Today's Article - Welcome Back, Kotter

This article is for quizzes on Tuesday July 28th, 2015...

Welcome Back, Kotter is an American television sitcom starring Gabe Kaplan and featuring a young John Travolta. Videotaped in front of a live studio audience, it originally aired on the ABC network from September 9, 1975, to June 8, 1979.
The show stars stand-up comic/actor Gabriel 'Gabe' Kaplan as the title character, Gabe Kotter, a wisecracking teacher who returns to his alma mater, the fictional James Buchanan High in Brooklyn, New York, to teach an eclectic crew of remedial loafers, called "Sweathogs". Befitting its low ranking, classes were held in room 111. The school was based on New Utrecht High School, which was used in the opening credits, and also the high school that Kaplan attended. The school's principal was referenced, but mostly not seen on-screen. The rigid vice principal, Michael Woodman (John Sylvester White), dismissed the Sweathogs as witless hoodlums, and only expected Kotter to contain them until they were banished or they dropped out.

Kotter, himself a past remedial student, was a founding member of the Sweathogs. Hip to the Sweathogs' do-little manifesto, he befriends them and stimulates their potential. A pupil-teacher rapport is formed, and the students often visit Kotter's Bensonhurst apartment, sometimes via the fire-escape window, to the chagrin of his wife, Julie (Marcia Strassman).

Many of the characters of Welcome Back, Kotter were based on people from Kaplan's teen years as a remedial school student in Brooklyn. As a stand-up comic, one of Kaplan's routines was "Holes and Mellow Rolls", in which he talked in depth about his former classmates. The names of characters in Holes and Mellow Rolls: "Vinnie Barbarino" was inspired by Eddie Lecarri and Ray Barbarino, from Miami, FL; "Freddie 'Boom Boom' Washington" was inspired by Freddie "Furdy" Peyton; "Juan Epstein" was partially inspired by Epstein "The Animal"; and "Arnold Horseshit" was changed to "Arnold Horshack" for network television.


Facebook Feed