Shows like Faking It and Awkward on MTV are fresh air in the teen drama genre. While the plot of Awkward revolves around the legal problems faced by teenagers, it does so in a humorous and surprisingly witty manner. It also features some startling darker undertones that set it apart from other shows.
The excellent young actors of Awkward, such as Ashley Rickards, Beau Mirchoff, Jillian Rose Reed, Greer Grammer, Molly Tarlov, and Brett Davern, make the show exciting and amusing for viewers of all ages, not just those still in their teens. Check out these ten exciting tidbits about Awkward, one of the best teens shows you’ve probably never heard of.
10: Prominent Paternal Figure
Lissa, played by Molly Tarlov, is one of the show’s most underappreciated characters despite being the focus of many essential plotlines and episodes. Greer Grammer, who plays her, has proven acting chops, which may be in her blood as she is the daughter of Kelsey Grammer.
Though she is Kelsey’s daughter, her success in the acting industry results from her hard work. At the 72nd Golden Globe Awards, she was chosen as Miss Golden Globe 2015, an award given to the daughter or granddaughter of a Hollywood star.
Lauren Iungerich, the show’s creator, undertook her research to ensure that the series’ teen cast and environment were authentic. Iungerich frequented her alma mater to see students and hear their conversations to understand better what it was like to be a teenager. Friday Night Lights, which ran for five seasons, is another program she looks up to; her saying,
“What Jason Katims created in five seasons was completely wonderful.”
The narrative and the characters’ backstories were established first. To be so brave as to graduate people and wrap up narrative lines or allow them to come back in organic ways while still making us fall in love with new characters; that’s what I took away from it.
8: No Teenagers Involved
Rarely do genuine high school students play high school students on television, but the cast of Awkward does an excellent job of making you believe they are. It’s good that they’re finishing up a senior year because it’s apparent that none of them was teenagers when filming the program.
7: Winning Multiple Awards
Since its release, Awkward has been nominated for multiple awards and has gotten positive reviews from critics thanks to its fresh perspective on high school and its ensemble of memorable characters. Ashley Rickards was nominated for Summer TV Star: Female but ultimately lost to Beau Mirchoff at the 2012 Teen Choice Awards. At the 2013 People’s Choice Awards, Awkward also took home the trophy for Favorite Cable TV Comedy.
6: Real Pals
The fact that the actors in a show are friends outside of work often comes as a pleasant surprise to viewers. They work together like a family, and the cast members routinely post images of themselves having fun and playing jokes on one another.
Jillian Rose Reed claims that the males frequently play pranks on her, including filling a trailer with balloons. Over 70 balloons were used to fill my trailer. Even in my trailer, I couldn’t move about. I imagine they spent hours in Beau Mirchoff’s trailer, where they blew themselves up orally.
5: Five-Year Cycle Or Longer?
Season 5 was widely believed to be the final season because the main characters had all graduated high school and moved on to college. However, with the program’s massive popularity, it hasn’t been so apparent if this is the end. The writers and producers are actively trying to figure out how to continue the show and the characters.
Showrunners Mike Chessler and Chris Alberghini told the Hollywood Reporter in August, “I think we planted a big enough clue that this may not be the final season, so we just want to make sure it gets heard.”
4: Show Has Undergone Some Alterations
Many television shows have a change of showrunners between seasons; while occasionally viewers don’t detect any differences, in other cases, the new showrunners make noticeable improvements. Lauren Iungerich, the creator of Awkward, left the program at the end of season 2, and the network has since replaced her with Chris Alberghini and Mike Chessler.
They were such devoted viewers that the show and its characters were preserved primarily unchanged, with minor tweaks.
“I guess the only thing we do differently is strive to make the world a more welcoming place. It wasn’t just Jenna and Matty who got backstories; several of the other characters did as well. When it comes to realizing our vision for the characters, we’re putting in as much effort as possible.”
3: The Shadow Side of Ashley Rickards
In addition to being an actress, Ashley Rickards writes all of her screenplays and scripts. In a recent interview, she admitted that she identifies more with the darker Jenna than the hilarious, happy Jenna, something her agency already understood.
My agents were phoning MTV and asking,
“Is she funny?’ when I was reading for Awkward. Can she handle a humorous trainer? Put, ‘Because we can quickly get her one. Nothing like Gaspar Noe bashing his head in the wall in Irreversible has been written by me yet. My work is very different from Awkward, albeit even that show has a dark side.
2: A Brilliant Mind, Ashley Rickards
Jenna Hamilton may have trouble getting into her chosen university, but Ashley Rickards will have no such concern. Rickards completed high school at the young age of 15 and is now a member of MENSA, the oldest and largest High IQ society in the world, into which one must be accepted if one’s IQ is in the top 2% of the population.
Her decision to join, however, had little to do with her ego. I was dating a guy who could speak five languages and solve a Rubik’s Cube blindfolded since it’s simply an algorithm, and he was the inspiration for me to join MENSA. The person I was with was terrifying, so this was my way of saying,
“You make me feel like an idiot, but maybe this makes me feel like less of one.”
1: Committed Performers, Number One
Actors’ schedules get more and busier as a series goes on, making it more challenging for every actor to appear in every episode. However, Awkward has a very committed cast, with Brett Davern, Jillian Rose Reed, Beau Mirchoff, and Ashley Rickards appearing in every episode so far and Molly Tarlov and Nikki Deloach missing only one episode apiece.