Thursday, January 27, 2011

Saved by the Bell: The Inconsistent Years - The Characters

I know that Saved by the Bell is not an award-winning show by any means. However, you would think that the writers would have been able to explain certain characters appearing and disappearing better than they did. Let's start from the beginning...

The show was originally called Good Morning Miss Bliss and aired on The Disney Channel, not NBC. These were the episodes that took place in junior high. During that one season, the students attended John F. Kennedy Junior High School in Indianapolis, Indiana. Miss Bliss was a junior high history teacher, and she worked under Mr. Belding, who was the principal. The students that were featured on the show were Zack, Lisa, Screech, Nikki and Mikey. While this show focused on the teacher, Miss Bliss, and her relationship with the students, Saved by the Bell focused on the students relationships with one another.
Love the outfits!
Fast forward to high school. The Saved by the Bell cast we all know and love attended the fictional Bayside High School in Palisades in Los Angeles, California. This brings up my first question - how did Mr. Belding, Zack, Screech and Lisa all transport together from Indianapolis to California? And when did Mr. Belding get promoted from a junior high to high school principal? What happened to Nikki and Mikey? I need answers people!

On the first day of high school, Zack talks about how he has been waiting since junior high for Kelly Kapowski to be single. Does this mean that Kelly attended JFK Junior High, too? And what about Zack and Jessie being neighbors and climbing into each other's windows since they were little? Weren't they Mr. and Mrs. Skunk in an elementary school play? Was there a mass migration from Indiana to California in the late 80's that no one knew about? So many questions unanswered...

It's a long distance between Indiana and Califronia. Just sayin...
During the later years at Bayside, Screech had his first relationship with Violet Anne Bickerstaff, who was played by Tori Spelling. Her character appeared out of the blue one day, and after their geeky love was just in it's prime, we never saw or heard of Violet again. Screech went back to being in love with Lisa and all was normal at Bayside once again. So what happened to Violet other than the obvious change of name and social status to Donna Martin? At least she was still a rich kid living in the same city on 90210.
Missing Person: Last seen while performing as a soloist in the Glee Club
One of my biggest questions is what ever happened to Max? You know, the guy who owned The Max (the burger joint where the kids hung out after and during school) and was also a waiter slash magician. The kids of Bayside and Mr. Belding dedicated so much of their time and money to Save The Max by the powers of radio, and yet Max was later replaced with a character named James, who was a waiter slash actor. James was then replaced by Jeff, who stole Kelly from Zack and then cheated on her with a girl named Christie while they were caught dancing the night away together at The Attic (an 18 and up club that the kids snuck into with their fake IDs created by Screech). Why was there so much turnaround at The Max? And why was it still called The Max even after Max no longer worked there? Did Max make it big as a Las Vegas magician? Did James make it on the big screen as an actor? Did Jeff ever graduate from UCLA?
Apparently this guy is BFF with Neil Patrick Harris in real life
Fast forward to the last year for the kids of Bayside High. Senior year starts off with a new character, Tori Scott, who seems to have replaced Kelly and Jessie in the group. Tori's character remains a prominent part of the crew for a whole 10 episodes. However, the kid's senior year ends with Jessie and Kelly at graduation and no sign of Tori. How in the world did the writers expect us to believe that Kelly and Jessie mysteriously disappeared from school when this new chick shows up, and then they reappear when Tori is no longer around. So is Tori a high school drop out? And where were Jessie and Kelly during those 10 episodes? A boarding school test run maybe? It makes no sense!
Deceiving since Tori never met Kelly and Jessie
After the crew said goodbye to Bayside and Mr. Belding, they all went off to college. While I thought that Slater was attending Iowa on a wrestling scholarship and Zack had committed to Yale, the boys all somehow ended up at California University, located in the Bay area. During the first episode we were introduced to the boy's suite mates - Lesley, Alex and Danielle. The next episode, Danielle mysteriously disappears, which opens up a bed in the girl's room for Kelly to take residence in. Now this is the one good job that the writers actually did - they explained that Danielle transferred to another school, which allowed for Kelly to transfer to Cal U and have a place in the very same suite as Zack, Screech and Slater.

Bravo writers! You seemed to have finally done something right in the very last season that we got to follow the lives of Zach, Kelly, Slater, Screech and even Lisa and Jessie who made an appearance in  Zack and Kelly's wedding made-for-TV movie. At least you ended on a high note.


  1. Haha solid article. You are spot on!

  2. I love this. So many questions unanswered!!! Haha. Thanks for posting!

  3. How about the time the gang worked at the beach resort with Stacey Carosi (Leah Remini). Slater "saved" and girl who pretended to drown and was going to go to Bayside. What happened to her?