Surviving high school can seem like a nearly impossible task to anyone, but if you’re the new kid, you might as well scale Everest instead. Will Mackenzie certainly has his work cut out for him in MTV’s new scripted comedy series, “The Inbetweeners,” and if the trailer is any indication, his transition into an entirely different realm of student life could leave him scarred. Still, there’s always hope–even in the darkest places–and since we (barely) made it through the experience ourselves (and are SO adult now), we’ve decided to give Will a hand.
As movies and TV love a good starting-from-scratch story, we racked our brains for tales of how former onscreen new kids navigated big moves, the great switch from public to private education or even exiling at the demands of a witch’s council (the usual). Check out what Will could learn from five green prototypes, and make sure to offer your own tips if you’ve ever had to adjust to new places and faces.
Sabrina Spellman: On “Sabrina, The Teenage Witch,” the quintessential girl next door discovered a magical family secret upon moving in with her two aunts (who happened to be witches). A new school and new powers spelled disaster for the spunky teen (oops, the school bully’s now a pineapple!), but if Will can learn one thing from the smart mouth, it’s that sticking to your guns–even when the world around you is changing–will lead you down the right path.
Tai Fraiser: Tai was an insecure pipsqueak when she first landed at Bronson Alcott High School, but the outcast of “Clueless” developed into the Queen Bee, ultimately betraying the person that first gave her popularity. What can Will learn from Tai (besides not to wear plaid-on-plaid)? Never bite the hand that feeds you.
Will Smith: Philadelphia’s infamous class clown got a culture shock on “Fresh Prince” when he left his blue-collar Philadelphia neighborhood to live with his relatives in Bel Air. Amid caviar lunches and jacuzzi parties, though, Will always held on to his personal style, and served as a solid example that staying true your roots will help when you might feel lost.
Rory Gilmore: Rory remained in her hometown until college, but was nudged into private school by her mother on “Gilmore Girls” for a better shot at the Ivy League. Rory was smart by nature, but never had to play social politics until her first day at Chilton, and quickly learned the people who are ostensibly your enemies can turn out to be good pals.
Cady Heron: Having grown up in an African tribe, American public school was about as strange as it got for new kid Cady Stanton. She started off on the right foot in “Mean Girls” by joining the math team, but ultimately compromised her work ethic to get a guy’s attention. It’d be hard to advise a high school dude to steer clear of girls, but…uhh…everything in moderation, Will.
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