Mandatory TV Battles: Classic ‘Saved by the Bell’ vs. Peacock’s New ‘Saved by the Bell’

Things have changed a lot in the 27 years since the original Saved by the Bell went off the air. Zack Morris’ miraculous talent for manipulating time offered no insight into the retrospective ignorance of Saved by the Bell. Societal pitfalls did not exist in or around Bayside High in the late ’80s and early ’90s. Zack and his friends fully embraced “ignorance is bliss.” Don’t get us wrong; for those who grew up watching the show, its depiction of friendship and first loves is nostalgic. Screech still makes us chuckle. However, Peacock’s Saved by the Bell reboot roasts the original by (attempting to) balance old and new. So, is it better? Worse? In this edition of Mandatory TV Battles, we pit the classic Saved by the Bell against Peacock’s remix. 

Cover Photo: NBC/Peacock

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At this point, the original Saved by the Bell might be enough of a critique in and of itself. With everything going on in the world, fans of the original should recognize its irony. Those fans probably won’t love Peacock’s Saved by the Bell due to it feeling like overcompensation for the original’s lack of “woke.” Regarding the balance of old and new, this Saved by the Bell is no Cobra Kai—its tonal shift is less elegant, the equivalent of laughing at your own joke. While it’s hard to compare these two very different shows, the original Saved by the Bell wins this one simply for being classic. 

Overall Winner: Classic

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