Teen Drama Election Episodes
The most important thing you can do today is VOTE. Once you've done that, keep reading.
My first experience with an election came in the third grade, when I ran for what I think might've been class president or student council. I was new to the elementary school and popularity always matters, so it was no surprise when I lost.
Fast-forward to senior year of high school, and I was voted Most Likely to Become President (which I took as a compliment) and Most Likely to Conquer the World (which I didn't). Why did I earn those superlatives? I have no idea. Perhaps it has something to do with never being shy about speaking my mind… which has certainly come in handy when writing about the teen dramas.
Several of the teen dramas did election storylines. The question is: Which one gets your vote?
Beverly Hills, 90210
Episode 1.17, “Stand (Up) and Deliver”
Brandon runs for class president with none other than Kelly serving as his campaign manager. At this point, they are quite far from the Brandon and Kelly we later come to know as a couple, but not for lack of trying on Kelly’s part during this episode. There’s also the Andrea factor — her preferred approach has virtually nothing in common with Kelly’s. Consider it a precursor of what’s to come with the three of them in episode 1.21, “Spring Dance.”
Episodes 5.02, “Under the Influence”; 5.03, “A Clean Slate”; 5.04, “Life After Death”; 5.29, “The Real McCoy”
Kelly and Brandon now are together as he runs for vice president of California University on Josh’s presidential ticket. Tragedy ensues on election night when Josh is killed in a car accident. As the duo won the election, Brandon assumes the role of president, only to have his ascension challenged. And when he eventually runs for reelection… well, that doesn’t go so well, either.
Episode 2.09, “The Election”
Andie, with help from Joey and Pacey, is running for student council president… and so is Abby, who — shock of shocks — takes the low road and tries to use Andie’s complicated home life against her. Fortunately, Pacey ensures Abby gets what’s coming to her. Who ends up becoming president? That would be Kenny, played by Colin Fickes… also known as Jimmy on “One Tree Hill.”
One Tree Hill
Episodes 2.13, “The Hero Dies in This One”; 2.14 “Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows”
Brooke runs for student council president against Erica. The two women trade plenty of barbs, but while Felix wants Brooke to fight dirty, Lucas encourages her to take the high road and just be herself. Brooke and Erica eventually reach a truce, and after Brooke wins the election, they tentatively embark on a friendship.
Episodes 3.04, “An Attempt to Tip the Scales”; 3.05, “A Multitude of Causalities”; 3.06, “Locked Hearts and Hand Grenades”; 3.07, “Champagne for My Real Friends, Real Pain for My Sham Friends”; 3.08, "The Worst Day Since Yesterday”; 3.09, “How a Resurrection Really Feels”
Clearly, this was a significant story arc during season 3 — not only for its longevity but for its contributions to the ongoing “Who tried to kill Dan?” storyline. Exes Dan and Karen run against each other for mayor, and there’s no level too low for him to stoop to. In fact, it’s only because he blackmails the current mayor that Dan even gets to run for the position in the first place. Karen, wanting to see someone ethical in charge of Tree Hill, steps into the race and takes the moral high ground during her campaign… except for an amusing bit where she and Deb attempt to vandalize one of Dan’s billboards. Dan eventually wins the election, and his power as mayor plays a role on the series through season 4… until he turns himself in for murdering Keith, whom he wrongly believed was the one who tried to kill him. “Champagne for My Real Friends, Real Pain for My Sham Friends” was directed by Paul Johansson (Dan).
Episodes 3.06, “Enough About Eve”; 3.08 “The Grandfather: Part II”
At their grandfather’s urging, Nate’s cousin Tripp runs for Congress. Serena gets roped into a convoluted plan against the opposing campaign, Vanessa films Tripp’s campaign efforts, and Chuck plans to host the election night party at the Empire. At various points, their moral compasses are challenged (what else is new?), and questions arise as to whether grandfather William is pulling strings behind the scenes. Tripp ends up winning not only the election… but also Serena’s affections, even though he’s married. Thus starts the next plotline.
Episodes 4.05, “Party Politics”; 4.07, “It’s the Great Masquerade, Naomi Clark”; 4.08, “Vegas, Maybe?”; 4.09, “A Thousand Words”
Silver joins the congressional campaign for Marissa Harris-Young (played by Brandy!), who is running against Teddy’s uncle. Viewers, and Silver herself, are initially led to believe Marissa is the ethical candidate, as opposed to Teddy’s allegedly homophobic uncle, but it’s Marissa who ends up doing some shady things to sabotage her opponent. There’s even a “Rock the Vote” registration party… although it’s rebranded as “Strip the Vote.”
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