Any show where the central focus is on teenagers, their angst
, pimples, and/or clothes. Best describes shows like Beverly Hills 90210
and Dawson's Creek
(or anything else on The WB
or The CW
, really). Most likely place to find the Very Special Episode
The kind of show where everyone's too old
and too short
to be teenagers, they have to bring new people in
, the men keep taking their shirts off
, there are no more than two non-white main characters
, the teens talk much more like adults than teenagers
, and anyone over a specific age is bad news
See also Kid Com
which also features teenage protagonists and many of the same tropes, but generally in a far more light hearted manner. Young Adult
fiction is the rough literary
equivalent of the teen drama. Compare Soap Opera
and Prime Time Soap
When the lens is reversed to focus on the flaws of the kids' entire families, it's Stepford Suburbia
- 7th Heaven, mixed with religion.
- 13 Reasons Why
- The Best Years — made in Canada, set in Boston, Massachusetts.
- Beverly Hills 90210, both the trope codifying original and the revival.
- Bittersweet Candy Bowl — Even if they are cats and dogs.
- Blue Water High
- Breaker High
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer
- Caitlin's Way
- Club Der Roten Bänder
- Dance Academy
- Dawson's Creek
- All versions of the Degrassi franchise (except the original The Kids of Degrassi Street):
- Dis Connected
- The 21st century parts of The Dreamer can count as this.
- Freaks and Geeks. Made by future comedy overlord Judd Apatow, and stars many actors that went on to be famous through his movies. Lasted only one season, but became a Cult Classic in the process.
- Gigantic: the TeenNick show about the teenage children of celebrities.
- Glee, which also double as a musical with comedic elements. Well mostly comedic.
- Glue - otherwise known as "Skins meets Broadchurch".
- Gossip Girl, which was based on a book series that it has since eclipsed.
- Grange Hill - a mixture of a teen drama and Soap Opera. First aired in the 1970s and lasted for 30 years.
- Greek, although it's set in college.
- H2O: Just Add Water
- Hidden Palms
- Instant Star
- Joan of Arcadia's second season.
- JONAS L.A. The prequel falls under Sitcom category.
- Khaos Komix is another webcomic example.
- My Mad Fat Diary
- My So-Called Life was a deconstruction of the over-the-top teen dramas of The '90s. It is also considered a classic of the genre, despite lasting only one season.
- The O.C.
- Odd Girl Out
- One Tree Hill
- Open Heart, which is also a Detective Drama and Medical Drama.
- Party of Five
- Patito Feo
- Point Pleasant
- Pretty Little Liars, which also started out as a book series.
- Privileged. Although the twins are not the main characters, their actions and crises drive a lot of the plot.
- Rebelde Way. Takes place in Argentina amidst the rich kids, but it also discusses elements of the lower classes. So the idea of "rich white kids" has a different connotation in the third world than in the USA/ the UK. (Not to mention the idea of light-skinned/white-passing latinos, which are fairly common in South America but rare to see in the USA).
- Reign: Unlike most of these examples, is set in the 16th Century rather than modern day.
- Romeo and Juliet: Just goes to show...
- Riverdale: Based on Archie Comics with mystery.
- Room 222
- Second Noah
- The Secret Life of the American Teenager
- Shut Up Flower Boy Band
- Smallville was one of these, before the Sci-Fi and geeky Comic Book fanservice took over.
- South of Nowhere: A TeenNick drama. Unusual because it had a 30 running time for the most part.
- The Love Of Siam
- 13 Reasons Why, albeit a much more dramatic example, dealing with suicide and bullying.
- The Tribe. A post-apocalyptic teen drama from New Zealand.
- The Vampire Diaries
- Veronica Mars — Teen Drama meets Film Noir.
- The Way He Looks
- YU+ME: dream is a webcomic teen drama.
- The Wanderers is a teen drama about a youth gang in the Bronx.