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Played by Miriam McDonald, Seasons 1-9 (regular), 15 (guest)
“I can’t apologize for doing something I believe in.”Emma is the daughter of Spike Nelson and Shane McKay, and step-daughter of Snake, all from Degrassi Junior High. Emma is highly idealistic with strong opinions and a desire to help others in need. She is an staunch environmentalist, and many of her causes correlate with this. In season 4, she undergoes a radical makeover, as she ditches her dorky cause girl gear and starts dressing like the popular girls. She ditches her friends and starts to hang out with the popular kids, until she realizes she can't change who she is and defends Rick, which doesn't save her when Rick brings a gun to school. She was one of the many students affected by the school shooting in season four, which left her lost and questioning who she was, and turning to questionable methods to deal with her PTSD. In season five, she developed an eating disorder due to her control issues and trouble at home. Her biggest love relationship in the show was with Sean Cameron, a troubled young man. They dated on and off since season 2 and their relationship went through tremendous highs and lows before it finally ended in season 7 when Sean went off to the military. In season nine, she dropped out of Smithdale University due to stress and to re-evaluate her future goals. She marries Spinner Mason at the end of season nine, after realizing she loved him. No, really.
- Accidental Marriage: Marries Spinner in a drunken stupor, and the marriage later turns real.
- Action Girl: She surprisingly held her own in a fight against tough girl Alex.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: She was drawn to Sean, Jay, and Peter despite their bad boy tendencies.
- The Bus Came Back: In the Degrassi: Next Class episode "#ThrowbackThursday," where she it's revealed she's still married to Spinner.
- But We Used a Condom: She had a pregnancy scare in season six with Sean, despite using protection.
- Compressed Vice: Her anorexia was only portrayed in two episodes, with only a few mentions of it later on.
- Control Freak: Even as a kid she was a bit of a control freak, specifically trying to control Manny and trying to stop her from joining the Spirit Squad. Later, after her parents separate for a bit, she tries to maintain control on other aspects of her life, leading to her anorexia.
- Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You: In Degrassi High, after her father Shane takes tries LSD he falls off/jumps off a bridge, suffering traumatic brain injuries and had to live in special needs facilities. That's a pretty good reason to not raise a child.
- Disappeared Dad: Her father Shane from Degrassi Junior High is in a home for the mentally disabled.
- Doomed New Clothes: She decided to show off her new white skirt at school, the same day she starts her period.
- Expy: She is directly inspired from Caitlin Ryan; both are feminists and have strong opinions.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: With Manny, JT, and Toby, she is melancholic (introverted and task-oriented).
- Go-Getter Girl: She is a staunch feminist, and not content with the typical Acceptable Feminine Goals. She also started a protest against the Spirit Squad for supposedly being sexist.
- Girliness Upgrade: In season 4, she ditched much of her earthy, basic (and animal printed) clothing and started wearing more fashionable girly clothing in addition to wearing makeup and growing out her hair.
- Granola Girl: She is an environmentalist, vegetarian, and animal lover.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: She got hit with this after Rick pointed a gun at her in the Wham Episode. The post-traumatic stress affected her greatly, to the point where she questioned everything about herself. And also ended up giving oral sex to Jay to distance herself from the event.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Manny, her best friend and confidant.
- Hypocrite: Has had quite a few hypocritical moments over the years, as sometimes her philosophies don't quite match up with her behavior.
- Karma Houdini/Easily Forgiven: She can often be a jerkass to the ones closest to her, but they eventually forgive her in the end.
- In with the In Crowd: Briefly in season 4 as she joined in with the bullying of Rick until she found her conscious.
- Intoxication Ensues: In season eight with marijuana, as she smokes in order to loosen up and establish her college identity.
- Last Minute Hook Up: Gets hitched with Spinner at the end of season nine.
- Light Feminine and Dark Feminine: The Light to Manny's Dark. Emma is generally seen as a "good girl," and not sexy or desirable, at least until season four.
- My Girl Is Not a Slut: Sean judges Emma harshly for hooking up with Jay, and for ruining his admiration for her and his past memories of her. A lighter version of the trope appeared when Snake was uncomfortable about Emma being sexually active with Sean.
- No Periods, Period: Horrifically averted in Coming of Age, complete with the red splotch on her brand new white skirt.
- Not So Above It All: She tries to hold steadfastly to her principles but often times she can't even live up to her own standards and has some hypocritical moments and breakdowns.
- Only Friend: She was Manny's only friend until Manny branched out. The opposite is also true, Manny is Emma's only friend and True Companion; she is friendly with Liberty, JT, Toby and others but not nearly as close as she is with Manny.
- Sex for Solace: She gives Jay oral sex after nearly being killed by Rick in order to cope with her emotional breakdown.
- She's All Grown Up: The most dynamic example in the show as she emerged from her awkward phase as one of the more attractive Degrassi students.
- She Cleans Up Nicely: Shown in season four where she doesn't have her braces anymore, starts wearing makeup and starts dressing more fashionable.
- Significant Wardrobe Shift: She shifts from her usual natural, understated clothing after season three and starts dressing fashionably and wearing makeup to start distancing herself from her "cause girl" look.
- Soapbox Sadie: She will give you her opinion on an issue, and was the resident "cause girl" of Degrassi particularly about environmental issues but not limited to advertising in schools, to genetically modified food, endangered species and violence.
- Spin Off Spring: The daughter of Spike from Degrassi Junior High, and she is one of the main characters of Degrassi: The Next Generation.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Starting in season four where with her new look came a more shallow personality, until the shooting rocks her to the core.
- Weight Woe: Suffered from both bulimia and anorexia, and it's mentioned a few times after she recovers.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Near the beginning of season four, Emma attempts to rekindle her relationship with Chris Sharpe. Not because she still likes him or anything; it's just because Liberty has shown an interest in Chris and Emma's worried that if Liberty is his next girlfriend, it will make her look bad. Both Liberty and Manny call her out on this bout of bitchiness.
Manuella "Manny" Santos
Played by Cassie Steele, Seasons 1-9 (regular)
“Remember when you got your period in class and everyone was laughing in class and you just told them to shut up? I feel like that everyday, like everyone's joking about me and I can't get them to shut up.”Manny is Emma's best friend who's been there for her since the beginning. She's sweet, cute and she has a idealistic view of romance, falling hard for Craig Manning in season two. In season three, she decided to start dressing provocatively in order to get attention from boys and bury her "cute" imagine. She gets Craig's attention and they end up sleeping together despite Craig having Ashley as a girlfriend. Afterward, she discovered she was pregnant and after much agonizing, she had an abortion but it left her with being known as the school slut. To put the drama behind her, she focuses on acting after realizing she loved it when she was part of the Jay and Silent Bob movie that filmed in Canada. In season 5, she ends up back in the arms of Craig. But unfortunately, he was into Ellie, which set off her insecurity. Much of her insecurity regarding her looks and self-worth are due to her oppressive father and Craig being emotionally distant from her during their relationship. In The Movie, she lands a role in Jason Mewes's Mewes-sical High. She now lives in Los Angeles and works as an actress but still has time to see Jay.
- Action Girl: More of the action-oriented girls on Degrassi, having been in three fights during her tenure.
- A Friend in Need: She sticks with Emma, through thick and thin not to mention her other friends, such as Liberty and Darcy.
- Be a Whore to Get Your Man: At the start of season three, her infamous Hot Girl makeover was to win over an extra. She later tries to sweep Craig away from Ashley the minute they have a fight.
- Berserk Button: DO NOT call her a slut!
- Breakthe Cutie: In proud Degrassi tradition. After having sex with Craig, being his side chick, getting pregnant and having an abortion she becomes a much different character. She loses her cheery, naive spirit and becomes much more jaded.
- Breakout Character: Initially Emma's shadow in Seasons 1 and 2, she developed her own style and personality and became one of the show's most dynamic characters in Season 3.
- Catch-Phrase: "Cuckoo bananas!"
- The Cheerleader: She joined the Spirit Squad in season one, became captain, and stayed there until she graduated.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: In season two, where she asked Craig to not speak to Ashley, after their one date, when Ashley is in all his classes. When they begin to date again and Craig hangs out with Ellie, she still remains jealous but for good reason.
- The Cutie: Only in the first two seasons, as she was adorable and sweet. Starting in season three, she decides that she doesn't want to be "cute little Manny" anymore. She wants to be hot, not cute or adorable, but HOT!
- Fille Fatale: During season 3 with her "hot girl" makeover and having all the boys (and Craig) drool all over her.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: With Emma, JT, and Toby, she's choleric (extroverted and task-oriented).
- Good Bad Girl: She's very sweet and kind, and after she goes through, she becomes a lot more mature. And also she's more sexually experienced than most of her peers.
- Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Averted, with "Accidents Will Happen". This led to the episode being banned from TeenNick for about three years.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Emma, her best friend since the beginning of the series.
- Hormone-Addled Teenager: Boys and sex are her two biggest vices. She throws herself at Craig and has sex with him.
- Hot for Teacher: She starts dating her acting professor at Smithdale University.
- Humiliation Conga: When it was revealed she was pregnant in front of the whole school, and then being known as the "school slut" in season three. Happens again later when she flashes her breasts to Peter and he uploads the video to the Internet.
- Idol Singer: In her imagination during season 2, she sings a Broadway style number with Craig. In a ball gown. Also, she becomes one literally in season eight as she sings in Mewes-ical High and at Spinner and Emma's wedding.
- I Just Want to Be Loved: She has a desperate need for love and male attention and the need to be protected.
- I Just Want to Be Special: Her makeover in season three was partly to stop being known as "Emma's sidekick" along with getting attention from boys.
- Instant Humiliation: Just Add YouTube!: After she drunkenly flashes her breasts for Peter who films it. A Degrassi Mini revealed that that video has it's own remix.
- Light Feminine and Dark Feminine: The Dark to Emma's Light. Manny is seen as a seductress and a boyfriend-stealer by the Degrassi female student body.
- Living a Double Life: She hid her provocative clothing and her Ms. Fanservice status from her conservative parents.
- Love Martyr: Was the other girl in Craig's relationship with Ashley, and for the most part always came in second place. More pronounced with her relationship with her professor in The Movie.
- Mistaken for Racist: By Holly J and Chantay in Love is a Battlefield after they hear Manny and Damian joking around.
- The Mistress: Craig continued to see Manny while dating Ashley. For a while she was happy with the mistress label until she finally demanded an ultimatum for Craig.
- Ms. Fanservice: A Ms. Fanservice to the school with her outfits in season three, for the belly button shirts, showing her thong, and actually Going Commando and nearly exposing her butt.
- She's also seen in bikini tops, particularly in Season 4's car wash. This gets a bit Squicky when you realize Cassie Steele was 13 and 14 at the time of filming Seasons 3-4.
- My Girl Is Not a Slut: As Manny herself points out, Craig was the one who cheated when they had sex, but whereas he got off scot-free, she gets saddled with the label "slut".
- Naïve Everygirl: In the first two seasons, she was a hopeless romantic and sweet and adorable. This changed in the third season with her Hot Girl makeover.
- Only Friend: She was Emma's only friend, and for awhile she was hers.
- Princess Phase: One day she imagines herself as Cinderella with Craig as her Prince. Craig likes her but says that he can't kiss her because she reminds him of his five year old sister.
- Real-Life Relative: Her sister Alex Steele played Craig's little sister, and she later gained a regular role in season eleven.
- The Rival: To Paige, for a while. After an all-out Cat Fight towards the end of season four, they mostly get over it. Also had Ellie as a rival, as she was jealous of Ellie spending time with Craig.
- She's All Grown Up: After her makeover, the male Degrassi student body finally took notice of her graduating puberty with honors.
- Satellite Character: She was Emma's shadow for the first two seasons before she became a more dynamic character in season three.
- Sex Equals Love: This was her outlook on sex, especially after she and Craig did it. She wasn't prepared for the consequences.
- Single Girl Seeks Most Popular Guy: She crushed on Craig Manning after he danced with her in season two and deliberately sought him out in season three after her makeover.
- Teen Pregnancy: She never went through with it and she terminated the pregnancy.
- Thinks Like a Romance Novel: When she crushes on Craig, she literally imagines herself as a princess and with Craig as her Prince Charming. She views on romance don't mature much from that until season 6 when she finally dumps Craig after his crappy treatment of her.
- Took a Level in Dumbass: Once she went through the change, she increasingly became lacking in basic common sense (though she did get better by later seasons).
- Took a Level in Jerkass: In season three with her new look came a mean girl streak and she initially had no qualms about messing around with other girls' boyfriends.
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: The first few seasons had her as the innocent, pigtail-wearing, popularity-seeking best friend of Emma. She wanted to be special even then, but didn't take the drastic lengths that eventually would to be so.
- The Vamp: Her reputation at Degrassi, much to her dismay.
- Weight Woe: She was considering getting liposuction on her thighs and rear, after a casting agent tells her to "dump the lumps." Worried about her weight for an upcoming role and purged a couple of times at Emma's suggestion, but stopped before things got out of control.
James Tiberius "J.T" Yorke
Played by Ryan Cooley, Seasons 1-6 (regular)
“If JT's death has taught me anything, it's that the worst mistakes are the ones you never learn from. And to never, ever take your friends for granted.”Earlier in the show's run, JT was the class clown obsessed with the female anatomy and sex. He grew to be one of Degrassi's more popular students in season three, but all the while keeping his joking attitude. Despite his childish and immature antics, he was the apple of Liberty Van Zandt's eye. They eventually get together and starting dating in season 5 but then he accidentally gets Liberty pregnant. Neither he nor Liberty handle the situation very well, with JT resorting to stealing prescription drugs in order to provide for Liberty and the baby. It completely blows up in his face, he ends up on suicide watch after a drug overdose and Liberty gives up the baby for adoption. In season six, Mia Jones becomes his girlfriend but he still has lingering feelings for Liberty despite wanting to get away from their past baby drama. Even while dating Mia, JT realizes that he was still in love with Liberty, but unfortunately he was fatally stabbed by a Lakehurst student before he could confess that he still loved her.
- Adorkable: He's seen as a general perverted geek at Degrassi, but he is funny, kind-hearted and friendly enough for the girls to take notice but not quite go out with.
- All Guys Want Cheerleaders: Paige, at least initially and Manny in season three. With the latter he even has a short relationship but it doesn't last long.
- Back from the Dead: As a ghost, in the season nine Christmas mini-episode and a season six Tearjerker webisode.
- Break the Cutie: The happy-go-lucky JT accidentally impregnates Liberty, desperately attempts to scrape together the money to support her and their child and works long hours to do it, ends up being coerced into a drug deal by Jay (and ends up immediately throwing up right after, that's how disgusted with himself he becomes), gets dumped by the love of his life as a result of his actions, and ends up in the hospital after overdosing on pills (whether it was an accident or a deliberate suicide attempt seems to be up for interpretation).
- Book Dumb: He rather be a Class Clown than be a good student. But he does show a surprising talent for sewing, and can do good in school when he applies himself.
- But We Used a Condom: Liberty ends up pregnant due to JT using a large-sized condom that slipped off.
- Butt-Monkey: He was the "Comic Relief" version the first few seasons. As the show went on, he became the "Go Through Hell" version.
- Chivalrous Pervert: He is obsessed with sex and pornography, but he has always treated women with respect.
- Class Clown: Degrassi's biggest Class Clown before he grew out of it in season three.
- Cool Loser: He's funny, charming to girls, and resourceful but for some reason he was seen as a loser, possibly due to him hanging around Toby and his childishness. After he grows up some, he becomes more popular.
- Deadpan Snarker: Usually the snarkiest out of his group of friends, along with Liberty.
- Distracted by the Sexy: Twice in U Got The Look, ogling Manny's new look and colliding into obstacles.
- Dogged Nice Guy: With Manny, who was more into Craig and other popular boys.
- Driven to Suicide: After going absolutely crazy trying to be a good teen father, which included quitting his dream TV job, getting a pharmacy job and stealing painkillers for money. The show doesn't make it clear on whether or not JT meant to do it, but when asked outright, JT is ashamed and he's on suicide watch at the hospital.
- Embarrassing Middle Name: Tiberius. He prefers to be called JT.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: With Emma, Manny, and Toby, he is sanguine (extroverted and people-oriented).
- Gay Bravado: As part of him trying to get Liberty to stop crushing on him. "Hey there Liberty, girlfriend!"
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Toby, even after JT moves up the Popularity Food Chain.
- Hormone-Addled Teenager: Very much so. He looks at porn on the internet, his science project are homemade silicone breast implants, and was in total admiration of Hot Teacher Ms. Hatzilakos.
- Hot for Teacher: He had a big crush on Ms. Hatzilakos, until he spent time with her and respected her as a teacher.
- Iconic Outfit: His baseball caps in seasons one and two, which he stops wearing when he becomes more popular.
- Interrupted Declaration of Love: He is tragically killed before he can tell Liberty he loves her.
- In with the In Crowd: Starting in season three, he gets more popular. This creates problems within his friendship with Toby.
- Kill the Cutie: Just when it looks like he'll get back together with Liberty for good, a Lakehurst bully stabs him for no reason. Poor JT's only consolation is that he died in Liberty's arms (not that this was much consolation to her, this moment was the biggest Break the Cutie moment for Liberty).
- Killed Off for Real: The second Degrassi student to be killed during the series' run.
- Love Epiphany: In the last episode he was alive in, despite dating Mia and defending her from Lakehurst bullies, he realizes that he's always been in love with Liberty.
- Nocturnal Emission: He has a wet dream about Liberty. In Toby's bed.
- No Guy Wants to Be Chased: Resisted Liberty's advances for a long while.
- Only Known by Initials: His full name is James Tiberius, but everyone calls him JT.
- Opposites Attract: With Liberty, an uptight Child Prodigy.
- Parental Abandonment: By both of his parents, he lives with his grandmother.
- Plucky Comic Relief: In seasons one through three with his Class Clown antics.
- Raised by Grandparents: Raised by his grandmother, specifically.
- Retcon: His mother and father are mentioned in the earlier seasons, but in season five he is shown to live with his grandmother, and neither parent appears to be in the picture. No in-universe explanation for this is ever given. Of course, since so little was known about JT's home life, his parents could've walked out on him off-screen.
- Schemer: In the first two seasons, he always had some plan that ended up getting Toby or them both in trouble.
- Straight Man and Wise Guy: The wise guy to Toby's straight man.
- Those Two Guys: With Toby, before the Teen Pregnancy storyline launched him into the main character spotlight.
- Teeny Weenie: JT is insecure about his penis size so much so he uses a penis pump.
- Unlucky Childhood Friend: With childhood friend Manny, who never payed him much attention and when they started going out, she dumped him shortly thereafter.
- White Shirt of Death: Happened to be wearing one when he was stabbed.
Played by Jake Goldsbie, Seasons 1-6 (regular), 7 (recurring), 8 (guest)
“Toby's a geek. He always has been.”Toby is J.T.'s best friend, Ashely's step-brother, and nerdy to the extreme. He loves video games, computers, and anime. When J.T. begins to get more popular, their friendship drifts apart until both characters hit a low in season four and season five. In season four, his friend Rick shoots Jimmy in the Degrassi hallways and later ends up being accidentally shot and killed by Sean. In season six, J.T. is killed which pretty much means Toby is unlucky, to say the least. Throughout season six and seven, he expressed a lot anger toward Lakehurst High for "killing J.T.," but after time he came to terms with J.T.'s murder. He is one of the more level-headed characters at Degrassi, and doesn't mind the fact he is considered a huge nerd.
- Adorkable: He is a pretty huge nerd and awkward, but despite that he's had a girlfriend for two seasons and even Alpha Bitch Holly J took a liking to him.
- All Love Is Unrequited: In The Mating Game, he nurses a budding crush on Emma, and the feeling isn't mutual.
- Always Someone Better: Virtually every main male student at Degrassi served as this to him, including his more outgoing best friend.
- Annoying Younger Sibling: To Ashley, in seasons one and two. In Ashley's first episode, he takes a long time in the bathroom and puts on her training bra.
- The Artifact: He, along with Ashley were a lot more prominent in the first few seasons as expies of Stephanie and Arthur, but as the show distanced itself from it's roots, their roles shrank.
- Butt-Monkey: He has two very close friends killed, and is also relentlessly bullied. In a lighter version of the trope, he's always the butt of the joke, particularity when it comes to romance and women.
- Dogged Nice Guy: For just about every girl he had an interest in. His only relationship in the series was with Kendra, whom he was a Dogged Nice Guy for until they started dating.
- Doom Magnet: Both his friends died: first Rick, then J.T.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: With Emma, Manny, and JT, he is phlegmatic (introverted and people-oriented).
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: JT is his very best friend, and he was crushed when he was killed.
- Informed Judaism: He is Jewish, and it's only mentioned a couple of times in the series.
- Jewish and Nerdy: Well, he's a nerd and he's Jewish. Fits the trope to a T.
- My Friends... and Zoidberg: During his senior prom, he got this treatment from Liberty, Manny, and Emma. "Girls and Toby."
- Nice Jewish Boy: He doesn't have it in his heart to be mean, and was only mean towards Lakehurst and Johnny DiMarco because of him being present when JT was killed. He got better though
- Only Sane Man: Throughout his time on the show, he was the most normal and level-headed out of all of his friends, with no major relationship drama and very few issues-oriented story arcs.
- Otaku: He loves anime and manga and he even meets Kendra due to their shared interest.
- Out of Focus: throughout seasons three through seven, he played no major role at all, a stark contrast to seasons one and two.
- Proud to Be a Geek: He makes no apology for being a geek and being smart.
- Straight Man and Wise Guy: The straight man to JT's wise guy.
- Tiny Schoolboy: He's significantly shorter than all of the other male characters and several female ones.
- Those Two Guys: With JT, in the first two seasons.
- The Short Guy with Glasses: He fits the physical description and is the The Smart Guy out of all his friends.
- Unlucky Childhood Friend: Emma and Manny doesn't see him as a potential love interest due to the fact they grew up together.
- Weight Woe: In season two, he tries to make weight for the wrestling team by starving himself and using laxatives and even throwing his lunch up.
- Wounded Gazelle Gambit : In Season 4's "kissing contest" with Rick. He uses this to get girls to "kiss it better."
Liberty Van Zandt
Liberty Van Zandt
Played by Sarah Barrable-Tishauer, Seasons 1-8 (regular), 9, 15 (guest)
“Liberty sees an opportunity, she goes for it. She’s like a rabid wolverine.”Liberty is an intelligent young girl who skipped a gradenote . Due to her intelligence being higher than her peers, she tends to be socially awkward and pompous of her own achievements. She is very serious-minded and despite this, she falls in love with class clown J.T. Yorke. In season five, she becomes pregnant by J.T. which caused a lot of strife within their relationship and they ended up splitting. J.T. gained a new girlfriend, but still had feelings for Liberty but was tragically killed before he confessed to Liberty. She grieves throughout season 6 and 7 before picking up the pieces and becoming valedictorian for the class of 2007. She ends up attending Smithdale University along with Manny and Emma. Liberty also has a younger brother, Danny.
- Academic Alpha Bitch: Even as a younger Degrassi student, she thought that with her smarts she could try to take charge of things. In season five, Liberty becomes Student Council President and then fights to be valedictorian. By then she was more confident and more concerned with herself than her peers.
- Action Girl: After Lucas brags that JT was begging to be stabbed, she full on shoves him into a fence and stats flailing on him. And Lucas is a good foot taller and much heavier.
- Birthday Hater: Even before JT bled to death in her arms outside of her birthday party.
- Black and Nerdy: She graduates as valedictorian, and participates in a number of school activities.
- Break the Haughty/Broken Bird: Season five and six, after her pregnancy and JT being killed. She slowly pulls herself out it at the end of season seven.
- Brutal Honesty: She was never one to mince words.
- But We Used a Condom: JT used a large-sized condom that slipped off during sex, getting Liberty pregnant.
- Child Prodigy/Teen Genius: She was one year younger than the rest of her class due to her skipping a grade due to her genius.
- Class Representative: In seasons one through four she is an ambitious know-it-all who takes it upon herself to enforce the dress code. She was responsible for involving the school in putting on a performance of 'Dracula' to express the darkness the school went through.
- Control Freak: Shown off in Relax, where she goes insane with power when's she made team manager of the floor hockey team.
- Deadpan Snarker: She can be snarky on occasion.
- Ditzy Genius: A lot of intelligence is book smarts, and it really showed when she got pregnant as she was too afraid and in denial to do anything. And then there's her wearing a cape as her part of floor hockey team manager power trip.
- Extraverted Nerd: Despite her place on the Popularity Food Chain, she seemingly wasn't aware of it. She was even confident enough to ask Sean out, while he was hanging out with his Gang of Bullies.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: Well not to be that harsh as she's liked by Emma, Manny, JT and Toby but they didn't really hang out with her that much as her personality can be abrasive. This gets better in the later seasons.
- Go-Getter Girl: She takes school government, academic and after-school activities very seriously. Don't get in her way.
- Her Heart Will Go On: After JT was stabbed, she went through the typical arc of getting over the death and becoming a better person as a result.
- Insufferable Genius: She's smart and not afraid to let you know about it. Constantly.
- "L" Is for "Dyslexia": She suffers from Dyscalculia.
- Meganekko: She's rarely seen without her glasses.
- Out of Focus: In seasons three through four, in stark contrast to the first two seasons. It took JT getting her pregnant and getting killed for her to get back in the main character spotlight.
- Opposites Attract: With JT, Degrassi's Class Clown.
- She Cleans Up Nicely: She already blossomed until a beautiful woman during the show, and then when she shows up at prom, wearing a clingy red dress. She gets rave reviews, from both male and female.
- She Is All Grown Up: As stated above, she along with Emma graduated puberty with honors, and it definitely showed at prom with the red dress.
- Smug Snake: Her pomposity was a plot point in several episodes.
- Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Her speech patterns tend to be very technical and wordy, with a dash of Spock Speak.
- Stalker With a Crush: Towards JT, in the earlier seasons despite him being very clear that he didn't like her.
- Student Council President: She was the first character to be president two times in a row.
- Teen Pregnancy: After she and JT bungled their baby plans, she gave the baby up for adoption.
- Token Minority: A would-be token to a sorority she rushed for in season 8 before she figured out their scheme to simply add a black girl for funding.
- Uptight Loves Wild: Uptight Liberty crushing on Wild JT.
- Also her crush on Troubled, but Cute Sean.
- UST: She and Damian had this, despite Damian dating Emma. They acted on it, but got caught and Liberty nearly lost all her friends due to this.
Played by Daniel Clark, Seasons 1-4, 6 (regular), 7 (guest)
“Classic Sean. When going gets tough, the Sean gets going.”Sean is a troubled young man who ends up at Degrassi after being expelled from his old school for a violent incident. He immediately gets the interest of Emma, and in season two they become an item. He has a tendency to let his anger get the best of him, resulting in a lot of fights at school. Despite his anger problem, Sean is a sweetheart and tries desperately to hide that from the tough crowd he hangs with. In season three, he breaks up with Emma due to feeling like a hindrance in her life and starts a relationship with Ellie. When Rick shoots Jimmy then turns the gun to Emma in season four, Sean protects Emma but inadvertently kills Rick in the process. Shell-shocked, he retreats to Wasaga Beach where his parents live. He returns to Degrassi in season six and reunites with Emma, only to be thrown in jail for a non-lethal hit and run while street racing Peter Stone. After he gets out of prison, he rekindles his relationship with Emma but later joins the Canadian military despite Emma's wishes.
- Alcoholic Parent: Both of his parents, leading for him to live with his brother Tracker in Toronto. Overall, they're Good Parents and welcome Sean back when he goes up to Wasega.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: His Establishing Character Moment involves him riding on the back of his brother's motorcycle, running his fingers through his hair and disrespecting a teacher. Emma is instantly smitten.
- Accidental Murder: While wrestling Rick for the gun, he accidentally kills Rick.
- Anti-Hero: He's not all for big causes, but he does what needs to be done.
- Anti-Villain: Yes, both. As a villain, he just wants to hurt Emma, even if he hurts her family in the process.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: "Saw your picture...recognized the eyebrows."
- Bruiser with a Soft Center: Very tough and gets into fights a lot but he's very sensitive and wants to do the right thing.
- Chekhov's Skill: Remember when Sean was on the wrestling team? See that dude pointing a gun at Emma?
- Dark and Troubled Past: Not so much. According to Degrassi legend, he was so tough he deafened a kid in the ear for messing with him. In truth, he was bullied by the kid until he fought back and punched him in the ear. Played straight with his parents being alcoholics and almost elderly and his older brother is much older than him hinting at the fact that he may have been an "accident."
- Delinquent: He doesn't try to be, but often finds himself in delinquent-type behavior whether due to circumstance or peer pressure.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Not so much "evil" as an Anti-Hero, but "Just put the gun down. You're only going to make things worse." And he and Ellie defended Rick when nobody else would.
- Expy: Of Rick Munro, a minor character from Degrassi Junior High. Rick was also Caitlin's initial Love Interest and Caitlin is in many ways like Emma.
- Held Back in School: Due to the violent incident he had in Wasega, he ended up repeating his 7th grade year.
- Heel–Face Revolving Door: He's a good kid, who does some bad things. His status changes several times throughout the show and even during his "evil" phases, he was sweet.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: After he accidentally kills Rick, he feels terribly guilty despite saving Emma and stays away from Toronto for an entire season.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Jay, after he breaks up with Emma and stops hanging out with her friends.
- Jerkass Façade: He has a cold, aloof demeanor, but inside he's a softie and doesn't like being outwardly mean. It's also hinted that much of his bad boy act and look is a front.
- Kirk Summation: Gives Rick one last chance to stop the violence.
- Memetic Badass: In-universe example, as the rumors of him deafening a kid spread.
- Mr. Fanservice: His sexy eyebrows are something of a Memetic Mutation. Not to mention that he has had several Shirtless Scenes, one of the more memorable ones in season 2 with the then closeted Marco Eating the Eye Candy while Sean was playing basketball outside.
- My Girl Is Not a Slut: He freaks out on Emma after he finds out what she did to Jay and is not the wholesome girl he remembers.
- My God, What Have I Done?: After accidentally killing Rick, he feels completely terrible and leaves Toronto in order to deal with his feelings.
- Only Sane Man: The first two seasons, outside of a few mishaps, he was one of the more level-headed students. Except in season three and six.
- Parental Abandonment: His parents sent him away to Toronto to avoid jail time after he deafened a bully in the ear.
- Perpetual Poverty: He is poor, lived with his brother in a bad place of town and qualified for assistance when he decided to live alone.
- Put on a Bus: Twice, once in season four the second time it was a Long Bus Trip in season six.
- Remember When You Blew Up a Sun?: Used repeatedly in the episode after he killed Rick, much to his dismay. Averted after his return.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: He also tends to run away from his problems and not face them.
- Shirtless Scene: More than any other character, including one at age fourteen.
- Sugar and Ice Personality: He keeps up a tough exterior and in season 3, completely switches over to being a delinquent, but Sean is a big 'ol softie on the inside. In season 6, after he comes back from his Bus Trip, he seems to have embraces the Sugar side of himself more.
- Troubled, but Cute: Degrassi: The Next Generation's original troubled, but cute boy. He has a lot of issues, and he's very handsome.
- Unlikely Hero: Who would've expected him out of all characters to try to talk down Rick and try to wrestle the gun out of his hand?
- Verbal Tic: Says "man" a lot, e.g. "I'm screwed, man."
Played by Mazin Elsadig, Seasons 6 (recurring), 7(regular)
“This should be a contest between equals. But the truth about Damian Hayes is that his charm is all an act.”Introduced in season six, and attended Degrassi in season 7 when his old high school Lakehurst burned down. He was friends with the boy who killed JT, but this is never extrapolated on much. He is a very ambitious guy and is very active in Lakehurst and Degrassi student government. He dates Emma, but later cheats on her with Liberty. He graduates along with the rest of the class of 2007 and attends Banting University.
- Ambition Is Evil: So bright, such a go-getter, and not afraid to do anything to get what he wants.
- Black and Nerdy: He fought with Liberty over the valedictorian slot, and smart enough to get into Banting University.
- Chick Magnet: He's had Emma, Manny and Liberty, all the three main girls, falling for him.
- Class Representative: He participated in both Lakehurst and Degrassi student government.
- Handsome Lech: He's a good looking guy, and in his short time on the show, he moved through Manny, Emma, and Liberty pretty quickly, not to mention cheating on Emma.
- Satellite Love Interest: He's pretty much the Satellite Character to all three girls he dated and hooked up with.
- Smug Snake: Confident to a fault, and even told Manny that she possibly couldn't understand politics.
- Spear Counterpart: He is very similar to Liberty in a lot ways, being black nerds and with the pomposity and intelligence.
- UST: With Liberty, while still dating Emma.
- Your Cheating Heart: He cheats on Emma by making out with Liberty at her prom, no less.