Children of the 1980s and 1990s likely have fond memories of watching the trials and tribulations of Kevin Arnold, Paul Pfeiffer, and Winnie Cooper on The Wonder Years. Fans can now relive the series on DVD and introduce new generations to its charming portrayal of the awkwardness of adolescence. The complete series is available as a 26-disc set at Timelife.com/WonderYears and season one is available for pre-order on Amazon and will be released October 7th.
OHSOGRAY recently joined a conference call with series stars Alley Mills, Danica McKellar, and Olivia d’Abo. Here’s some of what they shared about their experiences on the show.
Do you miss your characters characters? Do you ever wish you could go back and visit them again?
Olivia d’Abo: We do every day. It’s a part of our DNA. […] Yes, definitely.
Danica McKellar: Well, everyday somebody recognizes one of us on the street…. We get to be that character in some form. We get to see looks on people’s faces and they’re going to say, “Oh my gosh, that show I miss so much. My family watched it together.” We get to feel how special the experience was over and over again.
Were these life changing roles for you?
Danica McKellar: Yeah.
Olivia d’Abo: Yes. I think that every actor’s dream, every artist’s dream is that you want to be part of something that’s cyclical that comes around every 20 years and that makes you feel like all of the hard work that you’ve been putting into your craft is actually paying off […] most importantly but hopefully you get into it to really have a purpose and address something out there in the world that’s really going to be … It’s going to resonate and be memorable and touch people and make them laugh.
Luckily, I think we hit on all of those things with our show sort of bitter sweet, but there was a lesson in every show I think that’s stuck with everybody and when you watch it today, it resonates even more I think because the world has changed even from the 80s when we shot it let alone the 60s.
Danica McKellar: Now, nobody has to miss the characters because it’s coming out on DVD.
Olivia d’Abo: Good answer.
Alley Mills: This is not an answer to the character question but to, “Did it change us?” Working on the show, I think it’s very rare. I am the oldest of the group and once you’ve been around the block, you can see what things resonate…. What things resonate and what things stick in the hearts of people and the thing that this show did and nobody really knows what that magic ingredient was, except I always say it starts with writing, probably goes half way with writing and ends with writing, but it was also that we got to be part of it.
It was a great gift of that, but something that can touch every walk of life, every economic background, every color, every nationality; it’s so rare that writing can do that. It’s like any great novel. It’s like Shakespeare in the theater. Those things last and were we luckier than I won’t say the “F” word because I am sitting here with two young girls, but luckier than anything to be part of that.
Olivia d’Abo: Was lucky as shit?
Alley Mills: Norma would never say that. Danica was being somewhat facetious about how we get to see it on DVD, but the truth is it’s amazing that right now, all of us run into like eight-year old Hispanic kids on the street in LA who get to watch this show and I am so thrilled that now, my grandchildren, because it’s not probably running anymore on Nick at Nite which they got to see on and it’s running out on Hispanic TV.
They’re going to now be able to go on and on and always see this because I think the show is always going to just have that human link that make shows magic and they can laugh. Long answer. Sorry.