ARC Review: Saved By the Bell (Graphic Novel) – Joelle Sellner

Saved By the Bell – Joelle Sellner, Chynna Clugston Flores (Illustrator), Tim Fish (Illustrator)

25916650The classic TV series gets an update for today’s brand new high-schoolers as the coolest kids at Bayside High start their freshman year!

All your favorite characters – Zack, Slater, Kelly, Lisa, Screech and Jessie (and Mr. Belding, of course!) – are starting freshman year at Bayside High, trading in brick phones and mullets for iPhones and Twitter accounts. Does Lisa’s fashion show get on the air, and will Screech ever leave her alone? Will Jessie get that A+? And, most importantly, who’s Kelly going to go out with – preppy Zack or new star athlete A.C. Slater? It’s alright, ‘cause we’re saved by the bell!

Release Date: July 1st, 2015

Thank you to NetGalley for providing a free copy in exchange for an honest review!

I grew up watching Saved By the Bell and, because of my sister, was a Zack Morris fan (she loves Mark-Paul Gosselaar), so this graphic novel had me feeling like Jessie Spano on caffeine pills.

I'm so excited! I'm so excited! I'm so...scared.

I’m so excited! I’m so excited! I’m so…scared.

What I liked:

-well, the whole concept, to be honest. I think it’s really fun that they “modernized” the classic TV show for the next generation. You don’t have to be a fan of the original show to enjoy the stories – they do a good job of introducing the characters, though, admittedly, if you’ve watched the show, you can imagine the characters’ voices.

-the art is cute and quirky. Maybe not as amazing as the new Archie comics (they’re adorable!), but it almost has a 1980’s quality to it that fits with the story.

-the stories are short but similar to the TV show – in fact, I think a couple of the stories even share episode titles – and they all have the “lesson” or “moral” at the end.

-Slater is still a tool. Which isn’t necessarily a good thing, but at least they didn’t try to change his character.

-I both liked and disliked that the stories focused on other characters, instead of just Zack. Since he was the protagonist in the show, I wouldn’t have minded having him as my “guide” through the graphic novel (I mean, really – they didn’t even make use of his ability to freeze time!!).



What I didn’t like:

-I have no idea why Kevin the Robot was such a major character when he played a minor role on the show. More than that, there were no upgrades to his appearance, so it was weird to have a very eighties robot in the middle of Bayside’s class of 2015.

It’s a quick read, light-hearted and fun, and it’s a great way to introduce a new generation to the magical world of Bayside High where the dudes are a notch above surfers, and the cheerleaders are BFFs with feminists, and Valley students are the enemy.


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