00s | 90s

A Reminder That 'Popular' Was The Most Important Teen Drama On Television

I'm about to remind you of the most iconic WB series of all time, and I'm willing to physically fight you on it if you disagree.

Remember Popular? The show about high school kids doing high school things living high school lives? It was probably the best thing to ever grace our television, and gave us the most iconic quote of all time.


If you're fuzzy on the details, it was pretty wild. Two girls, Brooke and Sam, totally despise each other. But then their parents get married and now they're family. The girls now have to live together, despite Brooke being a preppy cheerleader, and Sam being the unpopular journalist.

The show as basically The O.C. on steroids...but before The O.C. even aired. Love triangles, bullying, and overall nastiness were the highlight of the show. Every character was in some way trying to be, or remain, popular. It was written by Glee, American Horror Story, and Scream Queens mastermind Ryan Murphy, which honestly explains a lot.

Like Mary Cherry.


And Nicole.

And the hunky hot jock, Josh Ford.

Wiki Fandom

The show also dealt with some crazy serious issues, like when Sugar Daddy went to rehab for being a compulsive eater. They made him chew a donut 5 times, spit it out, look at it, then asked if he wanted to eat it again. Even I turned off donuts for a while, and that doesn't happen easily.

Or what about that time that Harrison got FRICKIN' CANCER, then tried to kill himself, and I thought my world was going to end? Look at this smile. This smile didn't deserve the life he was handed. He deserved to be happy with Brooke, not Sam, which is who he truly loved.


Or when poor, sweet Carmen was almost taken advantage of by a college boy at a frat party?

I could go on, but perhaps the craziest moment of all was the episode I Know What You Did Last Spring Break, when it's discovered that Harrison, who has just returned from Yemen, has Rift Valley fever and is now infecting everyone...which is BAD NEWS. Also there's a killer in the school.

Karin Caps

April Tuna and Bobbi are the prime suspects.


So many secrets get revealed, including the fact that Brooke and Harrison had sex, but then even after that he and Sam kiss and make up...so what is going on?

You can watch that whole episode here.

The series finale is nothing if not true to Ryan Murphy form, as prom rolls around and Nicole tries to ruin everyone's life. When Brooke manages to intervene and stop that, Nicole gets it personally (duh) and decides to HIT BROOKE WITH HER CAR AND KILL HER. Talk about petty!

But now that we've gone through the basic plot (because the full series synopsis can only be understood by watching the show from beginning to end), are you ready to see what everyone looks like know?


Leslie Bibb as Brooke McQueen

Bibb was 25 when the show premiered in 1999. Since then, she's gone on to appear in movies like Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, the Iron Man series, and Law Abiding Citizen. She has also appeared in many TV shows, and even the new Netflix special To The Bone.

Carly Pope as Sam McPherson


Pope found her way on the television scene, starring in 24, Outlaw, Suits, and Arrow. She originally auditioned for the role of Brooke, but the casting directors liked her better as Sam.

Tammy Lynn Michaels as Nicole Julian

Michaels stopped acting in 2005 when she became pregnant with then-wife Melissa Ethridge. She gave birth to twins, Johnnie and Miller. She's now a stay-at-home mom, but not before going through a nasty court battle with ex-wife Ethridge.

Christopher Gorham as Harrison John

Mental Floss

Gorham got ripped, and starred for four years on the hit show Covert Affairs. He's currently on the show 2 Broke Girls. Fun fact: he and Anel Lopez Gorham, who played Poppita Fresh on Popular, got married when the show ended! They're still together and have 3 kids together.

Bryce Johnson as Josh Ford

Johnson is still a heartthrob, and hasn't avoided teen dramas at all. He was a recurring character for 6 years on the popular show Pretty Little Liars. He's been very active in Hollywood since Popular ended, and he's now married with one child.

Tamara Mello as Lily Esposito-Ford


Mello has had many guest spots on shows and in movies, but Popular remains her claim to fame by far. She was also in the cult classic She's All That.

Sara Rue as Carmen Ferrara

Rue has been consistently working since Popular ended. She had a recurring role on The Big Bang Theory and currently stars on Impastor. She will be in the upcoming series A Series of Unfortunate Events. Other credits include: Mom, Malibu Country, Rules of Engagement, Less Than Perfect, and Bones.

Leslie Grossman as Mary Cherry

Grossman will be in the upcoming season of Ryan Murphy's American Horror Story, and also starred on What I Like About You with Amanda Bynes.

Diane Delano as Bobbi Glass


Delano played the crazy teacher Bobbi Glass, and she's been acting ever since! She appeared on The Ellen Show as well as ER.

Adria Dawn as April Tuna

Dawn still continues to work in Hollywood. She's an actress, producer, and acting coach. Dawn has two movies coming out by 2018, one of which she both acted in and produced.

Ron Lester as Sugar Daddy


Lester underwent gastric bypass surgery and lost 400lbs. Unfortunately, in 2016, he passed away from liver and kidney failure. Before he passed, Lester spoke about his regrets with getting weight-loss surgery.

"Am I alive? Yes. Am I happy? No. Did I throw away my career to be skinny? Yes. I wouldn't do [the surgery] again. I would much rather have died happy, rich, and kept my status and gone out on top."

Do you remember watching Popular?