Class is in session and you don't want to skip it. Another classic '80s sitcom is getting a reboot, and we've got some questions. Don't worry, we raised our hands first. In 2021, the original Head of the Class turned 35, and as a gift, it's getting a redo via HBO Max. In the (school) spirit of this remake, we want to know how the original Head of the Class ended. Looks like it's time for a reunion.
How did the original 'Head of the Class' end?
The original Head of the Class, which ran from 1986 to 1991, centered around a group of gifted students in the Individualized Honors Program (IHP) at the fictional Fillmore High School in New York City. Under the watchful eye of Mr. Moore (Howard Hesseman), they were taught that life experiences outside of the classroom were just as important as what you could learn in one.
The students were social pariahs who were far too smart for their own good. Played by a rotating cast of actors that included but were not limited to Robin Givens, Tony O'Dell (Karate Kid), Brian Robbins (current CEO of Paramount Pictures), and Dan Schneider (creator of The Amanda Show, among other things), they were kids who had their own flavor of intelligence.
The show wasn't just goofs and laughs; it also carried important messages, like one of diversity. The show regularly featured characters who were white, Black, Latino, and Indian.
In a conversation with Today, Kimberly Russell, who played Sarah Nevins, commented on the different backgrounds of the characters. "Their social, economic, their political views, everything all burst in this classroom, yet they love each other and got along and I think that’s what the public saw. They saw themselves.”
In 1991, the final two episodes of the series revolved around choosing the school's valedictorian. By that time, Howard Hesseman had left and was replaced by Billy Connolly. After graduation, the school was closed and demolished.
What can we expect from the 'Head of the Class' reboot?
One delightful difference in this new class is the fact that the teacher is a woman, played by Isabella Gomez (One Day at a Time). Something that is carrying over from the original is a diverse class, which was very important to Isabella. Speaking with Variety, she said, "I was stoked that that’s what the cast looks like. It was just, 'Here’s what a normal high school room would look like. And this is how they are.'"
Isabella also brings a Latinx perspective to the Head of the Class. In fact, after she was cast, her character became Colombian, just like Isabella. What's great about the show is there aren't very special episodes that revolve around the fact that she's Latina. "She’s just a teacher and happens to be Latina," said Isabella.
She also stressed that it's important for her to show the students that teachers can make mistakes. We're sure this reboot will be anything but a mistake.
Head of the Class is now streaming on HBO Max.