That ’90s Show review: A lively and sincere successor to its forebear

That ’90s Show follows Leia Forman, the daughter of Eric and Donna, as she spends her summer at Point Place, Wisconsin with her grandparents, Red and Kitty. The episodes are streaming on Netflix.


Leia Forman visits her grandparents for a holiday weekend when she makes a bunch of new friends and asks her parents if she can stay with Red and Kitty for the summer. After some advice from Donna, Eric agrees to let Leia stay.

She spends the summer getting her first kiss out of the way, dating Jay Kelso, and enjoying some fun “circles” with her friends. She becomes best friends with her neighbor, Gwen, who helps Leia come out of her shell.

Gwen and Nate’s mother, Sherri, is dating Fez but she needs some direction in life so she’s constantly at Red and Kitty’s asking for help.

Kitty is delighted that the house is filled with kids again but Red is frustrated that he has to deal with all of their shenanigans. They fit right back into their old routines while also getting to be wonderful grandparents.

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Leia has a topsy-turvy time over there and when it comes time to leave, she has made many meaningful connections.


Callie Haverda is absolutely charming as Leia Forman. She’s awkward and dorky much like her father and Haverda is brilliant in making the role her own.

Ashley Aufderheide, Mace Coronel, Maxwell Acee Donovan, Sam Morelos, and Reyn Doi are the perfect foil for Leia’s bubbly disposition. The group has a great mix of personalities that work off each other splendidly.

Debra Jo Rupp and Kurtwood Smith slot right back into their roles as Kitty and Red respectively and do not appear to miss a beat. In fact, they showcase their character’s evolutions into doting grandparents seamlessly.

Andrea Anders is a wonderful addition to the cast, occupying that clumsy neighbor spot that Bob played for so long. Her performance as Sherri is enjoyable.

All the guest appearances from characters of the original are well-placed and never overstay their welcome.


Oftentimes when a series is rebooted or given a delayed sequel, the creators tend to just rehash the original. That is not the case here as That ’90s Show maintains the charm of the original while doing enough to stand on its own.

The script does not rely on past references and merely peppers them in perfectly placed moments to heighten their impact. Eric having a real “Red” moment in the first episode sets the tone for the rest of the series.

The new batch of characters is curated exquisitely as they are modified versions of the people that came before them but clearly distinguishing features as well.

The sets haven’t changed too much but the ’90s aesthetic is captured faithfully in the series with an appropriate soundtrack and narrative to boot.


The character of Ozzie falls deep into stereotype territory as he is a gay kid who is extremely sassy and cutting with his comments. Reyn Doi’s performance deserves praise but the character needed to be a more original creation.

The series moves at a frenetic pace and there are certain plotlines that could have been stretched out a little longer. Jay dates Serena for one episode before moving on to Leia and by the end, even that isn’t certain.


That ’90s Show is an entertaining sequel with a new group of youngsters at its forefront telling wonderful stories of teenage angst and shenanigans in the ’90s. There exists the right amount of nostalgia and fans of the original series will be pleased by what is on offer here.

That '90s Show
That '90s Show review: A lively and sincere successor to its forebear 1

Director: Gail Mancuso, Laura Prepon

Date Created: 2023-01-19 13:30

Editor's Rating:

Also Read: That ’90s Show ending explained: Does Leia end up with Jay?