Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Top Ten Best TV Shows of the '90s

These aren’t in any particular listing simply because asking me to pick my favorite between all these shows is asking me to pick my favorite child (if were to have children). All of these shows I can say I have watched 98%-100% of the episodes and would thoroughly enjoy it if anyone were to buy me them on a box set (except Seinfeld because I have all of them…). Now let’s get down to business. What is it that made these shows so amazing in my eyes? Well aside from the fact that 87% of all history and social norms I have been taught have been from these shows, these characters were my friends. When I was an awkward 8 year old with braces and a bob haircut who kept me company? Zack Morris and Screech. When I was a 9 year old and unsure if playing Barbies was still socially acceptable…who taught me as long as I wasn’t wearing sweatpants I was still in the clear? Why, George and Jerry. What other innocent girl asked her dad what a condom is because she saw it on 90210? None other than this one right here. So here you go. Enjoy.

All That:
What could be better than a TV show that not only had HILARIOUS sketches but a musical guest at the end?? Nothing! I started off watching this in good ‘ol ’96 when I didn’t know what a good joke was and thought Lori Beth Denberg being a librarian and telling everyone “QUIET THIS IS A LIBRARY” was downright piss-your-pants hysterical. Not to mention when Kenan Thompson brought out the British accent in the tub and got into all kinds of shenanigans that made me choke on the (tons) of cheese doodles I was most likely shoving down my throat. Ten points if you comment and say what his character's name was because I cannot for the life of me remember. Kenan & Kel's Good Burger was never a disappointment although their spin off show definitely was. If you couldn't already tell, Kenan was my favorite because not only did I think he was the funniest but he also starred in "Heavyweights" which is on my top 5 favorite movies. And who can forget that TLC rapped the theme song? That was probably what made me like it in the first place. In addition, they had all the hottest mid-'90s bands perform not ONCE but sometimes TWICE during the show. Most memorable performances for me: TLC's "Creep", Backstreet Boys "As Long as you love me,”Blackstreet-No Diggity, and Robyn's "Show me love" Not that there wasn't more that I liked but for some reason these all stood out for me. Probably because they all involved super neon-colored baggy pants and smooth choreographed moves.

Beverly Hills: 90210
Just to put it out there…I probably should not have been watching this show at the tender age of 9. However, my mom worked nights and my dad was busy watching The Simpsons with my brother so no one really could stop young, rebellious me.  This show not only showed me the hardships that occur once one starts dating (Kelly Taylor alone endured getting shot, burned, raped, sucked into a cult, and numerous bad outfits all before 25), but how incestuous some groups of friends can be in high school. I mean really Dylan? I think the only girl he didn’t hook up with was Andrea and that’s because she was the ugly dork that worshiped the ground Brandon walked on. Oh, and probably Donna because she was the lowly virgin who only had eyed for the too-cool-for-school David. And then you had Valerie, the super slore who really would sleep with anyone.  It really didn’t get better than this show and to tell you the truth…I still watch reruns religiously on Soap Net. Judge if you want but..90210 is the shit.

Salute Your Shorts
I think any kid growing up in the ‘90s who wasn’t Amish can agree that Salute your Shorts really was the show to watch on Saturdays. Potty humor, Donkeylips, Camp Anawanna…really it doesn’t get much better. I remember thinking armpit farts were AWESOME but I couldn’t ever make one.  At the time, it was part of the awesome Saturday line up which included Double Dare, Hey Dude, and Round House.  One of the stand outs of this show for me was the infamous “Zeke the Plumber” episode where the man had no nose. The back story is hazy to me but I do remember having nightmares as a child because of that episode.

Full House
Whoever says they have NEVER seen an episode of Full House is lying through their teeth. I felt I was an addition to the Tanner family. The family who got into CUH-RAZY shenanigans from Uncle Jesse (yes the stud muffin from Jesse & the Rippers) almost letting fame get to his head to DJ and Kimmy getting drunk at the school dance.  All they needed was a sit down from Danny and perhaps a hug...and everything was ok. Who could really forget the episode where Papoul dies and I sat there sobbing as if I knew the man. I could really go on & on but suffice it to say...I wanted to be a part of the Tanner family. I WAS part of the Tanner family. Except if I WERE there I would have kicked Kimmy Gibler’s ass out of my house and safeguarded my food from that monster Steve.

Family Matters
Yet another dinner time staple. My family rarely agreed on what to watch when we ate dinner ( 9 times out of 10 it was either Married…with Children or The Simpsons) but the few times I got to pick this was it. For some reason Urkel’s extreme nerdiness coupled with Laura’s extreme bitchiness really did it for me. Things got a little weird when Urkel went in the weird time machine thing and came out a handsome young man but I knew the real Urkel would come back. Carl Winslow’s immense hatred for Urkel made for some hilarious moments but it bummed me out when things always got serious at the end. It was like the black Full House. My most memorable episode was when their Aunt Oona came to visit and they gave her a make-over. It turns out she looks EXACTLY like Donna Summer (hint was Donna Summer!!) and she sings “Last Dance” at a karaoke bar.

Boy Meets World
Perhaps the best part of TGIF. Little Corey Matthews trying to weather the hardships of high school with his trailer park best friend Shawn and the love of his life Topanga. Now I remember in the early episodes Topanga as this weird ass hippie girl who nobody liked. Except for Minkus. Ah, Minkus. I don’t even remember when he got written off the show. I loved Corey’s tree house and how nobody thought that’s where he could be when he used to “run” away. Clever Mr. Finney always there with his trusty sweater vest and worldly wisdom. Shawn developed into a hottie and I got jealous when he dated super ugly Angela. Topanga got boobs and Corey well…he got taller I guess. Great show.

Fresh Prince of Bel Air
This show is a classic for many obvious and not-so-obvious reasons. Any show that started in 1990 (almost 20 years ago oh my god I am fucking ancient!) and can still make me laugh has a gold star in my book. I didn’t understand a lot of the jokes when I was younger but once it got on syndication and I started watching re-runs..damn Big Willie had some sexual innuendos didn’t he? The gruff yet lovable Uncle Phil, the fruit cake cousin Carlton, and the witty butler Jeffrey all made for a hilarious half hour when I was watching dinner. To this day, whenever this show is on I watch it and marvel at how many guest stars went on to become famous. And let’s face it…I’m still in love with Will Smith. And his sweet guest house behind Uncle Phil’s house.

Saved by the Bell
Not “The New Class.” Not “College Years.” Just plain old Saved by the Bell. The GOOD cast. Not the first episodes with that semi-dykey girl with the motorcycle jacket on. And that boy with the jerry curl. The Zack, Screech, Jesse, Slater, Lisa, & Kelly cast. Where for some reason Kelly didn’t realize how gorgeous Zack was, Lisa never had a man but Screech (ew), and beautiful Slater liked Jesse (who would ever love Jesse Spano??) Some stand out episodes for me were: Jesse overdosing on caffeine pills when studying and dancing in that aerobics video with Kelly & Lisa really got her stressin’. Probably still one of my favorite episodes. The toga party when Zack drives home drunk and crashes Lisa’s mom’s car. I just like how they portrayed a “drunk person.” At the age I had never been drunk and thought “Gee that looks like fun!” And of course all the beach episodes when the clubhouse woman from “Kings of Queens” is Zack’s love interest. Who can also forget Zack’s awesome cell phone? I think my mom still has one of those…

Probably my all-time favorite show. I am aware that many people hate it and that it takes a certain “type” of humor to find it hilarious. But really…a show about nothing?? GENIUS! I can relate to every single episode whether it is having a blow up doll in the car so you could drive in the HOV lane to not wanting to date somebody with “man hands.” Elaine, Jerry, Kramer, and George were truly what I aspire to be one day. George & Jerry’s parents are what I KNOW my parents will be one day. They have all tried to get their own shows and (for the most part) failed because what made them funny were them as a GROUP. If you ask me, they should just get together again and do Seinfeld until they die. Almost all the episodes are memorable to me but my favorites: “The Parking Garage”, “The Pez Dispenser” and “Junior Mint.”

Are you Afraid of the Dark?
This show marked a pivotal point in my life. I was finally old enough to stay up until 9:00pm on Saturdays AND watch a show with my older brother that was deemed to “scary” the prior year. From the opening credits I knew I was going to be terrified but I was willing to risk that for the chance of finally being cool enough to engage in this ultra-cool show. From the creaky swing to the kids putting out the fire with the sand at the end…I was petrified. More times than not I had to read a book or watch the Brady Bunch after this show because I was too scared to sleep. A particular memorable episode for me starred Tia & Tamera (the sisters from Sister, Sister). They turn into chameleons and “chameleons” threaten to take over the world.  Kind of sounds like Pinky and the Brain but I was ready to pee my pants. To make it worse, my brother had an iguana and for all I knew they were the same thing. I never went near it. Great show.

Agree? Disagree? Let me know what you think. It won’t change my list but I’m interested in hearing what shows formed your younger years.

1 comment:

  1. Wicked good blog nicole... I agree! Those shows were the highlight of the 90's for me... Granted, I didn't watch Seinfeld until recently with re-runs but nonetheless, I find it hilarious.