30 Thoughts About The ‘Saved By The Bell’ Episode With Zack Attack To Celebrate The Show’s 30th Anniversary

saved by the bell zack attack


It’s somehow been thirty years since Saved by the Bell first premiered, and if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to take a moment to scream into a paper bag because the last thing I need this morning is a reminder of how old I am.

Saved by the Bell was an institution; a hallmark in the lives of the lucky few who were in those formative early teenage years between 1989 and 1992. For everyone else, it has become a relic of an unrecognizable era.

I would have to think that for a 13-year-old watching Saved by the Bell today, it must be like watching something portraying life in a foreign country. That’s not to say a 13-year-old wouldn’t immediately appreciate it. How could you not? The show portrayed a utopia-like version of the life of a high school student.

Now I don’t know if “Rockumentary,” which was the show’s 22nd episode in its third season, is the best episode of Saved by the Bell ever, but it’s easily one of their most memorable. The episode tells the story of Zack Attack, their rise to stardom, unfortunate break-up, and eventual reunion.

It’s fantastic.

Those are just one of several thoughts I had about the episode while re-watching it recently, thoughts that I wrote down because two minutes into the episode, I realized that this called for a Google Doc.

1. The episode should have opened with Zack Attack performing the show’s theme song. Kind of a missed opportunity there.

2. Hey, it’s Casey Kasem. Sweet sweater. 1991 really was a weird time in terms of fashion, wasn’t it?

3. Casey’s mic isn’t plugged in. Guys, Casey’s mic isn’t plugged in!

4. Is Casey Kasem still alive? I don’t think so. Nope. He’s not.

5. I know that the good folks over at Funny or Die have the topic pretty well covered, but Zack Morris isn’t just trash—he’s a pretty sleazy dude.

Between telling two fans that he can relate to them because he “used to sneak into Paula Abdul’s dressing room twice a week” and shamelessly hitting on both a female reporter and his female publicist, you have to imagine that the #MeToo Movement would not be kind to old Zack Morris. He’s a creep.

6. Really Zack? You snuck into Paula Abdul’s dressing room twice a week? I’m calling bullshit on that one. Paula Abdul was a huge star in 1991 and not even someone with the ability to freeze time would have been able to sneak into her dressing room once, let alone twice.

Actually, if you could freeze time and the people around you, I suppose it’s possible. Were there limits to Zack’s superpowers? If not, then there should have been because he definitely wasn’t only using them for good.

With great power comes great responsibility, Zack! It’s not “with great power comes the ability to be an unchecked pervert lurking unbeknownst in women’s dressing rooms.”

Zack Morris was a menace to society.

7. Speaking of microphones not being plugged in, no one has microphones when the band is practicing in the garage. They do have amps, though, and based on everything we know about Slater, he’s most likely a heavy hitter on the drums.

As a result, there’s no way anyone in the band can hear the vocals and seeing as how harmonies are apparently a big part of their sound, this seems problematic to their development.

8. Screech not even pretending to know how to play the keyboard seems problematic as well. He looks like he’s an anti-dog person giving pity pets to an old woman’s Yorkie.

9. Let’s go back to Slater for a moment because him threatening to kill Screech if Screech doesn’t take off his Pope costume feels like a bigger deal than it was made out to be.

Slater’s on steroids, right? Is that confirmed? Either way, he made threats of violence towards a co-worker and someone needs to tell HR.

10. “Fate was running by their door,” Casey says and then *BAM* Brian FATE comes in, saying he was running by. Casey my man, you’re killing it!

11. Brian Fate is looking for a new band after his last group, the Beach Buddies, broke up because “they aren’t buddies anymore.”

You’ve piqued my interest, Brian Fate. What happened with the Beach Buddies, Brian Fate? Did one of them threaten to kill the other over an article of clothing?

12. “Did We Ever Have a Chance” is an absolutely terrible song, even by 1991 standards.


13. Wait a second. Where’s Jessie? She should be in this, but she’s not. And it’s not because she lacked musical talent. She was part of the girl group Hot Sundae with Lisa and Kelly. Jessie can sing. What gives?

14. Wait, was it because of the drugs? Was getting back into music too hard for her given her experiences the last time around?

That makes sense then.

Good for you, Jessie. You’re not missing much. Zack is a terrible songwriter.

15. I will say that despite their issues with microphones, the show actually did a really good job showing that as a band gets bigger and more successful, they upgrade their gear.

Screech gets a legit keyboard stand, Zack looks to be rocking a Gibson Les Paul, and (of course) Slater is playing a drum set with two bass drums.

16. Easy with the hyperbole there, Billbox.

17. Also, Billbox sounds like “pillbox,” which sounds like a magazine for old people. Seeing as old people are probably the only people out there that still read magazines, maybe starting up an old-people lifestyle magazine called Pillbox would be a smart move.

I call dibs on this idea.

18. I don’t trust this Mindy Wallace lady at all. She’s giving off Yoko vibes from the jump. I’m going to be keeping my eye on her.

19. At around the seven-minute mark during a press conference, Kelly answers a question about them being friends, saying that they are “friends first and nothing could ever come between us.” In the business, we would call this quote ominous.


20. As for this press conference, it’s their first, but according to Mindy, the band has sold five million copies of “Did We Ever Have a Chance.” Mindy, you are terrible at your job if this is the band’s first press conference. You should have held at least two or three by now. Stop conspiring to break up the band and get your act together.

21. Also, Mindy is totally going to break this band up and the fact that no one in the band sees this coming is as much their fault as it is hers.

22. Guys, it’s the Grammys, but it’s not the Grammys.

Just like it’s Michael Jackson and Madonna but not Michael Jackson and Madonna.

23. Is the “Grammy” trophy really a CD glued onto a small pedestal? Sometimes I can’t help but think that NBC gave the show’s producers $1000 to do the whole season and wished them luck.

For example, earlier in the episode, the hallway that the band was walking through to get to their big gig definitely looked like the hallway of a nondescript office building somewhere in Burbank and the room the afterparty is in after the award show was definitely a break room in that same building.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the concert shots were filmed in Ted from Accounting’s office while he was out sick.

24. Slater is probably the worst friend ever to Screech and I don’t know why Screech even hangs out with him. Actually, why does Screech hang out with any of these people? They’re all assholes to him. Find new friends, Screech. You owe it to yourself.

25. Screech does get some comeuppance at the after-party, pulling the old “don’t hang out with that dude, he has a crazy disease” move to steal the ladies that had flocked to Slater. The fact that they didn’t then show Screech in the middle of an orgy is a shame, although possibly (and probably) for the best.

26. Screech also goes on to leak to the press about the problems with the band and we can’t support rats, man. You have to keep that shit in house, Screech. I don’t care if they did offer you a free ticket to Disney because you can definitely afford a ticket to Disney BECAUSE YOU’VE SOLD FIVE MILLION COPIES OF YOUR DEBUT SINGLE.

Do you think Screech’s accountant is scamming him? Do you think Screech even has an accountant? I bet Slater is stealing his money. Or Zack.

The fact that there are two possible people who could be stealing money from Screech and those two people are his best friends tell you everything you need to know.

Get new friends, Screech.

27. I told you Mindy was going to break up the band. You didn’t listen to me. She was all about Zack from the beginning and it was only a matter of time before she got rid of the rest of the band. She’s not smooth, but she’s definitely effective.

Zack wants to go see Slater in the hospital, but can’t because they need to go to London. This is Zack Morris, Mindy. By all accounts, he’s a big effin’ star at this point. Things can change and plans can be altered (especially for celebrities). Why is Mindy taking such a hard stance here?

Oh, because she’s the worst. That’s why.

28. Lisa going on to become an American Gladiator kind of surprised me.


29. I love how they show Slater polishing his trophies in the garage and then as he leaves, putting on his race helmet as if the race is right outside the garage.

I’m serious. Each season of Saved By the Bell couldn’t have cost more than $1,000.

30. Guys, it was all a dream. It was all Zack’s dream.

I’d have to imagine having dreams in which they are successful and super famous is pretty common among people who play in bands and play music.

However, it is kind of weird that Zack’s fantasy about his band finding stardom includes him breaking up the band and striking out on his own, only to be brought back after his best friend suffers a serious injury.

That’s kind of messed up.

Also, Zack, you’re a horrendous songwriter.

Ryan harbors a constant fear of losing his keys, prefers flip flops, and will always choose cereal if it's an option. He maintains his own blog, Giddy Up America, and has previously contributed work to UPROXX & Heavy. Ryan is on Twitter: @ryanoconnell79