‘Grown-ish’ gets real about the struggles of college life

February 19, 2018


Staff Reporter |tmw055@latech.edu


The ‘90s momentous series “A Different World” served as a catalyst for shows that spoke for college student experiences. On Jan. 3, “Grown-ish” premiered on Freeform, and let’s just say, it’s getting real about what college is really like for students.


In the new series, viewers are taken along a perspective of college life from main character Zoey, the eldest daughter from the Johnson family on ABC’s groundbreaking show “Black-ish.” The series centers on Zoey Johnson, played by 17-year-old activist Yara Shahidi, as she heads to her first year of college at Southern California University. While attending school, she faces coming-of-age challenges of today’s society.


Within the pilot episode showing homage to “The Breakfast Club,” Zoey is accompanied by new students, which later become friends that she confides in. In the pilot, she meets track recruits and twins Jazlyn and Skylar Forster, portrayed by singers Chloe and Halle Bailey.


The series also follows Nomi Segal, who is portrayed by Emily Arlook. She’s faced with challenges to keep her bisexuality from her family, but later finds out that she’s struggling to admit her sexual identity to herself.


Trendsetter Luca, portrayed by Luka Sabbat, is an easygoing freshman who’s not afraid to speak his mind from time to time. Vivek, played by Jordan Buhat, is an Indian American who is slightly inspired by Drake.


Ana Torres, played by “Bring It On: All Or Nothing” actress Francia Raisa, plays a Catholic school girl that secretly likes to party and let loose.


So far, the show has covered topics including dating, drug abuse, sexuality, parties and of course a college student’s dear friend and worst enemy, procrastination. In the episode titled, “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late,” Zoey finds herself in a conflicted situation when she receives the infamous “U up?” text from Aaron Jackson, the president of the Black Student Union and committed social activist. This episode sets the tone for the rest of the season, portraying how Zoey will lean on her friends from time to time for advice.


From its relatable storylines to its authentic characters, “Grown-ish” is a show about the college experience as a whole. Not only is it entertaining to watch, but I would say that it is one of the best written shows out right now.


I think the series is genuinely hilarious and has a lot to relate to. The show has become one of my favorites because it gives perspective on what us college students have to endure on a daily basis.


The series is definitely worth tuning in for 30 minutes every Wednesday. It premiered a month ago, and has already been renewed for a second season featuring 20 episodes. If you watch “Black-ish,” you’ll love what “Grown-ish” has to offer us college students. The show is exactly what our generation needs.


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