Of all the great early 2000s live-action Nick shows out there Ned’s Declassified lasted the shortest at a mere three seasons. But that did not keep it from making the most out those three seasons. Instead of a canned laugh track the show went for a cartoony sound effects, which could easily prove to be just as annoying. But thankfully the show knew how to use the cartoon sound effects to its advantage while providing a vast array of charming characters and a lot of heart into the connections they shared and built upon those connections in each season. This list takes a look at the top 5 Ned’s Declassified episodes.
5. Boys and Girls
This one is lowest on the list because its tone for the Boys episode was a tad too comical and it comes as a detriment to its premise. The story is that Ned is devastated after Suzie Crabgrass moves away and gives up writing the guide. Thus all his friends come together to make him feel better and move on. The reason why it’s a tie is because both these episodes perfectly play hand in hand with one another and the interactions the characters have with one another have just the right amount of exaggeration and realism. It also helped sew the seeds of romance between Ned and Moze. It also gave a great chunk of highlights for both the main and supporting characters. And this is one of the few episodes where none of the heroes win but there are promises for the future. And the later episodes did well to capitalize on that.
This episode took the fun of dodgeball and in its exaggeration of making out the sport into a complete war zone has some hilarious references (though some can get too distracting) and puts a great deal of intensity into the sport. The energy going on all throughout pretty much reminds me of the rush I get every time I get into a game of dodgeball. There’s also Coach Dirga’s dodgeball motivation video, which is easily one of the show’s funniest moments.
3. Career Week
This episode helped teach a lot about picking a career path: Exploring all the various options, the need to have a fall back choice, and how your career might be something you may not expect but something you can be cut out for more than you know. What really stands out about this episode is the main plot involving a computer program selecting Ned to take a career to becoming a Vice Principal. Thus Vice Principal Crubbs takes Ned under his wing to teach him the ways despite the fact Ned doesn’t want this. This episode showed that Crubbs wasn’t just an over-the-top authoritative disciplinarian but showed that he legitimately wanted to help students by keeping them from getting on the wrong path. In all three areas of the episode it provides a legitimate learning experience for all three main characters about the difficulties of choosing a career.
This episode has a really funny cameo by the Fairly OddParents but that’s not all it has going for it. Ned’s daydreaming brings some one of a kind visuals to the show but they aren’t merely a distraction but also help progress the main conflict of the plot. It showcases the benefits of daydreaming in full on action. This was an episode that truly showed how Ned’s Declassified gave advice on the little things in life and how they be something more.
1. Field Trips, Permission Slips, Signs, and Weasels
This 40-minute final episode of the series featured just about every recurring character on the show. It pays homage to many past jokes of the show while also mixing in some new characters for good measure. There are three separate storylines in this whole thing all of which intertwine perfectly with one another and are paced perfectly. It proves to be a great ending to our heroes’ middle school days showing just how far the characters we know and love have grown over the past 54 episodes (particularly through the interaction between Sweeny and Ned) and opened up a lot more doors in the process. There was actually going to be a high school survival guide spin off after but sadly due to other commitments by the main cast, it was scrapped. In any case, this episode truly embodies every aspect fans have loved about the series.
Are there any other Ned’s Declassified episodes that you think deserve a spot on this list? Any you disagree with? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.