Watch The Saved By The Bell Cast Return To Bayside With Jimmy Fallon

The past year has been an incredibly rich one for fans of Saved by the Bell. (Not a sentence one has to form very often.) It all reached an apex of sorts on The Tonight Show, which featured Jimmy Fallon taking a trip back to his high school days at Bayside, specifically the day when he told friends Zack, Kelly, Jessie and Slater that he was leaving. It’s pretty much the best thing since Saved by the Bell.

Nothing dredges the depths of post-modernism more gleefully than a Saved by the Bell sketch with the original actors commenting on their careers after SBTB. Beyond just a guilty pleasure, this is “scraped off of the electric chair pleasure,” as we watch Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Tiffani Thiessen, Elizabeth Berkley, Mario Lopez and Dennis Haskins don their old duds and essentially perform the hits for Jimmy Fallon and his audience. As soon as Bayside’s main hall shows up, with the walls covered in episode-specific posters, my face locked into a permagrin. And then Zack walked out, and the crowd screamed for like twenty minutes or something. Time doesn’t work the same in this universe.

From the costumes to the props to the jokes, there was nothing imperfect about this. The theme song gets a reference. Slater’s grin is as shit-eating as ever, and he’s wearing tearaway clothes for impromptu dance numbers. Lopez and Berkley don’t look like they’ve aged past Saved by the Bell: The College Years (which also gets a reference).


Fallon’s career and missed chances with Nicole Kidman gets joked about. ”I’m so excited!” and Zack Attack show up. And there was no better quote on TV on Wednesday than this.

I got Kelly Kapowski pregnant.

This was definitely better than the Saved by the Bell Lifetime movie, although that was amazing in its own special way. Watching these actors just settle right back into the roles that launched them into different orbits, it’s more fulfilling than actually seeing them return for an hourlong reunion special. You can’t get the giant mobile phone joke into a modern-day version.

Fallon recently brought back some TV nostalgia with his take on the Fresh Prince of Bel Air theme. Are we going to get a Beverly Hills 90210 reunion next? Is it too soon for Freaks and Geeks?

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper.  Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.