In middle school, I was the definition of a Degrassi fan (back then it was called Degrassi: The Next Generation and aired on “the N,” so I should have known the name and network change was a bad sign). I haven’t seen the show since Emma married Spinner and everything went to hell, but I know it’s still on the air because I follow a couple Degrassi twitter accounts (old habits die hard). The other day I saw a tweet about “Brutus” on Degrassi, and as a proud Ohio State student (O-H!), I had to do some research. I went to the Degrassi-Wiki page (because any show that has 13 seasons and Drake as an alum deserves a Wiki page), and discovered one of the current character’s nicknames is Brutus. Not enough to start watching again, but still kind of cool (and a little nuts…yeah, I just went there #buckeye4lyfe). My time spend on Degrassi-Wiki brought back all the great memories at Degrassi Community School and is also what brings you this:
The Top 6 (because 5 just isn’t enough) Most Memorable Moments on Degrassi: it goes there:
6.Spinner’s Cancer: Spinner was always the tough guy at school, and watching him lose his hair and experience all the side effects of Chemo was heartbreaking.
5.Manny’s abortion: This episode was so controversial it didn’t even air in the US until 3 years after it originally aired in Canada, but I’ll never forget the way Emma stood up for her best friend’s choices.
4.Ellie cutting herself: I randomly saw this episode when I was about 5 years too young, and watching Ellie use a math compass to harm herself made me terrified of using one in math class for many years to come.
3.Darcy’s Rape: During a ski-weekend gone bad, Darcy, who was saving herself until marriage, is drugged and raped. And the understandable meltdown that comes after is even crazier, and includes an epic Spring Break movie where her romance with Peter proves strong enough to heal all.
2.JT’s Death: Right when JT finally figures out he loves Liberty, that redhead from Degrassi’s rival school Lakehurst stabs him, and that’s when we learned none of our favorite Degrassi couples would live happily ever after.
1.The School Shooting: In one of the most heart-wrenching hours of television I’ve ever seen, Degrassi Community School is changed forever when Rick- a student who was bullied- brings a gun to school and puts Jimmy in a wheelchair. The repercussions of that day haunt Degrassi and it’s viewers for seasons to come (plus we will never be able to take Drake seriously unless he’s sitting down).
The Top 5 Less-Sad but Still Memorable Moments on Degrassi:
5.Emma and Sean’s first kiss: Emma and Sean are my all-time favorite Degrassi couple, and the fact that their first real kiss takes place when Emma has a perm just proves their love is true.
4.Every time a character sings or raps: Craig, Marco, Jimmy and Spinner have a band-Downtown Sasquatch-for the first couple seasons and it’s as bad as it sounds. Paige, Ashley and Terri (remember her?) start a band too-PMS-and sing an epic song about Craig cheating on Ashley that includes t-shirts with Craig’s face in flames. Sav also sings that weird song to Anya for their 6 month anniversary, and before Drake was Drake, he rapped as Jimmy (tell me anything but the truth because I don’t really know if I can take it now– admit it you remembered the song too).
3.Twincest: It’s exactly how it sounds. Fiona KISSES her twin brother Declan, only to find out she’s actually a lesbian a few seasons later (we couldn’t make this up even if we tried).
2.Gonorrhea outbreak: Jay starts a Gonorrhea outbreak at Degrassi by hooking up with half of the cast, including good girl Emma, and ruins the school play because no one can kiss each other without spreading the disease further.
1. Manny’s “I’m Gonna Be Famous” Tape: Only a couple years after Manny shows up to school wearing a thong above her jeans, she is drunk at a party and is filmed taking off her red halter top (don’t act like you don’t remember the details), and it turns out Peter should have kept the tape and sold it for a million dollars because she really was going to be famous.