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Freaks and Geeks (TV Series 1999–2000) - Plot Summary Poster

(1999–2000)

Plot

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Summaries

  • A high school mathlete starts hanging out with a group of burnouts while her younger brother navigates his freshman year.

  • It's the 1980s and at McKinley High, there's two different groups of teenagers, the Freaks with cool and charismatic Daniel Desario and tomboy Lindsay Weir and the Geeks with Lindsay's shy younger brother Sam, gentle Bill Haverchuck, and self-proclaimed ladies' man Neal Schweiber. The show chronicles the normal teen/adolescence problems any teenager goes through including acceptance, drugs, drinking, and bullying.

  • This is the story about two groups at high school- freaks and geeks. The freaks ("lead" by Daniel Desario), add a new member to there group, Lindsey Weir (a once mathlete) who just wants to fit in. The geeks Bill, Neal, and Sam have a mission of making it through their freshman year of high school.

  • Growing up circa 1980, a misfit high-school student and his pals are probably destined to become new media millionaires, but right now they're stuck in school, where all the girls are a foot taller and bullies terrorize the gym class. Meanwhile, his older sister is flirting with the dope-smoking bad boys, cutting classes and questioning the point of getting good grades.

  • William McKinley High School, Michigan, 1980. Lindsay Weir is a straight-A student but is feeling like expanding her horizons. She starts hanging out with the "freaks", the students more into rock music, drugs and just having fun. Meanwhile, her younger brother Sam and his friends are navigating growing up and teenage social politics.

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Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • Retro series, set in the school year 1980-1981. The main setting is the fictional town of Chippewa, Michigan, depicted as a suburb of Detroit. The main theme is the change of perspective which the two Weir siblings experience.

    Lindsay Weir is a mathematics prodigy, having competed as a "mathlete" in mathematics competitions for several years. The recent death of her grandmother causes Lindsay to question the direction and meaning of her life. She starts hanging out with the "freaks", a group of mostly jaded slackers and burnouts in her school. They consist of the manipulative Daniel Desario, mild-mannered drummer Nick Andopolis, the witty and sarcastic Ken Miller, and the short-tempered, tough-girl Kim Kelly. Most of them are habitual drug users.

    The series explores why this group is so jaded. Daniel is 18-years-old, but has had to repeat classes in school and is nowhere near graduation. He has to take care of an invalid father, a stressed-out wreck of a mother, and a drug-addict older brother. Nick used to be a talented basketball player, but was kicked off the team for drug possession. His ambition to become a musician places him at odds with his strict father, who happens to be a military officer. Ken comes from a wealthy family and is a potential heir to the family fortune, but has no interest in actually running a business. He is also always eager for a fight or an argument. Kim's anger is fueled by a difficult relationship with her disapproving mother, by having her illiterate stepfather criticizing her for her bad grades, and by having a rather odd man as a brother.

    Meanwhile, Lindsay's younger brother Sam Weir is trying hard to get a social life. Because he is a fan of science fiction, and of comedy actors, Sam has been branded a "geek" and has few friends in school. His best friends are fellow "geeks", the would-be ladies' man Neal Schweiber (who doesn't seem to get why girls avoid him), and the sickly, child-like Bill Haverchuck (who is obsessed with soap operas). Sam's other "friend" is his long-time crush Cindy Sanders, a popular cheerleader who mostly wants someone to listen about the frustrations in her own life.

    The "geeks" are mostly tormented by local bully Alan White, who happens to be a closet geek himself. Alan is a fan of science fiction and comic books, but plays the tough guy and the mean prankster at school. In a subplot, Sam is horrified when his conversations with Cindy reveal Cindy's snobbish and rather elitist views on politics and American society. Cindy's parents are hardcore Republicans and she mirrors their views to a degree which Sam finds offensive.

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