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Steven Hyde

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Steven Hyde
That '70s Show character
File:Hyde.png
First appearance"That '70s Pilot"
(episode 1.01)
Last appearance"That '70s Finale"
(episode 8.22)
Portrayed byDanny Masterson
Joey Zimmerman (age 13)
Easton Gage (age 7)
Information
GenderMale
OccupationFoto Hut clerk (formerly)
Hotel cook (formerly)
Muffler store associate (formerly)
Record store manager/owner (currently)
FamilyWilliam Barnett (biological father)
Edna Hyde (mother)
Bud Hyde (step-father)
Angie Barnett (paternal half-sister)
Red Forman (foster father)
Kitty Forman (foster mother)
Eric Forman (foster brother)
Laurie Forman (foster sister)
SpouseSamantha Hyde (invalid marriage)
Significant otherJackie Burkhart (ex-girlfriend)
Jill (fling)
Kat Peterson (fling)
Chrissy (fling)
Pam Macy (fling)
Donna Pinciotti (former crush; kissed)
Unnamed Nurse (one night stand)
NationalityAmerican

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Steven James Hyde , often referred to just by his surname, is a fictional character from the Fox sitcom That '70s Show, portrayed by Danny Masterson.[1] He is Eric Forman's (Topher Grace) best friend and by the end of season one, his de facto adopted brother. Hyde is portrayed throughout the series as loving rock and roll, being anti-establishment, a pothead, and a borderline alcoholic.

Character biography[edit]

Hyde is abandoned by his mother, Edna (Katey Sagal), who only appears in three episodes, two of which feature only her screaming voice calling from inside Hyde's house. His stepfather, Bud (Robert Hays), had left some years earlier when he got back together with Edna but they didn't tell Hyde of their whereabouts. A half brother was mentioned once in a Season 8 episode, though not much is known about him.

Hyde's best friend, and later foster-brother, is the nice, geeky Eric Forman. The two share probably the closest friendship out of the group, shown by how they care and rely on one another and one another's advice. He first met Forman in 1968 when he walked to Forman's home with him to protect him from Donna. Forman’s mother Kitty (Debra Jo Rupp), upon seeing that Hyde was dirty, made Eric and Hyde bathe together. When Hyde's mother leaves town at the end of the first season, Eric tries to persuade his parents to do something about his best friend's living conditions and thus Hyde is invited to live with the Formans, which Hyde does from season one until the series' end. He is adopted into the Forman family, and lives in the basement of their house. Since there are no extra bedrooms, he sleeps in a small storage room on a cot. When Forman’s father Red (Kurtwood Smith) kicks Hyde out after the latter is arrested for drug possession, Eric attempts to come to his rescue.

Hyde finds a job working at the Foto Hut with his burned-out hippie boss Leo (Tommy Chong). Hyde and Leo become good friends until Leo leaves town. During his tenure in the Foto Hut, he is the more responsible worker between himself and Leo, even telling his own boss off for not doing his job. Hyde and Leo's friendship resumes when Leo returns near the end of Season 7. He gives the money he makes to Red and Kitty to help them pay the bills. It is evident that Hyde has a sense of propriety and responsibility to rival that of Eric's, yet is not proud of it as he is more accustomed to his stoner lifestyle.

Hyde develops a fairly close relationship with Red, who admires his toughness, stoicism, and traditional masculinity, qualities that Eric lacks. Red becomes the closest Hyde has to a real father after he moves in with the Formans. Red does occasionally feel that Hyde can be a bad influence on Eric, particularly due to his frequent marijuana use, and briefly kicks him out when Hyde is arrested. However, he is often shown to have a deeper respect for Hyde over his own son and occasionally prefers Hyde over him (such as when he offers Hyde a job at his new muffler shop instead of Eric).

In the season 6 finale, Kitty discovers that Bud is not Hyde's real father. Subsequently, Hyde meets his biological father, William Barnett (Tim Reid), who is African-American, making Hyde biracial. He later meets his half-sister, Angie Barnett (Megalyn Echikunwoke), who ends up working alongside Hyde in their father's store.

Hyde is highly critical of organized religion. He tells an Episcopalian girl that she believes in "the exact opposite of what he believes in". Also, in "Holy Crap", he claims he doesn't go to church because it would make him a hypocrite, him believing that organized religion has corrupted the teachings of the likes of others like Jesus, Buddha and Muhammad. Despite the fact that Hyde mentions God (such as stating his hair is a gift from God in "Eric's Hot Cousin",) he does not express any sort of organized religious affiliation. However, he is shown on several occasions to be reverent and somewhat religious when times call for it.

In contrast to the sensitive New-Age men prevalent in the 1970s, Hyde is very traditionally masculine, much like Red. He does not voice or show his emotions often, and does not worry about romantic relationships and women the way Eric, Michael Kelso (Ashton Kutcher), and Fez (Wilmer Valderrama) do; he considers himself too "tough" and strong for that type of behavior. He generally acts as though he does not care for anyone, perhaps as a defensive mechanism; however, it is shown during the course of the series that he does care deeply about his friends and the Formans. Hyde seems to be against extracurricular activities, although he does mention that he plays baseball in school and is a fan of the Green Bay Packers. Hyde's other hobbies include music, hunting, and working on cars.

After Eric's departure to Africa, Hyde's conflicts were front and center in the series, mostly due to his relationship with Eric's parents (his foster parents) and his short marriage to an exotic dancer named Samantha (Jud Tylor). Hyde receives a letter from his father, William Barnett, telling him that he is selling his chain of record stores. Hyde, angry at the vague letter, fears that he won't be able to continue the career he loves. This drives him to actually quit "the circle" (although he returns to it by episode's end) Later, Barnett shows up to Hyde's record store to tell him that he sold every store except for the one in Point Place and has granted him sole ownership of the last remaining Grooves. Hyde ends the series as the owner and manager of his Grooves record store.

Relationships[edit]

Early on in the series, he is rarely interested in getting into a serious relationship, and is very cynical about the idea (as portrayed in some of his quips such as "Dating is prostitution, only you don't always get what you pay for"). However, as the series progresses, he enjoys a number of relationships. It was mentioned that his only girlfriend ended up leaving him for his uncle.

Hyde's first love interest of the series was a proto-punk girl named Crissy (Jade Gordon), who wanted him to move to New York City with her, but he ultimately decides to stay in Point Place, and she leaves for New York. The relationship lasted only one episode.

Before Eric and Donna (Laura Prepon) start to date, it causes friction between Eric and Hyde, as they both have feelings for her. At one point Hyde attempts to kiss her, but she rejects him with a slap. In an early episode, she blows off a "study date" with Hyde at the library to go out with Eric for Valentine's Day. Hyde goes to talk to Donna while she is out with Eric and tells her how he feels about her. However, Donna doesn't understand him because she is drunk. Hyde gives up soon after, prompting the assumption that he was more infatuated with Donna and not in love with her and they remain close friends.

In Season 5, he begins dating Jackie Burkhart (Mila Kunis). There is foreshadowing of their relationship throughout the series, most prominently at the Forman's Veteran's Day BBQ in Season 3, where Jackie's date Chip (Kavan Reece) insults her behind her back. Hyde responds by knocking Chip out cold. Later that day, after talking to Kitty, Hyde takes Jackie out for their first date which leads to their first kiss. Hyde also takes Jackie to his junior prom in the first season, and he is the one Jackie goes to for comfort when she and Kelso encounter problems in their relationship, prompting him to ask, "Why does she always come to me?" Despite initially loathing Jackie for all that she represents (she is spoiled, shallow, and rich), he has his first real romantic relationship of the series with her.

Hyde and Jackie's relationship is a very typical 'opposites attract' relationship. Hyde tells Eric that he simply ignores Jackie's constant complaining and bossiness and focuses on how "hot" she is instead, although he does become more mature and caring as their relationship progresses. They come together during the summer between Seasons 4 and 5 when they find themselves bored with watching The Price Is Right. The relationship gradually grows into a surprisingly strong one, considering their past conflicts. However, Jackie sees Kelso making out with Annette (the girl Kelso dated while he was in California) and yells "get off my boyfriend". Hyde breaks up with Jackie but it only lasts an episode before they get back together and go to the Valentine's Day dance. They also go through trouble when Hyde mistakenly believes she is cheating on him with Kelso. In response, he cheats on her. He sincerely apologizes, but Jackie ends the relationship. The separation is brief, however, and they get back together at the beginning of Season 6. They remain together until midway through Season 7, when Jackie becomes insecure about their relationship and asks Hyde if he can see a future with her. His response, "I don't know", breaks them up briefly, but they reconcile after only a few weeks apart. However, when Jackie is offered a job in Chicago, Hyde is once again forced to make a decision about a possible future together. Just when Jackie thinks Hyde will break up with her for good, Hyde makes the decision to marry her. At that moment, he finds a note from Jackie that says she's left for Chicago, and Hyde is hurt and angry. In the following next episode, however, he decides to follow her and propose. In the middle of Hyde and Jackie's conversation, Kelso walks into the room in only a towel, carrying a bucket of ice and making a comment implying he and Jackie are about to have sex. Heartbroken, Hyde drives off to Las Vegas.

In the last season, Hyde returns from Las Vegas after his confrontation with Jackie and Kelso. While he is in Vegas, he gets drunk and marries a stripper named Samantha. Although Jackie claims nothing happened between herself and Kelso in Chicago, Hyde chooses to stay in the marriage instead of annulling it, ending his and Jackie's relationship. The marriage is bitter, as they are often seen screaming at each other, but it is hinted that they have an excellent sex life and all the yelling is just a factor of it. In the middle of Season 8, Samantha's other husband shows up unexpectedly and decides to take Samantha with him back to Vegas. Donna points out that since Samantha was already married when she married Hyde, Hyde and Samantha were never legally married, making their marriage null and void. In the midst of the confusion, the two decide that it would be best for them to part ways, and Sam goes back to Vegas. Hyde has no significant other in the final episode.

Personality[edit]

Hyde is a rebellious, distant, wise-cracking boy with no respect for authority and often makes it his main priority to defy as many policies or rules as possible, and seems to take pride in his own disobedience. He is tough, highly intelligent, supremely insensitive and seldom feels compassion for others, and often will make a sarcastic remark rather than show sympathy for somebody who is suffering. In fact, Hyde is easily the most intelligent member of the gang despite his bad upbringing and poor grades in school. It is revealed in the Halloween special that Hyde's reputation is first sabotaged in elementary school, when Eric ruins another student's diorama and Hyde receives the blame, and has since then maintained a reputation as a troublemaker and rebel. Although he rebels against school and other educational activities, he is generally smart, as in the episode "The Crunge", Hyde scores second lowest among the gang, but does better than Eric without textbooks and without applying himself. When other members of the gang need advice, Hyde is usually the only one who gives them real advice. Also, Hyde is physically the strongest (and presumably the best fighter) in the group, although on multiple occasions Hyde has backed down from an aggressive Eric and rarely ever lashes out on Eric the same way he does with Fez and Kelso. On many occasions throughout the show, Hyde beats up Kelso for various reasons, and he is easily stronger than Fez, Eric and even Donna.

Appearance[edit]

Hyde has an afro and sideburns (or occasionally a mustache and/or beard), and his sunglasses, which he is almost always seen in, making him appear like Jeff Lynne of Electric Light Orchestra and Eric Bloom of Blue Öyster Cult.[2] He regularly sports jeans and cowboy boots and was once failed in PE for refusing to wear shorts, and also has many rock band T-shirts, which include: Santana, Judas Priest, Eric Clapton, AC/DC, Queen, Kiss, The Who, Eagles, Led Zeppelin, Jimmy Page, Deep Purple, Thin Lizzy, ZZ Top, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Pink Floyd, Steve Miller Band, The Beatles, Black Sabbath, Jethro Tull, Jimi Hendrix, Alice Cooper, The Doors, The Rolling Stones, Ted Nugent, Boston, Rush, Aerosmith, John Lee Hooker, The Allman Brothers Band, Blue Öyster Cult, Sex Pistols, Ramones and the Grateful Dead. In at least one episode, he dons a two-tone green T-shirt displaying the International Paper corporate logo. Contrasting with his tough guy exterior, Hyde was once caught on videotape dancing to Frank Sinatra. Additionally, following his first breakup with Jackie, he happened to hear B. J. Thomas' "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song" and becomes a fan of country music although the season 2 episode, "Red's Last Day", a drunken Hyde is seen singing "Redneck Mother" by Jerry Jeff Walker. Hyde is also a huge fan of Led Zeppelin, and when once questioned by his father as to why he wears said shirts he replies, "If God didn't want me to wear them so much he wouldn't have made them rock so hard." He also notes that he likes to watch Little House on the Prairie, because it "reminds him of a simpler time". He dislikes the music of Pat Boone, Styx, ABBA, Andy Gibb, The Carpenters, and Little River Band.

Steven is known to drive a black 1967 Chevrolet El Camino that is referenced in several episodes. It was given to him by Leo in the episode Radio Daze.

He hates disco (even starting a disco burning bonfire in season 8); however, the real reason he hates disco was because of his lack of dance skills. However, Kitty teaches him to dance, and he later dances with Donna to disco in the first seasons.

References[edit]

  1. "Steven Hyde (Character)".
  2. "Steven Hyde's Rock 'n' Roll T-Shirts". Rate Your Music. Retrieved August 17, 2012.


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