For many of us, our early teen years were defined by television. ABC’s TGIF filled every Friday night and brought families together with programming that we could all relate to in completely different ways. Then, of course, we’d get up every Saturday morning (because Tivo was still a twinkle in eye of Al Gore or whoever invented it) to watch the shows that were specifically geared towards us gullible tweens. The one that took advantage of our gullibility the most was “Saved by the Bell.” As mindlessly positive and upbeat as it was, sometimes the show had to take some liberties in its writing. Let’s be honest, they lied to us. Things happened that aren’t even plausible, let alone believable, and yet we swallowed it down like a Dungaroos/Shark Bites pre-lunch snack. Let’s take a look at six lies “Saved by the Bell” hoped we’d never notice.
1. Zack and Jessie’s “Movie Night”
Everyone remembers the episode when Jessie got addicted to “drugs.” She was on caffeine pills, which is basically like drinking too many Code Red Mountain Dews.
After Jessie has her musical breakdown, Zack consoles her by reminding her of a time when they were kids and sneaked out to watch “E.T.” together. Zack reminded her that she was scared riding back home on her bike but they made it then and they’ll make it now.
THE LIE: Zack grew up in Indiana where Miss Bliss was his teacher in the early years of the show before Jessie was even on the show. And Jessie grew up in California. Who wouldn’t be scared taking a cross-country bike ride as a child? She would have been like Forrest Gump with a perm. Nice try, Zack, but I highly doubt Jesse popped on her Livestrong bracelet and did the Iron Man across the U.S.
2. Screech Masters Artificial Intelligence
Besides his best friend Zack (a mystery on its own), Screech had another best friend named Kevin – a robot that Screech apparently built. Kevin does menial tasks for Screech, as well as expresses emotions and even sneezes! Is this how Skynet started?
THE LIE: You expect us to believe this child created an advanced artificial intelligence that surpasses anything on the market even in 2013?! Screech had a better chance of railing Lisa Turtle at the Spring Fling than he did building this robot. Sorry, guys, I’m afraid the jig is up.
3. We Struck Oil!
A very memorable episode is the one where they strike oil at Bayside High. Everyone is very excited as they imagine it will lead to an extravagant lifestyle for all the students. This luxury, however, comes with a cost that may be too much for the gang. Of course, that cost is losing a few random park animals the class has adopted and that have clearly won their hearts. What decision will they make?! Well, God decides to make that choice for them as an oil spill takes the lives of all of their new “pets.” A line has now been drawn. It’s gone too far. Something must be done!
Zack bursts in to a meeting where the oil company is explaining how much this discovery is going to benefit the school, the city, and probably everyone in the country, as gas prices would decrease with this motherload of oil they’ve just unearthed. Zack and the gang whine and cry about how this goldmine is going to do so much damage because, “Hey, we won’t have a pond!” God knows you can’t thrive without a pond. Zack then sprays oil all over the businessman’s shirt.
THE LIE: NO ONE WOULD CARE WHAT THIS KID THINKS! We’re supposed to believe that the city shuts down the entire project because Zack cried over his oily duck? Seriously, guys, I’ll accept the plot of Michael Bay movies, but this is just over the line. The moral of this episode can be explained in this equation: Ducks > Shirts > Oil.
Never forget that, kids. Never forget.
4. Screech Movie Magic
In Season 2, we come across an episode where the gang has Screech pose as an alien in order to get money from a publication called The Blabber. Shenanigans ensue when the government shows up and wants to take Screech for testing. Speaking of which, I have a feeling if testing were done when Screech’s mother was pregnant, we’d be one cast member short.
THE LIE: When the government agent shows up to get Screech, he’s dressed as a pathetic excuse for an alien. Screech, looking to fool the agent, then PULLS OFF HIS FACE, revealing another alien mask.
After the agent runs off screaming, as any normal human being would, Screech removes that alien mask as well unveiling, once again, his normal face. How did Screech peel off his actual face? Do we really need to delve much further into this lie? HE PULLED OFF HIS FACE for God’s sake!
5. Zack Is a Warlock
The gang didn’t go to school at Hogwarts. Zack did not have a Nimbus 2000. There were no magical powers of any kind, as it was supposed to be just a normal high school.
THE LIE: If he isn’t a male witch, then please tell me how Zack “Voldemort” Morris had the ability to FREEZE TIME. Everyone would be hanging out and laughing, then all of a sudden Zack would summon his dark magic, causing time and space to stand still. Although this lie is hard to swallow, it’s a good thing that pervert Screech never got a hold of this power or there would have been a lot of baby Turtles running around.
6. Kelly and Jesse Can Disappear and Reappear
Kelly and Jesse were obviously integral parts of the “Saved by the Bell” machine … or so we thought. After being the love interest of Zack and Slater for years, one day they simply vanish. In reality, we know that contract disputes were the reason for this, but as kids we just figured Hot Sundae ditched Lisa, became a duo, and went on tour. That’s when this “lady” comes along:
Tori Scott. For some reason, Zack abandons his lifelong love of Kelly and jumps aboard the pleather train with Tori without even a mention of Kelly’s absence. Tori only got to hang around for half of season before Kelly and Jesse made their return.
THE LIE: No one noticed Kelly and Jesse just disappeared? As if that wasn’t enough, no one mentions them returning and then Tori magically disappearing? Is this “Lost”? People are just vanishing and showing back up, and it’s just normal behavior? Unless you’re Peter Bishop from “Fringe,” you should not be defining the laws of time and space. (That joke would probably make a little more sense if anyone actually watched “Fringe”.) Thanks for the lies, Bayside. Clearly, you may have weaseled your way into our hearts when we were young, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt now.