If you haven’t had the privilege of watching the campy, sorta edgy, and utterly addicting series Degrassi: The Next Generation, get Teen Nick on your TV plan ASAP. Seriously, you won’t regret it. The show follows teens at Toronto’s Degrassi Community School, whose halls have witnessed teen pregnancy, abortion, anorexia, drugs, bullying, sexual abuse, mental illness, homosexuality, and hate crimes, just to name a few. With that much drama and a huge cult following in the states, Degrassi‘s actors seem ripe for American stardom.
Degrassi has already said goodbye to classmates who have crossed over to American pop culture. First it was Shenae Grimes, whose Christian good-girl Darcy took a dark turn after she was raped. Grimes currently stars as Annie on the CW’s 90210. Nina Dobrev, Degrassi’s resident teen mom/model, just finished her first season of the CW’s new hit The Vampire Diaries. Rapper and Lil Wayne protegé Drake, also known as wheelchair bound Jimmy Brooks, dropped his highly anticipated album Thank Me Later on Tuesday.
Can more Degrassi kids make it in America? Or do we love these Canucks simply because they end every question with “eh,” and spend way too much time in a class called “Media Immersion”? My vote for the next breakout star goes to Paige Michalchuk (Lauren Collins), the school’s diva, fashionista, and social director. Once one-half of a Degrassi power couple (with Spinner Mason), Paige had an affair with a teacher (fine, student teacher), dated a girl, and experienced the harsh realities on fame and failure in last year’s movie Degrassi Goes Hollywood. Despite a slew of intense story lines (her rape tops the list), her over-the-top persona was often used as comic relief for the series. Holly J. may rule Degrassi now, but Paige was the one who first wrote the book on how to have it all. Plus, don’t you miss hearing her distinct “hun”? A term of endearment like none other. I also would love to see Spinner, Alex, Sean, and Sav (but not Anya) find success in American TV or movies.
If nothing else, maybe Drake can throw some of his former friends a bone. Vulture‘s already weighing in on the chances more Degrassi kids have at rap stardom (Jimmy-Craig reunion tour? Yes please!). Degrassi fans, unite! Who are your favorite characters? And who do you think deserves their big, fat, American break?