The few hours between getting home from middle and high school and my mom coming home from work were almost always the happiest of my day. It’s not that I hated school or my mom – on the contrary, both treated me pretty damn well. But it was a period of time where I could watch meaningless TV, play computer games or guitar, listen to music, whatever. As I got more involved with after school “activities,” this time because less frequent, but no less important.
So this scene from the Freaks and Geeks episode “Dead Dogs and Gym Teachers” really struck a chord with me. Not to mention it (and the whole episode) is scored with Who songs. My relationship with The Who is probably the longest and most durable of any band. They were the first rock band I ever really loved and provided a large portion of the soundtrack to my adolescence. As I’ve gotten older, they’ve stayed with me a little better than some of my other musical obsessions, primarily due to the quality of Pete Townsend’s songwriting (especially in the mid-sixties singles).
But this is probably the best scene in great show, telling you all you need to know about Bill Haverchuck without any dialogue. Mad props to the totally underrated Martin Starr (if you haven’t seen the show Party Down, you might want to get on that) for making Bill almost outlandishly dweeby, but completely believable. Nerdery is something most movies and television shows never seem to get right. But Bill feels right to me, and this scene was instrumental in making that happen.