Season 2, episode 23: “Bye, Bye Hillridge Junior High”

I don’t know why I’m surprised to see the finale air twelve episodes early, considering the pilot aired four episodes late. But I was bummed to find this out when I first started looking over the airing order and thought it would be annoying to end the project on a relatively low note, with a random episode.

I was relieved, then, to realize that this finale is hot garbage and it’s best to get it out of the way as soon as possible.

I remembered the finale as being very dramatic and important. So I was surprised to revisit it and find a goddamn clips episode. It’s written by someone who never wrote for the show before – in fact, it’s written by someone who had never written before, period; this is the first writing credit on their imdb.

It’s insultingly bad TV. Lizzie seems like a caricature of herself, and all of the tension you think they’ve been building about Gordo and Lizzie is resolved in the most treacly, forced way.

AND THERE’S NO MIRANDA. It’s an injustice. I wonder when exactly the production team found out that Lalaine was leaving. Since the airing order was nonsense anyway, I wish they could have just filmed the finale earlier in the season and cut Miranda out of a more useless episode, like “Those Freaky McGuires” or “The Longest Yard.”

I can basically summarize the entire episode by saying “Gordo and Lizzie look back on middle school,” since that’s all it is. If the world needed a collection of clips that make the show look happy and fun and gloss over its annoying and problematic parts, we could just watch the “I Can’t Wait” music video!

Call me crazy, but I would think the Lizzie McGuire finale would start with Lizzie McGuire. We’ve gotten cold opens that focus on Lizzie getting ready for big days before, like “Picture Day” or “I Do, I Don’t.” Ideally she would be on one of her morning three-way chats with Gordo and Miranda about the last week of middle school, but since that’s not possible, we should get her talking to her mom or something.

But no, this episode starts with Matt. He’s sleeping on the floor partially inside the fridge because it was too hot in his room the night before. Sam and Jo pick him up, tell him to get ready for school, and say he can go swimming in the public pool later. Matt’s subplot barely counts as one this episode.

Lizzie comes downstairs for one of the famous McGuire sibling lame insult exchanges. “Pardon me, Your Royal HEINOUS!” says Matt, which isn’t too bad, but Lizzie responds with “Bug off, FRIGID AIR!” which doesn’t function as an insult and doesn’t make sense since she never saw him in the fridge. She gloats about going off to high school soon, and Sam says, “Not yet, young lady! You have to graduate first!” and no one says “And don’t forget about the big class trip to Rome that I’d think you’d be a lot more excited about!”

Jo is very weepy about Lizzie growing up. This series started with Jo trying so hard to get through to Lizzie and guide her through her middle school years, but that gets chucked out this episode for this bit about how moms are so emotional and crazy.

Lizzie blows off her mom’s feelings by snapping, “I don’t have time for this! Yearbooks are coming out, and I’m going to have to sign ‘You rock. Don’t ever change’ like 800 times.”

That’s very important to this episode: everyone at this school writes that in yearbooks.

At school, Lizzie is super excited about starting high school and Gordo is a wet blanket and complains about her being excited. They get to their lockers to find that high schoolers have left flyers with a threatening list of rules for incoming freshmen, which freaks Lizzie out. Kate shows up to say that rules don’t apply to girls like her, only to people like “Gor-dork” and “Lose-y.” That insult alone gets this episode a “Kate sucks at bullying” tag from me.

Principal Mr. Moseby makes an announcement that yearbooks would be available the next day – so why was Lizzie rushing to school to sign them that day? – and Kate says Lizzie won’t even get two signatures because Miranda’s gone. Lizzie very angrily retorts, “Kate, she had to leave early to vacation with her family in Mexico!” Wow, that exposition was smooth as butter. Honestly, since this is a clips episode, we should get a whole clip montage dedicated to Miranda. Instead, her existence is mostly ignored.

I’m picking apart these early scenes because they’re the only real scenes this episode. A whole lot of nothing is coming up.

Lizzie says that Kate’s right and she is a loser, even though I thought they’d gotten past caring about Kate. Isn’t Lizzie supposed to be all confident in eighth grade? Gordo says high school will be great, because he’s already been there, and we get a clip of him in high school from “Movin’ On Up.” The entire rest of the episode is like that. It’s especially lame because the dialogue is so clunky and unnatural. “Remember when this happened?” *clip* “Oh yeah! I do remember when that happened.”

Matt and Melina find out the public pool is closed.

Sam finds Lizzie sulking in her room about the scary high school rules and comforts her by saying that seniors always try to prank freshmen. He says when he was in high school, seniors used to throw freshmen in the trashcans but adds that high school wasn’t bad because he met Jo then. We get a flashback to them meeting while stuffed in trashcans, which is a perfect meet-cute for the founders of this garbage family.

Sam says Lizzie really grew up in middle school and points out that she tried running for class president, doing rhythmic gymnastics, saving the environment, and getting a job so we can get clips of all of those things. Lizzie says she failed at those things so we get clips of her failing at all of those things. Sam says the important thing is that she tried and says she’ll be fine in high school. Why does Sam get this moment with Lizzie? He hasn’t earned this! He’s clueless. It should be Jo.

Lizzie and Gordo pick up their yearbooks and say that they’re glad their Monte Carlo Night stunt got everyone in the yearbook so it’s not just a tribute to Kate. That’s not what their stunt was about! They just made it into a tribute to Lizzie instead, with a 2-page spread of just photos of her. It turns out that that was unnecessary anyway, because the entire yearbook is devoted to her.

They acknowledge Miranda’s existence for half a second when they see a picture of her and then they move on to reminiscing about the “Come Fly With Me” dance so we can get a clip of it. They reminisce about Lizzie falling – weirdly, just once, even though they definitely have dozens of clips for that – so we can get a clip of it. They reminisce about the food fight so we can get a clip of it.

Tudgeman asks Lizzie to sign his yearbook and she comes up with a lovely, touching message about how unique he is. Let’s be honest, Lizzie is way too basic for heartfelt, well-written yearbook messages, right? She’d be the one to write “You were always SO CRAZIE lol 🙂 ❤ HAGS!”

When he leaves, Lizzie says, “There goes the only boy that ever truly liked me in junior high,” even though she supposedly just found out Gordo liked her so that’s a dick thing to say to him, and even though boys constantly throw themselves at Lizzie. Gordo brings up Ronnie but fails to mention millionaire celebrities Frankie Muniz or Aaron Carter. We get the clip of Gordo consoling Lizzie after Ronnie broke up with her, then Gordo smashes his head against the wall thinking about it because he should have told Lizzie he liked her. Lizzie asks why he’s smashing his head against the wall and he says, “Oh, I just have a headache.” I’m writing about this in detail so you can appreciate that every line of this episode is bad.

At home, in the middle of the day, even though they just established earlier that school isn’t out for summer yet for him, Matt fills the basement with water to make a pool and that’s it, that’s the end of Matt’s plotline. It doesn’t even happen onscreen. That’s the finale we get for one of the worst demon children ever to grace the Disney Channnel? I would think he’d have some Max Keeble’s Big Move-level mayhem planned.

Gordo struggles with composing a message for Lizzie’s yearbook and Tudgeman shows up to console him. Here it’s really clear this writer doesn’t know what the show is like. Tudgeman doesn’t make a zany joke using the first sci-fi reference you could Google and he’s written like Gordo’s close friend instead of a random guy who shows up every fifth episode.

Gordo stares at the yearbook, which contains a picture of Lizzie and Ronnie kissing even though Ronnie doesn’t even go to their school, so we can get another clip from the Ronnie episode.

This page is amazing. It’s called “TOGETHER” and shows Lizzie kissing Ronnie and Lizzie and Gordo having their end-of-“Clue-Less” moment – neither of which could have been photographed unless Lizzie has a stalker – so this seems like a couples page. So then a picture of Orlando Brown with Tudgeman that makes them look like a gay couple from the 50s. And then there’s Miranda.

We get clips of Gordo struggling with his feelings for Lizzie. Lizzie and Ethan exchange yearbooks, and tragically, we get no clips of Ethan. More tragically, this writer decided to make Ethan into a douchebag! Lizzie can’t think of a good message, and Ethan snaps, “Dude. Cheerleaders. Can’t keep ’em waiting,” when he’s never that dismissive of Lizzie. Interestingly, though, he and Lizzie both end up writing “You rock. Don’t ever change” in each other’s yearbooks, and Ethan says, seriously, “Cuz you really do rock. And you shouldn’t change.” And that’s treated as dumb, signaled by dorky sound effects. Keep that in mind.

Ethan tells Lizzie to watch him play water polo in high school because Clayton Snyder is a water polo champion in real life. I wonder if the writer had originally put a more generic sport in there and Clayton asked to change it. Lizzie complains that Ethan will be a jock and Kate will be a cheerleader in high school and she’ll be nothing. She says she’ll never be as popular as Kate and looks over at Kate, who is yelling about how popular she is to a line of admirers hoping for her signatures in their yearbooks. All of this feels really off. Ethan isn’t a jock, Lizzie hasn’t whined about being unpopular all season, and I thought that it was established by now that Kate isn’t that well-liked. Honestly, what should happen here is someone predicting that Kate will crash and burn in high school because boy howdy, do people who peak in middle school go downhill fast.

Lizzie says, “I really don’t like her!” and Gordo says, “At least she’s gotten her payback a couple of times in middle school!” as a very obvious lead-in to a bunch of clips of Kate falling or getting food thrown on her. Lizzie cracks up as if she could see the clip montage, and Gordo gets all serious and says, “I like it when you laugh.” Every time I had to watch this episode for this review I screamed “UUUUUGGGH” and my whole body cringed. It’s stomach-turningly mortifying.

After school, Gordo hangs out for another extremely on-the-nose chat. He tells Lizzie, “You’ll always have your friends” and Lizzie says “Except for when we’re fighting!” as a very obvious lead-in to a clip of the trio fighting and Gordo says “We always forgave each other” as a very obvious lead-in to a clip of the trio forgiving each other. He says, “Who else could have helped bring me back from the dark side?”as a very obvious lead-in to a bunch of clips from that episode where he got into the dwarf game, which probably could have been omitted from this episode because it was so insignificant and stupid, and then says “Or dive in front of paint for someone?”as a very obvious lead-in to that clip from “Picture Day.”  This episode is TRASH.

Then Gordo has a voiceover monologue over lots of clips of Lizzie about how Lizzie is a great person and great friend and is all-around great – I heartily disagree – and that they’d get through high school together just like they got through middle school together because they’re always there for each other. This monologue would make a great yearbook message, so I don’t know why he’s struggling with it.

We finally get to the only part of this episode anyone remembers, I guess because the rest of the episode is meaningless, poorly written fluff. It’s the next day and Lizzie asks for her yearbook back from Gordo, but he says he’s still working on his message. Someone asks him to sign their yearbook so he gives Lizzie back hers and tells her not to read what he’s written, so Lizzie looks at it because she’s a terrible person who doesn’t respect anyone else’s feelings. Gordo wrote: “Dear Lizzie, you rock. Don’t ever change. And only, I really mean it.”

Real talk: that’s pretty lame. We just saw Ethan Craft deliver the exact same message. Of all the things for Gordo to say to Lizzie, we get that badly worded semi-twist on the standard sentiment? Literally just including the words “I like you,” as boring and straightforward as that is, would have caused actual drama. And I think this episode was supposed to air right after “Clue-Less,” which ended on the cliffhanger of Lizzie realizing she liked Gordo and he liked her, so why is none of that energy here? She’s played the whole episode as a friend until now.

Regardless, Lizzie gets OVERCOME WITH EMOTION by Gordo’s moderately nice yearbook message and “I Can’t Wait” starts playing over a billion slow-mo clips of Lizzie and Gordo. It’s interrupted by Principal Mr. Moseby yelling that it’s time to take a graduating class photo. In legitimately the best Kate moment ever and one which belongs in a completely different show, Ethan and Kate look at each other nervously and say in unison, “How’s my hair? Good.”

Lizzie says, “Gordo? Promise me we’ll always stay close to each other, even in high school,” and Gordo says, “Don’t worry. I’m not going anywhere.” And then, in the most dramatic moment of 2003 for people too young to care about other things like Britney and Madonna at the VMAs, LIZZIE KISSED GORDO ON THE CHEEK RIGHT WHEN THE PICTURE WAS BEING TAKEN.

Oh man, I wish they’d let Adam Lamberg laugh or look surprised when that happened. His face looks so goofy and it doesn’t make sense that he wouldn’t react to the kiss.

This episode was a hacky, phoned-in attempt at closure. Imagine if all of the drama of Gordo’s feelings for Lizzie came to a head with an emotional speech to her, or at least a real heartfelt yearbook message – something of the same caliber as his bit at the end of “Dear Lizzie.” And what if Lizzie could actually come to terms with what her time in middle school meant to her instead of being told what it meant in simplistic lines leading into clips? We could see some acknowledgement of evolution from her, but she whines about being unpopular and unnoticed just like she does in the pilot. I’m astonished at how badly this entire finale was botched. I see why they aired it out of order.

Weird never-popular youth culture slang: “You rock. Don’t ever change” as standard yearbook message. Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised that was a thing at one school somewhere once, but it’s so weird how they introduce it like it’s so commonplace. Gordo’s throwaway line”People are just gonna write, ‘Have a great summer! Love ya!'” in “Lizzie’s Eleven” was actually closer to what people write in yearbooks.

Unnecessary references: every single clip in this episode

Notable fashion moments: They gave Kate a good outfit for once!

This is pretty much what she should always look like. Her shirt is actually trendy and flattering and her hair, while slightly obnoxious, still looks cute – especially compared to the giant ratty extensions she usually wears. I have no idea why they don’t dress Kate like this every episode.

Lizzie’s hair looks greasy and limp in her first outfit. I think it’s because the twists in it were created with gel. It makes it look kind of matted.

Her outfits are all really boring. It’s like no one realized this would actually be the finale – which, to be fair, it kind of wasn’t. Lizzie wears an interesting bracelet. That’s about it.

Other interesting tidbits: DUMB GRAMMAR RANT – the title of this post is transcribed from the episode listing on imdb. Grammatically, it should be “Bye-Bye, Hill Ridge Junior High” – “Hill Ridge” is always two words whenever it’s seen in the school – but instead it’s “Bye, Bye Hillridge Junior High.”

The flashbacks to season one are weird because Gordo’s voice deepened a lot by season two.

There’s an “Embarrassing Moments” page in the yearbook that spells “embarrassing” very incorrectly.

Can we just talk about “I Can’t Wait”? Like, forever? What a jam. It’s a cover, which is insane to me, since it seems so tailor-made for Disney. Granted, Disney changed up the lyrics a lot to make it about not waiting to grow up instead of not waiting to be in a committed monogamous relationship for life.

I’d expect the Disneyfied lyrics to be a lot cheesier, and they definitely are cheesy, but the original’s not that great either. For instance, Disney switches “Life goes on/Like a song” for “Life goes on/Then we’ll go,” which is fine because their corny new line at least sort of rhymes and also doesn’t seem to portend death. They also substitute “bullet shoes,” a very specific type of shoe that most people don’t call by that name, for “bowling shoes” because….no one wears bowling shoes.

The really interesting thing, to me, is how similar the two songs sound. Obviously the vocal styles are different, but the original production is pretty similar. Fascinatingly, Disney snatched this song up for Hilary immediately. McClymont’s version hit Australian charts in May 2002 and Hilary Duff’s was on Radio Disney by June.

There was the most minor of scandals around the song at the time, with the LA Times questioning whether it was ethical for Radio Disney to give so much free airtime to someone signed to the Disney label. I guess that was settled by the time Hannah Montana was around. Launching these kids as singers is Disney’s entire business model nowadays.

From what I can tell, they only made a 1-minute music video to play during commercial breaks to promote the song and the show – versions on YouTube chop it up with YouTube fan videos. Disney Channel was not yet the well-oiled child star promotional machine they’d become once Hilary set the standard.

This song is pretty delightful. It’s probably the best song Hilary’s ever done, which can’t be what her manager nowadays wants to hear. It’s like a kid version of “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” in that it forces nostalgia for a time that’s currently happening. It’s not dancey or Britney-esque in any way, which is a smart move by Disney considering its audience. I find it interesting that they picked this kind of song for her, especially compared to the songs of the Selena/Miley/Demi era – it sounds like a poppier version of the Barenaked Ladies’ “Pinch Me” or a less beachy version of Sugar Ray’s “When It’s Over.”

Suspiciously, though, it also sounds exactly like Hilary Duff’s 2014 single “Chasing the Sun,” which was written by Colbie Callait but somehow incorporated the exact same chords from “I Can’t Wait.”

Please discuss this song extensively in the comments!!

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22 thoughts on “Season 2, episode 23: “Bye, Bye Hillridge Junior High”

  1. The yearbook has me ROLLING oh my god I always cringed and laughed so hard at how much it does not make any sense lol especially the photos of Ronnie and other private moments. I can’t.

    Gordo’s yearbook message/the ending pissed me off as an 11 year old. I was like “rEALLY?! that’s what I get?! REALLY???” It was still somehow one of the more dramatic moments of my childhood. (EXCEPT FOR LOUIS AND TAWNY’S ENDING. Oh, man. That was so romantic and satisfying and WELL DONE. Doesn’t even compare. Jesus.)

    The Even Stevens finale makes me legitimately cry from the great writing/buildup. But, the Lizzie finale makes me shed a nostalgic tear thanks to “I Can’t Wait.” haha. It is a jam.

    The continuity issue of Lizzie completely forgetting she likes Gordo now and treating him as just a friend happens AGAIN in the movie!!!!! I DRIVES ME INSANE! Like, holy crap Lizzie must suffer from short-term memory loss and they forgot to address it, lol. Gordo too, actually! At graduation and beyond they’re both back to dropping the “friend” bomb left and right, even though (presumably a only a few days prior to graduation) she kissed him on the cheek in the school photo. Their dynamic should have changed after that! How do you NOT build on it?! Ugh.

    I also always laughed at how tiny their picture is on the wall compared to the MASSIVE photos of like, 400 students omg Either Hillridge (I like the one word spelling lol) became super exclusive or they’re about to be shut down due to such a substantial loss of students

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  2. I just found your blog and I agree with most of the points you make. Fair warning about the length of this comment – I see myself in your writing style because I also rant about Disney shows on a regular basis.

    I love the concept of “Lizzie McGuire Reviewed” because people always put this show on a pedestal. “It was Disney’s only normal show! Lizzie was so relatable!” First of all, why do people complain if a Disney show isn’t “normal”? I don’t get this. Their best shows were the not-normal ones! Second of all, people conveniently ignore that Hilary Duff created the Disney Pop Star model everyone blames on Miley Cyrus. I wonder if Lizzie led to the creation of Hannah Montana since many LM episodes and the movie were about fame.

    You’ve pointed out that Lizzie doesn’t actually have a personality to relate to and acts however the story line dictates. I think when people call Lizzie relatable, what most are really saying is they wanted to be her in a particular scene or story. I also think the writers played up to this by creating wish-fulfillment situations like the Aaron Carter and Frankie Muniz episodes. (By the way, you’re right, I never realized how warped “Lizzie in the Middle” is. He’s obsessed with her and she barely says two words to him!) It isn’t a far leap to believe people still love Lizzie McGuire because they remember envying the fantasy situations she found herself in, more so than minor details like the acting or writing.

    While of course I remember Lizzie McGuire, but it was never my favorite show either. “So Weird” is one of my favorites to this day and I rewatch all the time. (Just the first two seasons though…Disney’s treatment of that show still bugs me.) Are you going to review another show after Lizzie?

    What’s your take on the Boy Meets World/Girl Meets World phenom? I feel BMW is similar to Lizzie because people have a skewed perception of it. BMW fans who criticize GMW seem to remember BMW as a serious drama instead of the goofy comedy it was most of the time. Though to be fair GMW is terrible on its own.

    I did say my comment would be long! Thanks for this fun blog – you rock, don’t ever change! (I had to go there.)

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    1. Welcome to the site! I’m glad you found it!

      I think you’re definitely right about the show being more aspirational than relatable. I’d also add that I think a lot of the “she’s so normal!” feelings came from the fact that it was set in middle school, not in high school like so many other Disney shows, and the actors were visibly younger.

      Hilary Duff was absolutely the mold for every star after her. But Disney Channel didn’t perfect the system until Miley Cyrus – casting a kid with pre-existing musical skills instead of hiring a voice coach along the way, writing her music career into the show from the start instead of inventing an Italian alter ego, and monetizing the shit out of it with concerts, CDs, and merchandise. So I can see how people would think she was the standard. (That, or maybe they’re too young to remember Peak Hilary?)

      I didn’t really watch Boy Meets World that much – at least not enough to understand the entire plot, because it went on for like a million seasons. Didn’t Topanga, like, pass up an Ivy League school to go to Corey’s college? Didn’t they get engaged in college? I don’t approve of any of that. If I could give anyone any one piece of advice before going to college, it’d be “break up with your high school boyfriend.” I do remember watching BMW when I was very young and thinking “Wow! That’s what college is like! You live in huge apartments and everyone wears flannel!” I haven’t seen GMW but I assume it’s awful because all Disney shows are awful now, right? Like as much as I genuinely do not like Lizzie McGuire, it can’t compare to the mind-melting dreck that was the one episode of Hannah Montana I had to watch when visiting a younger cousin once.

      I’m probably not going to review another show after Lizzie, just because it’s very time-consuming and there’s a bit of cost involved. I paid for a premium WordPress theme for a nicer viewing experience and I pay hosting costs every month. The viewership isn’t quite big enough to make a dent in the costs, especially with people using adblockers. All that said, I am so glad I’m doing this project, and comments like yours are the best part of the job!

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      1. Confession – when I first saw your blog, my first thought was “dang I wish I thought of this first.” It’s exactly the kind of stuff I love to ramble about, so if you do want another reviewer, I volunteer.

        As for costs, don’t get me wrong, the blog looks awesome and completely fitting for Lizzie McGuire (unlike the show’s questionable costume choices). But personally I don’t understand paying for a blog in the days of free WordPress themes and tumblr. I’ll also argue that posting on long-form social media platforms would drive more traffic your way. I’ve commented on So Weird though tumblr before and a small but active community found my posts. If you targeted 90’s/2000’s blogs and Twitter accounts you’d definitely find a bigger audience.

        In defense of Hannah-era shows, I *loved* Wizards of Waverly Place. My little sister was a kid at the time so I got hooked on Disney Channel again, even though I was in college. Believe it or not I met a lot of WOWP fans my age through Twitter who loved the show as much as I did. That particular Disney sitcom had much better writing than most, IMO. The last one I watched on and off was Phineas and Ferb so I don’t really know the current generation. While I used to love BMW I couldn’t stomach GMW, even when BMW stars returned.

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      2. Ehhh, free WordPress themes are VERY limiting. I like this theme a lot and personally thought it’d be worth it. I’ve set up or run websites for a lot of companies when I worked in marketing and really prefer the look and functionality of premium WordPress sites to free sites or Tumblrs.

        I’m not 100% ruling out doing another show! It depends on how I feel when this one is over. Maybe I’ll poll readers at the end on what they’d want covered!

        I’ve never seen Wizards of Waverly Place but I love wizards so much and wanted magic powers extremely desperately as a child, so I’d probably like it. Also Selena Gomez seems adorable.

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      3. I guess your blog brings out my inner social media manager. I can think of a bunch of platforms/groups where this concept would take off, so I just hate that you might shut down after one show.

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    2. If I may be allowed to chime in here…

      “BMW fans who criticize GMW seem to remember BMW as a serious drama instead of the goofy comedy it was most of the time. Though to be fair GMW is terrible on its own.”
      ^ YUP. Like “Lizzie McGuire”, one can most often find BMW gifs/screen captures about how Cory & Topanga were #GoalsAF and how relatable and awesome they were. And few episodes conveyed that, yes. Mostly, it was just Cory wanting Topanga and when he did get her, he did want sex. It came to a point where Topanga just asked him “why are you so obsessed with sex?!” and he replies “Because I never get some!” and you hear the laugh track. BMW had their handful of “serious” episode but most of the time it was sort of casual – sometimes they had dumb, shitty episodes that makes Kate Sanders and all of the Lizzie McGuire episodes seem like Emmy Award material in comparison.

      BMW had a lot of continuity issues and left on a note where it was like, gee, what about some of these main characters that weren’t in the finale or the last few episodes? What happened to them? From 2000-2014, no peep. GMW started in September of 2014, and it was basic Disney Channel mindless shit. But it was nice to see Cory and Topanga again, even though they acted nothing like how they used to (cause they were grown up?). But then Cory sort of began to shrink back into how he used to be (albeit only when Shawn showed up) and the actors in season 1 were still finding the footing. Season 2 shot like a firework, with 30 episodes (there was even a week where they released 5 episodes – from Monday to Friday) and they had really good episodes in there and the actors all grew up and looked like middle schoolers and their so called romance began to grow some weight. Then they brought in characters from BMW and it was nice to get explanations as to what happened to some of these characters, since BMW left them on a cliffhanger.

      GMW as a whole only ended up being Disney’s best show from 2015-January 2017 because of BMW. As a stand-alone show, if it wasn’t BMW related… it wouldn’t have lasted as long as it did. And it didn’t last that long. The show should have been on ABC Family/Freeform to tackle actual middle school/high school issues. Lizzie McGuire could handle middle school issues but she was on 2000s Disney Channel. 2015 Disney Channel can’t even handle the word “cigarette”, “bra” or “drinking”, which Lizzie McGuire could.

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  3. I felt very unfulfilled by this episode. There was all this build up to the grand finale and it felt sort of flat. It was half flashback montage and half Gordo afraid to tell Lizzie what Lizzie already knows. Come to think of it, why is Lizzie so shocked? I think the last episode established that Gordo’s totally hot for Lizzie. Does Lizzie have selective memory loss? Also, I wish Lalaine could have come back just for a few minutes, maybe in some fourth wall, “what’d I miss” kind of shtick.

    Is this the end of your series or are you going to do the movie as well?

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  4. I’m gonna have to agree with some of these comments. It really doesn’t make much sense to pay anything for a fun blog like this! I personally recommend Tumblr. It’s way easier for people to find you because you can add tags to your posts (including your own fun/organizational tags I’ve noticed you give to certain episodes!) which will make your blog show up when people search for such tags on Tumblr. (Like.. “Lizzie McGuire”, the actors names, “2000s” etc. Which are frequently searched for on Tumblr/Social media due to nostalgia.) From there it’s super easy for people to share your entries directly to their own followers by reblogging. And things can take off from there. Slap a (free) Disqus comment section to your blog and you’re pretty much good to go.

    It doesn’t make a lot of sense to pay for a domain name either. Aren’t you gonna have to continue to pay for it to keep this site up, even after you’ve finished the project? As long as you get an “official” sounding URL before the “.tumblr.com” that’s all you need to sound impressive and important, lol. And even if you DO want to use a domain, it’s super easy to direct it to your Tumblr.

    As far as Themes/Layouts go, if you search you can find pretty awesome ones. I was able to find a super sleek/aesthetically pleasing (I think, lol) completely customizable theme for my Even Stevens blog! For free!! Also, all themes support the “continue reading” option. I’m not paying a penny for anything and it’s already doing pretty well averaging 10-15 unique viewers a day with a few comments rolling in.

    You’re really good at this, and deserve as many people as possible to see your hard work. So if you ever decide to do another show.. I would obviously recommend trying out Tumblr and see what happens! You can do everything you’re already doing here, except for free, no ads, and reach a way wider audience! 🙂

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    1. Exactly! I didn’t want to sound too annoying about tumblr so I’m glad someone else agreed with me, lol. 90s/early 2000s nostalgia is all the rage so not capitalizing on it seems like a missed opportunity. (Especially since many mistakenly think Lizzie McGuire was a ’90s show.)

      …by the way what’s the link your Even Stevens blog?

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      1. The whole missed opportunity thing was bothering me! 😦 This blog should have way more attention. I wish she could transfer all of this over to a tumblr blog! “lizziemcguirereviewed” isn’t taken! (People thinking Lizzie was a 90s show is fairly annoying, btw lol.)

        My blog was actually inspired by this one! And an article that ranked every episode of Even Stevens. So, I combined the formats! I’m obsessed with the show, so I figured I turn the obsession into something constructive, lol. http://www.evenstevensranked.tumblr.com 🙂

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      2. I’d like to ask that we discontinue this thread and focus on the content of the episode in any future comments. Thanks!

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  5. Yet again, another episode that I can point out that specifically heightened my anxiety about high school. ESPECIALLY when I was going from private Catholic middle school to public high school.

    Also I can’t believe how much Hilary sounds exactly the same as when she was a kid?? Like the production value has totally increased but if I close my eyes, I could convince myself that her 2014 song was from 2003.

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  6. Yeah… this was not finale material. We got a clip-show? Great. No Miranda? Cool. Yeah. I think I preferred the actual last episode to air as a finale… and I remember complaining that it wasn’t suitable to be a finale episode.

    Lizzie McGuire is like 2000s Disney’s first child. They learned as they went along. They sort of got it with Hannah Montana, Suite Life & Wizards of Waverly Place, but then began to drop the ball in the 2010s; Suite Life on Deck managed to stay afloat and “Jessie” tethered on that; 2013 onwards though, all their shows are churned out, same type, no jokes, no laughs, no real plot. It’s all garbage. GMW was their one shining light from 2015-2017, mostly because it continued off of BMW, but they didn’t know how to handle GMW. Don’t get me wrong – GMW is nowhere in the same league as Lizzie, Hannah, Suite Life or Wizards. But it was nice to have a canon sequel to an older show. But the writers (half of them used to work on BMW too) got older and they made it real cookie cutter, childish stuff. 2 or 3 episodes though, they hit it out of the park. At least there will always be that.

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  7. Speaking of I Can’t Wait there’s actually a cute Lizzie McGuire music video a fan made on YouTube. I feel it shows the more nice and relatable side of Lizzie.

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  8. Maybe I’m biased because Miranda’s my favorite character, but her absence is so obvious in the six episodes she’s not in. I know there’s nothing they could have done with Lalaine leaving the show, but you can feel something is missing when Miranda’s not there. She is a crucial character. Not to mention I loved her friendship with Gordo. If she was in the LMM she could have hung with Gordo while Lizzie was out with Palao.

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