Kevin Burwick of TVWeb isn’t kidding when stating that people might need a refresher course on Head of the Class before watching the reboot on HBO Max since this is one of the many shows that ran for several years and had a degree of popularity but at this point in time has kind of been forgotten by a lot of people. It does sound as though the reboot will be taking off the source material of the original show for the most part and will only deviate insofar as creating obviously needed updates that will keep the show recognizable as something belonging to the current era. When it comes to any TV show that’s not a period piece these days it’s pretty obvious that it’s going to be getting a pretty big update since things as they were back in the 80s to early 90s were quite a bit different than they were now. The technology is different, the teaching methods are different, the clothing and fashion sense is definitely different, and yet the kids are more or less the same save for the fact that there now appear to be even more serious issues that can crop up from time to time that educators have to be ready to deal with.
It’s likely that we’ll also see the same stereotypes that usually show up and did show up in the original show as trying to deny it is pretty much pointless. In every generation there will be nerds, jocks, preps, cool kids, losers, loners, and so on and so forth as we continue to call out every possible group that’s been known to occur. It’s a natural part of a high school environment in which kids tend to stick with those that share the same interests in order to feel a sense of normalcy that they might not experience with others. While Head of the Class was primarily a show that focused on gifted students that being taught by their teacher how to experience life instead of just trying to excel with every breath that message might still be what’s being pushed in the reboot, but it’s also likely that several other themes might try to intrude as well given how the landscape of the average high school has changed over the years. Let’s face facts, things aren’t the same as they were when a lot of us were still in school, and they haven’t been for a couple of decades now.
A lot of us that came from the country and small town high schools can remember kids that had gun racks in their trucks because they’d be out hunting if they weren’t in class, and yet those same kids never once thought about bringing them into the school. A good number of people can remember going to school and not needing a safe space even if they were bullied since the bullies knew where the safe places were. In other words, things have definitely taken a serious turn since the 80s and high school has become more and more like a continually changing landscape that can’t decide which setting it wants to utilize in order to teach the kids and nurture them at the same time. In a way it’s almost easy to feel sorry for the kids of today if only because they’re being given such a chaotic experience that it’s no wonder that some of them are in need of a room well away from the madness that has become the high school experience. On the other end of that spectrum however is the need to excel, to push forward and stretch limits in a way that can, when done properly, insure that a high school student will have a future after graduation, but can also make a highly neurotic and chemical-dependent individual that might have to pop a few pills to feel normal in the morning. In case you’re still not following, high school is a rough transition that rests between junior high and real life.
Yet, it does feel that this is what it might take for the reboot to really make sense and to grasp or possibly surpass the original. It’s possible to still make it into a comedy, but given the lack of limitations that HBO Max will work with as far as content and language it’s easy to think that it could be so much more as well. The realism that could be brought into this show and the hilarity could in fact work together if it’s been done in a way that would allow said realism to give way to the slightly depressing feeling that high school day can bring to a kid, while at the same time proving to be entertaining since comedy does after all come from the most depressing and saddening moments at times. It might be worth a watch.