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A Look Back at the TV Series ‘Welcome Back Kotter’ [VIDEO, POLL]

I never missed the show “Welcome Back Kotter!” Of course I had the biggest crush on Vinny Barbarino, played by John Travolta. I did get over my crush for Vinny Barbarino, but I still have a major crush on John Travolta. I hated to hear of the death of Ron Palillo, known as Arnold Horshack on the ’70’s successful series.

“Welcome Back Kotter” ran from 1975 – 1979. The premise of the show centered around “The Sweat-hogs,”  a group of under-achieving misfits in a New York high school. Gabriel Kotter was once a Sweat-hog himself, returning to the high school as a teacher to teach a new generation of Sweat-hogs.

The show was filled with colorful characters. Horshack (Ron Palillo) was known for his catchphrase, ““Ooh, ooh! Mr. Kotter!” and his distinctive, hyena-like laugh. Vinnie Barbarino (John Travolta) was the ladies man and wisecrack leader of the Sweat-hogs, Juan Epstein  (Robert Hegyes) a Jewish Puerto Rican and Boom Boom Washington (Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs) who very streetwise.

Ron Palillo was a very successful actor, guest starring in several television series throughout his career. Some of those series included: Laverne & Shirley, Murder She Wrote, Alice, Chips, The A Team, The Love Boat, Mork and Mindy and tons more.

I watched all of those shows when I was a kid. Ya know, I hate to sound like a cranky old lady, but they don’t make ’em like they used too!

Horshack “Ooh, Ooh! Mr. Kotter!”

“Welcome Back Kotter” Theme Song

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