Synopsis by Hal Erickson
The star of this half-hour Nickelodeon sitcom was Jamie Lynn Spears, sister of Britney Spears. "Celebrity sibling" Jamie Lynn was cast as Zoey Brooks, the first female student at Pacific Coast Academy, formerly an all-boys' prep school. The stories concerned Zoey's interaction with her male classmates (whose attitudes ranged from hostile to adoring) and the other girls who'd been brought into the academy in our heroine's wake. In time-honored "teencom" tradition, the series bore only a passing resemblance to reality: for example, Pacific Coast Academy boasted not only a fully equipped movie theater, but also a sushi bar. Nevertheless, each episode ended with Zoey and her friends learning an important life lesson with which the home audience could easily relate. The supporting cast included Paul Butcher (son of the same-named NFL star) as Zoey's brother Dustin, likewise a student at the academy; Sean Flynn (grandson of Errol Flynn) as shy Chase Mathews; Alexa Nikolas as ebullient Nicole Bristow; Christopher Massey as Chase's pal Michael Barret, Matthew Underwood as handsome Logan Reese, and, during the first season, Kristin Herrera as the resident "girl with attitude," Dana Cruz; she was replaced in season two by the similarly acerbic-but-lovable Lola, played by Victoria Justice. In addition to the regular cast, the series boasted guest appearances by several of the youthful actors who appeared in other Nickelodeon programs. Zoey 101 debuted on January 9, 2005.