Bring on the Nostalgia, Part 3: Retro TV Shows of the 80s and 90s
Hopefully you haven’t reached nostalgia overload yet, because I’ve compiled 5 TV shows from the 1980s/1990s that may trigger some sensational memories in that brain of yours!
My colleagues, Lauren and Joe, mentioned 8 retro snacks and foods in their posts (which you can find here and here, respectively). However, the reign of forgotten-foods blog posts has officially ended! My contribution to this series will focus entirely on retro television. I’ve decided to pay tribute to some older cartoons and TV shows that helped shape me back in the day, so here goes nothing:
Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?
Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? – I couldn’t even tell you how often I watched this show in the early 90s. From the tough clues and characters to the infectious theme song by Rockapella, this kids’ show had me hooked from the very beginning! I had the computer game first but I still have this show to thank for a portion of my research and puzzle-solving skills. Carmen Sandiego was one of those rare 90s shows that entertained kids and taught them valuable lessons at the same time.
Dinosaucers – I’ll give you every bill of my Monopoly money if you’ve heard of this show before right now! Dinosaucers is not to be confused with the exceedingly popular Dinosaurs (you know, “Not the Mama!”) although they were on TV at approximately the same time (1987-1988). Dinosaucers was a clever cartoon that followed the adventures of two rivaling dinosaur teams: the good guys were called Dinosaucers and the bad guys were called Tyrannos. This was one of my all-time favorite shows when I was growing up, but apparently I’m the only kid who remembers it because people look at me like I’m an escaped mental patient whenever I mention it. (While we’re on the subject of obscure cartoons, let me know if you remember watching an anime featuring a baby unicorn named Unico. If you do, then I think we may have just forged a new friendship!)
Clarissa Explains It All
Clarissa Explains It All – Every woman my age probably remembers tuning in to see Melissa Joan Hart dress in unforgettable outfits and torment her annoying brother! But Clarissa’s appeal ran much deeper than that. She taught young girls how to think independently of the norms, how to stand up for what’s right, and how to use creativity to solve problems. Don’t believe me? Just think about those complicated videos and games she created to show off her master plans (well, at least they were complicated for the 1990s). At any rate, there’s no denying that Clarissa was an inspiration to young girls everywhere.
Legends of the Hidden Temple
Legends of the Hidden Temple – I desperately wanted to be a contestant on this show until I found out that new episodes were no more. The teams had to find and recover a missing “artifact” that ended up inside the hidden temple, and they had to go through mazes and physical challenges in order to do so. It looked like so much fun! And who could forget the gigantic talking Aztec head named Olmec? This show ended too soon!
Singled Out – This zany MTV dating show got popular when I was already a teenager, and I couldn’t stop watching it. It may not seem like a good fit with the other TV shows I selected, but I chose it because it marks two milestones in my life. 1) Singled Out made me realize early-on that dating was kind of scary, which prepared me for the dating scene once I was actually old enough to date. As weird as that sounds, it’s true! 2) The show also marks the beginning of my 16-years-and-counting nerd crush on the beautiful and talented host, Chris Hardwick, who is now known for his successful Nerdist podcast, comedy music, an ever-growing list of writing and hosting accomplishments (like Web Soup), and not to mention a forthcoming book that I’ll be first in line to buy.
Do you remember watching any of these 80s/90s TV shows? If I didn’t mention your favorite, then shout it loud and proud in the comments!
Want to read more about the shows I mentioned? You can find all of the gritty details by checking out the Wiki articles for these shows: Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?, Dinosaucers, Clarissa Explains It All, Legends of the Hidden Temple, and Singled Out.