Five Ways Something Ruined My Life Five Ways ‘Felicity' Ruined My Life Erin Mallory Long

Felicity was on TV the four years I was in high school. Her four years of college mirrored my four years in high school. Senior year in particular, my friend Jacob and I would watch episodes together on the phone – which usually meant we just talked on the phone and occasionally looked up to see what was happening and make fun of Felicity’s clothes.

But the series finale aired the night of our Senior Awards ceremony (where it’s just like, “You got all A’s in this class, congrats!” or like, “Here’s $50 for being a music student!”) and I was feeling extra emotional about leaving high school and my friends and so I got to share that with the gang on Felicity. As a result, this show always feels so important to me and I haven’t even watched it since it was first on. (And let’s be real, some weird stuff happens in that last season so I think I’m forgiven for not re-watching it earlier.) The entire first year I lived in New York consisted of me singing the Felicity theme song in my head whenever I was walking down the street.

I had some time off recently and did a full series re-watch (and sporadically chronicled my feelings on it) so it’s pretty fresh in my mind. Let’s get into it.

1. Made Me Disappointed With My Objectively Awesome College Dorm

Now, do not get me wrong. NYU has quite possibly the nicest college dorm rooms I have ever set foot in. And my desire to go to NYU started when I was in 8th grade (even before Dawson Leery got his rejection letter) and just continued when Felicity started when I was in 9th grade and she was going to the suspiciously similar, UNY.

So even with awesome dorm rooms, no college in real life could ever live up to college depicted on TV. It’s just not fair. But when my frame of reference for New York City dorms is Felicity and THIS is one of her dorm rooms, I’m expecting a LOT:

For real, this is just one side of Felicity's dorm. How dare she have natural light and a nice chair!

I mean, yes, freshman year she lived in a dorm on Fifth Ave called Kelvin Hall and I lived on Fifth Ave in a dorm called Rubin Hall so we at least had that in common. And I could sort of see where you might get her dorm from this dorm (mine, freshman year):

View of my part of the room taken from my roommate's bed. I love to decorate but as you can see, we have no cool furniture and no natural light.

2. Definitely Tried Sending Audio Tapes to My Friend (It’s Not That Fun, Actually)

I took a class freshman year called Sound Image and it was about, you guessed it, SOUND! So part of my little sound kit was a tape recorder! It was not as small and handheld as Felicity’s and it wasn’t explicitly meant to be used to send audio tapes to my former French tutor, but it was pretty cool anyway.

So with this tape recorder and with starting a new chapter all Felicity-like in NYC I decided to try sending Jacob audio tape letters.

Let’s just say this didn’t continue for very long.

I think I maybe sent two tapes and it just felt weird! It was sort of like a really slow phone call. I’d much rather send a written letter to someone than make them listen to my voice. But Felicity is so adorable when she does it and they use it as voice over so we can get caught up. Plus, “Sally” was voiced by one of my heroes, Janeane Garofalo. And then there’s that party at the dorm where someone accidentally PLAYS one of her tapes and it is SO embarrassing. Poor girl.

3. Always Confused About Why Two Guys Weren’t Fighting Over Me

So the premise of Felicity is that Felicity Porter gets to senior year of high school obsessing over Ben Covington (who, I’m sorry, is no Seth Cohen, in my opinion) but never having the nerve to talk to him. So, since she apparently has no friends who tell her she’s insane, she decides to ditch her plans for med school and “go to school in New York” because Ben tells her he’s going to “New York” and I guess UNY is the only school there that you can turn down your acceptance and then accept it again in June or whatever, so she goes there.

Fine.

But then she has a super cute RA, Noel Crane, who is in love with her almost immediately. The entire show is a back and forth between Ben and Noel but not in a normal love triangle way. She literally just goes back and forth on them. She’s dating Noel but liking Ben, she dates Ben and sleeps with Noel, etc etc until the end of time.

So it’s like, well, how come we ALL don’t have that? Where were my Noel and Ben? Why can’t I have that?

P.S. That actually sounds awful but at the time it would have been pretty sweet.

P.P.S. I’d choose Noel. Duh.

4. Wanted a Polar Opposite College Roommate That I Could Eventually Be Best Friends With

Meghan is a queen. Check out her bar code fake tattoo!

Meghan Rotundi is not only one of my favorite characters on Felicity (and definitely an underrated TV bff) but she’s also part of one of my favorite TV couples of all time: Meghan and Sean.

Yes, they're always fighting, but they're the most stable couple on this show and I love them!

Obviously from the moment Felicity sets foot in her dorm and has this girl as a roommate you KNOW things are going to be crazy. Well, things also get really sweet. They end up being really close friends by the end and I always really enjoyed the idea of being given a random roommate and just kind of seeing what happens. And even better if they’re your polar opposite!

My college roommate and I were randomly put together freshman year and stayed together for all of college, but we weren’t polar opposites. We just had good luck.

Well, I mean, she did play soccer, and aside from one year in 7th grade playing basketball, I’ve never played a team sport of any kind, so that’s kind of opposite. But neither of us was Wiccan and that was really what I was looking for.

5. Thought The Most Dramatic Thing You Could Do Was Whisper

My BFF’s uncle once famously described Felicity as “[whispering] Hey, we’re in college.” (Which, as long as we’re talking about it, I DEFINITELY used in my AIM profile. I actually have a word doc somewhere of the many different versions of my AIM profile I had. I have no life.)

You watch the show and seriously they are ALWAYS whispering. They’re also always saying “hey” to each other. No, for real. But even when it’s not the episode where they’re cramming for finals, they are still always whispering. Nothing dramatic happens on Felicity above a whisper.

This is where I learned the “speak softly” lesson of teen drama and could use that when the Joey Potter moves failed me.

[whispering] Everything is more dramatic in a whisper.

 

Also, freshman year of college I definitely signed the inside of my closet with my name and the year.

I hope my "Erin Huth '02" is still in my closet from freshman year.

So if anyone has access to room 1121 at Rubin Hall, see if anyone added their name after mine, please.

(All images mine or screengrabbed by me)
comments

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  1. Going to be the only guy posting on this comment thread but NO SHAME. Applying to NYU in September during Early Decision and oh man oh man, Felicity and Gossip Girl feed my imagination about all the drama and intrigue of New York university life. :P

  2. I started watching this show on instant netflix once summer started. I only am halfway through the first season, but I love it just the same. I find myself getting reeallyy into it, like cringing during the awkward parts, getting sad, and angry when I found out about Noel’s girlfriend. Plus, I love Kerry Russel and the power rangers chick who is sometimes a good friend to Felicity. Either way, this post was great.

  3. I really want to rewatch Felicity. Pretty sure I was too young to watch it when I did (5th or 6th grade). I do remember that Amy Jo Johnson (aka the Pink Ranger) was a friend on the show. I think she played guitar. :)

    • Oh indeed she was. She played Julie, Felicity’s first college friend. So good. It’s all on Netflix Instant!

  4. I was also a college frosh in ’02, so same scenario. I thought going to school in Boston guaranteed a rekindled romance with my high school boyfriend who was a few years ahead of me…Which actually worked. Yay semi-stalking until you get your way. Thanks Felicity.

    I also screen grabbed every AIM profile of mine when that was a thing.

    Great piece!

  5. Okay, Erin, let me just say that I agree… Seth Cohen is always number one in my heart of hearts…. But Scott Speedman? What a man!!

  6. Love this. My best friend from college, Lindsey, and I bonded over our shared love for Felicity. When Lindsey moved to Japan for a year we actually recorded letters to one another all Felicity like. We also skyped, but there was something fun about telling stories, reading books, and just being silly. Additionally I first became friends with Lindsey whilst helping her make a parody short film based loosely on Felicity in our college film class. The film was called “A Zombie Chick Flick.” Also, Dean & Deluca looks nothing like on the show.

  7. I have a daughter who also Loved Felicity. On a very positive note she dedicated her 4 yrs of High School to do everything she could do academically and with clubs etc.. to get in to NYU. She applied early decision with no other school as a back up. I almost thought she wouldn’t even go to college if she didn’t get in. She made it. Now living in NYC as a working photographer. I must send her this wonderful post. I can tell you her dorm situation was so poor she moved out her sophomore year to live in a living room in a corner just for fresh air and sunlight. Felicitys dorm room did look like the one I had at Boston U. over looking the Charles river.

  8. I love, love, love Felicity! I haven’t watched it since it originally aired, but I think the time for a Felicity marathon is long overdue over here! I need some Ben in my life! This is probably the best show ever about college. Ever!

    http://www.bundtsofsteelblog.com