Review: Freaks and Geeks (1999-2000)

Set in 1980, Freaks and Geeks follows the social and emotional learning curve of two siblings: Lindsay Weir, a sophomore in high school (imbued with sweet confusion by Linda Cardellini) and her little freshman brother, Sam (played with the heart-stopping tenderness by John Daley).
So in the series she is a Freak and he is a geek. But the beauty of this show is in the exploration of the complex lives and questions behind the social file folders into which every living kid has to be stuffed.

Sam has two friends, Neal and Bill all of  ’em are so called geeks. They together face a strange, unfamiliar world. Debating with each other about the general affairs of the school. Protect each other from the classic sociopathic kid who used to think they were actually cool but was ignored by geeks in the past. Sam has a crush on a beautiful girl, Neal wants to get into pants of a girl as soon as possible and Bill, well he isn’t so interested in girls. So what is a geek? Well the dictionary says A person regarded as foolish, inept, or clumsy. So were they geeks? May be, but they were certainly more than just geeks!

Lindsay is a smart girl, well one of the finest in school. But she doesn’t want to be labelled as a bookworm. She has recently started to question a lot of what she has taken for granted in the past. She is not just fooling around, she wants to explore the real world unlike the geeks or even other normal students. She has found her way to a small cluster of funny, cranky outsiders who aren’t that interested in school, but seem to be actually engaged in life itself, doing the things lots of us put on hold ’til after we finish school, when real life apparently begins: sex, driving, playing in a rock band, drinking, checking out the world. You can call Lindsay a sweet, but a smart rebel like we used to be in our high school life!

The writers of Freaks and Geeks explore these things in a realistic, yet somehow fairly nonchalant way. And I think the key is that they don’t predict the future; they just show it like it is, this day in 1980. In short the story isn’t larger than life, it’s realistic, may be that was the reason it wasn’t that successful on the network.


If you ask me to point out the best thing of this series I’d say it’s the casting! Each actor perfectly gets into their character. I guess that’s why It got The Primetime Emmy for Best Casting.
Another important thing you’d notice about this series is the brilliant use of music. If you’re a rock fan then it’s a treat for you! You would go all the way to 70s-80s era. I’d have loved to watch the second season as John Lennon was assassinated in 1980. The freaks would be devastated and the geeks.. well they would not even have a slight idea!

The historical accuracy, the beautiful music score, honest characters bundled with praiseworthy performances, realistic story and not to forget the thoughtful direction makes this little series as a cult classic! Highly recommended. 9.5/10

IMDb link: Freaks and Geeks

Wikipedia Link: Freaks and Geeks

– Ajinkya


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