Fans of the Wonder Years, you’re in for a treat. ABC released a new trailer to hype its reboot.
The new Wonder Years premieres, Sept. 22. And it combines the recent trends of sentimental nostalgia and beloved series revival.
The original show ran from 1988-93. It was a poignant, coming-of-age story focusing on Kevin Arnold, portrayed by Fred Savage. He has a puppy love kind of crush on Winnie (Danica McKellar). The series starts in the late 1960s, a tumultuous time in the nation when people marched for civil rights and the women’s movement while protesting the Vietnam War. Daniel Stern, as the grown-up Kevin, narrates the episodes.
But there’s a twist to the 2021 version of the Wonder Years. Don Cheadle is the narrator, a grown-up Dean Williams. The show focuses on younger Dean and his family. Like the first version of the show, the series starts in the late 1960s. But this time, the family is Black and living in Montgomery, Ala. Young Dean and his friends suffer growing pains and middle school angst. Montgomery also is a hub of the country’s Civil Rights movement.
Producer Said He Wanted to Keep Reboot in ‘Wonder Years Universe‘
Wonder Years producer Saladin K Patterson talked about the show this week during a Television Critics Association press tour.
“We want to really take opportunity to show a part of Black, middle class life that had not been seen before,” Patterson told reporters. “Usually, when you talk about the late ’60s, it’s talking about the struggle in the civil rights movement and things like that, that are very valid and a part of our story as well.
“The difference between now and the late ’90s, early 2000s does not seem to be as different as when the original came out and you were looking from ’88 to ’68. And so, we really gravitated towards sticking to the universe — The Wonder Years universe — and sticking to that original time, really looking at this Black, middle class perspective during that time because we haven’t really seen that represented on TV and film before.”
In the trailer, Don Cheadle opens the Wonder Years trailer, saying:
“It’s weird to grow up in a time when your mom and dad have to give you the ‘police talk,’ or when a presidential election creates a racial divide. But it was 1968, the year I turned 12 — the age of locker rooms, bullies, and girls.”
The new Wonder Years premieres on Sept. 22. That’s a Wednesday night. And ABC plans to use actors from the original Wonder Years that night to help market the show.
Dan Lauria, who played Kevin’s dad, will appear on The Goldbergs. Then comes the reboot, which also will feature the Joe Cocker theme song.
Savage, who portrayed Kevin, is set to appear in The Conners, which follows the Wonder Years. Then McKellar will guest star in Home Economics.
The young Dean is played by Elisha “EJ” Williams. Dule Hill plays Dean’s dad.
Check out the trailer: