Freaks and Geeks
The Garage Door
Photo: NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection
In honor of Freaks and Geeks’ long-awaited return to streaming on Hulu, Vulture is revisiting every episode, one at a time, to see what made this one-of-a-kind high-school series tick. Check back for new episodic reviews every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday evening.
Excuse my bluntness, but: At this point in the Freaks and Geeks run, is Neal Schweiber anyone’s favorite character? This is not slander against Samm Levine, who is unflashy and steady as the third primary member of the geeks, and who perfectly captures — as Alfonso Ribeiro did with Carlton Banks on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air — a teenager mimicking the affectations of an older man. The sweater vests. The slightly judgmental and standoffish streak. The tendency to lose himself in repeating the words of adults — his father, Bill Murray — rather than demonstrating much identity of his own. The interest in sex that neither Sam (John Francis Daley) nor Bill (Martin Starr) yet share. He’s not pleasantly goofy, like Bill, nor achingly sincere, like Sam — he’s pricklier, less loyal, harder to like….