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Degrassi Junior High
Djh picture.jpg
The Degrassi Junior High title card.
Format Teen drama
Created by Linda Schuyler, Kit Hood
Starring Cathy Keenan
Dayo Ade
Amanda Stepto
Pat Mastroianni
Stacie Mistysyn
Stefan Brogren
Siluck Saysanasy
Duncan Waugh
see cast list
Country of origin  Canada
No. of seasons 3
No. of episodes 42
Production
Running time 30 minutes (including commercials)
Broadcast
Original channel Canada CBC Television
Original run January 18, 1987 – March 6, 1989
Chronology
Preceded by The Kids of Degrassi Street
Followed by Degrassi High

Degrassi Junior High is a Canadian CBC Television teen drama series that was produced from 1987-1989 as part of the Degrassi series. The show followed the lives of a group of students attending the titular fictional school. Many episodes tackled difficult issues such as drug use, child abuse, teenage pregnancy, homosexuality, racism, and divorce, and the series was acclaimed for its sensitive and realistic portrayal of the challenges of teenage life. The cast comprised mainly non-professional actors, which added to the show's sense of realism.

The series featured many of the same actors who had starred on Kids of Degrassi Street a few years earlier, including Stacie Mistysyn, Neil Hope, Anais Granofsky, Sarah Charlesworth and others. However, their character names and family situations had been changed, so Degrassi Junior High cannot therefore, be considered a direct spinoff.

The legal counsel for all the episodes was Stephen Stohn who later became the executive producer of Degrassi: The Next Generation.

Contents

Episodes

In 1987 Degrassi Junior High won an International Emmy in the Children and Young People category for the episode "It's Late",[1] where Christine "Spike" Nelson gets pregnant. Spike's baby was named Emma, to commemorate the award, and Emma wound up being the inspiration for the spin-off series, Degrassi: The Next Generation.

Locations

Degrassi Junior high was filmed at the unused Vincent Massey Public School in Etobicoke, Ontario.[2]

Cast

Degrassi Junior High had a large ensemble cast where only the ones with dialogue would be placed in the credits. However, essentially all the main cast would act as extras from time to time appearing in the background, and were credited when they would be featured in an episode. Their billing sequence in the closing credits varied, based upon their relative prominence in each respective episode. No cast billing was presented in the opening sequence.

UK schedules

The BBC refused to transmit the episode "Rumour Has It" when screening the first series of Degrassi Junior High because of the central theme of homosexuality. The BBC only screened the first season of the show.

From its first day of broadcasting in 1992, UK Gold screened Degrassi Junior High daily. The channel then screened Degrassi High in its entirety.

Popular culture

The Australian Football League (Aussie Rules Football) in fact had a cult following in Canada in the 1980s as the games were televised on The Sports Network from the early 1980s to the early 1990s.

  • The Doctor Sally radio show is based on a call-in radio show entitled the Sunday Night Sex Show. Registered nurse and sex educator Sue Johanson was the host of the program which aired on local Toronto, Ontario radio station Q-107 between 1984 and 1998. Sue Johanson portrays "Doctor Sally" in two Degrassi Junior High episodes.
  • Propagandhi wrote a song entitled, "Degrassi Junior High Dropouts."
  • Skankin' Pickle wrote a song entitled, "I'm In Love With a Girl Named Spike."
  • In Chasing Amy, Holden (Ben Affleck) asks Banky (Jason Lee) what he thinks they should do that night. Banky says that he wants to order a pizza and watch Degrassi Junior High. Holden replies that Banky has a real "thing" for Canadian melodrama, to which Banky responds that he has a thing for girls who say "aboot".

Disguised Canadianisms

  • In "Nothing to Fear", LD's father's mechanic is working on a vehicle - the name Ontario is taped over on the licence plate, though the motto is still visible; in the shop window, plates are mounted for B.C., Alberta, Sask., Ontario and Quebec.
  • In "Fight!", Joey passes a poster in the boys' washroom; the poster celebrates 120 years of Confederation (1987).
  • In "Censored", Ms. Avery is having the class prepare maps of "the country" to show how its boundaries have changed; the maps show North America with wholly unfamiliar boundaries for about five-seven regions.

References

External links

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