Real-life fraternities and sororities have criticized ABC Family’s Greek for its stereotypical depiction of the Greek life, but according to the cast and crew, the show is really more about getting the chance to start anew and finding a second family in an unfamiliar environment.

“College is the time to say nobody knows who I am.  I can be whoever I want. It’s liberating and exciting,” series creator Sean Smith told the Fresno Bee.  “And it gives you the opportunity to try new things and, more importantly, make mistakes in doing so.  I think that’s something we also want to see with our characters.”

Actress Spencer Grammer echoed Smith’s statements, saying that a major part of the college experience is the freedom to redefine oneself.

“It’s scary because you don’t really know who you want to be.  You are breaking rules.  You are not listening to your parents,” she said.  “Your parents aren’t there, but you still have the cloak of being in an environment where you are being protected still.  I think that’s what the show is about.”

On Greek, Grammer plays Casey Cartwright, a beautiful and highly competitive sorority girl who is ready to do anything to elevate her status at Cyprus-Rhodes University’s Greek system.  She is dismayed when her geeky brother, Rusty (Jacob Zachar), shows up at the school, wanting to become a member of the Greek system as well.  Their relationship, along with the bonds they form with their Greek brothers and sisters, is what drew executive producer Shawn Piller to the series.

“The thing that we responded to was this brother/sister relationship that was at the center of this family show and then the extension, sort of the family, brothers and sisters, in these different houses,” Piller explained.  “When you go to college, it’s your first time to sort of find this surrogate family of friends.  And so many people are sort of half-raised by their friends as well as their family.  So we just thought, what a great sort of core theme of the show to make a show about.”

In line with the idea that fraternities and sororities serve as a second family, actor Paul James believes students are eager to become part of the Greek system in the hopes of finding a new support system.

“That’s kind of why a lot of people join fraternities and sororities, to try to find that support system.  So you are trying to find that family when you go to college,” James, who plays Calvin Owens, explained to the Fresno Bee.

Greek airs Monday nights at 9/8c on ABC Family.

-Lisa Claustro, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
Source: The Fresno Bee
(Image Courtesy of


Staff Columnist, BuddyTV