Thread: What is this "Coming of age" (?) show from the 80/90s?

  • avatar
    • 3 months 17 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Looking for this show I saw once in the early 90s and never saw again. I know this is sort of a weird one, but what 80s/90s coming of age TV show had a best friend character who had a bowl cut and glasses, always ate peanut butter and sprouts sandwiches, and used the catchphrase, "Holly Cow!"?

    The single episode of this unusual show that I saw years ago had the following plot from what I could recall:

    A grade school aged boy embarrasses himself at school in front of a girl he likes, so he pretends to be sick to not have to go to school the next day. When he's home sick, he decides he is going to commit suicide by asking for ginger-ale so he can slip in some stuff from a chemistry set that he thinks will accomplish this. His best friend camps out in front of his house to see if he will actually do it(who has a bowl cut and glasses, uses the catchphrase, "holly cow" frequently, and eats peanut butter and Brussel sprout sandwiches out of a cooler he brought).

    Anyway, nothing happens when he drinks the ginger-ale because the stuff he put in turns out to be harmless. His dad, who is sort of a Patrick Duffy type, figures out whats going on and remarks that he tried the same thing when he was his age with the same result. I know it really weird. lol

    Ive been looking for this for years. I’m not certain if it was a one off special or an episode of a tv show, but it had to have been made in the 80s with the absolute latest being the early 90s.

    Thanks so much for the help in advance!
    • 3 months 14 days ago
    • Posts: 21
    Was this before, during, or after The Wonder Years?
  • avatar
    • 3 months 11 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by retrofan01
    Was this before, during, or after The Wonder Years?


    it was during
    • 3 months 8 days ago
    • Posts: 21
    I'm going to take some wild guesses that might be off. McGee and Me? My Secret Identity? The New Leave It To Beaver? The New Our Gang?

    Was it a failed TV pilot or failed TV series?
  • avatar
    • 3 months 6 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by retrofan01
    I'm going to take some wild guesses that might be off. McGee and Me? My Secret Identity? The New Leave It To Beaver? The New Our Gang?

    Was it a failed TV pilot or failed TV series?


    I checked the synopsis for each episode of "The New Leave it to Beaver" to see if it was this show, and unfortunately it wasn't. However it's the closest of what you listed to the type of show it was.

    The other shows seem to have featured animation or fantasy elements so they wouldn't be it.

    I believe the show was probably a short lived TV series. There's also a possibility it could have been Canadian.
  • avatar
    • 3 months 4 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    I was just thinking about it, and there's the possibility it could have been religious. It kind of had that vibe of one of those family shows/movies produced by a religious institution but in plot doesn't have to do with religious subject matter literally (like Buttercream Gang, or Just Like Dad for example)
    • 2 months 29 days ago
    • Posts: 21
    Was it on a basic cable channel or premium offering?
  • avatar
    • 2 months 29 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by retrofan01
    Was it on a basic cable channel or premium offering?


    Definitely basic cable/network. My dad didn't want to pay for the premium channels so we only had movie/premium channels for the first couple years we had cable, and I definitely saw this long after that.
    • 2 months 25 days ago
    • Posts: 21
    Was it a Canadian teen drama or teen sitcom?
  • avatar
    • 2 months 25 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by retrofan01
    Was it a Canadian teen drama or teen sitcom?


    It would be a one camera tween sitcom. The characters were about Junior high age/later grade school age.
    • 2 months 18 days ago
    • Posts: 21
    The bowl cut was popular from 1993 to 1997.

    Perhaps the description you gave happened in a latter episode of this series.
  • avatar
    • 2 months 15 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by retrofan01
    The bowl cut was popular from 1993 to 1997.

    Perhaps the description you gave happened in a latter episode of this series.


    From what I remember, in terms of the type of bowl cut, it was more along the lines of such as this kid in this pic, which did pop up as a "nerd" haircut in late 80s things (like early seasons Paul Phifer from the Wonder Years), as opposed to the "cool"/fashionable variant of the bowl cut that came about in the 90s.



    But with that said, you could be right since it's a possibility the show was from say 1993 for all I know, memory is foggy and I could just be remembering it as looking "from the 80s" because I'm conflating it with something else.

    I appreciate you helping me out with this by the way! Some of the other forums and "find an obscure movie/tv show" sites elsewhere pretty much either ignored my posts or told me that it "can't be found" because I didn't know the network/cast/director/etc. because they pretty much just wanted to answer softball enquiries that just require to quickly check imdb, even though they're "experts" that are touted to be able to track down thing by description, and I would have already checked imdb myself if I knew that information, so thank you , I appreciate it!
    • 2 months 15 hours ago
    • Posts: 21
    Quote by TheLastDGS
    Quote by retrofan01
    The bowl cut was popular from 1993 to 1997.

    Perhaps the description you gave happened in a latter episode of this series.


    From what I remember, in terms of the type of bowl cut, it was more along the lines of such as this kid in this pic, which did pop up as a "nerd" haircut in late 80s things (like early seasons Paul Phifer from the Wonder Years), as opposed to the "cool"/fashionable variant of the bowl cut that came about in the 90s.



    But with that said, you could be right since it's a possibility the show was from say 1993 for all I know, memory is foggy and I could just be remembering it as looking "from the 80s" because I'm conflating it with something else.

    I appreciate you helping me out with this by the way! Some of the other forums and "find an obscure movie/tv show" sites elsewhere pretty much either ignored my posts or told me that it "can't be found" because I didn't know the network/cast/director/etc. because they pretty much just wanted to answer softball enquiries that just require to quickly check imdb, even though they're "experts" that are touted to be able to track down thing by description, and I would have already checked imdb myself if I knew that information, so thank you , I appreciate it!


    You’re very welcome, TheLastDGS. As a fan of the culture of the 80s and 90s, I would like to find this TV show, also.

    Do you remember what programs were on before and after this coming of age show?
    • 1 month 20 days ago
    • Posts: 221
    Just Like Dad?
    imdb.com/title/tt0113502/?ref_=nv_sr_srsg_0
    • 1 month 13 days ago
    • Posts: 10
    did you find it
  • avatar
    • 1 month 10 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by coolretrokid9
    did you find it


    Unfortunately no, I didn't find it yet
  • avatar
    • 1 month 10 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by janhall47
    Just Like Dad?
    imdb.com/title/tt0113502/?ref_=nv_sr_srsg_0


    It's not Just LIke Dad, but I did think of it at one point myself lol

    (Coincidentally, The above photo I posted is from Just Like Dad but I was using it as an example of what this character looked like in the show in question.)
    • 1 month 10 days ago
    • Posts: 10
    i miss the 90s
  • avatar
    • 1 month 10 days ago
    • Posts: 15
    Quote by retrofan01
    Do you remember what programs were on before and after this coming of age show?


    I can't for the life of me remember what was before or after this. The only thing I can think of is It's possible to have aired on channels that I normally liked to watch that were on regular rotation at my house:

    Fox, The Family Channel (currently called Freeform), Disney Channel, Nickelodeon, MTV (although this one is unlikely), PBS, KBHK (independent channel in the SF bay area), KOFY TV (independent channel in the SF bay area)
    • 19 days 18 hours ago
    • Posts: 221
    Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd?
    imdb.com/title/tt0329028/?ref_=nv_sr_srsg_6

    The movie takes place in the 1980's.
Forum Staff
Super Admin: Vertex
Super Mods
Search