My relationship with Degrassi seems to have been more complicated than I originally through. I mean, it was a television show, it was on when I was home from school, and I watched it. But it’s not like it was Saved By the Bell, which everyone watched (mainly because it was on. It always seemed to me that SBTB being on television when you were home from school was like a USA Today being placed at your hotel room doorstep–there was nothing else to do, really.) In fact, aside from one fleeting moment where I felt cool at the bus stop because the cool older kids had watched it, with the possible exception of my sister, I was the only person I knew who watched Degrassi.
To that extent, I developed sort of a complex. When other people walked int he room during my Degrassi time, I felt as if I had been caught doing something, even though all I was doing was watching Canadian teen melodrama. Okay, Degrassi Junior High wasn’t always that melodramatic, but this episode, “Food For Thought,” which tackles the issue of eating disorders, lays it on pretty thick. In fact, it does that right away, as we open with Kathleen (one of the more uptight and bitchy Degrassi girls) sitting at the dinner table while her workaholic father and alcoholic mother argue back and forth. She excuses herself without eating, then goes to the bathroom, looks in the mirror and says, “You’re! So! Fat!”
Did I say that they’re laying it on thick? I meant that they’re spackling it on. (more…)