11 Times Teen Shows Handled Serious Topics Really Irresponsibly, And 11 Times They Actually Did A Great Job
Degrassi didn't handle everything perfectly, but they still got a lot right.
We asked the BuzzFeed Community to tell us examples of when teen shows handled serious topics poorly, and some examples of times they handled them really well. Here's what they had to say!
🚨 Warning: Spoilers ahead!! 🚨
Note: The following contain mentions of sexual assault, eating disorders, suicide, and other sensitive topics.
1. Handled poorly: When Hanna's and Mona's eating disorders were never properly addressed on Pretty Little Liars.
2. Handled well: When J.J. revealed that the bruises on his body were from his father on Outer Banks.
3. Handled poorly: When Blair had a miscarriage and it was pretty much never mentioned again on Gossip Girl.
4. Handled well: When Spike got pregnant at just 13 on Degrassi Junior High and chose to keep the baby, and the show was realistic about the difficulties of being a teen parent.
5. Handled poorly: When Cheryl attempted suicide and never received any help afterward on Riverdale.
6. Handled well: When Archie's dad, Fred, died on Riverdale and they held a memorial for him after the actor who played him, Luke Perry, died in real life.
7. Handled poorly: When the severity of Marley's eating disorder was never properly addressed on Glee.
8. Handled well: When it was revealed that Craig's father was physically abusing him on Degrassi: The Next Generation.
9. Handled poorly: When Spike attempted to rape Buffy and it was used for his character development on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
10. Handled well: When Buffy's mom died and the show realistically explored Buffy's grief on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
11. Handled poorly: When Kelly's friend Amanda's eating disorder was resolved in one episode on Beverly Hills, 90210.
12. Handled well: When Adrian's baby was born stillborn on The Secret Life of the American Teenager.
13. Handled poorly: When Maya was framed as being in the wrong for protecting Tristan from a predatory teacher on Degrassi: The Next Generation.
14. Handled well: When Manny became pregnant at 14 and decided to have an abortion on Degrassi: The Next Generation.
15. Handled poorly: When Nathan was implied to have purposely crashed the race car and then never received any serious help in the aftermath on One Tree Hill.
16. Handled well: When Jimmy brought a gun to school, (unintentionally) shot Peyton, and then killed himself on One Tree Hill.
17. Handled poorly: When Landry killed a man who was trying to rape Tyra, then they covered it up, and it was pretty much never addressed again on Friday Night Lights.
18. Handled well: When Polo killed Marina and then dealt with extreme guilt and eventually attempted suicide on Elite.
19. Handled poorly: When Aria and Ezra's student-teacher relationship was completely romanticized, and they even ended up getting married, on Pretty Little Liars.
20. Handled well: When Maeve chose to have an abortion on Sex Education.
21. Handled poorly: Nearly every single storyline on 13 Reasons Why.
22. And finally, handled well: When Shawn's drinking began negatively affecting his behavior, and he discovered his family's history of alcoholism, on Boy Meets World.
Note: Some submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.