Drama High

Shannon Purser (aka Stranger Things' Barb) Enrolls in NBC's Drama High

Jason Katims is jumping on the Barb bandwagon, enlisting Stranger Things breakout Shannon Purser to co-star in his NBC pilot Drama High.

The potential series — written by the Friday Night Lights and Parenthood auteur — is based on the 2013 novel, which was inspired by real-life events, and follows the still-not-cast head of a working-class high school theater department, whose passion and enthusiasm draws interest from everyone in town.

Purser, who’s currently recurring on The CW’s Riverdale, will play Annabelle, one of the students in the town who works harder than anyone else to make the cast of Spring Awakening despite not fitting the exact mold of what everyone has in mind. Per Deadline, which first reported the casting, Katims created the role specifically for the actress.

The Drama High ensemble also includes Rosie Perez, Moana star Auli’i Cravalho and The Path‘s Amy Forsyth.

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  1. James Moore says:

    “Breakout star”. Seriously? You shouldn’t use her agents hype.

    • Simon says:

      What are you talking about? Have you not heard or read anything on the internet in the last year regarding Stranger Things? Tons and tons of people loved Barb and even had the whole justice for barb became a big deal. Sounds like a breakout star to me.

      • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

        +150 TVLine Power User points (no cash value)

      • James Moore says:

        She was such a breakout actress that I doubt anyone knows her name. I admit I am in the minority and thought “Stranger Things” was a generic kids movie and don’t plan to see the sequel but if the character wasn’t the only real character who died, I doubt people would remember her at all. I tick to my original post. If she was such a breakout actress people would know the actresses name.

        • James Moore says:

          “Stick to my original comment”, sorry typo above

        • Dysturbed says:

          “if the character wasn’t the only real character who died, I doubt people would remember her at all”

          What would happen if things were different has no bearing on how they actually are. Regardless of why it happened and how minimal of screen time she had (she didn’t seem like a big deal to me at the time either), the character and even the actress became surprisingly popular in regards to being talked about, a lot memes that still circulate today, etc. Also, what makes you have such doubt that people in general who enjoyed the show don’t know her name, just because some people understandably don’t?

    • Anne says:

      Maybe she isn’t a break out star to you, but to millions of others (particularly millennial women), she is definitely a break out star. I for one am delighted to see her getting more work.

  2. Dennis says:

    Awesome! Love her. Will she still appear on RIVERDALE?

  3. webly3 says:

    Ooh, I think Jason Katims might be assembling something really great here. I will already definitely watch the pilot. This is definitely not another Pure Genius based on the casting lol.

  4. Joey Padron says:

    Good casting of her being on the show which Jason created the role for her.

  5. Christian says:

    I saw Stranger Things after all the hype so imagine my surprised when she was on the show so briefly. I don’t get why her character has such a huge pop culture impact but good for the actress; She doesn’t fit the mold the Hollywood mold and we could use seeing women of different shapes and sizes!

    • Anne says:

      I think Barb became so popular because the actress is so non typical. And i think for many of the women who watched, it was Barb with whom they most related to. She was them. And then to have her so poorly treated; like an afterthought, it became a sort of rallying cry. It wasn’t just about Barb, it was about every woman who has never seen herself on tv as a protagonist and who are always the best friend and/or cannon fodder.

  6. James Moore says:

    PS As an aside and I apologize for not asking this question in a more timely and appropriate manner, but did it not occur to the audience as well as the writers, who exactly built the pool and the structures of the “Underworld” where the Creature was from. Surely not the Creature. I don’t understand why this was never addressed at all.

  7. Anne says:

    Yay !!! Glad to see it. And he’s building quite the cast on this new show

  8. HAP says:

    I’m really happy for Shannon. She’s a real sweetheart. Katims has a tremendous track record. Assuming this goes to series, Shannon will be a big star.

  9. Benjamin Stockholm (from Jason Katims’ “About a Boy”) is the right age to play a high school student on this …