Have you ever thought about how some of the best TV series are behind us?
I often find that the majority of today’s TV doesn’t level up to the ’90s content that I grew up with. Here are 9 TV series that are all MAJOR classics, all began in the ’90s, and all will help you reminisce on better television.
Twin Peaks (1990)
Created by: David Lynch
A small town in Washington State is suddenly the creepiest town on the map. Twin Peaks is arguably the beginning of extremely strange mystery series. Basically, Homecoming Queen Laura Palmer is murdered and then chaos ensues. Except, it’s not that basic. Double lives are exposed, character layers are unraveled, and some episodes share similar qualities to that of a horror movie. This show pushed the boundaries of the mystery genre and, probably because of David Lynch, was discussed far beyond its plot. And if you exclude the pilot episode, the acting wasn’t half bad. Fairly groundbreaking, this show had a passionate cult following much like the Twilight Zone.
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990)
Created by: Andy & Susan Borowitz
Will Smith did, in fact, flip our lives – turned upside down. Aside from the epic theme song sung around the world, it blessed us with some of the best comedy (especially physical) content to date. Not only did it become popular when rap music was still exceptional (I prefer 90s hip hop over anything that it released today), it’s the epitome of the early 90s culture pertaining to fashion and lifestyle. A lot of familiar supermodels faces made memorable appearances (Tyra Banks, Naomi Campbell), and Will/Jada actually met on set when Jada auditioned to be Will’s girlfriend. Jada didn’t get the part but I heard everything turned out just fine for her. Oh yeah, and The Cosby Show can leave.
Boy Meets World (1993)
Created by: Michael Jacobs
This series never really belonged on Disney Channel. The writers were well aware of that, as they pushed the boundaries of teen/young adult content until the very end. What’s marvelous is that the audience actually was able to meet the world through this show, as it follows Cory Matthews from junior high to college. I remember dreaming about my own experiences through him, imaging what being away from home would be like and hoping that I would also be blessed with a group of lifelong friends. The dialogue was genuinely funny and charming. Personally, I think this show kind of feels like home. Shawn Hunter (played by Rider Strong) was one of the original swoon-worthy “hair flippers.” Most importantly, fans still remember every life lesson Mr. Feeny (William Daniels) taught them along the way. “Dream. Try. Do good.”
The X-Files (1993)
Created by: Chris Carter
If the X-Files had a voicemail, it would read, “Hi, I’m a paranormal phenomena. If you are not willing to consider an form of conspiracy, don’t bother leaving a message.” At the time, this series was like candy for UFO lovers. Fans describe it as “transcendent,” forever remembered as a true hit TV show. Admittedly, it is hard to forget a show so incredibly thought provoking. It doesn’t just make you think; it exercises your imagination and even offers some level of faith. And as the world fell in love with Mulder and Scully, Mulder and Scully fell in love with each other. Who doesn’t like a story about FBI agents with a soft side? Also, it’s the classic Skeptic vs. Believer.
Created by: Marta Kauffman/David Crane
* Watch me kneel down and praise the best sitcom of our time. * There will never be anything like it. It’s one of the few shows that audiences watch over and over again – and laugh every time. The comedic writing was impeccable, and God’s holiest angels crafted the ensemble cast. It is stupidly lovable, quotable, relatable, all the able-s. Rightfully considered a timeless piece of work, exemplifying late 20s/early 30s life and helping us all feel better about officially becoming adults. I still refuse to watch the series finale, because I prefer my heart to stay in my chest. No one told me life was gonna be this way…. I wish they were just ON A BREAK.
Buffy The Vampire Slayer (1997)
Created by: Joss Whedon
Plot Twist. I didn’t even watch this show, but it seemed like a large percentage of the population did. I just know that it’s about a teenage girl named Buffy who has talents that she utilizes to apparently slay. I don’t understand why her name is Buffy, but I do get where the obsession stems from. I admire the premature supernatural craving this show satisfied, and the strong female lead. In a good way, the show was a bit ahead of its time. It seems Buffy is the “chosen one” – kind of like Harry Potter – but her supernatural doesn’t include Voldemort and I think she uses a stake instead of a wand.
Sex and the City (1998)
Created by: Darren Star
Are you Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte or Samantha? (I’m running this blog, so I’m obviously Carrie Bradshaw.) Welcome to the female-powered show that glamorizes break ups, condones drinking on weeknights, portrays everlasting friendships, and of course, welcomes a vast amount of mostly safe sex in a very large city. The best part is the feminist realism of self-sufficient women who work for what they have and can be just as detached as men when it comes to relationships. If I ever find myself and I probably will to be 30 and single, I promise you this show will be my personal tour guide to middle-age life. I’ve never witnessed so many mid-life crises handled this spectacularly.
Dawson’s Creek (1998)
Created by: Kevin Williamson
The original One Tree Hill. Ya know, high school and drama – drama and high school. I know it’s Dawson’s creek, but really you get the pleasure of watching Katie Holmes (or Joey Potter) grow up in a small town, struggling through adolescence. This heartfelt series really is the whole sha-bang with all the first loves, first times, and abundant amount of sensitive topic coverage. Even though James Van Der Beek’s crying face is a worldwide meme now, you should still take this show seriously. It can be pretentious (these teens are a tad ahead of themselves), but the addiction and need to watch the next episode will not waver. It really is the sweetest.
Freaks and Geeks (1999)
Created by: Paul Feig / Judd Apatow was memorably involved.
Only the good die young. This, in my opinion, perfect depiction of a high school in the early 80s only lasted a single season. Many blame the network for continuously switching air nights, but I blame the world for not recognizing the potential phenomenon before them. The James Franco/Seth Rogen love story began in this teen dramedy and others like Linda Cardellini and Martin Starr, are major standouts. It’s edgy and real, also portraying the typical we-have-dinner-together-every-night American family. Not to mention, I truly believe this is why green cargo jackets rose from the ashes – and never left.