Degrassi fans, prepare for an overload of awesome information.
Wondering when the second half of season 11 is premiering? We've got you covered. Have you ever wanted to hang with your favorite castmembers? Consider us your hookup. Want to know everything about the new freshman entering Degrassi? Yep, we've got that, too. Oh, and we chatted with fan favorite Munro Chambers about what fans can expect from the second half of the season. Yes, we're aware that we're frickin' awesome.
So are you ready to find out when is the beloved show returning to TeenNick? And which U.S. cities will the cast be hitting in February? Plus, what scoop did Munro give us about the upcoming episodes? Here's what we can exclusively tell you...
Rejoice, Degrassi fans! A premiere date has finally been revealed: the second half of season 11 will begin on Monday, Feb. 20 at 9 p.m. on TeenNick with "Underneath It All Pt. 1." The 14 new episodes will then roll out every Friday at 9 p.m., allowing you your weekly Degrassi fix.
Oh wait, it gets even better. The network is giving fans the chance to meet their favorite Degrassi castmembers with their "Party With Degrassi" screening events, which also offer an exclusive sneak peek of the new season. Starting Feb. 13, TeenNick will hold viewing parties with the cast in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and Minneapolis. The fifth and finale location will be chosen by the fans, who will get the chance to vote on Facebook and Twitter beginning Jan. 13.
"Fans will rejoice as Degrassi returns with new characters and their favorite upperclassmen who continue to face relevant issues affecting teens today, including drug abuse, sexuality, bullying, parenthood and adoption," said Keith Dawkins, senior vice president and general manager of Nicktoons and TeenNick. "We are excited to bring the cast from the halls of Degrassi to fans across America at these ultimate fan experiences."
We chatted with Chambers, who plays fan favorite Eli, and he tells us he will definitely be attending some of the viewing parties. "I'm very excited about it. I think it's going to be great to see the fans in the states because I've honestly never seen them except the Kid's Choice Awards," he says. "But to see them so raw, like just there, not just for an award show, it's going to be a very exciting time."
Alex Steele, who joins the show this season as freshman Tori, will also be hitting at least one of the parties. "I'm so excited!" she says. "I always try to talk to fans on Twitter, but it's going to be so exciting to finally meet them on sort of a one-on-one basis."
Any true Degrassi fan knows two things about Steele: She's the sister of Degrassi original Cassie Steele (Manny Freakin' Santos, yo!) and she actually played Angela Jeremiah on the show for several seasons. "I'm so thankful to be back," Alex tells us. "It would have been cool to come back as Angela, but I'm so excited for Tori!" And for fans wondering why Alex came back as a new character, she tells us, "I was auditioning at the time and they put up a character Tori and I auditioned and got the part. It was just a regular audition. They didn't contact me or anything."
Of the new episodes, Munro tells us, "It's a lot of new beginnings for a lot of the characters. A lot of new beginnings for the school because we have brand new students coming in, our freshman kids. Really awesome characters that really bring a lot depth to the show and a lot of interesting stories. A lot of the characters who have had kind of a rough time in the earlier season, they kind of start over again. They struggle to find themselves again." And yes, you can expect to see Eli attempt to start over again.
While Munro doesn't share much screen time with the newbies, he tells us that "some great stories come up with those kids." In addition to Alex, there are three new actors joining the show as freshman and here's what we can tell you about their characters:
Tori (Steele): While Tori may be spoiled thanks to her parents indulging her every whim (dance lessons, modeling, beauty pageants, you name it), she's definitely not a brat. Her positive attitude and bright smile are infectious and she enters Degrassi believing she's the best at everything. Unfortunately, Tori is a bit sheltered and realizes she's a bit unhip compared to the students. Like former niner Alli (Melinda Shankar), Tori is ready to rule Degrassi.
Zig (Ricardo Hoyos): Handsome, charming and aloof, Zig is the freshman class' very own bad boy who is full of swagger. He flirts with girls, pulls pranks, gets detention and basically treats Degrassi High like his playground because his homelife is anything but fun.
Maya (Olivia Scriven): Katie (Chloe Rose) has a younger sister, y'all! Maya, who has been living in Katie's accomplished shadow her entire life, is ready to carve out an identity of her own when she comes to Degrassi. While Katie is in to karate and journalism, Maya loves music and, like so many students before her, she decides to start her own rock band. Unafraid to speak her mind and not interested in gaining popularity, this freshman often finds herself in detention.
Tristan (Lyle O' Donohoe): Guess what? Owen (Daniel Kelly) has a younger brother! Tristan is out and proud and has his eyes set on running the school. Seriously, he wants it all: school musicals, dance committees and top of the Power Squad pyramid. Fiercely loyal, Tristan is a good friend to have.
There you have it, Degrassi fans: Everything you need to know about the second half of season 11. Are you looking forward to meeting the newbies? Will you be attending one of the cast viewing parties? Sound off in the comments!