hybrids, sent to earth to save the race. All's going well until Max decides to heal a fine lookin young wan named Liz, after she's fatally shot in the stomach. Think aliens with teenage angst. Love it.
Who you may have spotted: Aside from the obvious, Danny Strong aka Jonathan from Buffy, Julie Benz aka Darla from Buffy, Colin Hanks (son of Tom), Lost's Emilie De Ravin, CSI Miami's Adam Rodriguez and Jason Dohring of Veronica Mars fame. Sopranos heavyweight Joe Pantoliano also made an appearance, as did Star Trek: The Next Generation's Commander Ryker himself, the one and only Jonathan Frakes. Oh, and did we mention Nelly Furtado played herself in it too?
That 70's Show
Why we loved it: There was quite literally NOTHING about That 70's Show that we didn't love (until Laurie came along but that's another story). Eric and Donna may have been the main focus, but a young Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher totally stole the show as pampered princess Jackie and her rather vacant boyfriend Michael. Red, Kitty and Fez came a rather close second. Not TECHNICALLY a drama, but it's in there anyway.
Who you may have spotted: American Pie star Shannon Elizabeth played Kelso's baby mammy, while Jessica Simpson starred as another of his love interests. Teen screen queens Lindsay Lohan and Melissa Joan Hart guest starred, Betty White played Kitty's mammy, Buffy star Seth Green made a few appearances, and Luke Wilson popped his head in to star as Michael's brother. Our personal favourite was Tim Reid, aka Ray from Sister Sister, who turned out to be Hyde's biological dad! And believe it or not, Joseph Gordon-Levitt was cut from the show. We think he did well for himself anyway...
Freaks and Geeks
Why we loved it: Quite possibly one of the most popular teen TV shows of all time, Freaks and Geeks gave us the original McKinley High (take that Glee!). Set in a 1980s high school, Freaks and Geeks did academic life through the eyes of two groups, the errr... freaks and, uh... geeks.
Who you may have spotted: To be honest, the only stars worth spotting in this one were the gang. James Franco, Seth Rogen and Jason Segel more than speak for themselves while you'll recognise Linda Cardelini aka Lindsey, as Velma from the live action Scooby Doo or Samantha from ER. Also featured are Cougar Town's Busy Philips, Bones star John Francis Daley and Inglorious Basterds star Samm Levine. And the whole thing was the work of Paul Feig, aka Mr Pool from Sabrina The Teenage Witch.
Buffy The Vampire Slayer
Why we loved it: We have no words because Buffy was simply beautiful. Everything about it, from the thrilling chases to the horror perforated with Xander's humor, was pure telly gold. We're not even sure we watched it because of Sarah Michelle Gellar, we just loved Spike and Drusilla and Darla and Angel and... we could go on.
Who you may have spotted: Michelle Trachtenberg, who played little sister/key to the universe, Dawn went on to play Georgina Sparks in Gossip Girl while Joan of Arcadia/Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants star Amber Tamblyn popped up in season 6. Mad Men star Vincent Kartheiser played Angel's son Conor, Academy Award nominee Amy Adams had a bit part and Prison Break star turned screenwriter Wentworth Miller even appeared as a young fella with gills.