Oh, high school. A time that most people wouldn’t dare to go back to for many reasons. Who wants to get up at five in the morning, sit in class for 7+ hours and go home to do hours of homework? Not me. While being in high school wasn’t always the most fun, there was one part of it that I particularly enjoyed. After a long day of classes and extracurriculars, there was nothing better than plopping down on the couch to watch some shows on Netflix.
Thanks to streaming services and syndication, you can enjoy the shows you loved back in the day once again. Below is a list of some personal and fan favorite shows that will take you back to the days before you were worrying about internships, career plans and Blackboard assignments.
Created by the brilliant Ryan Murphy and adored by musical theater kids across America, “Glee” centered around, you guessed it, a glee club at a high school in Ohio and the students from various walks of life who join and change their lives for the better.
The show was revolutionary in launching former Broadway actress Lea Michele into the small screen and taking popular hits and old favorites and reimagining them. The early seasons featuring Michele’s Rachel Berry opposite, Cory Monteith’s Finn Hudson, are arguably the best of the whole series, as the audience is getting to know and fall in love with the couple and the quirky misfits of the glee club.
The show had several emotional and notable moments (I’m sorry, but if you don’t tear up a little when they sing “Don’t Stop Believin’” at the end of the first episode, you have no soul) through both music and dialogue, as it covered a variety of topics and issues that were current and are still current, like school shootings, teenage pregnancy, being an LGBTQ+ student and dealing with abusive relationships.
To say I was obsessed with this show in high school would be a major understatement. I can remember when my family first had Netflix and blowing through the first few seasons in no time. The series, which is still airing on ABC, takes place at the fictional Seattle Grace hospital and revolves around the latest group of medical residents who work there. The residents are all lovable and unique characters from all across the board and each had their moments to shine in the series.
Fans of the show watch for the romance between several characters, but mainly the relationship between Meredith Grey (played by Ellen Pompeo) and Derek Shepard aka McDreamy (played by Patrick Dempsey). The show also has plenty of other elements that are going on; it is a medical drama after all. Like “Glee,” “Grey’s Anatomy” covers many difficult subjects like racism, PTSD and gay marriage.
The show might also be the most educational option on the list as each episode covers various medical procedures and issues. Just don’t rely on it solely for your medical knowledge.
While this show had been off the air for many years during my time as a high school student, it played a big part in mine and many of my friends’ time in high school, as the show was having a resurgence amongst our generation thanks to Netflix. If you live under a rock and haven’t watched it yet, the show highlights the life of a group of friends in their 20’s living in New York City during the late ’90s and early ’00s.
The show’s characters, Rachel, Ross, Monica, Chandler, Phoebe and Joey, have become iconic over the years as they are each unique but each have elements that are still relatable even after 15 years of being off the air.
Those who love the show enjoy it for the 90s nostalgia and the easy-to-follow nature of the show that makes it the perfect thing to pop on when eating dinner or tidying up.
Another show that began my love of binging a series on Netflix, “Gossip Girl” was and still is the perfect show for the fashionista who wants a glimpse at how the other (read: extremely wealthy) half lives.
The show starred Blake Lively and Leighton Meester as Serena Van Der Woodsen and Blair Waldorf, two high school students living on the Upper East Side of Manhattan and displayed all the drama that occurs at prep schools in the city, especially when an unknown online personality, Gossip Girl, is divulging everyone’s secrets to the whole school.
The show’s dramatic and sometimes unrealistic element makes it sort of a great escape from the mundaneness and stress that comes along with being a college student.
This show was all the rage in middle and high school, and continued to be pretty popular during my freshman year of college, as it had the power to captivate audiences week after week. “Pretty Little Liars” was noted for putting now successful stars Shay Mitchell and Lucy Hale on the map.
The ABC Family series told the story of a group of high school students and the disappearance of their beloved friend, Alison. Things don’t quite go back to normal after she goes missing, and as the friend group does some investigating of their own, they begin to realize that things are a little more complicated than they originally thought.
The show meshed the life of teenagers with a suspenseful plot that is quite addictive and will keep viewers hooked.
While high school wasn’t always rainbows and butterflies, you have to admit that some of the TV shows during the time were pretty entertaining. So, next time you’re feeling a little nostalgic and eager for a study break, turn on one of these shows and transport yourself back to your teens.