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Freaks and Geeks
Freaks and Geeks.jpg
Freaks and Geeks title card
Genre Period teen dramedy
Created by Paul Feig
Starring Linda Cardellini
John Francis Daley
James Franco
Samm Levine
Seth Rogen
Jason Segel
Martin Starr
Busy Philipps
Becky Ann Baker
and Joe Flaherty
Opening theme "Bad Reputation"
by Joan Jett
Country of origin United States
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 18 (List of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Judd Apatow
Paul Feig
Running time 44 minutes
Production company(s) Apatow Productions
DreamWorks Television
Broadcast
Original channel NBC
Original run September 25, 1999 (1999-09-25) – July 8, 2000 (2000-07-08)

Freaks and Geeks is an American comedy-drama television series, created by Paul Feig and produced by Judd Apatow, that aired on NBC during the 1999–2000 television season. Eighteen episodes were completed, but the series was canceled after only twelve had aired.

A fan-led campaign caused NBC to broadcast the remaining six episodes in July 2000; three earlier, unaired episodes would not be seen until September of that year, when the cable network Fox Family Channel aired them in syndication. The complete series was later released on DVD.

Despite a quick cancellation and only one season with 18 episodes, Freaks and Geeks developed a devoted cult following. The series appeared on Time magazine's 2007 "100 Greatest Shows of All Time" list,[1] and in 2008 Entertainment Weekly ranked it the 13th-best series of the past 25 years.[2]

Contents

Plot

The show centered on a teenage girl, Lindsay Weir (Linda Cardellini), and her brother, Sam (John Francis Daley), both attending William McKinley High School during the 1980–1981 school year in the town of Chippewa, Michigan, a fictional suburb of Detroit.

Their friends, respectively, constituted the "freaks" — Daniel Desario (James Franco), Ken Miller (Seth Rogen), Nick Andopolis (Jason Segel), Kim Kelly (Busy Philipps) — and the "geeks" — Neal Schweiber (Samm Levine) and Bill Haverchuck (Martin Starr) — of the title. The Weirs' parents, Harold (Joe Flaherty) and Jean (Becky Ann Baker), were featured in every episode. Millie Kentner (Sarah Hagan), Lindsay's nerdy, highly religious former best friend, was a recurring character, as was Cindy Sanders (Natasha Melnick), the pretty, popular cheerleader on whom Sam had a crush.

The show's starting point was Lindsay's transition from her life as an academically proficient student, star mathlete, and proper young girl, with Millie as her like-minded best friend, to an Army-jacket-wearing teenager who hangs out with troubled slackers. Her relationships with her new friends, and the friction they cause with her parents and with her own self-image, form one central strand of the show; the other follows Sam and his group of geeky friends as they navigate a very different part of the social universe trying to fit in.

Cast and characters

Weir family

Geeks

Freaks

Teachers

Guest stars and cameo appearances

Early on, the creators of the show were not open to the idea of having guest stars on the show. A denied suggestion from NBC was to have a pop icon like Britney Spears to appear as a waitress in one episode. Many of the program's crew, including producer Judd Apatow, thought that such guest-star appearances would greatly detract from the show's quality and realism. However, lesser-known "guest stars" would make occasional unhyped appearances on the show. As the producers began to fear an imminent cancellation, Apatow's old friend Ben Stiller made an appearance as a Secret Service agent in the second-to-last episode of the program, but the appearance only aired after the series had been cancelled.

Other notable guest appearances were made by Thomas F. Wilson (in the recurring role of Coach Fredericks), Joel Hodgson (in the recurring role of a salesman who loves disco), David Koechner (as a waiter), Kevin Corrigan (as Millie's delinquent cousin), Jason Schwartzman (as a student dealing in fake IDs), Allen Covert (as the liquor store clerk), Matt Czuchry (as a student from rival Lincoln High), Claudia Christian (as Bill's mother), Shia LaBeouf (as the school mascot that gets hurt), Samaire Armstrong (as "Deadhead" Laurie), and Ben Foster (who appeared as the mentally handicapped student Eli, and often hyped the show while promoting the film Liberty Heights), Alexander Gould as Ronnie, the boy Lindsay babysits while high. Veteran character actor Kevin Tighe also appeared in two episodes as Nick's father.

Many of the writers appeared on the show at one point or another. Mike White, for instance, played Kim Kelly's oft-discussed injured brother, first appearing in the fourth episode "Kim Kelly is My Friend". Paul Feig and Gabe Sachs appear uncredited as members of the fictional band "Dimension" in "I'm With the Band". Michael Andrews, the original score composer for the series, plays the role of Dimension's lead singer. Steve Bannos played the recurring role of the math teacher Mr. Kowchevski.

Other notable guest stars include David Krumholtz as Neal's brother Barry, Lizzy Caplan as Sara, and Rashida Jones as Karen Scarfoli, first appearing in the fourth episode, "Kim Kelly is My Friend".

Punk rock band Diesel Boy appears and performs in the "Noshing and Moshing" episode.

Opening sequence

The series's opening sequence depicts each of the main characters having their high school yearbook photo taken as the song "Bad Reputation" by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts plays.

Episodes

The show ran for eighteen episodes, three of which were unaired by NBC and not seen until Fox Family began running the show in 2000, and the final three episodes were premiered at the Museum of the Moving Image prior to being broadcast on television. Most episodes on the DVD set have two commentaries each and deleted scenes, with optional commentaries by creator Paul Feig and chosen cast and crew members.

Ratings

The show averaged 6.77 million viewers and was #93 in the rankings during its only season.[3]

DVD, CD and book releases

On April 6, 2004, a six-DVD Freaks and Geeks box set was released through Shout! Factory. A limited "yearbook edition" set including two additional discs was also available through the official website for the show. Fans who had signed an online petition to get the show on DVD got priority in purchasing the special set. A CD soundtrack was released on September 14, 2004.

In November 2004, two Freaks and Geeks books were released, titled Freaks and Geeks: The Complete Scripts, Volume 1 and Freaks and Geeks: The Complete Scripts, Volume 2. Both published by Newmarket Press, each book covers nine scripts from the series as compiled by Paul Feig and Judd Apatow themselves. Extra content includes behind-the-scenes memos and notes, photos, additional plotlines and excerpts from the Freaks and Geeks series bibles.

On November 25, 2008, the deluxe "Yearbook Edition" boxed set was re-released. The set features all of the episodes, commentaries, and special features of the "Complete Series" six-DVD set, plus two extra discs and deluxe packaging. It is packaged as a 80-page color yearbook with essays, pictures, and episode synopses.

Freaks and Geeks: The Complete Series
Set details Special features
  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • 18 episodes
  • 1.33:1 aspect ratio
  • English (Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround)
  • Subtitles: None
  • 29 audio commentaries by the actors, writers, directors, network executives, parents of cast members, teachers in character and dedicated fans of the show
  • Over 60 deleted scenes and outtakes with commentary
  • 28-page booklet with an essay by series creator Paul Feig, and a Q&A with producer/writer Judd Apatow.
  • Cast auditions
Release date
North America April 6, 2004

Soundtrack

One of the distinguishing characteristics that separated Freaks and Geeks from similar television series at the time was its authentic soundtrack. The creators made it a priority to feature genuine, period-specific music that would help to create the tone of the show. Clearing such names as The Who, the Grateful Dead, the Moody Blues, and Billy Joel would prove to require much of the show's budget. Eventually, this would become an obstacle in releasing the show on DVD due to the difficulty and expense of clearing all of the music rights for the series. Many television shows (such as Dawson's Creek and WKRP in Cincinnati) had music cues changed or removed in order to facilitate relatively inexpensive DVD releases, as was done for Freaks and Geeks when it was seen in reruns on Fox Family. However, the creators chose to wait to release the DVD until they could find a company up to the challenge of gaining clearance for the music, as not to upset the fans of the show. Shout! Factory, a music and video company specializing in comprehensive reissues and compilations of classic and sometimes obscure pop culture eventually brought Freaks and Geeks to DVD with all of its music intact.

Awards

The show was nominated for two Emmy Awards in 2000: one for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series (Paul Feig, "Pilot") and one for Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series (Allison Jones, Coreen Mayrs and Jill Greenberg). The show won the Emmy for Outstanding Casting.

The show was nominated for an Emmy once again in 2001 for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series (Paul Feig, "Discos and Dragons").

In addition to the Emmys, the show has been nominated for and won numerous awards for writing, directing and acting.

Detroit/Michigan references

The show is set in the fictional town of Chippewa, Michigan, although the town is unnamed until the fifteenth episode, "Noshing and Moshing". The series was partly based on creator Feig's experiences at Chippewa Valley High School – located in Clinton Township, Michigan – from which he graduated in 1980. Though the town's geography is never clearly established, in the episode "Looks and Books" Harold Weir mentions that they live near Detroit.

There are many other references to the Metro Detroit area, including mentions of institutions specific to the Detroit area, such as Faygo, Cobo Arena, Detroit Lions, Pontiac Silverdome, Detroit Tigers, Farmer Jack, party stores, General Motors, the Mile Road System, and the North American International Auto Show.

Undeclared and beyond

In 2001, several of the actors featured in Freaks and Geeks appeared in a new Judd Apatow college half-hour comedy called Undeclared, which aired on Fox Network. Apatow fought with the network to include Freaks and Geeks actors, but only picked up Seth Rogen (who was already committed to the show as a writer) as a regular cast member. However, Jason Segel became a recurring character, and Samm Levine, Busy Philipps, and Natasha Melnick guest-starred in multi-episode arcs, as did prominent Freaks and Geeks guest stars Steve Bannos and David Krumholtz. Martin Starr was prominent in another episode, and a scene with Sarah Hagan was shot, although it was cut for television broadcast. Despite garnering a cult following, the show was also canceled abruptly during its first season.

Six years later, actors from the two shows comprised the bulk of the starring cast of Apatow's film, Knocked Up, with James Franco making a brief cameo appearance as himself. In addition, many of the extras starred as teachers and principal tertiary characters from both shows. Martin Starr, Steve Bannos, and David Krumholtz all appeared as extras in Superbad, which was produced by Apatow and co-written by Rogen (who also has a supporting role in the film). Walk Hard featured Bannos, Krumholtz and Starr in minor or cameo roles.

In 2008, Rogen and Franco co-starred in the Judd Apatow-produced comedy film Pineapple Express.

References

External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Freaks and Geeks (1999-2000) was a U.S. television series that aired on NBC. The show centered on a teenage girl, Lindsay Weir, and her brother Sam attending McKinley high school during the early 1980s in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan.

Contents

Season One

Pilot [1.1]

Daniel: You guys know Lindsay?
Nick: Yeah, you were in my English class last year. You were the chick that got an A, right?
Lindsay: Yeah, well, what are you gonna do?
Ken: I don't know. What are you gonna do?

Neal: [to Sam] The dance is tomorrow. She's a cheerleader. You've seen "Star Wars" 27 times. You do the math.

Mr. Rosso: You're our best mathlete.
Lindsay: Please don't say that.

Nick: Check it out man, that's uh 14 mounted toms, 8 floor toms, 4 splashes, 2 gongs, 10 cowbells , 4 rides, 5 snares, a rototom rack, and it's all mounted on my infamous quadruple kick drum system. Six more pieces and I got a bigger set than Neil Peart from Rush, yeah.
Lindsay: That's great Nick.
Nick: Teachers want us to work, and I say, "Fine, I'll work. But you've gotta let me do the kind of work that I wanna do. And for me, it's my drum kit, man. This is my passion. This is the essence of who I am now. But before I had this, I was lost, too. You see what I'm saying? You need to find your reason for living. You've gotta find your big, gigantic drum kit.

Harold: I used to have a friend who smoked, you know what happened to him? He died!

Ken: That's exactly why I don't carry a purse.

Kim: Why don't you blow your nose in some bread and make me a sandwich?

Lindsay: Are you guys going to the homecoming dance?
Ken: Excuse me?

Daniel [to Lindsay] : That's funny. It's a joke, right?

Lindsay: My dad's kinda makin' me go.
Nick: Your dad's makin' you go to the dance? What's that all about?
Ken: Who's your dad? Hitler?

Beers and Weirs [1.2]

Lindsay: All my new friends think I'm some goody-two-shoes and all my old friends think I'm throwing my life away. What the hell am I supposed to do?

Lindsay: Well, my house is so boring looking...so I just wanted to make it look more party-like.
Ken: Well I'll tell you how to make it look more party-like. Point me to the keg.
Nick: Oh yeah.
Lindsay: In the corner.
Ken: Then I am in the corner.

Harold: Elvis didn't expectorate on his fans.
Sam: No. But he died on the toilet.
Harold: Well, that's paradise compared to where the Sex Pistols are gonna end up.

Daniel: I love being told not to drink by a pot-head hippie guidance counselor.

Sam: What's non-alcoholic beer?
Bill: It's beer but without that ingredient that makes you drunk.
Neal: Alcohol?
Bill: Yeah.

Neal: Bill, Dallas sucks.
Bill: You suck! Dallas rules!

Sam: Keg of beer, please.
Liquor Store Clerk: Yeah, that's not gonna happen.
Neal: Oh, we need a keg of non-alcoholic beer.
Liquor Store Clerk: No!
Sam: But we need it.
Liquor Store Clerk: What for?
Neal: We're gonna switch the kegs at his sister's party.
Liquor Store Clerk: Righteous!

Neal: [to Lindsay] Friday night. Always a good time for some Sabbath. [pause] 'Cause, you know...Friday...is the Sabbath...for the Jews.

Neal: I'm Jewish. That's no cakewalk either. Last year I was elected school treasurer. I didn't even run!

[Bill is passed out on the floor]
Lindsay: Hey, Bill. Get up. That's how the drummer from Led Zeppelin died.

Tricks and Treats [1.3]

Bill: I'm just trying to win ten bucks here, I don't wanna die.

Bill: I'm sorry, I can't hear you. Hold on, I'm gonna put the phone on my bionic ear. That's--that's better. No, don't talk so loud! Don't forget, I've got bionic hearing.

Daniel: Knock it off, blondie. You're gonna blow the speakers.
Kim: Oh, I'm sorry, Grandpa. I'll try not to blow anything of yours from now on.

Bill: Ma'am, I hope there aren't any peanuts in these peanuts.

Harold: Last time I had this much fun, I was pinned down in a foxhole by the North Koreans.

Kim Kelly is My friend[1.4]

Millie: I heard about what she does in the yearbook darkroom.
Lindsay: What? She does what? I have no idea what you're talking about.
Millie: She does it.
Lindsay: What do you mean, it?
Millie: She fornicates it!

Tests and Breasts [1.5]

Bill: I don't really like jokes. I don't think they're funny.

Sam: What am I supposed to do with a porno?
Neal: You watch it. Over and over.
Sam: Ew, only perverts watch pornos, right?
Neal: Well, then every guy in America is a pervert.

Harold: She's hanging with a bad crowd. She's lying and cheating and next thing you know, she's Patty Hearst with a gun to our heads.

I'm With the Band [1.6]

Neal: What is wrong with them? Why do they think that hitting people with towels is so funny?
Bill: If it wasn't us, it would be kind of funny.

Sam: Will girls ever like us?
Neal: I think our best play is to go for the smart, sexy librarian type.

Bill: Stop looking up my shorts.
Neal: Why would we? There's nothing to see.
Sam: Just keep climbing, Wonder Woman.
Bill: There is something to see.

[Playing moon ball]
Neal: That's it. I'm gonna die in gym class.

Neal: My mom says women prefer guys with a good sense of humor.
Bill: But you're not funny.
Neal: Screw you. I'm hilarious!

Daniel: I wrote out some Ramones songs.
Nick: The Ramones? They only use like three chords.
Daniel: Alright, so I'll learn another one.

Daniel: Rock 'n roll don't come from your brain. It comes from your crotch.

Carded and Discarded [1.7]

Jean: Nobody's home. You wanna have a little sex?
Harold: Sex?! Well, okay.

Harold: You can hardly stand to be around us. When you two were kids, you used to run around naked and lay in bed with us all night. We bathed you and we cleaned your butts when you pooped and we loved it. Now, we try to pat you on the head and you run for the hills. Well, I'm fed up. We are going to be close from now on whether you like it or not. We're going to spend quality time together, and we're going to enjoy it, damn it!

Daniel: I hate astrology. What, everybody born in the same month is gonna have the same life?

Ken: I just want to be older so I can go to bars. Everything fun in this world happens in bars.

Bill: [about Maureen] How are we not supposed to be in love with her?

Girlfriends and Boyfriends [1.8]

Daniel: Lindsay... I think it's really great that you and Nick are going out.
Lindsay: Yeah. Me too.
Daniel: No, I mean it. Nick's a great guy. We give him a hard time, but you know... he's the man. I just think it's really great you guys are going out. He's a really great guy.
Lindsay: Yeah, I know.
Daniel: Nick's a stud. You know? I mean, he may not seem like it, but he is.
Ms. Yeats: Mr. Desario, don't you have something to do?
Daniel: Right, but I thought we were going to do that after class, Ms. Yeats.
Ms. Yeats: Oh, be still my beating heart.
Daniel: [whispers to Lindsay] I like that dress.

Nick: Hey, man, I heard Kim got an A on her world civ test. That's great. Oh, no, that's right, that was MY girlfriend. Ohhh...
Daniel: That's really funny.
Nick: Oh, you know what though? Lindsay got detention for flipping off her gym teacher. Oh no, that's right, that was YOUR girlfriend. Oh ho ho...
Daniel: I heard Kim punched you in the chest really hard. Oh, whoops, that was me. [Daniel punches Nick.]
Nick: That was really hard.

Sam: Cindy is not abnormal.
Bill: Yeah? She cut the cheese.
Neal: Oh my God.
Sam: That's not funny.
Bill: I heard it, man, I swear. She blamed it on the chair. But she cut the cheese.
Sam: Well, some chairs make weird noises. What kind of a chair was it?
Bill: I don't know. Vinyl?
Sam: Vinyl chairs always squeak.
Bill: It wasn't a squeak. It was the sound of cheese being cut.

Jean Weir: Honey, tell her about Korea.
Harold Weir: Korea. [sighs] Well, one day, I, uh, went into Seoul on a weekend pass. And I went to this bar. And I had a few too many. And I followed a couple of my buddies to the red-light district.
Jean Weir: Your father's first time wasn't special, and he's always regretted it.
Harold: It was the worst $5 I've ever spent. And I wish I could get that $5 back.

Nick: See, Lindsay. Nothing 'bout you and me should ever be rushed. I made that mistake before, but I'm not gonna make it with you. Cause we've got time. We've got all the time in the world. And you know why? [singing] Cause you're my lady of the morning. Love shines in your eyes. Sparkling, clear and lovely. [speaking] You're my lady. See, Lindsay. We were made for each other.
Lindsay: You wanna make out or something?
Nick: No. All guys wanna make out. But I just wanna hold you. [holds her] What's better than this?

The Diary [1.9]

Sam: Think we could be arrested for making prank calls?
Neal: Yeah, and we'll get sent to telephone prison.

Bill: Fredericks? You're a turd. A stinky fat turd. Go sniff a jock strap, you poophead. You love patting boys butts. You love patting boys butts, butt. You butt patter. You're a perv, and a loser, and a stinky turd.

Neil: Smooth move, Alexander Graham Bell.

Mr. Weir: We are not robots and things do not need to change. I like how things are! I like eating the same things. You know why? Because those are the things I like! I like chicken. And I like pot roast. And, that's how I feel about you Jean.
Mrs. Weir: Oh please. You like me like you like a pot roast?
Mr. Weir: I love pot roast!

Mr. Weir: You think I don't appreciate you? Well, I do. Everything I do I do to serve you. I think of you when I'm stocking fishing poles. I think of you when I'm answering questions about cross country ski wax. My whole life is about serving you. And I love you, Jean.

Looks and Books [1.10]

Daniel: Am I a loser?
Harris: You're not a loser because you're having sex. But if you weren't having sex, we could definitely debate the issue.

The Garage Door (a.k.a. Tries and Lies) [1.11]

Sam: Hey, Neal, I gotta go home. My parents are going to be worried.
Bill: Yeah, me too. My mom doesn't like to watch Dallas alone.

Neal: Tell you one thing, when I get married, I'm never going to cheat on my wife. Even if she gets old and fat.
Bill: I'd be happy just to get a wife. I don't think I want the kind that's gonna get old and fat.
Sam: I don't even know how you get one girl. How does anyone get two?

Neal: So I wake up this morning, and guess what's sitting at the foot of my bed?
Bill: A turd?
Neal: Yes Bill, a turd.
Bill: Eew!
Neal: An Atari!

Chokin' and Tokin' [1.12]

Lindsay: God! We used to love Mac Davis, remember?
Millie: Yeah. You used to say you wished you had pillows stuffed with his hair.

Smooching and Mooching [1.13]

Harold: Well, Neil Peart couldn't drum his way out of a paper bag.

Neal: Everyone looks cool in turtle necks. That's the point! We can't both wear them; we'll look like the Smothers Brothers!

The Little Things [1.14]

Harold: Everyone's a Democrat until they get a little money. Then they come to their senses!

Discos and Dragons [1.15]

Daniel: All right, fine, I'll be a dwarf, but my name is Carlos.
Bill: Carlos the dwarf?
Daniel: Yeah, you got a problem with that, Gorthon?

Ken and Daniel: Disco sucks!

Kim Kelly Is My Friend [1.16]

Millie: I heard about what she does in the yearbook darkroom.
Lindsay: What? She does what? I have no idea what you're talking about.
Millie: She does it.
Lindsay: What do you mean, it?
Millie: She fornicates it!

Dead Dogs and Gym Teachers [1.17]

Neal: He's a gym teacher. There's no upward mobility.

Noshing and Moshing [1.18]

Cast

External links

Wikipedia
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