How Saved By The Bell’s Zack Morris ‘Failed Upward’ For The Peacock Reboot

Saved by the Bell Zack Morris Mark-Paul Gosselaar Peacock
(Image credit: Saved by the Bell Trailer Screenshot / YouTube / Peacock)
(Image credit: Saved by the Bell Trailer Screenshot / YouTube / Peacock)

If anyone in TV land can fail and make it higher up the ladder of life, it is Saved by the Bell’s Zack Morris. In case you somehow missed the headlines, the beloved sitcom has been revived for NBCUniversal’s streaming service, Peacock. So, how does Zack manage to continue succeed despite failures? The new Saved by the Bell executive producer has some thoughts.

In the Peacock reboot, Zack Morris has advanced from his days of teen hijinks into getting voted in as California’s governor. It is that incredible leap and Zack’s subsequent decisions in office that serve as the jumping-off-point for Peacock’s Saved by the Bell. If you have followed the upcoming show’s development, you know that not a lot has changed about Zack Morris, which is part of the fun.

To think that Mark-Paul Gosselaar might not have been approached early on about reprising his role as Zack! After some back and forth about scheduling, Gosselaar’s return was arranged, and Zack sounds quite necessary to the series, as Saved by the Bell’s executive producer Tracey Wigfield told TV Guide:

It seemed really fun that he was exactly the same. He's just avoiding doing math homework and trying to con people out of fifty dollars or whatever. He's failed upward and failed upward. I feel like that's kind of what happens to a guy like that, especially in California.

If you caught the trailer for Peacock’s Saved by the Bell, you know how true it is that Zack has not changed all that much. He is a father now, so there is that change, but arguably not much else. His son Mac is one of the students that the reboot will follow. On that note, Mark-Paul Gosselaar went all-in going blonde again to reprise his famous role as the troublemaker from the classic show.

In related news, Zack and Kelly are still together as a married couple in the reboot. The original Saved by the Bell’s executive producer, Peter Engel, had a less optimistic update on how the teen sweethearts’ marriage turned out. Engel believed they would have broken up. The question is if they have stayed together because Zack is less of a jerk circa 2020.

Mark-Paul Gosselaar had expressed an interest in making Zack less of one as he reprised the role. How much the script allowed him to do that remains to be seen. Zack Morris is very much up to his same old tricks in the reboot from the sound of things, which is not entirely surprising. It seems Peacock’s Saved by the Bell is leaning into its original characters’ original personalities.

In that vein, Elizabeth Berkley was ready to pay homage to Saved by the Bell’s most legendary moments, and fans probably are too. Slater, Lisa Turtle, Zack, and Kelly will all be back and the wait isn't too much longer. The new Saved by the Bell starring Mark-Paul Gosselaar and his co-stars will begin streaming on Peacock on Wednesday, November 25. For more entertainment offerings, check out 2021’s winter/spring schedule.

Britt Lawrence

Like a contented Hallmark movie character, Britt happily lives in the same city she grew up in. Along with movies and television, she is passionate about competitive figure skating. She has been writing about entertainment for 5 years, and as you may suspect, still finds it as entertaining to do as when she began.