Recess (TV Series 1997–2001) Poster

(1997–2001)

User Reviews

Add a Review
39 ReviewsOrdered By: Helpfulness
This show is Great!!!
Ginger8730 July 2004
Recess is one the best animated cartoons ever invented by Disney. I started watching it back when I was ten years old when it first began on One Saturday Morning and immediately fell in love with it. The Recess gang included six friends: T.J. the leader, Vince the athlete, Mikey the poet, Spinelli the tomboy, Gretchen the genius, and Gus the new kid. My favorite characters were Spinelli and T.J.(he's so cute)! They gave me good adventures for my friends and I to to do at recess when we was bored. My favorite episodes were "The Experiment" and "Mama's Girl". These episodes are classics! Unfortunately they don't make anymore new episodes but I still watch reruns on the Disney channel and Toon Disney when I get a chance to. They bring back memories of Elementry school and how I wish I was still there and not in high school!(LOL) Recess deserves a full 10/10 stars!
20 out of 20 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
One of the best shows ever from Disney.
dootuss28 November 2002
This is one of the greatest T.V. shows that Disney has ever made. The characters are unique, and have their own personalities, and the episodes are very creative, which I think is the main reason why this show is so cool. I also like this show since the characters can relate to us if you are, or were once a kid. Truly, an enjoyable half hour of animated bliss.

This gets a 10/10.
33 out of 35 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Tresix8 January 2003
I only began to follow "Recess" in reruns. Now I wish I had watched it while it was still on the air. The show is funny and very enjoyable. I can still identify with a lot of the things that the fourth graders at Third St. Elementary School (named after millionaire philanthropist Thaddeus T. Third III) go through even though it's been thirty-four years for me. First, let's look at the gang themselves: T.J., the undisputed leader of the gang and master prankster. Gretchen, the smartest kid in the school REGARDLESS of grade. Gus, the mousy new kid. Vince, the school jock. Spinnelli, the toughest girl, if not kid, in the school. Mikey, the big kid with the soul of a poet. Each kid has their own unique personality and strength (for the record: I was like Gus while in the fourth grade, now I'm probably more like Mikey). Then, there are the suppporting players like the Ashleys, who act not unlike the title characters in the movie HEATHERS. Randall, the school snitch. The Diggers (named Sam and Dave, after the famous singing group). Upside-down Girl and Swinger Girl. Office clerk Menlow (does this kid EVER go to class?). Lawson, who is constantly on the losing end of any competition with Vince. And the Kindergarteners, who look and act like escapees from "Lord of the Flies". Then there are the grown-ups of the show: The appropriately named Principal Prickly (voiced by Dabney Coleman). Flowerchild teacher Miss Grolke (Alyce Beasley of "Moonlighting" fame). And last, but certainly not least, Miss Finster (April Winchell), the school disciplinarian, described as "a 200-lb. gargoyle in orthopedic shoes". Watching this show brings back a lot of memories, both good and bad. It's a trip down Memory Lane worth traveling.
19 out of 21 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Wonderful!
Flower_of_the_Lily3 January 2006
I first encountered this great series a short while back when babysitting, and can only regret that it wasn't around when I was at school! Sharper, wittier and more acerbic than standard Disney fare, it still packs a healthy dose of Disney morals and lessons into each episode without being overwhelmed by them, thank heavens.

The idea is simplicity itself: a group of tight-knit ten-year-old friends battle to overcome problems and enemies (often in the shape of an authority figure!) within the confines of school, the playground, the odd field trip and of course, the daily doses of Recess. The fun, however, lies in the outrageous situations that spring up, the even crazier solutions, and the delightfully extreme characters that populate the school.

At the centre of it all is the gang of six: the leader T.J (a sort of pre-teen Fonzie) who always has a plan (or six) and enough moral fibre for the whole playground, hot-tempered, feisty Spinelli, Gretchen, the smartest girl in school (and possibly the nation) gentle giant Mikey, ultra-cool sports fanatic Vince, and pint-sized, fearful Gus. Together they take on dilemmas ranging from bullying and what to do about it, to unfair teachers, playground fads and classroom snitches (not to mention the savage kindergärtners!) Characterisation as aforementioned is delightfully extreme - kudos to whoever came up with Gretchen and Spinelli in particular! Gus is a constant source of humour - Vince and Mikey are solid support, but T.J, who combines the wisdom of Huckleberry Finn and the coolness of the Fonz, along with a mischievous streak that would do Bart Simpson proud is a continual stroke of genius. 10/10!
18 out of 21 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Disney actually did something right for a change
Op_Prime27 June 2000
Disney can do great stuff with movies, but when it comes to tv shows they really stink. Examples of this include Disney's sickening Doug and stereotype filled Pepper Ann. But with this I am shocked. Somehow, Disney did not ruin this like they did with Doug. Despite having some Disney aspects, Recess is actually clever and fun to watch. For once, they came up with a show that children can relate. For the first time in years, ABC actually has a great cartoon. Recess is a winner.
9 out of 10 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
2nd greatest animated series after 'THE SIMPSONS'
liammurphy128 August 2003
This animated series about the adventures of THEODORE 'TJ' DETWEILER and his friends VINCE,SPINELLI,MIKEY & GRETCHEN is absoultly fantastic, the stories which are mostly set around recess (obviously) are very well written and thought out.The actors behind the voices are really good & convincing. This in my opinion (i started watching when i was 13 - i'm now 19 & i still love it) the best animated series second only to the superior 'THE SIMPSONS' but for a great cartoon for children 8+ this is one of the best and adults won't mind sitting down to watch - it'll bring them back to their schooldays. Sadly this series came to an end in 2001 after 4 great years,but is repeated everyday on 'THE DISNEY CHANNEL' here in the UK. The feature - length movie 'RECESS:SCHOOL'S OUT' is also very good and has the great JAMES WOODS as a bad guy is a must-see for all fans of the series & even newcomers will find it enjoyable.

rating for the series & movie 10/10!
10 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
best Disney cartoon
Siloty17 June 2008
ahhhh to be young again and in the fourth grade. less work. more fun. imagination. freedom. exaggerated places where people belong on the school ground. wild kindergardeners.

this show is a really great watch. the characters are unique and have strong personalities. and not just the main characters like T.J, Vince, Gretchin, Spinelli, Mikey and Gus. but others like the Diggers, the Ashleys, Tubby, Wenlow, Randall, King Bob, and even some of the teachers themselves like Ms. Finster and Ms. Grotkey and even the principal himself: Principal Prickly.

this show has a great collaboration of characters and even if some of the stories seem exaggerated (hey thats what younger school life was like) you can actually relate to these characters. and a lot of the episodes have quite a deep story to them as well. as soon as i find these cartoons on DVD i definitely am buying them.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
7/10
Recess
Warning: Spoilers
This used by one of the best reasons to get up early on a Saturday morning. This cartoon was just one of the best weekend treats when I was younger. Basically it is showing all the adventures that all the kids of an American school have in Recess. The main kids are T.J. (the boss), Vince (the cool one), Mikey (the greedy fat simple one), Gretchen (the smart nerdy one), Gus (the wimp) and Spinelli (the tough girl). There were some other good characters during Recess that the main kids dealt with. There was the mean playground minder Miss Finster with her young sneaky spy-like assistant, Randall. There was the constant watcher (of T.J. especially) and manager of the school Principal Prickley. There was also the ruler of the playground, the teenager King Bob (anything he said had to be done). This is very good from time to time, the kids will love it if they like Disney and Saturday morning cartoons. Very good!
6 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Recess is about 6 best friends who solve the tribulations of growing up.
husnain ali4 October 2005
I love Recess and I think it is one of the best cartoons that are shown on television.Recess is about 6 best friends who solve the tribulations of growing up. Theodere.J. Detwiler-The leader. Vince Losall-The athlete. Gretchen Grumbler-The clever one (The brain) Ashley Spinelli-The great fighter (The wrestler). Gus P Griswoll-The boy with the heart. Mikey Blumberg-The poet. My favourite episodes are Here comes Mr perfect,the new kid and King Gus. My favourite characters are Gus,T.J.,Gretchen and Vince but I think Spinelli and Mikey are fantastic too. The gang remind me of me and my friends so I like it even more.
4 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
9/10
The Kid Version of "Hogan Heroes"..."Recess" one of the great Disney animated shows of the late 1990's
rcj536531 October 2012
Pictured if you will a group of elementary school students and their interaction with other classmates and teachers where most of the time planning and scheming others in the format of the 1960's television series "Hogan's Heroes"....The Disney animated series "Recess" was one of the best animated shows ever invested by Disney that ran for six seasons from August 31,1997 until November 5, 2001. A total of 65 episodes were produced(most of which in 128 segments). Created by the brainchild team of Paul Germain, Joesph Ansolabehere, and Mike Berenstain,"Recess" was basically a good premise of a series...a group of elementary school kids become close friends battling to overcome problems and not only enemies(but to plot and scheme against the upper authorities of the school including the principal of the school and certainly not least the the evil Miss Finster!)within the confines of the school,the playground(where the gang hatches up most of their plans),the odd field trip not to mention the daily doses of anything and everything that goes on within the confines of the school....really it's like Hogan's Heroes but in a school setting with kids! The kids themselves...you have T.J.(the undisputed leader of the group)in the Bob Crane role; Gretchen(the smart one)in the Larry Hovis role; Vince(the school jock)in the Ivan Dixon role,Spinnelli(the tough girl)would be a cross between Richard Dawson;Gus(was the mousey kid)in the Robert Clary role,and Mikey(the big kid with the soul of a poet). Then their ate the grown-ups that would be named Principal Prickly(in the Werner Klemperer Col. Klink role),and last but certainly not least the evil Miss Finster(in the John Banner Sgt. Schultz role). "Recess" was more wittier and more characters added than any other standard Disney fare,but it still packed a lot of Disney morals and lessons into each of the episodes. The series first aired as part of the ABC Kids Saturday Morning schedule from 1997 to 2001,and from there repeats aired on both the Disney Channel. The success of the series spawned the first of two features. In 2001,Disney released,"Recess:Schools Out" that became a runaway hit in theatrical release. It was followed by a direct-to-video second film titled "Recess:Miracle on Third Street" that same year. In 2003,a third entitled "Recess: Taking The Fifth Grade" were also direct-to-video. Repeats of the series continued after 2001 when UPN pick it up until September of 2004. The Disney Channel recycled all 65 episodes in repeats from 2006 until 2011.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
9/10
words can't express how much I miss this show
Marcus Geebs2 September 2012
Recess was a really good show. I loved it so much. Although I haven't watched this show in about 7 or 8 years I have never forgotten about it. Recess is about a group of six 4th graders trying to face challenges and make it through the course of a school year. There was TJ, a born leader, who never backed down from a challenge. There was Gretchen a super genius who knew a lot about science and was the brains of TJs plans. THere was Spinelli, a tough girl, who always would fight with a lot of people. There was Vince, who was the athletic, sporty kind of guy. Then there was Mikey, the sweet, poetic, kid who always tried to do the right thing. Lastly, there was Guss, the new kid, and who is sort of timid, and shy at times. I thought that each episode was entertaining and I liked the stories in each episode. All six of the main characters had great chemistry together although all of them had different personalities they still got along well.

In conclusion this was a great show one of Disney's finest too bad Disney doesn't make shows like this anymore :(
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
Smart and funny- really made my Saturday mornings
TheLittleSongbird18 January 2010
Recess is so good as a show. I am 17 now, but before they stopped showing it on Terestrial TV, I watched it religiously every Saturday morning, and it made my morning. Thank goodness for Virgin, whenever it's on on Toon Disney mostly I watch it. Recess is funny and smart, and just such joy to watch. The animation is great, very colourful and smooth, and reminds me of Disney when they were making quality shows like Darkwing Duck and Talespin. There are two kinds of categories where theme tunes fall under, one that grates on your nerves and one that is irresistibly catchy. The Recess theme tune falls under the latter, for it is wonderful. The scripts are funny and witty, and the story lines while mostly taking place in one location are original. The characters are engaging enough, TJ is quite mischievous yet he is the sort of boy who you can't help warming to. His friends are feisty Spinelli, geeky Gus, genius Gretchen, giant softie Mike and sporty Vince. I have to say Spinelli is my favourite, she is like me in some way in the way she behaves. And there is always room for someone to hate, in this case Randall.The teachers are great fun too, Principal Prickley while strict and clearly doesn't like TJ is still a fun character, while Miss Finster is priceless. All in all, I love this show, I watch it when it is on on Virgin. 10/10 Bethany Cox
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
The Hierarchy of the playground
Angelus216 November 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This show took the audience into the world of the playground and made it something much more. In this world there are different groups, different classes....It wasn't made to educate simply to entertain and thats what it did with success.

TJ along with his friends, Gretchen, Vince, Gus, Mikey and Spanelli are at the bottom and therefore try to survive. The show combines some great comedy with some great plot twists and explores the different areas of the playground and the individuals.

The music at the start says it all...its a army beat that captures the audience, I have currently cousins who are watching the show and can't believe that I once watched this show with amusement...

Overall a great children's TV show..
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
King of the Playground Which is Saturday Morning Television
Now, I know almost nothing about the inner workings of the standard Elementary K-6 school, being home-schooled, but I certainly hope it's like the sometimes harsh, often absurd, but always hilarious society-within-a-society of Third Street School presented in Paul and Joe's Recess. When I was around 9 and Animaniacs was going off the Air, I quickly turned to Recess to meet my SMC needs. And boy did it meet them. The best thing about recess is the world, which is a richly defined and fleshed out as the world in your average fantasy novel. Kindergarteners are a savage, Golding-esquire tribe of natives. Similarly named cool-girls dwell in a tire-pile clique house. A girl decked out in goggles and a flight jacket spends every moment of recess trying to go over the bar. Fifth and fourth graders are embroiled in a fierce class war. Nerds and injured children retreat to a basement to play d20 games and use strange construction toys. Popular stickers become a form of currency. A shady trench-coat-clad kid doles out contraband goods and a turban-clad boy doles out useless Zen animal proverbs. Ruling over all this chaos is King Bob, a Steely-Eyed sixth grader with his own secret service.

The characters within this world are great, as well. The central cast is a group of sixth; T.J Detweiler, a cap-wearing mischief maker and schemer is the de facto leader of the group. Mikey Blumberg is a rotund boy with a poet's soul and Robert Goulet's singing voice. Vince LaSalle is a trash-talking, competitive athlete. Gretchen Grundler is a bespectacled Renaissance girl. Spinelli is a stocking-capped,pigtailed tomboy with a love of pro-wrestling and a penchant for violence. Finally, Gus "The New Kid" Griswold is a dorky, wet-behind the ears transfer student and an army brat. The adventures they get involved in never cease to be fun. As fun as the students are, the Teachers are just as delightful. Muriel Finster is a savage dictator, ruling over the playground with an iron fist, seeming to always be right where T.J and the gang DON'T need her. Miss Grotke, the fourth-grade Home Room teacher, is a progressive, new-agey teacher. Finally, president Peter Prickley (brilliantly and stuffily voiced by veteran character actor Dabney Coleman), rounds out the central faculty, ineptly attempting to run the school with Finster always trying to pull the strings.

For some reason, Disney has decided to release more cruddy "Dinsey Channel Star" albums and DTV sequels of their movies instead of DVDs of this brilliant show. When it comes, though, I heartily recommend checking it out.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
I call it: R.E.C.E.S.S.
byakuyataicho7 August 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I loved this show. I'm still like "OOO, RECESS!" when it comes on. I'm a senior in high school.

This has the best use of nicknames and original characters. Swinger Kid, King Bob, The Diggers, Randall (yes, not a nickname, but worth mentioning), The Ashleys (scandalous), and the list just keeps on going.

The storyline was great, the humor was good, and the animation wasn't half bad (I liked it better in first season kind of stuff, but, meh).

The only thing I don't like about it to this day is that they only had one movie. Other than that, this show is VERY deserving of a 10. THIS is what Disney should stick with, not this Hannah Montana and That's So Raven nonsense.

Wanna buy a Winger Dinger?
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
A Show that everyone and anyone can connect with..
adonis98-743-1865033 November 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Comic tales of a group of good friends, 4 boys and 2 girls, during breaks in primary school, as they grow up, relate to each other, and have brushes with authority. I remember myself coming home from school and turning on the TV watching this show about 4 friends who went to school together 2 of them were boys and the other 2 were girls there was also a principal and the casual guy who is always closer to the teacher and i just wanted to punch him in the face every time he came on screen but besides that i don't remember many things about the show but i remember that it was really fun when they talked during breaks or did something to make the principal or the teachers to go mad and i think anyone can connect with the show especially when you still go to school or anything like that.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
Something I wish I still watched
Kate Weston24 April 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I was little when I started watching this of a Saturday morning on Saturday Disney, but now they have taken it off there so I never get to watch it. A group of six third grade school kids try and tackle life as a pre-teen and survive the horrors of their principal, a mean old hag of a teacher, a little snitch and a band of wild kindergartens. The kindergartens would probably be my most favourite thing out of the series, because I was once like them, well not exactly but you get the picture. Disney shows and movies are always a must see, especially P.O.T.C trilgoly, and they are always enjoyable in many ways. A great show and the movies of this are hilarious and fun to watch on a rainy day.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
Great show, why did they cancel it?
nauru-18 August 2006
Warning: Spoilers
It is a GREAT show and they canceled it! If you've never watched it before I would advise you to. There is a movie or two. It is a classic show that should never be copied, and the characters are classic. Maybe if the people who watch the reruns watch it enough and post great comments, Recess could possibly go back on the air!!!! If you've ever heard of Family Guy, it was canceled and one year later it went back on the air. Hopefully Recess will be the same if they decide to put it back on the air. If you have watched all the episodes then watch the movies, they are just as good. It reveals things in the movie! I'm glad I was able to find this show.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Quiet but clever, Simpsons for children
Warning: Spoilers
This is one of the best things Disney has made. Strongly set in the neighbourhood but unfailingly surreal, parts of it are both sophisticated and quite rude (exactly what does Miss Finster get out of riding on the floor waxing machine?). There are strong morals on the value of friendship and loyalty but those come from the characters themselves and are not so relentlessly editorialised as the worse youth series. Given their surreal talents, the children are well characterised and the adults sympathetic. I always enjoy the kindergärtners - trapping TJ is a funny episode - and the tension between Miss Grocke and Miss Finster is beautifully picked up in Prickley's attitude to the children, part paternal and part career fodder.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Recess...Classic...Canceled?
lilmickey484 January 2006
OK, I don't have much to say about this show. Only, if u haven't seen it please watch as many reruns as you can. I love this show. It embodies just about how all kids probably felt in their time when they had recess. T.J is the leader, and quite a looker. He brings the humor and schemes to the show. Spinelli is the tough chick, scared of no one and nothing. She brings the strength. Vince is the athlete, he always wins. He brings coolness and determination. Gretchen is the genius. The brain, she brings the strategic moves of all the plans. Mikey, he is the gentle giant. He brings the heart of the operations. And last Gus, the nerd, the wimp at times. He brings reality and that no matter how small you are you can be heard. But IMDb has said that it was finished in 2001, but on my television I got shows that have appeared in 2003. Theinfo shows the year the episodes appear and I have 2003 so how can it have been finished in 01. But anyway, this show is a classic and there can't be a replica. Recess is a show that shows that all things are possible and that you don't have to be an adult or have money and power to make a difference. And also that your true friends are with you no matter what.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Very good...excellent
musiclvr79510 October 2005
This show is one of the rare ones that every member of the family can enjoy, no matter how old they are. This used to be one of the hit shows on the Saturday morning cartoon block, "One Saturday Morning", until they cancelled the show and brought in shows from Disney Channel. Then the show was on Disney Channel for a time, until new shows premiered. Recess was then moved to Toon Disney channel, the immortal land for all of the discarded cartoons. Even if Disney Channel is no longer showing the series, they, from time to time, show the movie "Recess: School's Out", during the summer. I like this show because it puts a creative edge on six kids trying to survive the fourth grade. It uses imaginative characters like King Bob, the Ashleys, and the Diggers. Every episode deals with something that all of us have had to deal with at sometime in our lives, whether its trying to fit in or being unable to stand out. This show is especially good for kids to watch, for it shows them that they are not the only kids going through these things.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Excllent Smart and Funny
buzzarb6 June 2005
This cartoon is one of my top of all time favorite cartoon shows. Recess came out when I was in 4th grade, you could imagine my excitement to see a cartoon that dealt with the trials and tribulations of being a forth grader. The characters were so true and captured the essence of elementary school life in particular recess the best time of the day. In this cartoon situations were over dramatized to create a satire parallel to adult life. This was a very intelligent witty cartoon and it's a shame that it had to end so early. Now that I am 17 years old I still find myself catching reruns of this show on Disney when I come home from school. I now catch things that were a little old for me to understand back when i was younger. This cartoon among others like doug, pepper ann, made waking up for one Saturday morning a must.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
loading
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews