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Kids from TV shows of your youth: Where are they now?

Kids from TV shows of your youth: Where are they now?

Kids from TV shows of your youth: Where are they now?
03 January 2014

What did you think the world would look like in 2014, when you were ten years old? Frankly the 10-year-old us would be livid with how boring things are. There's no hoverboards, no smell-o-vision, no lemonade that makes you fly. In short, movies lied to us.

But TV? TV was honest. It was decent. It was real. Join us now, as we look at what has become of the heroes of the small screen, the actors and stars that we grew up with us, and didn't lie.


Okay, okay, so a boy turning into a dog may have been a slight fib. But what a great show! It looks, sadly, like Woof! was the pinnacle of Edward Fidoe's acting career (can you believe his surname is basically Fido?), but that doesn't mean he didn't go on to do good things.

He played the boy who turned into a dog for four years from 1989 to 1993 (it was filmed initially in Moseley, Birmingham but moved to Nottingham's West Bridgford), but as an adult he has run a theatre production company with playwright Matt Charman, worked as a consultant at McKinsey & Company and co-founded School 21, an all-through school for pupils from four to 18 - that opened in September 2012 in Stratford, East London.

Here he is giving a very strong presentation about the future of learning. We spent the eight minute duration waiting for his nose to tickle to see how he'd get round turning into a canine in front of his audience...


Can you name the whole band? All of The Orange Organics? There was Pugwall (Torrens), Jenny, Bazza, Orfo and Stringbean. Good times.

Post-Pugwall, Torrens played Duncan in Newlyweds in 1993 before the obligatory Neighbours turn for every Aussie actor, when he starred as Dillon Renshaw in 1996.

Ever the musician, though, Torrens turned his back on acting and was a founding member The Reefers, a band that played surf music with a Middle Eastern twist. They described themselves as "Like Hank Marvin on acid".

More recently he plays drums for heavy rock'n'roll outfit Bugdust. Rock on, Jase.


Tatyana Ali (Ashley Banks, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air)

By the age of six, Tatyana had begun her acting career as a regular child performer on Sesame Street (1985) before landing her role as Ashley in 1990.

Having shown her musical skills in the show, and after the final episode, she launched her album Kiss The Sky, which was certified gold in early 1999. The album spawned the hit song Daydreamin' which peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and on the UK Singles Chart.

The album spawned two further UK hits, Boy You Knock Me Out, featuring Will Smith, (No. 3 - her biggest hit to date) and Everytime, which was her third top 20 hit in the UK. She also made an appearance in Smith's album Willennium.

Along with her musical career, Ali kept acting. In 2005, she completed work on the film Glory Road and in early 2008, she performed on the song "Yes We Can", a project supporting Barack Obama's presidential campaign. She traveled the US as a spokesperson for Obama and steered voter registration drives at college campuses.

She is currently playing a recurring character on the CBS soap The Young and the Restless (playing Roxanne) and can be seen in the show, Love That Girl! on TV One.

During all this she attended Harvard where she received a bachelor's degree in African-American studies.



Tamsin played Linda Twist in only the first season of the bizarre Aussie show, but was for our money the best Linda. The show actually had just 4 seasons, despite having an 11 year run. Throughout that 11 years it never changed it's intro music, a song we all know, but may not know was sang by Tamsin. It's worth revisiting...

As well as appearing in children's TV, Tamsin also appeared in Neighbours as Emma Gordon, between 1987 and 1988, and again in 1991. She was also in the chorus for the 1992 Jesus Christ Superstar Australian arena production. After five years living in London where she sang with jazz bands in the late 90s, West is back in Australia, but is somewhat under the radar.


Larisa Oleynik (Alex Mack, The Secret World Of Alex Mack)

Larisa's first TV role came in a 1993 episode of Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman before, in the same year, being cast ahead of over 400 others in the lead role of Alex Mack. The series ran from 1994 to 1998 and, during her time on the show, she played a lead character in the 1995 film The Baby-Sitters Club and appeared in several episodes of Boy Meets World.

After The Secret World of Alex Mack ended its run, Oleynik starred in 10 Things I Hate About You before appearing in twenty one episodes of 3rd Rock from the Sun. She appeared in Malcolm in the Middle before a series of less successful TV shows and independent films that gained limited release. More latterly she landed a recurring role on Hawaii Five-0 as a CIA analyst before appearing in two episodes of Mad Men in 2010 and 2012. She was in American Dad! for one episode before appearing in 7 episodes of Pretty Little Liars.


OMRI KATZ, (Marshall Teller, Eerie, Indiana)

Prior to playing Marshall, the protaganist of Eerie, Indiana between 1991 and 1992, Katz played the role of John Ross Ewing III, the son of J.R. and Sue Ellen Ewing in Dallas from 1983 to 1991.

Post-Eerie he was in one episode of Zorro before big roles in Matinee, starring John Goodman and Hocus Pocus, starring Bette Midler.

Six episodes of The John Larroquette Show followed by bit parts in shows like Freaks And Geeks spelled an end to his mainstream acting biography. He appeared in a childhood-ruiningly NSFW short film called Perfect Girl, which you can find here. He is now either cutting hair in LA or living in Israel.



Ben Savage took a hiatus from acting following the end of Boy Meets World, going to Stanford, graduating in 2004 with a degree in political science.

Post-school, he returned to acting, starring in the 2006 indie Palo Alto and making guest appearances on Phil of the Future, Chuck, and Without a Trace. He also played a murder suspect in Bones.

Ben has signed on to play Cory again, this time in Girl Meets World a sitcom that will debut in the US in 2014 on the Disney Channel. It's a sequel to Boy Meets World and will follow Riley Matthews, the teenage daughter of Cory and Topanga Matthews, as she navigates the challenges of life. As well as Ben, Danielle Fishel, who played Topanga will also reprise her role.


LYNDYANN BARRASS (Spuggie, Byker grove)

Byker Grove launched many a successful career, including Ant & Dec, Jill Halfpenny and Donna Air. Less well known is the whereabouts of Grover Spuggie, aka Lyndyann Barrass.

In 1993 and after six years on the show Spuggie was written out and Lyndyann went to Sunderland College to study performing arts. She struggled to find acting work having been typecast, and at the age of 21 she joined a band called Angel. They lasted just a year.

Alas her acting career, despite efforts, never really took off from there on and reports suggest the mother of two now works in a call centre. She can be found on Twitter here (she seems genuinely lovely) and can be seen rudely being cut off and grilled by Eamonn Homes, for no reason, here.


LARK VOORHIES (lisa turtle, saved by the bell)

Following the success of Saved By the Bell' Lark nabbed roles on Days of Our Lives and The Bold and the Beautiful.

In 1995, Voorhies guest-starred in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and episode of Family Matters and appeared twice on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

She appeared in music videos like Boyz II Men's "On Bended Knee," and was in a group originally called the X-Girls (now known as Geneva) with Stacee and Yashi Brown (the daughters of singer and oldest Jackson family sibling, Rebbie Jackson).

Voorhies also founded and was the lead singer in an alternative band named Third Degree.

She formed her own production company, but suffered a PR setback in 2012 when questions about her well-being became rife.


LEE MACDONALD (Zammo Maguire, Grange Hill)

Remember watching Grange Hill while you were at primary school and being absolutely terrified about moving up to secondary? Yeah, thanks for that. During his six year innings at the London school Zammo infamously had issues with heroin and as such actor Lee was the face of the subsequent 'Just Say No' campaign. MacDonald enjoyed boxing and post-Grange Hill he fought to a high level. Unfortunately a car accident in the early 1990s left Lee unable to box again. He appeared in an episode of The Bill in which his girlfriend was played by Melissa Wilkes who, weirdly, also played his girlfriend Jackie Wright in Grange Hill and he set up a successful key-cutting business - a trade he learned between series of Grange Hill - which he continues to run today.

Lee makes public appearances for charity events and appeared as a contestant on BBC3′s third season of Celebrity Scissorhands, in 2008, raising money for Children In Need. He also appeared in Sky One's Cirque De Celebrite and in 2008 presented a show on the Overseas Property TV channel. "The only reason I got that is the lady who runs it is a Grange Hill fan," he said of the gig.

(Images: Rex, YouTube, Mubi)