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Degrassi: The Next Generation


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Paige was my everything. I'll never forget the hallway fight she and Manny got into during season 4. "Big words for someone picking up my leftovers." Bam! Manny kicks her in the ass! Cue slap from Paige and it was on! Once the old school kids were phased out I was done. RIP Degrassi.

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What was you guys' favorite & least favorite version of the opening (artist-wise).

Even though I LOVE LOVE LOVE the season 4-5 one, I have to go with season 9-10 as the best one. It's just amazing to me & was the one that played when I was in high school myself wub.png

I HATE the first version. Sorry. LOL. Season 8's was also tragic

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They've changed networks like 4 times in Canada. It should've ended years ago.

I really hope they bring back some of the older characters. We don't have to have them in any in-depth story lines but I'd like to see them again. I know Drake/Aubrey Graham would NEVER. LOL!

If you say you want the old Drake, maybe we'll tempt him.

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I gotta go with the glory days, S4-S5. S3's new music to go along with the original vocals were a drastic improvement, but thank god they got rid of the kiddie choir (the lead singer was fine). But yes, nothing brings me back to JHS and HS like the Jackalope version of the theme. There's this great undercurrent of tension that just builds and builds until the last chord with my boy Marco poppin' that collar.

Runners-up would be the last two full versions of the opening theme. I hate the first version of the "rearranged" theme because that girl's voice was SH!T, but the all-male version was awesome and different at the time. The final full version, I think I like just a little bit more.

The original closing theme was perfect.

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Paige was my everything. I'll never forget the hallway fight she and Manny got into during season 4. "Big words for someone picking up my leftovers." Bam! Manny kicks her in the ass! Cue slap from Paige and it was on! Once the old school kids were phased out I was done. RIP Degrassi.

Yaaassss I'm really about to go purchase Season 3-7 on DVD right now
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OK, I'm sure we've done this before, but favorite/least favorite characters, couples, storylines, episodes, moments, etc. If I'm reading my sources correctly, it will end with 14 seasons and 372 episodes. Got damn!!

My #1 favorite character:

SEAN CAMERON

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Sean was THE resident bad boy during his time on the show. He was troubled and brooding, he was prone to mischief, and he was always involved in some kind of drama, but underneath it all, he usually had the best of intentions. It's just that the absence of love and affection in his life often led to poor choices. In spite of all this angst, Sean could still be a happy, well-adjusted young man with a sense of humor. Daniel Clark was without a doubt one of the show's best actors, displaying so much of Sean's inner hurt with nothing more than a look.

Can't y'all tell that this was my boo?

If I had to round out my top 5, it'd be Manny, Paige, Spinner, and JT.


Yaaassss I'm really about to go purchase Season 3-7 on DVD right now

Me too!! For years, I've wanted to rewatch those glorious seasons, but the episodes come and go on YouTube so quickly, and usually mutilated in some way to prevent them from being found. I'm more than willing to shell out the bucks for Linda's baby now.

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Long post alert! All My Shadows you better read all this I like your feedback lol

Firstly, 14 years?! This show was a low key underground icon, it's crazy to think that this show which was so popular among my group of friends only hit 1 million viewers ONCE in its entire run on The-N/TeenNick. (I am feeling nostalgic thinking about The-N when it was strictly 6pm-6am and had shows like The Best Years, South of Nowhere, and Radio Free Roscoe *sigh* )

Secondly, let's marinate on the fact that the two most famous Degrassi alum are Aubrey Graham and Nina Dobrev. So random! LOL. I love Drizzy though.

Ok as far as my favorite storylines and characters, this show was everything to me Season 3-5, 6-7 were bad when I first watched but in hindsight were strong seasons that just suffered from the fact that they followed behind much superior seasons.

Season 1-2: These seasons were good for what it was, but seeing as the kids were in 7th and 8th grade there wasn't much room to do much of anything. Season 1 was particulary "childish". The strongest episodes from these seasons are Jagged Little Pill (Ashley taking ectasy), Paige's rape, and the two parters dealing with Craig's abusive dad. I also liked the one lead plot Hazel had but other than that I pay these seasons dust.

Season 3: It's pretty much unanimous among the Degrassi fandom that this was the best and strongest season overall. Every character had an A-plot, and it was a really good season as far as character development.

Favorite episodes: Pride (Marco's coming out was phenomenal and I could relate), Should I Stay Or Should I Go? (The Manny/Craig/Ashley triangle was flawless), Gangsta Gangsta (the end of Sean and Emma, and the introduction of Jay and Alex), and Accidents Will Happen (Manny is bae and the abortion episode was everything.) Other gems include Take On Me (the Breakfast Club episode) and the episode where JT bought the penis pump.

Season 4: The first half of this season is the best stretch of episodes the show ever had. Ghost In the Machine (Paige's rapist going to trial), King of Pain (Marco coming out to his mom/The return of Rick), Anywhere I Lay My Head (Ellie confronting her alcoholic mother), and of course the classic Time Stands Still two parter when Rick shot my husband in the back! The show went off the rails with the Craig going bipolar storyline and the introduction of Silent Bob or whatever his name is lead to the most horrendous subplot ever. The only bright spot of the second half of the season was Secret (Emma giving blowjobs in the ravine) and West End Girls (Manny v. Paige for Prom Queen)

Season 5: It was a dip in quality but the show was still strong. Venus is my favorite Manny plot ever and the "I'm gonna be famous" boob flash is iconic in its own right. This season was the first time I began to take Spinner seriously and I loved him and Darcy. His isolation from his former friends and him embracing religion was different and I liked that. JT and Liberty's pregnancy storyline could have been better handled and I don't like the awkward position the writers left them in, but I guess that's true to life. Not every high school couple stays together through that. Ellie and Craig were lame, and I was so happy to see him leave. Manny and Craig 2.0 was random and left a lot to be desired. Paige and Alex was random, but yet somehow it worked. I usually enjoyed Emma during these seasons but the anorexia episode was some of the worst acting Miriam McDonald ever did, Cassie Steele carried that episode as usual.

Season 6: I abhorred this season when it aired, but looking back it was really good. The Sean and Emma reunion was the worst plot the show could have ever went with. They were not that great, Ellie and Sean were far more popular and he should have came back for her. Darcy's plot with the posting pics online was good, but I hated she and Spinner broke up. Jimmy and Ashley 2.0 was a fail on many levels, and I feel as if Ashley was with him out of sympathy. The bright spot of this season was the scene at the end of Rock This Town when the gang learned JT had died. Once again Cassie Steele and Daniel Clark delivered amazing performances and the episodes when Paige dropped out of Banting.

Season 7: This season had loads of potential with the Lakehurst/Degrassi merger but it fell flat. Bright spots of course were Darcy's rape storyline. I really thought Shenae Grimes was going places after she got the 90210 gig. Roping Snake into it and having her accuse him of inappropriate behavior was interesting, and I felt they could have done more with it. Manny and Jay were a cute couple, but I felt they could have done so much more with her and Emma that season. They really made alot of missteps, probably because they were trying to prep us for the new characters. Mia/Sav/Holly J/Anya got on my damn nerves and I was not here for the newbies. Spinner's cancer storyline was a bright spot, but I hated his pairing with Jane. Also hated how we never got any real follow up on how Jimmy and Ashley dealt with Ashley deleting Jimmy's verse from her demo. We also had the awkward plot of Jimmy blackmailing his father about an affair so that he would let him get stem cell surgery. The most offensive plot was the finale centering about Liberty screwing around with Emma's boyfriend Damian. Really? SMH.

Season 8 and 9: Horrible

Season 10: This reboot provided us with the only strong season of the later years. The transgendered storyline was the brightest spot of the reboot as well as the introduction of Eli.

Season 11-14: I didn't watch consistent enough to have a real opinion but Cam's suicide seems like the best material out of these 4 years. They clearly have NOTHING on the golden years.

Overall, this show was amazing and thought it took a severe dip in quality for some reason I always popped back in to check it out even though I am old as hell. It'll feel weird not seeing Degrassi on TeenNick. It was literally there since the beginning on April 1, 2002 and outlasted EVERYTHING the network has ever aired. Wonder if they will abandon original programming all together.

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From that read up the last season that semi held my interest was season 6-7. I loved Manny and Craig together. When Jay and Manny got together I was pretty much done. Darcy and Peter were deal breakers for me when I first saw them. I couldn't stand them and I just didn't care for the Lakehursters.

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I thought season 13-14 was a pretty good season. At least when it comes to the character of Zoe Rivas. Her stories have been good. Her coming for Maya over Miles and starting a "FaceRange" page of Maya being scantily clad to her being sexually assaulted by Becky's brother. I also thought her sexting story with getting the spirit squad to sell their nudes for money was good too. Especially, when she got Frankie (Miles' sister) to take the blame.

Yeah, her sexual assault is a modern spin of Paige's rape, but it was good. Again, I feel like Zoe is a good little scheming minx for the show and she has breathed some new life into the show.

I also enjoyed Tristan having affairs with his creative writing teacher, and him eventually becoming involved with his best friend, Maya's, ex-boyfriend (Miles).

I do feel like these last two season though that they had a hard time figuring out what to do with the outgoing seniors [Ally, Mike, Drew, Claire, and Jenna].

I'm sad if this is end of Degrassi but I do hope all these actors land on their feet. I feel like most of these youngsters have real talent. I feel like Degrassi was always a good start for young Canadian actors.

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Yes, I read your entire post, Eric! It got the juices flowing for me to go through each season and highlight my fave episodes/moments and shade the lowlights. I agree with you on a lot!!

And my god, I remember April 1, 2002, like it was YESTERDAY! I wasn't even looking forward to Degrassi! It was all about reruns of Ghostwriter and Clarissa for me! I had kinda heard of the original Degrassi at that point, but I figured I wouldn't be able to follow the new show without having seen the originals. How wrong I was! I remember the other main "original" series at the jump were Being Eve (from New Zealand) and 24Seven (from the UK), but no one was here for them. I never really watched the other, more successful shows like South of Nowhere, Instant Star, or Radio Free Roscoe, but I kinda wish I had.

Anyway, back to the mackdaddy!

Season 1-2: These seasons were good for what it was, but seeing as the kids were in 7th and 8th grade there wasn't much room to do much of anything. Season 1 was particulary "childish". The strongest episodes from these seasons are Jagged Little Pill (Ashley taking ectasy), Paige's rape, and the two parters dealing with Craig's abusive dad. I also liked the one lead plot Hazel had but other than that I pay these seasons dust.

This basically sums up how everyone feels about the first two seasons. As a little middle schooler, I totally felt grown up because of the somewhat racier plots (OMG Ashley and Jimmy might have sex! JT and Toby are surfing a porn site!), but in hindsight, I can appreciate these episodes for setting up the characters and their roles in the grand scheme of Degrassi. My favorite episodes from S1 would be "The Mating Game" (Ashley considers having sex with Jimmy), "Friday Night" (Sean and Emma's infamous first date), "Wannabe" (Manny wants join the Spirit Squad), and "Jagged Little Pill" (Ashley takes E). For S2, it's "When Doves Cry" (Craig and his abusive father), "Shout" (Paige's rape), and "Tears Are Not Enough" (Craig's father dies).

Season 3: It's pretty much unanimous among the Degrassi fandom that this was the best and strongest season overall. Every character had an A-plot, and it was a really good season as far as character development.

Favorite episodes: Pride (Marco's coming out was phenomenal and I could relate), Should I Stay Or Should I Go? (The Manny/Craig/Ashley triangle was flawless), Gangsta Gangsta (the end of Sean and Emma, and the introduction of Jay and Alex), and Accidents Will Happen (Manny is bae and the abortion episode was everything.) Other gems include Take On Me (the Breakfast Club episode) and the episode where JT bought the penis pump.

YASSSSS. The beginning of DTNG's renaissance. All of the relevant characters were present at some point, and this was the true beginning of the "it goes there" era. When the show was syndicated to local stations in 2006, they started with S3, which was great for me bc it came on immediately after I got home from school and then they did an omnibus on Sunday mornings, so I was able to rewatch these glory years while I was in high school myself. Flawless. One of the best things about this season was how much they developed the older characters from the previous Degrassi series. Snake and Spike were regulars of course, but so were Joey and Caitlin, and some of their friends made guest appearances.

My fave episodes: "Father Figure" (Emma and Craig search for Emma's father), "U Got the Look" (Manny werqs), "Pride" (Marco comes out and the aftermath), "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" (Snake is sick, so Joey invites friends of Degrassi days of old to cheer him up), "Holiday" (Manny/Craig/Ashley triangle at its finest!), "Accidents Will Happen" (Manny's abortion), "Take On Me" (Breakfast Club episode, in which Hazel delivers one of my fave lines: "*laughing* I kissed Toby!"), "It's Raining Men" (JT's hilariously awful fast food commercial, also Marco/Dylan's first date), and "The Power of Love" (the dance from hell).

Season 4: The first half of this season is the best stretch of episodes the show ever had. Ghost In the Machine (Paige's rapist going to trial), King of Pain (Marco coming out to his mom/The return of Rick), Anywhere I Lay My Head (Ellie confronting her alcoholic mother), and of course the classic Time Stands Still two parter when Rick shot my husband in the back! The show went off the rails with the Craig going bipolar storyline and the introduction of Silent Bob or whatever his name is lead to the most horrendous subplot ever. The only bright spot of the second half of the season was Secret (Emma giving blowjobs in the ravine) and West End Girls (Manny v. Paige for Prom Queen)

Another fabulous season! I wasn't a fan of any of the Kevin Smith or Alanis Morissette stuff, either. The whole "movie premiere" stuff was just too much and it took away from the simplicity of the basic plot of the kids and their problems. I think that storyline might be a reflection of the show's growing popularity in the US, but that's pure conjecture.

My faves: "Ghost in the Machine" (Paige goes to court), "Mercy Street" (Emma tries to run Rick out of Degrassi and Craig has a huge penis), "Anywhere I Lay My Head" (YES!! I loved Sean/Ellie, and this episode is why -- loved the maturity of their relationship), "Time Stands Still" (probably the greatest episodes of the series), and "Back in Black" (Sean can't handle his status as a hero).

Wow, you're right. The second half of 4 really wasn't that great. There were good things happening, but too much time wasted on the Kevin Smith crap and other things I didn't care about (Craig/Ashley, the MOST boring couple).

Season 5: It was a dip in quality but the show was still strong. Venus is my favorite Manny plot ever and the "I'm gonna be famous" boob flash is iconic in its own right. This season was the first time I began to take Spinner seriously and I loved him and Darcy. His isolation from his former friends and him embracing religion was different and I liked that. JT and Liberty's pregnancy storyline could have been better handled and I don't like the awkward position the writers left them in, but I guess that's true to life. Not every high school couple stays together through that. Ellie and Craig were lame, and I was so happy to see him leave. Manny and Craig 2.0 was random and left a lot to be desired. Paige and Alex was random, but yet somehow it worked. I usually enjoyed Emma during these seasons but the anorexia episode was some of the worst acting Miriam McDonald ever did, Cassie Steele carried that episode as usual.

There was definitely a change here, and for some reason, I've always associated Peter's introduction with that. Maybe it was his intro coupled with Sean's departure in the previous season, plus all of the other huge things that took place then, that kinda ushered in a new era. I agree with everything you said.

Faves: "Venus" (And you can SELL this for a MILLION DOLLARS 'cause I'm gonna be FAMOUS!), "Turned Out" (JT slings dope to support his new family), "Tell It to My Heart" (Marco comes out this dad), "The Lexicon of Love" (Paige/Alex), "I Against I" (Spinner begins to reconcile with the gang), and "High Fidelity" (Class of 2006 graduation).

As for the rest of the series, of course everything changed forever with "Rock This Town" and JT's death. I never forgave the show for trying to make Johnny, one of the guys who killed him (and YES, I consider him to be just as guilty), a regular. The whole Lakehurst/Degrassi thing was too much. In real life, they wouldn't have crammed all those kids together like that. They would have platooned (Degrassi goes to school in the morning, Lakehurst goes in the afternoon), but whatever.

The only other specific thing I have to comment on for that murky S6-S7 period is that Sean's return was so botched. I hate that they put him in the Emma/Peter orbit, especially since he was long over her before he left. I would have much preferred them exploring his relationship with Ellie, perhaps with her in college and him working and showing how they deal with those differences. Her stories were pretty boring and isolating during these seasons, culminating with the ridiculousness of her and Marco.

It's well established that they did some missteps once the first group graduated. It really must have been hard for them to decide what to do -- they had an extremely effective cast, and they didn't want to lose that, but at the same time, they had to keep the focus on Degrassi. I've always said they should have just done a spin-off and had characters go back and forth between the two shows as needed, but maybe the logistics of that wouldn't have worked. Unfortunately, the need to keep the 06ers around did the 07ers an injustice because they never really got their chance to shine together as the "elders" of the show, even with the stupid decision to split the school year into two TV seasons. Toby could have been given way more to do, and they could have developed other characters to support the main group of Emma, Manny, Liberty, and Toby.

Anything after S7, I watched with the most judgmental ass eyes ever. So many new characters, and I was in college at this point, so I had no time nor desire to watch anymore. They literally switched casts over night it seemed, and it was too much. Off the top of my head, the things I caught and liked from the latter years would be the very beginning of Riley's coming out and pairing with Zane and then, much later, Cam's depression and suicide. Honestly, I just didn't watch enough of the rest to care one way or the other. My head literally spins when I think of the shitton of newer characters and the whopping 40+ episode seasons.

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To sum up my feelings for the whole show, I think they excelled at dramatically portraying mundane teenage issues during the glory days. They didn't rely on a huge events and gimmicks to get you watching -- it was truly a slow-moving, character-driven soap for teenagers with plenty of episodic plots thrown in. Unfortunately, once the original crew was gone, TPTB succumbed to pressure to make the show glossier and less believable. They got a lot of that original flavor back later on, but I think upping the episode counts for each season was a huge mistake that might have ultimately led to cancellation.

I'm trying to think of what place a show like this could have in the current TV landscape, and I'm having trouble coming up with a definitive answer. It did so well for so long on a US network that wasn't widely available at the time, but I think that popularity leveled off at some point. Maybe if they'd moved it to Nickelodeon proper or to MTV (which did air day-after encores a few summers ago), it would have kept the momentum up. But whatever, it ran for 14 seasons and nearly 400 episodes. That's an extraordinary run that no one saw coming, and I'm proud to say I'm a fan. Time for someone to start the reruns from episode 1.

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