Movie of the Week: High School U.S.A.

This made-for-television movie from 1983 was a pilot for a series that didn't set sail. Perhaps it's for the best. There isn't much here that you won't find in any other TV fare of the era. But the real reason to watch this right now is for the cast.

 Who's in it? More like who's NOT in it. Crispin Glover steals the film, getting bottom billing, yet a surprising amount of screen time. Michael J. Fox plays a worthless idiot who's supposed to be likable, a lamentable and inexplicable 80's trope. The #2 nerd from Revenge of the Nerds is the Alpha Yuppie Stud of the school. He has a gang of lackeys wearing Ray-Bans, blond feathered hair and pink izods. There's Willis from Diff'rent Strokes ("NASA wants to send my robot to Mars…") and his stepsister Kimberley. And that girl from Facts of Life. And the cute nerdy girl from Gimmie a Break. Is that the lady from It's a Living? And look, Ozzie and Harriet and their son Ricky. Both June Cleaver and her Beaver. Eddie Haskell. Donna Reed's son. Gilligan and Mary Anne, Batman's Robin, Penny Robinson, Dobie Gillis…. has my collective memory of all the television I watched as a kid materialized itself into this one movie? I believe it has.

And the icing on the cake, dear reader, is this… the Futurechimp Movie-of-the-Week mainstay, King Vidiot, can be found here. Can you find King Vidiot in this film? I did, and it took me about half a second.


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