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Here's why Abbott Elementary should be your next binge watch

OK, let's be honest for a sec: You probably love TV shows like The Office, even though you've gotten a little tired of rewatching them. You continue returning to these faithful sitcoms, craving 30-minute laughs and mockumentary madness, but missing that special feeling of watching something brand new. But how are you supposed to pick a new comfort show? Nothing can beat your OG faves, Right? 

Actually, there might be a contender. ABC's Abbott Elementary is our new fave comedy, with all the laughs and *all* the feels. Currently halfway through its second season, the show centers on a unique ensemble of Philly-based elementary school teachers navigating an under-funded school system. The cast is diverse, the pop-culture references are top-tier and there are so many good messages. 

Time to grab some snacks and curl up on the couch, because we've compiled all the reasons why Abbott Elementary should be your next binge. But fair warning: once you catch up by streaming the show on Hulu or HBO Max, you'll actually have to wait a week to see the next episode air every Wednesday at 9 p.m. on ABC. Crazy, right? Totally worth it, though. 

The wacky workplace shenanigans

Beauty is found in the mundane—and so is comedy. Most Abbott Elementary episodes are based in typical yet silly educational mishaps. Examples include when a teacher gets sick and has to take a day off (S2 E9), when a TikTok trend has kids acting up (S1 E11) and when a new computer program requires teachers to learn something new themselves (S1 E4). Each episode is inherently realistic, which makes it all the funnier. The everyday circumstances make audiences feel like they're sharing a real-life moment with the characters. There's a reason why it's so cool to be #relatable. 

The diverse cast

One of the best parts of Abbott Elementary is the thoughtful representation of real-life school faculty. Black characters take center stage, with creator Quinta Brunson starring as a school teacher alongside Everybody Hates Chris's Tyler James Williams and former Broadway starlet Sheryl Lee Ralph. Middle-school teacher Jacob, played by Chris Perfetti, has a boyfriend who volunteers to teach choir to the students. Differences in race and sexuality are portrayed as positive and natural—and we're so here for it. 


The queen herself, Quinta Brunson

Triple-threat producer, writer and actress Quinta Bruson is the heart and soul of Abbott Elementary. After getting her start as an independent video creator and Buzzfeed writer, Brunson established herself as a creative and all-too-relatable comedian. But Abbott Elementary is what truly catapulted her to success. As creator and star, Brunson has been praised for bringing freshness back to network TV. But beyond her acclaim, she's also incredibly thoughtful. According to Elle magazine, the show was actually inspired by her mother's work as an elementary school teacher in Philadelphia. Brunson wanted to shed light on the challenges of teaching while still creating a comedy with tons of feel-good content. A talented woman with a heart of gold? We're Quinta Brunson's #1 fan, tbh. 


The slow-burn romance

If your fave part of The Office was Jim and Pam's ultimate slow-burn love story, you'll be excited to find that Abbott Elementary features its own budding romance between optimistic second-grade teacher Janine and stiff yet endearing substitute Gregory. You can sense the tension from the very first episode. There are nervous side glances, adorably awkward convos and authentically flirty moments. We just need them to get together ASAP. 


The critical acclaim 

Just like all of us here at GL, critics love Abbott Elementary. The show has maintained a 98% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and has been praised for its intelligent humor, diverse casting and positive life lessons. The show has also been awarded multiple Emmy and Golden Globe Awards (with our girl Quinta Brunson earning individual accolades for both acting *and* writing). With a confirmed third season and this streak of success, there's no doubt the Philly-based mockumentary will continue to shine. 


The heartfelt messages

Although Abbott Elementary is already the perfect comedy, what really sets the series apart is its morals. Each episode is paired with a gently-enforced message—whether that be about perseverance (S2 E8), navigating conflict (S2 E12) or positivity in times of challenge (S1 E1), it's always well-woven into the storyline. Lessons never feel out of place, always serving to enhance the characters' personal growth (and our own as well). Abbott Elementary is here to make us laugh, but it's here to make us a little bit kinder, too. 

Top and slider image: @abbottelemabc

Who's your fave character on Abbott Elementary? Let us know on Twitter @girlslifemag!


by Laila Mayfield | 2/17/2023