Review

  • I only began to follow "Recess" in reruns. Now I wish I had watched it while it was still on the air. The show is funny and very enjoyable. I can still identify with a lot of the things that the fourth graders at Third St. Elementary School (named after millionaire philanthropist Thaddeus T. Third III) go through even though it's been thirty-four years for me. First, let's look at the gang themselves: T.J., the undisputed leader of the gang and master prankster. Gretchen, the smartest kid in the school REGARDLESS of grade. Gus, the mousy new kid. Vince, the school jock. Spinnelli, the toughest girl, if not kid, in the school. Mikey, the big kid with the soul of a poet. Each kid has their own unique personality and strength (for the record: I was like Gus while in the fourth grade, now I'm probably more like Mikey). Then, there are the suppporting players like the Ashleys, who act not unlike the title characters in the movie HEATHERS. Randall, the school snitch. The Diggers (named Sam and Dave, after the famous singing group). Upside-down Girl and Swinger Girl. Office clerk Menlow (does this kid EVER go to class?). Lawson, who is constantly on the losing end of any competition with Vince. And the Kindergarteners, who look and act like escapees from "Lord of the Flies". Then there are the grown-ups of the show: The appropriately named Principal Prickly (voiced by Dabney Coleman). Flowerchild teacher Miss Grolke (Alyce Beasley of "Moonlighting" fame). And last, but certainly not least, Miss Finster (April Winchell), the school disciplinarian, described as "a 200-lb. gargoyle in orthopedic shoes". Watching this show brings back a lot of memories, both good and bad. It's a trip down Memory Lane worth traveling.