Hey y’all. Look, I’m just going to shorten Degrassi: The Next Generation to DNG. It’s easier. Obviously S is for Season and Ep is for Episode. And lucky for us (or whatever) DNG starts off with a TWO- PARTER. When I was younger I hated multiple episode arcs. Remember when Punky Brewster had to live with those rich people? That took up 5 episodes. It was awful. (Side note to Letty: let’s review Punky Brewster).
There is a LOT going on in these introductory episodes. I almost felt as though I should have watched the original series and DJH (figure it out) for background, but let’s face it, we can figure out who is who as we go. Our story opens with Emma (Miriam McDonald, with terrible buckteeth and atrocious hair) and her biffle Manny (Cassie Steele, who will go on to become quite the character), gushing over the worst email graphics I have ever seen. Apparently our Emma is online- dating an older boy (16!) named Jordan who is doing things to save the rain forest or some shit teenagers don’t do. She has been trying to figure out how to meet Jordan IRL without her mom (Spike! from the original Degrassi!) finding out about it. Spike is distracted by her upcoming 10 year Degrassi reunion (meaning of course that she was– gasp– an unwed teenage mother!) to notice her daughter is falling under the alluring spell of an online predator.
We are introduced to a bunch of old Degrassi characters from the original series– Snake (now a teacher), Joey (a car dealer whose wife is dead), Lucy (was in an accident, has a cane), and Caitlin Ryan (environmental journalist with douchebag fiance). Is there a love connection between any of these people? We’ll find out in upcoming episodes, obv.
We meet the adorkable JT (Ryan Cooley), who meets up with his old camp buddy Toby (Jake Goldsby) in front of the computer lab which has new state of the art computers that run on….HIGH SPEED TELEPHONE ACCESS! Whooooooo! The four kids hang out, talking about this Jordan who wants to meet at a hotel TOMORROW. JT seems to know all about stranger danger but the other kids are just whatever about it.
Finally it’s the night of the reunion. Emma tells Manny she doesn’t want company because there’s this new show on environmental whatever the hell– she’s really going to see Jordan. Spike and Snake are snuggling on the dance floor, Luke is watching Caitlin’s fiance try to bang some slut, everyone complains about almost turning 30– OH CRY ME A RIVER.
Meanwhile Emma is a moment away from losing her innocence and naivety. Luckily for her, Manny figures it out, JT and Toby break into her email and realize “Jordan” has been doing the same thing– and this exchange occurs:
“What’s her mom’s favorite band?”
“The Pogues? Who are the Pogues?”
So they go warn Spike that her daughter is about to become a statistic, Spike and Snake take off to the hotel. Spike calls the police: “My daughter is with someone she met on the internet, please hurry!” And hangs up. So helpful. Meanwhile “Jordan” is really some 40 year old who has Emma locked in a hotel room, about to tape some bad business.
That dude starts SMELLING HER HAIR and stuff. Really awful. Emma is stoic though.
Lucky for stupid Emma, her friends (and her shitty computer security skills) saved her damned life. Snake threatens to kick the dude’s ass, the cops arrest him and confiscate Emma’s computer (and totally victim- blame her in the process), and Spike tells Emma she’s too smart to be so stupid.
Teenage idiocy is my favorite thing. Reliving DNG will be fun. But how long does it take to get to Craig?
Letty: Never fear Kolleen, Craig is coming. CRAIG IS COMING. This is so much fun! I love reminiscing about the DNGs of yore. Everyone was so young and innocent, and they have so much to learn! They are like delicate Canadian flowers just waiting to bloom.