Mark-Paul Gosselaar Says Rewatching Old Saved By the Bell Episodes Is 'a Little Bit Torturous'

"I don't like to watch my work: I feel like I should leave it on the set," said the actor

Mark-Paul Gosselaar
Photo: J. Countess/Getty; Joseph Del Valle/NBCU Photo Bank

Revisiting his Bayside High days is no simple task for Mark-Paul Gosselaar.

In a new interview with Variety, the 46-year-old actor shared what it's been like to rewatch episodes of Saved By the Bell for his new podcast. On Zack to the Future, Gosselaar and his co-host Dashiell Driscoll provide commentary on the iconic comedy series — on which he played Zack Morris — from the very beginning.

“I feel like it’s a little bit torturous every week for me to go through this process because I am watching my work — and it doesn’t matter that it’s 30 years old, it’s still something that I feel like I can improve,” Gosselaar said.

“There are moments where I’m talking with Dashiell and I say, ‘My timing is off there; if I had just done it this way I bet I would have gotten a bigger laugh,’” he added. “But that’s just the perfectionist in me, which is why I don’t like to watch my work: I feel like I should leave it on the set.”

Gosselaar added that he "learned so much from being on that show."

Mark-Paul Gosselaar
J. Countess/Getty Images

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"It was a classroom on the set for me of how to conduct myself as an actor," he recalled. "Looking back, I bring up things like character protection. But I think that was one of the things that attracted so many people to the show: It was just the innocence of these characters, as well as the actors portraying them."

"A lot of people forget that we were the same age as the characters, so we were going through the same experiences as them," continued Gosselaar. "And there was no ego on the set — there was no negative energy — and when you watch the show you see that bleeding through."

Gosselaar — who will also be reprising his role for the upcoming Saved by the Bell reboot on Peacock — said in a previous statement about the new podcast that fans had asked him to revisit his iconic character for decades. The show first premiered in 1989.

“I am so proud and honored to be partnered with Cadence13. For years I have been asked by the dedicated fans of Saved by the Bell to revisit the show. I couldn’t wrap my head around an idea that would keep the audience entertained and celebrate the beloved series we created over 30 years ago, mostly because I can't remember a thing about making it, and I am thrilled to say I have found the answer," Gosselaar said at the time.

"As my co-host, Dashiell Driscoll will be my key to unlocking every door at Bayside, a key he assures me Zack Morris would've had. I haven’t watched a single episode in its entirety since I walked off the sets in 1993. It’s time to wheel that big television into class. Go Bayside!"

Zack to the Future is now available wherever you stream podcasts.

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