20 Fun Fan Theories From Classic Teen TV Shows That We Can't Stop Thinking About

List Rules
Vote up the theories that have you reliving the drama.

Of all the genres on television that fans never seem to get tired of, teen TV shows seem to be high on that list - especially those of the classic variety. Whether it's relationship drama in high school or supernatural elements that cause characters to deal with things far beyond their years, fans are always invested. From unanswered questions to character quirks, some passionate fans managed to come up with some interesting theories surrounding the best classic teen shows and series.

Check out these classic teen TV show fan theories below, and don't forget to vote!


  • 1
    50 VOTES

    The Differences Between The Two Main Parents On 'That '70s Show' Is To Juxtapose Sitcom Cliches With Reality

    The Differences Between The Two Main Parents On 'That '70s Show' Is To Juxtapose Sitcom Cliches With Reality
    Photo: Fox

    From Redditor u/MasterLawlz:

    Bob and Midge are meant to represent the stereotypical sitcom mom and dad (dumb and goofy overweight father with an extremely attractive wife) to be juxtaposed with the more realistic parents in the main family (Red and Kitty).

    If it were any other sitcom, Bob and Midge would have been the main characters (or at least the main parents) because they fit the cliche sitcom mom and dad perfectly. Bob is overweight, goofy, and funny and somehow managed to get a housewife that looks like a supermodel.

    Red and Kitty, however, are both more average looking people that work blue-collar jobs to provide for themselves and their children. Red is not goofy and overweight, he's slim and can be outright mean at times. Kitty can be goofy and fun but also has a drinking problem to cope with life at times. They aren't dumb but they aren't overly intelligent either.

    I think this was done intentionally to juxtapose sitcom cliches with reality.

  • 2
    30 VOTES

    The Principal's Name In 'Saved By The Bell' Has A Hidden Meaning

    The Principal's Name In 'Saved By The Bell' Has A Hidden Meaning
    Photo: NBC

    From Redditor u/Zorak6:

    Mr. Belding's name (Bell - Ding) and the name of the show was a pun the entire time

    Now maybe this is completely obvious, but it just dawned on me out of nowhere (seriously, why was I thinking about Mr. Belding all of a sudden?).

    Zack and his friends were constantly getting into trouble and they were seriously heading towards juvenile delinquency time and again. They dealt with all sorts of issues in their angsty high school years; drugs, bullies, divorcing parents, eating disorders, you name it.. But who was always there to intervene and save them (even though they never appreciated it)? Mr. Belding.

    I don't know how I never saw it before, but it is so obvious now. Mr. Belding was the Bell that saved them just in time, every time.

    It's all right, 'cause I'm saved by the bell (ding)

  • 3
    24 VOTES

    'Buffy The Vampire Slayer' Is The Story Of Sunnydale, Not The Title Character

    From a Redditor:

    While Buffy the Vampire Slayer follows a slew of different characters the show really isn't about them. It's about Sunnydale and the Hellmouth that lies under it. Not only does everything in the show happen because of the Hellmouth (which draws all the big badys to Sunnydale) but, when you think about it, Buffys Character progression neither begins or ends with the show. When she's introduced to the show she already knows she's the Slayer. That's cutting out the first step to the [hero's Journey.] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monomyth) And when the show ends Buffys journey is far from over. Slayers all over the world have just awoken and it's assumed that Buffy and her friends must take on the responsibility of rounding them all up and organizing them. Why would the show end right on the cusp of a new Journey?

    Well, because the show wasn't really about Buffy or her friends. It was about Sunnydale, the Hellmouth, and all the trouble it caused. While the show doesn't end with Buffys story, it does end with the destruction of Sunnydale and the Hellmouth. The thing that's been driving the show this whole time is now gone bringing the story to an end. So while the show may have followed Buffy it wasn't really about her. It was about the Hellmouth and all the trouble it caused.

  • 4
    32 VOTES

    Eric Matthews' Character Changes On 'Boy Meets World' As Cory's View Of Him Does

    Eric Matthews' Character Changes On 'Boy Meets World' As Cory's View Of Him Does
    Photo: ABC

    From Redditor u/Anshill3:

    Eric Matthews is a beloved character in Boy Meets World. In the early seasons he wasn't ever a genius, but he was certainly cool. He was a total ladies man who basically ruled John Adams High. But then as the show went on, Eric's IQ took a massive drop. He became pretty much the dumbest man to ever live and no explanation was ever given. Here's the explanation. Boy Meets World is obviously about Cory. The show takes place through Cory's eyes, and that's why Eric changes the way he does. When Cory is younger, he doesn't see Eric as an idiot. He sees him as the "cool older brother." Once Cory gets older, that perception changes and so does Eric's character on the show.

  • 5
    21 VOTES

    Dewey Is The One That Will Become President In 'Malcolm In The Middle'

    Dewey Is The One That Will Become President In 'Malcolm In The Middle'
    Photo: Fox

    From Redditor u/twistedmic:

    Dewey, not Malcolm, is the one that will become President in Malcolm in the Middle.

    In the finale of Malcolm in the Middle, Lois reveals that she intends/believes that Malcolm will eventually become the greatest President America has ever had due to his intelligence and the struggles he has been through. She also claims that Dewey is the one to have an easy life of riches and luxury.

    While Malcolm is unquestionably smart, he also has emotional and psychological baggage and has a tendency to overthink and overact to things.

    Dewey, on the other hand is just as smart as Malcolm (or near enough not to matter) and doesn’t have as much (visible) baggage. He also has the added benefit/experience of being put in the Busey/‘disturbed’ kids class and seeing how they were ignored and exploited.

    Dewey is also much better at dealing with people than anyone else in the family.

    Combine the intelligence, people management/diplomacy skills and his willingness to go out of his way to help people who can’t help/defend themselves (the Buseys and his little brother Jamie) and you get someone almost tailor made to be extremely effective at politics.

  • 6
    21 VOTES

    Prue Halliwell Died A Lot Earlier In 'Charmed' Than We Realize

    Prue Halliwell Died A Lot Earlier In 'Charmed' Than We Realize
    Photo: The WB

    From Redditor u/fan_theory:

    TL;DR Prue's stubbornness got her killed very early on in the series, something the others never discovered because of her clone taking her place

    Prue did not die in the end of season 3; she died as early as in the middle of season one. In season one, there's a episode called "Which Prue Is It, Anyway?", in which Prue clones herself using an incantation in the Book of Shadows, creating two identical clones of herself - this in order to defeat some guy with a crystal sword who wants to kill her for her powers. Anyways, to keep track of who of the three Prues is the 'real' one, Phoebe and Piper decide to color-code them by letting them use different sweaters. The real Prue is supposed to be wearing a black sweater.

    After the death of one of the Prue clones, the two remaining Prues decide to confront the evil guy in his own home. Both Piper and Phoebe think this is a really bad idea and tries to talk the real Prue out of it. Prue insists on it being a good idea, as she doesn't want to risk the evil guy finding her first and therefore havníng her sisters being exposed to potential harm. However, as they enter Prue's room, they walk in on Prue and her clone being busy adjusting their clothes. They are both wearing the same outfits as in the scene before, so why would they both be readjusting their clothes like that? My explanation for this is that they changed sweaters with each other in order to be able to go through with the risky plan, as they know Piper and Phoebe will do everything in their power to stop Prue from going. As Prue has forseen, the two other Haliwell sisters demands to talk to the real Prue - the one presumably in the black sweater - in order to stop her from going, as the clones' death have proven to be non-harming to the real Prue. The Prue in the blue sweater is forced to wait outside when they have their talk. When the others are done talking, they notice that the Prue in the blue sweater is missing - she has decided to carry through with the plan.

    As Piper and Phoebe has warned her for, the ill-constructed plan fails and the blue sweatered Prue dies at the hands of the evil guy. The Prue in the black sweater feels this but does not disappear - it appears that she really is the real Prue. Here we come to what is my final conclusion - the incantation Prue read from the Book of Shadows created two clones with all of Prue's memories and experiences who would stay as long as they were needed. When the real Prue - the one in the blue sweater - died, she left behind two sisters who not only were very dependant on her but still also possessed fairly weak powers. They would - at the time - be easily defeated by almost any enemy. Because of this, the remaining Prue clone had to stay, as the spell obliged her to stick around for as long as her presence was needed.