Powerhouse

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PBS (ended 1983)

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5.9
out of 10
User Rating
7 votes
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SHOW REVIEWS
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Powerhouse

Show Summary

Every episode of this teen-targetted PBS drama delivered a new challenge for the Powerhouse gang: a group of teens (Jennifer, Lolo, Kevin, Pepper and Tony) who hung out at a community center run by Brenda Gaines. In the process of solving each episodes problem, important life lessons were learned all around. The show tackled similar issues to the famous "Afterschool Special" series. Major life issues such as alcoholism, anti-semitism, kidnapping, communicable diseases, government corruption and even worker outplacement were covered making this show surprisingly grown-up for what looked like a PBS kids show. The show also memorably featured a series of "un-commercials". Appearing at the same time breaks where a regular TV commercial might appear, these custom made public service announcements promoted such things as healthy eating and exercise. A common tagline of the ads was "don't just sit there, do something."
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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • I loved loved LOVED this show as a teenager!!!! I still think of it often fondly and would like to see it onair again maybe TV Land!!!!!! (I had a big crush on Jason!!!!)moreless

    10
    I remember not missing an episode especially because I had such a huge crush on Jason. My parents couldnt get me away from this show. It was timely and helpful with such story lines as alcoholism. I "borrowed" the characters to write a play for my Girl Scout Living Faith award. I still have a copy of the play I wrote today. I think of these characters and the show very fondly. And Hope that they will re run the show prehaps on TV LANDmoreless
  • One of my favorite shows from my childhood. Much more dramatically intense than was typical for the standard kids show.

    7.5
    This show had a very low budget since it was produced for PBS. And while its production values are almost laughably bad when viewed in a current light, its acting and writing are good enough that it remains a surprisingly watchable trip down memory lane -- for that rare group of people who actually remember watching this as a kid.



    The show focuses on the lives of a group of 5 teens (Jennifer, Kevin, Tony, Pepper and Lolo) who hang out at a youth activity center called Powerhouse. The characters range in ages between 11 and 17. There is great chemistry between the actors and at times they feel like a family.



    What is remarkable is how serious the show's plots could get. The gang would often face major challenges such as alcoholism, kidnapping, and anti-Semitism. Although the show has a slightly embarassing "Afterschool Special" vibe to it, the skill of the actors helps things remain fairly natural and so it ultimately ends up better than many of the other shows in its genre.



    It is a very difficult show to find, because it was never released on VHS, so the only available copies are videos made off of broadcast TV. Snce so few people watched it in the first place, very few people ever taped it. I finally did manage to see the show recently, and I was surprised by how much I still liked it. It is not likely to gain new fans -- far too low budget -- but existing fans hoping to experience a bit of nostalgia will be rewarded if they manage to find this show.moreless

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