Dan Schneider Throwback: Quinn’s Secret Past on “Zoey101”

We all have things in our past that we aren’t so proud of…

Whether it’s a ridiculous baby picture, a cringe-worthy tween journal entry, or that inexplicable hair choice on picture day, if you go about your life hoping that no one ever convers one particular detail of your past—well, take solace. You are not alone!

For Quinn Pensky, the smartest student at PCA (and Zoey’s best friend) on “Zoey101,” that source of historic shame is a video from when she was five, performing a ribbon dance routine in a beauty pageant.

When an old acquaintance from her pageant days (special guest Janel Parrish) shows the video to her friends, she gives away Quinn’s not-so-deep, dark secret. And yes, it’s pretty cute—in everyone’s opinion but Quinn’s, anyway!

What’s so bad about a beauty pageant, anyway? If you know Quinn, just about everything. As a young, female innovator that prides herself on her intelligence and “Quinnventions,” it’s easy to see why she’d think this revelation could tarnish her reputation.

As Quinn frantically explains, “It was before I turned seven and realized my true passion for intellectual superiority over all others!”

When her then-boyfriend Mark assures her that the video is nothing less than adorable, and doesn’t diminish anyone’s respect for her, Quinn’s panic subsides. She even puts on a little show for him. It turns out one can be intellectually superior and great with ribbon routines!

At the end of the day, it’s clear that Quinn had nothing to be worried about. That’s kind of how it goes: the things in the past that embarrass us most aren’t ever nearly as bad from an outsider’s perspective. And let’s face it, at age 5, just about everything you do is cute.

Whatever the case, remember that your mistakes and secrets may be part of you, but they don’t change a thing about the unique person you’ve become since—especially to those that care for you most!


Zoey 101” is an American teen drama series created by Dan Schneider. “Zoey 101” aired on Nickelodeon for four seasons, from 2005 to 2008, starring Jamie Lynn Spears and Paul Butcher as brother and sister attending boarding school in Southern California. The series was created and produced by Dan Schneider, an American actor, TV and film actor, and producer.

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