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17 Teen Shows That Prove The '00s Were The Real Golden Age Of TV

They don't make 'em like this anymore.

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1. One Tree Hill (2003 – 2012)

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Kidnappings, stalkers, teen marriage, a dog eating a man's heart – One Tree Hill always went there. You probably thought you deeply resonated with Peyton Sawyer and spent your schooldays doodling "people always leave" even though it didn't apply to your life. Also, Pete Wentz guest starred and that will never not be iconic.

2. Gilmore Girls (2000 – 2007)

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Gilmore Girls made you dream of living in a cosy small town and becoming a regular in your local diner. So timeless, it got a revival a decade later. You probably had a crush on Jess because you'd never seen a boy with nice jackets and books before.

3. Everwood (2002 – 2006)

Warner Bros

You came for a cute story about a teen piano prodigy and stayed because Everwood had a whole lot of heart. An added bonus is now you get to claim you ~knew~ Chris Pratt before he got big.

4. Gossip Girl (2007 – 2012)

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You got to watch rich kids look glamorous and engage in ridiculous drama, which is all the makings of good TV. You were either a hardcore Chuck/Blair fan or you thought no man was good enough for her. You also think Dan being revealed as Gossip Girl is riddled with plot holes (because it is).


5. Veronica Mars (2004 – 2007)

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Smart, witty, and above-literally-anyone's-shit, Veronica Mars was who you wanted to be when you grew up. You're still bitter that Piz even had the audacity to exist because it was Logan, or nothing tbh. But it wasn't all savage comebacks and star-crossed romance; the ~mystery~ was great, too.

7. 8 Simple Rules (2002 – 2005)

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8 Simple Rules refreshingly didn't pit girls against each other. It made it okay to be the nerdy introvert girl and equally okay to be popular and into your looks. If you had a sister you obsessively watched the show and decided which one of you was Bridget and which was Kerry.

8. Greek (2007 – 2011)

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The female friendships were endearing and strong and we actually got to witness guys having meaningful friendships beyond bro-dom. Plus, Casey and Cappie literally drove off into the sunset together so the wait was worth it.


10. The Hills (2006 – 2010)

Trifecta Entertainment

The sheer mention of Justin Bobby would make you laugh and if anyone asked, you couldn't explain why. You think about the iconic "I wanna forgive you and I wanna forget you" line on a regular basis and you still feel personally betrayed by Lauren's decision not to go to Paris over an undeserving guy.

11. 90210 (2008 – 2013)


None of the characters actually looked like teenagers and the storylines included arson, hit-and-runs, and sex tapes, but you watched anyway because the drama was just unmissably good.

12. Make It or Break It (2009 – 2012)


Make It or Break It was great for those of us fascinated by gymnastics but more likely to watch a fictional TV shows than a competition. It obviously delivered on theatrics, romance, and great female friendships, but actually managed to cover serious topics like eating disorders, too.


13. The O.C. (2003 – 2007)

Warner Bros

Who doesn't have a soft spot for unlikely friendships, steamy romance, and wholesome families making up interfaith holidays like Chrismukkah? You probably discovered a lot of your favourite emo bands thanks to Seth Cohen, and just thinking of this show brings back years of teen angst and an aching craving for a bagel.

14. Unfabulous (2004 – 2007)


Emma Roberts before her "surprise bitch" days starred in another one of those shows that made you wish you had a quirky juice bar to hang out with your friends after school. Unfabulous had the best theme song ever, weird fashion choices, and wonderfully nerdy friendships.

15. Dawson's Creek (1998 – 2003)

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Dawson's Creek became less about Dawson as it progressed and proved that the protagonist doesn't always have to end up with the girl. The show was a sunny escape and the dialogue that had teens consistently waxing poetic left us watching with a feeling of dreamy nostalgia. Not to mention it gave us that one GIF of Dawson crying.

16. Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997 – 2003)

20th Television

All the teen drama that comes with every other squad of misfits, but also demons. To this day, you're either adamantly Team Angel or Team Spike.

17. Friday Night Lights (2006 – 2011)

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You cheered whenever Tim Riggins spoke from the heart, laughed every time Tami said "come on y'all", and squirmed with secondhand embarrassment when Matt asked the coach for permission to marry Julie. Indisputably the most powerful series to come of the '00s, Friday Night Lights actually made you care about football.

Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose.