I started watching the show because Vineet
put it in an external hard-drive and gave it to me. It lay there for a good one year before I thought I should probably see what it’s about. When I watched the first episode, I knew I was hooked. For those who have seen the series would know what it meant to them – watching it, episode after episode. But those who haven’t, this something you should not miss out on.
I don’t think there’s anyone who cannot relate to The Wonder Years. Young and old, women and men and especially, boys and girls. Perhaps every emotion, situation, problem that you have been through and every pain, heartbreak, joy that you have felt, this show lets you experience it all over again.
Remember how you, as a kid, had fights with your best friend and didn’t know how to get past the awkwardness? Or the massive crush you had on your school teacher and you would give the world to be in her good books? Dealing with the sudden death of someone you have utmost respect for (I cried in that episode), or when your parents root for your best friend in a game of basket ball as you cheer for him (quite moving) or when your dad is away for long and you realize what family and home and love is all about (cried the most in that one!) or when your high school sweetheart told you, “I have met someone.” with tears in eyes, or when your sibling, who you can’t stand even for a minute, faces failure and you just stand by him, with all your support… the instances are endless.
It also reminds you of the values that we all must imbibe – like how it’s wrong to judge someone based on their physical attributes, or how it’s important to be good to others, how it’s wrong to break someone’s heart, how you have to be there for others when they need you. It also reminds you that love finds its way back, now matter how much you push it away without knowing.
You fall in love with the characters. The show has six seasons and is in flash back with the narrator’s voice-over to support every scene. The narration makes the show what it is – funny, emotional, meaningful. The series primarily captures Kevin Arnold’s growing up years. The show is just sunlit perfection because you can feel the anxiousness, excitement and pain just as well as the characters. I loved Kevin’s parents, Jack & Norma. The most amazing parents (just as your parents and mine). When you see the show you know the other side, what we put them through, knowingly or unknowingly. It also makes you realize what they really mean to us! I have cried watching a few episodes thinking how much my family means to me.
Parents must watch the show too! They would just get such deep insight into every growing child’s psyche. Although the show is based in 1960-70s America, it is just as relevant today. May be because what they have tried to portray cuts across time – dealing with a pimple or dealing with death or your dad having bad days at work or your mother revolving her life around home, cooking, children, family and feeling ignored; or the first love or even the first heart break.
One has to watch it to enjoy and absorb the innocence of it all. You would love to grow old with Kevin Arnold. Or may be, you would love to become a child with him again.
The last episode moved me to no end. These parting words by the narrator just summed up every childhood that there has ever been, including yours and mine.
Growing up happens in a heartbeat.
One day you’re in diapers; next day you’re gone.
But the memories of childhood stay with you
For the long haul.
I remember a place…a town…a house
like a lot of other houses…
A yard like a lot of other yards…
On a street like a lot of other streets.
And the thing is…After all these years,
I still look back…with WONDER.
The final episode also makes you realize how you have left behind the most amazing years of your life. Your friends, who you saw everyday for years together, have now moved to different countries and seeing them just once has become a luxury. Your life has turned out to be very different from what you had imagined as a child. You have answers to many questions that you had when you were young but you have more questions now than ever.
It just reminds you that your childhood is yours to cherish forever. Your childhood forms your wonder years.