Mark-Paul Gosselaar Recalls Problematic ‘Saved By the Bell’ Episode

Mark-Paul Gosselaar Recalls Problematic Saved By the Bell Episode
Phillip Faraone/WireImage; Al Zeta/Getty Photographs

Mark-Paul Gosselaar isn’t happy with all the pieces his Saved by the Bell character, Zack Morris, needed to do on the teenager sitcom. 

“By way of story traces, there was one the place I used to be principally whoring out Lisa Turtle [played by Lark Voorhies] to cost folks to kiss her with out her consent,” Gosselaar, 49, stated on the September 3 episode of the “Pod Meets World” podcast. “That was a troublesome one, which we needed to preface the episode by saying, ‘We don’t condone this. We’re right here simply to debate it however that is previously.” 

The episode, titled “The Lisa Card,” was the second episode of the ‘90s sitcom’s first season, by which Lisa panicked after going over her dad’s bank card restrict. In an effort to assist his pal out, Zack charged boys of their grade $1 every to “lose their Lisa playing cards,”  as in, kiss Lisa with out her consent. 

A second episode Gosselaar — who portrayed Zack Morris on all 4 seasons of the unique sequence in addition to Saved By the Bell: The School Years and returned to visitor star on the 2020 reboot — recalled feeling uncomfortable with was season 3’s racially insensitive “Operating Zack,” the place Zack pretends to be of Native American first rate for a category challenge. 

“Seeing Zack Morris in a full headless, that was one we needed to be delicate on,” he defined. “There’s simply stuff you simply wouldn’t movie these days … and rightfully so, it’s inappropriate. We’ve advanced as human beings.” 

Mark-Paul Gosselaar Recalls Problematic Saved By the Bell Episode

Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Lark Voorhies on ‘Saved By the Bell’
NBC/YouTube

Gosselaar famous that on his personal Saved By the Bell rewatch podcast, “Zack to the Future,” he would typically discover himself not sure of the way to strategy sure subjects, including that there “are issues in each single episode that we might select” which are deemed problematic. (The podcast lined the primary three seasons of SBTB however went on indefinite hiatus when it didn’t discover a new podcast community.)

“And you end up at that time, you’re attempting to not be unfavourable. It’s a watch get together. Folks need you to have fun the product,” he continued. “It’s fragile however total you’re attempting to be optimistic concerning the work, saying, ‘It was a distinct time. And we don’t condone that now however that is what it was. Get pleasure from!’” 

Gosselaar did focus on the problems with “The Lisa Card” throughout a 2020 episode of the podcast — which he cohosted with Dashiell Driscoll, a author on the Peacock revival sequence — and shared that he felt “conflicted” concerning the story line whereas taking pictures it. 

“It wasn’t as carefree and harmless because the final episode,” he stated on the time. “However possibly it’s as a result of I’m watching it by means of these eyes and never the eyes of a 13-year-old or the viewers that watched it again within the ’90s.”

He later added that the duo would strategy additional conditions in an identical matter, saying, “We’re not gonna say that we don’t see a number of the morally abhorrent or dated conditions and responses to sure issues, however we’re additionally right here to present you a enjoyable podcast. It’s a celebration of Saved by the Bell.”

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Saved By the Bell ran on NBC for 4 seasons from 1989 to 1993 and starred Gosselaar and Vorhees, 49, together with Tiffani Thiessen, Mario Lopez, Elizabeth Berkley and Dustin Diamond. The present was later revived for Saved By the Bell: The School Years, which lasted for one season. Peacock revived the sequence in 2020, with Lopez and Berkley as stars and government producers. Gosselaar, Thiessen and Voorhies all made visitor appearances.