Mark-Paul Gosselaar appeared on the “Pod Meets World” podcast and spoke about how tough it can be to revisit outdated episodes of “Saved by the Bell,” on which he starred as Zack Morris. The series aired on NBC for four seasons and 86 episodes from 1989 to 1992. In the show’s second episode, “The Lisa Card,” Zack charges boys in school to kiss Lisa (Lark Voorhies) for $1 so she can get money to pay her dad back after she exceeds his credit card limit.
“There was one where I was basically whoring out Lisa Turtle,” Gosselaar said. “I charged people to kiss her without her consent. That was a tough one.”
In another episode, Zack pretends to be Native American and wears a “a full headdress.”
“There’s things that you just would not film nowadays,” Gosselaar said. “There are things every single episode that we could pick out. At that point, you try not to be negative. It’s a watch party… It’s a tightrope walk. Overall, you try to be positive about the work and say ‘that was a different time.’”
Gosselaar first spoke about his concern with rewatching “Saved by the Bell” episodes on his own podcast, “Zack to the Future.” He admitted in 2020 about watching “The Lisa Card,” “I feel a little conflicted by this particular episode. It wasn’t as carefree and innocent as the last episode, but maybe it’s because I’m watching it through these eyes and not the eyes of a 13-year-old or the audience that watched it back in the ’90s.”
Speaking on “Pod Meets World,” Gosselaar remembered, “We had to preface the [podcast] episode by saying, ‘We do not condone this. We’re here just to discuss it.’”
Gosselaar reprised the role of Zack Morris on Peacock’s short-lived “Saved by the Bell” reboot series in 2020 alongside original cast members like Mario Lopez and Elizabeth Berkley. Episodes are still available to stream on Peacock.