Pepper Ann

This piece was written by my good friend Chase Bowman. He doesn’t have a blog of his own (lame). I guess he doesn’t mind living a life where all of his talent is wasted. Or he has one of those job things. Either way, enjoy one of my new favorite Kidz Showz posts.

“Pepper Ann, Pepper Ann, is she lame, is she cool”

Growing up, I was definitely the former, and I was sure it all stemmed from my parents refusal to pay for cable for my entire childhood and adolescence. For those of us without cable, Disney’s 1 Saturday Morning was basically the best thing on TV all week. Thinking back on that glorious era, you will remember the classics: Doug, Recess, Duck Tales, Sabrina: The Animated Show. But Pepper Ann? Is there any reason I remember this show, other than the fact that the protagonist had red hair? (No.)

“Oh, you’re talking about what’s-her-name”

I wanted to see how well Pepper Ann has been preserved, in these days of Buzzfeed’s “40 Foods You Will Never Eat Again #OMG #Nostalgia” lists, and kids born in 1999 declaring themselves “90s kids.” The answer is: not very well. Judging popularity by Facebook likes, Pepper Ann is 10 times less popular than Recess, and more than 200 times less popular than Doug. And let’s be real: Doug isn’t even that good. It’s just popular because he has a superhero alter-ego and there’s someone named Patty Mayonnaise in it. Yet somehow Pepper Ann survived 5 seasons (although there are tragically no plans to release it on DVD).

“Pepper Ann, she’s, like, one in a million!”

Actually, less than one in a million.

Actually, less than one in a million.

Pepper Ann was a seventh grade girl dealing with the problems every seventh grade girl dealt with in the late 90s: zits, tardiness and detentions, bad hair days (every day), and trying to impress the Jordan Catalano-esque mysterious older guy who wore sunglasses indoors. I definitely wasn’t the target audience, so I’m just going to chalk this one up to having sisters (an excuse I use to this day: “Why do I know the words to every song off of No Strings Attached? I have 3 sisters”).

“Who is she and why does she have her own song?”

An excellent question.

An excellent question. What is with her fashion? Although her thigh gap is ahead of its time.

Pepper Ann lives with her divorced Jewish mother and her younger “sister” Moose (voiced by a man, sounds like a man, let’s just call it like it is), and spends most of her time with her best friends Nicky and Milo. I also feel that it’s important to note that there is a prominent character named Pink-eyed Pete who has pink eye for five straight seasons, and there were also some notable guest voices, such as Brittany Murphy (RIP) and Alex Trebek.

“Pepper Ann, she’s her own biggest fan.”

Wait, what? Despite its questionable lyrics, the theme song remains a national treasure. In fact, after watching several episodes, I think it might be the only reason I have such fond memories of this show after all these years.

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10 thoughts on “Pepper Ann

  1. Nice work Chase! You did the blog good. I feel bad for you because you probably didn’t ever watch the original Doug which was actually really good. One Saturday Morning killed Doug and I can never forgive them for it.
    I really liked Pepper Ann’s theme song, but I don’t remember ever watching any episodes. I also couldn’t get past her hair and the fact that she and her sister/brother looked like boys.
    Was your third sister even alive during the Pepper Ann days? I do like that excuse though.

    • Yeah, I guess I never saw the original Doug. I didn’t even realize there was one. And no, my third sister was not born yet, but no one has to know that.

  2. Great post Chase and a wonderful way to tackle this topic. I especially like that you went out of your way to find out how rare Pepper Ann is.

    I never really watched this show. Her voice made me feel uncomfortable. She sounded like a cigarette smoking 45 year old woman from Staten Island. Why does she dream about being really muscular with large breasts and all that happens is she gets arrows shot at her? This kid needs help. She reminds me too much of someone friends of mine would date in high school.

    • Thanks “Mooselicker.” I had completely forgot about her dream superhero/alter-ego or whatever it was. She definitely needed help. Like many cartoon characters of our childhood, it’s easy to now see that she definitely had some sort personality disorder (possibly split personality?) that was just dismissed as “quirkiness.”

  3. I think Kidz Showz has found itself a new writer! Excellent post, Chase. I’ve always thought you were funny, and have to agree with Lily, that your talents are being wasted – not that I know what you do during the other 23 hours a day of your life, but still. I trust Lily on this one. If you don’t become a regular featured writer here, then get a blog so I can enjoy it. As you know, I have a twitter account that I’ve never used –but there is one person on it in case I change my mind – You, Chase Bowman. I’m very discerning. Make me happy and get a blog.
    Lisa

    • Thank you, Lily’s mom (still never sure what to call friends’ parents, even at this age). I’ve definitely tossed around the blog idea. At the very least I hope to guest post here again, the creators willing.

  4. Pingback: Table of Contents | Kidz Showz

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