The Wonder Years, which aired from 1988 to 1993, took place in the ’60s, although at the time it didn’t seem so long ago. In the late ’80s and early ’90s, kids weren’t so much different than kids back then. We still rode our bikes off to god knows where — sans helmets, of course — and stayed out until after dusk, school dances were every bit the nerve wracking social experience, and we still had to camp out by the family phone all night long if expecting a personal call.
So, maybe that’s why it feels so surreal to hear that Kevin Arnold would have turned 60 today — as in the character, because obviously Fred Savage (currently starring in The Grinder) is only 39. As to how we came to this conclusion, The Hollywood Reporter did the math and figured out that Kevin would have been born in 1956 thanks to the season two episode “Birthday Boy,” in which Paul (who was born just four days apart from Kevin) holds his bar mitzvah on the same day of Kevin’s actual birthday: March 18, 1969.
In the season two episode about the bar mitzvah of best friend Paul Pfeiffer (Josh Saviano), Kevin (Fred Savage) is upset because Paul’s big day falls on his big day — the friends’ actual birthdays are just four days apart. Kevin pouts because he thinks Paul is ruining his big day and refuses to go, even though 13 is no biggie for Christians but a huge deal for Jews. Then, at the last moment, he shows up and realizes how selfish he was. In celebrating with Paul, he reflects that “in a funny way, when I look back on it, I sorta feel like it was my bar mitzvah, too.”
Interestingly enough, that also puts Kevin Arnold at two years older than the man who narrated him in the then-present time, as Daniel Stern is currently only 58.
For a dose of nostalgia, here’s a clip from the end of “Birthday Boy” featuring Kevin getting down to the Hora at Paul’s bar mitzvah and reflecting on the memories:
(via The Hollywood Reporter)