BY: FRANCISCO FLORES
As a prominent part of the millennial generation, the iconic ‘90s era seems to have a strong influence on today’s culture. Everything from its music to its fashion is incorporated into modern trends. Nothing compares to a throwback significant to so many people’s lives, which is why the ‘90s are really all that. For many who grew up in the ‘90s, music was one of the biggest influences in their lives. Nothing brings a more nostalgic feeling than hearing your favorite song from when you were a child on the radio.
Communications major Paola Placencia, grew up in the heart of the ‘90s.
“When I think of the 90s, I picture Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Spice Girls, Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears and *NSYNC,” said Placencia. “[They’re] just artists I grew up with.”
First, there was the bubblegum pop explosion in the late ‘90s. Britney Spears, The Backstreet Boys and Christina Aguilera all saw the start of their careers, and are still relevant today. Pop music in the ‘90s focused on live bands and simpler beats, making it an instant classic in today’s music world.
Rock music was one of the most listened to genres as well. Bands like Blink-182 and the Red Hot Chili Peppers made a name for themselves and united people through their music. There was much less criticism and comparisons between artists and instead, all music was embraced.
We also saw a huge growth of rap and R&B music. Artists such as Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls led the rap game along with Jay-Z and Eminem. Rap and R&B focused on everyday struggles, love and other common ideas, and while they focused on simple beats as well, the smooth rhythms and catchy tunes gave these genres a spot in our nostalgic hearts.
Today’s TV shows focus on reality television along with the occasional crime show here and there, but nothing will ever take the place of the comedy sitcom that brought families together and influenced a generation of geniuses.
TV in the ‘90s was probably one of the best eras in entertainment. Sitcoms such as “Full House” and “Married With Children” made their triumphant takeover as they became household favorites. Both shows are still featured on networks as popular reruns.
However, nothing can compare to the joy that the 1990s television brought the youth with its cartoons.
“I was really young in the ‘90s, so I mostly remember the cartoons. I was genuinely happy and entertained when shows like ‘Tom and Jerry,’ ‘Hey Arnold!,’ ‘Recess’ and ‘Spongebob’ came on,” said Alex Garcia, a CSULB psychology major.
These animated shows, along with many others, made a great impact on children of the ‘90s. Shows like “Rugrats,” and “Pinky & the Brain” are still very popular today. The Nickelodeon network spinoff, TeenNick, decided to pay tribute to these classic children’s shows in 2011. They began a segment titled “The ‘90s Are All That,” where reruns of the best Nickelodeon shows from the ‘90s were played after 12 a.m.
Christy Cannioto, a communications major, was one of many ‘90s kids that enjoyed these iconic cartoons.
“The most influential thing, for me, was the way Saturday morning cartoons were considered a treat and there was discipline that seems rare today, such as playing outside and coming home when the street lights came on,” she said.
As if the ‘90s weren’t already the greatest era by far, it also brought about a new style in fashion that is currently being brought back as one of the hottest trends today. Bright colors, symmetrical patterns and oversized clothes are just a few of the trends that made their mark in the ‘90s.
Snapback caps for men and crop tops for women are just as popular today as they were in the ‘90s. Denim also made a name for itself as everyone had jeans paired with their washed-out denim jacket. Today, those jackets are coming back in fashion, but of course they have been revamped to reflect the styles of today by adding leather sleeves and hoods.
There was also the huge boom in high-waisted jeans, plaid, and Doc Marten boots. Those “fly” trends have all resurfaced in recent years as they are modernized to fit today’s fashion standards.
Though they have taken a modern twist on classic fashion, the styles in the ‘90s will always have their own distinct attitude.
To bring the ‘90s full circle, there were also those tacky dance moves introduced by people like MC Hammer, the birth of DVDs and the Internet’s slow and steady rise to stardom.
Unfortunately, the last big cultural event for the ‘90s was the Y2K scare that lead everyone into a frenzy of panic, as the future of their technology was unknown. When the clock hit midnight on Jan. 1, 2000, and all the lights were still on, everyone continued their celebration and bid a farewell to the end of an era.
If you weren’t born in the ‘90s, I’m truly sorry. The greatest era of all time is now the biggest influence on today’s culture. Its iconic styles and catchy beats have impacted the most advanced technologies today.
The ‘90s were never focused on looking for the next big trend or what would make money. It was all about fun and coming together and it unexpectedly created one of the greatest eras of all time.