Film and TV

20 Years Ago in TV; the Good and the Bad

I was flipping through channels yesterday and stumbled upon an episode of Barney; you know, the purple dinosaur. It's been a long time since I had any reason to watch Barney, but I could have sworn I had seen this episode before. More likely, all Barney episodes involve songs about brushing your teeth and how much you love him. I got to wonder how long Barney had been teaching preschoolers good manners, and was shocked to find out that it's been 20 years!

If there is anything that can make you feel old, it's to know that you were pushing puberty the same time that Barney began pushing Old McDonald down children's throats. Nineteen ninety-two was definitely a banner year for movies (as pointed out by our own Craig Hlavaty), but television shows...let's say there were a few winners and just as many losers.


The Real World

Nineteen ninety-two was the year that started it all. The people on this show were actually seven strangers, picked to live in a loft, to find out what would happen. Twenty years later, they found out that if you gave them a bunch of Jell-O shots, they would make out in a hot tub. Experiment done!

The Ben Stiller ShowSadly, The Ben Stiller show only lasted a year on Fox, but while it aired, it broke comedy ground. Plus, it featured the likes of Bob Odenkirk, Janeane Garofalo, David Cross and Judd Apatow.

The GrindThe Grind was a show where you watched people in little clothing dance. Why this was such a hit is hard to say. If it aired now, you would be able to text in who got kicked off the dance floor.

Melrose PlaceThe scandal, the lies, the betrayal, the burning of pools and hearts simultaneously, the first few seasons of Melrose Place was everything a soapy drama should be. Eventually it turned ridiculous, but that first season it was glorious.

King Arthur and the Knights of JusticeKing Arthur and the Knights of Justice was a Sunday morning cartoon that made little sense, but it really didn't matter. It had football players who were transported back in time to defend Camelot. How could that be a bad thing?

Dateline NBC

Dateline premiered in 1992, and when it began, Stone Phillips and Jane Pauley were the hosts. It has lost some of its hard-hitting exposés, but it's still uncovering things like perverts who solicit sex on the Internet, every Friday night.

Mad About YouOne of the first couples on prime-time television to have a loving and stable marriage without children -- until they jumped the shark and had a baby.

Alternative NationIt was 1992! Even MTV's nerdy, somewhat obnoxious VJ Kennedy seemed cool.

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Abby Koenig
Contact: Abby Koenig