Welcome to the Bevolution!
- TV Show
The Goldbergs are about to get weird.
After previously paying homage to such iconic ’80s pop culture as The Karate Kid (sorry, the Adam F. Goldberg vs. Adam Goldberg gag is retired for good) and The Breakfast Club, the ABC sitcom is going back to John Hughes’ filmography in the season 5 premiere with a tribute to Weird Science.
As Barry (Troy Gentile) struggles to deal with his breakup from Lainey (AJ Michalka), Adam (Sean Giambrone) convinces his older brother that they can build him a new girlfriend through the very real science from the 1985 film. Like past special episodes, the Weird Science homage includes a familiar face from the film — this time in Ilan Mitchell-Smith, who played Wyatt in the film and hasn’t acted in nearly 30 years. “It was one of my favorite movies of all-time,” creator Adam F. Goldberg tells EW, “so to have him back and wearing the same costume was really surreal and awesome.”
Later in the year, The Goldbergs will step out of the ’80s to focus an episode on the legendary ’60s sitcom Hogan’s Heroes, complete with Pops (George Segal) repurposing storylines from the show as his own war tales in hopes of impressing Adam. One problem: Pops proves to be such a good storyteller that Adam ends up turning those tales into a report, which promptly gets him accused of plagiarism.
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The most exciting upcoming arc of season 5 has nothing to do with any pop culture property, but it does have a name: The Bevolution! “I hope it means she finds a life outside of pestering her kids,” Wendi McLendon-Covey, who stars as family matriarch Beverly, tells EW. “Although, I’m not sure that will ever happen; she was put on Earth to smother those children. But I’m hoping she takes a self-defense class, maybe starts a neighborhood watch. I look forward to her mid-life crisis and digging her way out of that.”
Beverly’s struggle to figure out the next step in her life begins when eldest child, Erica (Hayley Orrantia) flies the coop. The overly-loving mother isn’t quite ready to let go, considering she stays over in her daughter’s dorm on the first night of college. Like many of the show’s plots, it’s pulled from Goldberg’s own experiences. “I love that Beverly actually spent the night in her son’s dorm room,” laughs McLendon-Covey of the woman her character is based on. “That is so insane to me.”
In addition to Beverly’s big change, the series has also added a big (and muscular) guest star in the form of professional wrestler Bill Goldberg, who will play Coach Miller’s (Bryan Callen) “even more alpha-ripped” brother. “He has been angry that there’s a show bearing his name, and rightfully, because he’s the ultimate Goldberg,” shares Goldberg (the creator, not the wrestler). “He is so funny. You don’t realize that these wrestlers are skilled actors. His comic delivery was perfect, we were all so impressed.”
Speaking of impressed, ABC is such a fan of The Goldbergs, that in May, the comedy was renewed for not one, but two more seasons. For Goldberg, the demonstration of faith showed how far the series has come.
“When the show began and it wasn’t well received, it was very polarizing and the reviews were incredibly brutal,” he recalls. “It was hard not to take it personally, especially because it’s about my life. I was just shocked that I even got 12 episodes and, now, we have our 100th episode coming up.”
Guaranteed to last at least six seasons, there’s no end in sight for McLendon-Covey, who’s in for the long haul. “The real Beverly Goldberg is out there in the world still having adventures,” the actress points out. “I know of some stuff she’s pulled with her grandchildren that would make really good television.”
The Goldbergs airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.