HBO Max's reboot of a beloved ABC sitcom is finally a reality. After coming together in recent years, the reboot of Head of the Class is coming to the streaming service on Nov. 4. Not only will Head of the Class fans meet a whole new crop of students, but they'll see a familiar face, as well. The streamer revealed that Robin Givens, who played Darlene Merriman in the '80s show, is officially reprising her role.
In this version of the series, she's a mom to one of the students (and has a new last name, Hayward). She's also a "member of the original Individualized Honors Program (IHP)" and a lawyer with a Stanford degree who's described as "ambitious." The streamer further revealed, "She wants what is best for her son and is hyper focused on setting him up for success. Darlene might need a reminder of the positive impact an out-of-the-box teacher can have, but she's fighting for the good of all students at Meadows Creek High as co-head of the Parents' Association."
HBO Max's official synopsis for the new Head of the Class reads: "Inspired by the sitcom of the same time, Head of the Class centers on a group of overachieving high school students who meet their greatest challenge: a teacher, Alicia (One Day at a Time's Isabella Gomez), who wants them to focus less on grades and more on experiencing life." The cast includes Isabella Gomez, Jorge Diaz, Jolie Hoang Rappaport, Gavin Lewis, Dior Goodjohn, Brandon Severs, Adrian Matthew Escalona, Katie Beth Hall and Christa Miller.
The OG Head of the Class was an '80s staple. It aired five seasons between Sept. 1986 and June 1991 on ABC. A total of 114 episodes were produced, as well as a spinoff show (Billy, featuring Billy Connolly's Billy MacGregor). Aside from Givens and Connolly, the original series starred Howard Hesseman, Dan Frischman, Tony O'Dell, Kimberly Russell, Khrystyne Haje, Leslie Bega, Tannis Vallely, Jeannetta Arnette and William G. Schilling. It also provided early on-screen roles for two future Hollywood executives: Paramount Pictures head Brian Robbins and controversial producer Dan Schneider, who created The Amanda Show, Drake & Josh, Zoey 101, iCarly and Victorious, among others.