Between the mild profanities, underage drinking, and promiscuous sex, Greek
is definitely not your older sibling's Saved by the Bell: The College Years
(You've come a long way, ABC Family!). This instantly addictive series may not be, as its creators intended, "the definitive fun college show," but it gets high marks for its appealing cast, smart writing, and reasonably clear-eyed portrayal of fraternity and sorority life. Jacob Zachar stars as Rusty Cartwright, an incoming freshman at Cyprus Rhodes University. He is a geeky science major and socially awkward (his first taste of tequila earns him the nickname "Spitter"). But he is eager to join a fraternity and "have a real college experience." The soapsuds froth early. His sister, Casey (Spencer Grammer, Kelsey's daughter) is campus royalty, a junior with a wealthy and well-connected boyfriend, Evan (Jake McDorman). She is also "heir to the throne" of her "best of the best" sorority house. So embarrassed is she by Rusty, she has never told anyone she had a brother. "You have your world, and I have mine," she dismisses him early on. But her world is rocked after Rusty accidentally catches Evan about to cheat on Casey with Rebecca Logan (Dilshad Vadsaria), a senator's daughter and highly prized pledge who Casey has been charged to bring in to the sorority at all costs.
Greek is not just kids behaving badly. What moves this series to the head of the class is that its characters struggle with doing the right thing, and as Casey tells Rusty, "sometimes doing the right thing isn't doing the right thing," adding, "It's shades of grey from here on out." Greek creates compelling moral dilemmas and should spark worthwhile family discussions. Should Rusty tell his sister about Evan and ruin his chance to join Evan's elite fraternity? Should Casey break up with Evan and risk her social standing? Greek is all about acceptance and how friends can become like an extended family. Rusty finds his at a rowdy Animal House-like frat headed by Cappie (Scott Foster), Casey's less reputable former boyfriend. Though Rusty may be lame, he proclaims, "he'd be fun to corrupt and bring to the dark side." How Rusty wrestles with his ideals and reconnects with Casey is at the heart of this auspicious season. Greek does traffic in stereotypes, but most of the characters emerge as fully dimensional, including Evan, less of a jerk and more soulful than one would expect, and Dale (Clark Duke), Rusty's "fundamentalist hick" roommate, who becomes less of an easy punch line as the season progresses. For a show that at one point gives a shout-out to Gilmore Girls, Greek's own pop-culture references (from The Matrix and Monty Python to Grey's Anatomy) are spot-on. Beyond that, the character-based writing is well observed. After a first date, a euphoric Rusty calls it the best night of life, adding, "Even better than the time they announced Pluto wasn't a planet. I hated Pluto." With one year under its belt, you'll want to pledge yourself to Greek. --Donald Liebenson
From ABC Family comes the fresh and addicting comedic drama, Greek: Chapter One. Take an unforgettable journey with the students of Cyprus-Rhodes University as they build friendships, shatter stereotypes and discover that life s most important lessons are learned outside the classroom.
Go Greek with the hippest young cast on TV. Experience all 10 episodes of the show s sensational first season, complete with chart-topping music and never-before-seen
bonus features in a three-disc box set. Pledge today and get Greek: Chapter One on DVD.