[9 January 2008]
Want to finally figure out how to bag the ultimate babe? Then Weird Science is the totally dope ‘90s nerd show for you, and if you sit down to watch the newly released DVD set (finally!), you will certainly up your status as a total babe, or a total babe magnet just from the coolness you will absorb by watching such a hilarious and loveable show. The series follows Gary (John Mallory Asher) and Wyatt (Michael Manasseri), two geeky, Mystery Science Theatre watching, computer game playing high school students who create the ultimate woman one night on Wyatt’s computer. Lisa (Vanessa Angel) is not only beautiful, but she grants Gary and Wyatt’s wildest wishes, acting as their own personal I Dream of Jeanieesque magician.
Wyatt and Gary are the classic best friend duo. Wyatt is the straight man, leader of the chess club, shy, innocent and clueless, and Gary, the perfect foil to the Wyatt’s innocence is sex crazed, desperate, adventurous and dying to loose his virginity. Real live babeage Lisa teaches the boys life lessons about sex, love, homework, and high school. Whether she is proving to Gary that love is not in fact “doing it in your parents’ bed while they are at work” but instead is the friendship between himself and Wyatt, one can’t help but feel a little touched, which is impressive considering that the previous half hours episode would have been devoted to jokes about “losing it”.
Life lessons are happening all over the place during Weird Science: in the episode entitled “Sex Ed”, Gary and Wyatt make Lisa teach a class where they learn how to do it by actually doing it, and even though this is probably the most overtly inappropriate and blush-making episode of the series, the viewer comes out of it knowing that sex is actually about more than just “doing it”—it’s also about love and above all the use of condoms.
Just as the viewer most likely lumps it together with other shows from that time in our lives such as Saved by the Bell and Boy Meets World, Weird Science knows its own place in ‘90s television. Gary even says when referring to his own sexual education, “I’ve seen the very special episodes of Saved By The Bell.” Well, unlike Saved By The Bell, Weird Science won’t dance around taboo teen subjects, it will take them head on.
The show must have helped to inspire a whole era of teen sex comedies such as American Pie, as well as more sentimental and dynamic teen nerd dramas such as Freaks and Geeks. We don’t feel attached to the characters in the same emotional way as we might in a show like Freaks and Geeks, but Gary and Wyatt’s nerdiness certainly set the bar high for nerd shows to follow, sentimental or not.
In some ways Weird Science is so distinctly ‘90s that’s its hard to imagine it being anything more today than a reminder of that time in our life, and therefore is perhaps not that appealing for a new viewer. It has all the hallmarks of a ‘90s show, Pearl Jam and Sound Garden references, unfortunate fashion, and ‘90s terminology overload. But watching the episodes again or for the first time, you realize the show isn’t simply a reminder of our youth (in the way that Saved By The Bell might be), but is also still completely hilarious and surprisingly relevant in that it deals with topics that will forever be current, most notable getting dates and having sex.
When you find yourself asking someone if they are “scamming on” you, you will know then and there that Weird Science influenced you not only back in the ‘90s, but will continue to do so daily. You will rediscover all the euphemisms for sex that you used in the ‘90s (“doing it”, “the deed”, “raising the flag at Iwo Jima”, “the wild thing”, “zooma zoom zoom in the boom boom”, and my personal favorite “rocket to Nasty-ville”) and furthermore, the show has some of the best insults ever, which are definitely worth committing to memory (“cud boy” and “skid mark” being examples of such).
Even though the extra features on the DVD aren’t noteworthy unless you are such a huge fan of the show that you want to watch a few episodes with audio commentary, Weird Science definitely doesn’t bite, it rules, and is ultimately one of the most dope, rad, illin’ and choice shows to come out of the ‘90s.