I Want My MTV (Classic)!

Yesterday, executives over at MTV decided the repeats of the Eric Clapton hour-long jam band special on VH1 Classic just wasn’t getting the ratings they were expecting, so they decided to rebrand and turn VH1 Classic into MTV Classic. Just like the regular VH1 and MTV, MTV Classic is the cooler, more hip cousin as opposed to your slightly off-colored uncle who was a diehard DeadHead back in the day.

What this rebranding means is that now millennials can watch “retro” shows from the 1990s like MTV Unplugged, Cribs, OG Road Rules and an animation block featuring the likes of Daria and Beavis and Butthead. Plus, MTV Classic promises more 90s and 00s music videos, including a TRL Retrospective, so I better be seeing more Carson Daly and Jesse Camp in my life. JK about that last one.

Growing up, I was the kid who thought watching MTV made me cool. The first season of The Real World that I ever watched was London, which aired in 1995. I was nine years old. MTV was a staple throughout my teen years, including my teenybopper days when I was legitimately named TRL Fan of the Week (Something I take pride in all my social media “about mes”).

A) this is a printed out webpage because it’s from 2002. B) the answers to all my questions are embarrassing but at this point in my life, like, who gives a shit C) lol my screen name

All this to say that MTV was as much a part of my life growing up as books I read or movies I watched, and it’ll be interesting to go back and watch these shows as an adult. Will the cast of The Real World: London look like babies to me now? Is Beavis & Butthead still as offensive and stupid as I remember it? Will I still get an unenecessary aversion to ‘N Sync’s Bye Bye Bye video because I was hardcore Team BSB (yes. the answer is yes and always yes)? Here are a few shows I hope pop up on MTV Classic moving forward – do you have ones you are DVRing too?

Making the Video

Maybe it’s because MTV doesn’t show music videos any more, but can we get new eps of Making the Video? I guess for now I settle for anything from Making the Video seasons 1 through 3, where fans were given a behind-the-scenes look of how stars like Britney, 98 Degrees, Mariah Carey and Sisqo create their TRL-worthy videos.

Diary

You think you know … but you have no idea. This the Diary of  :: insert every big MTV celeb here:: This documentary show focused on one artist for each episode, usually as they’re in the midst of doing something big like a press tour or photo shoot or releasing an album, whatnot. It’s important to remember that celebs didn’t have social media back then, so having this kind of backstage access was exclusive in the purest sense of the word. With a simple Snapchat, Demi Lovato can show you what she’s eating in her dressing room before a concert. That would’ve never happened in the 90s + 00s with Britney unless it was through a show like this. In the episode above, the late, great Aaliyah gives a glimpse of her diary, and it aired just a couple weeks before she died on August 25th, 2001.

Fear

To be honest with y’all, I maybe watched a full episode of this show then immediately called it quits. After being freaked out by the episode I watched, I maybe saw a clip here or there, and just pretended I thought it was the best show ever. *I was trying to be cool*. Fear is a reality competition show that features a group of contestants alone in a haunted location. There are no camera men, only the night vision cameras as well as some attached to them as they went on their dares. Dares, you say? Yes. Contestants spend the night, are given a dare, and if they complete it and make it to the end of two nights in the haunted location, each survivor gets a monetary prize. You couldn’t pay me enough to do this. Or maybe even to watch this again.

Singled Out

Kids, Nerdist/@ Midnight icon Chris Hardwich used to host a dating show on MTV and his eye candy co-host was Jenny McCarthy. I just want to see if I think the people on this show are truly hot or not in 2016.

Say What? Karaoke

It’s basically karaoke on a much bigger platform than the dive bar club you used to go to in college. Everyone embarrasses themselves and celebs are the judges.

Making the Band

Ok, but OG Danity Kane – 👏 THAT 👏 IS 👏 WHAT 👏 I 👏 AM 👏 TALKING👏 ABOUT 👏 . There was a lot of drama in the literal making of the band and subsequent downfall, but for a period of time, they had so much potential. They were the ultimate 00s girl group and I was sucked into the process from day one. In the video above, Diddy Sean Puffy Daddy Combs P had narrowed it down to a handful of girls and had them perform in groups a la Hollywood week on American Idol. The first song, which featured eventual Danity Kane members Aubrey O’Day and Aundrea Fimbres, was my JAM and I ripped it off the TV somehow and made it into an MP3 that I listened to more often than any normal human. #BoomKat

2ge+her

One of the most brilliant ideas MTV ever had was to make the TV movie 2ge+her, a mockumentary on a fictional boy band. The director of the 2000 film was Nigel Dick, a frequent staple on Making the Video as he was one of the top music directors for Britney, BSB, Jessica Simpson, etc. Then, they cast actual cute guys and truly catchy pop tunes and soon, what was supposed to be a joke became a real life boy band sensation, and it took on a life of its own. After a successful movie and soundtrack, the boys did another album and a spin-off TV series. It didn’t last long for multiple reasons, but one unfortunate reason was the passing of member Michael Cuccione, who died in 2001 at the age of 16.

The Real World

Seasons I want to see again: 1 through 12 (New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, Miami, Boston, Seattle, Hawaii, New Orleans, New York, Chicago, Las Vegas).

Road Rules

None of the “Challenge” shit. I’m talking Mark Long. I’m talking Semester at Sea. I’m talking Theo and Abe before they became Challenge/Gauntlet veterans.

Rich Girls

There was only one season and 10 episodes of Rich Girls, but it felt like so much more. Before the Kardashians and Laguna Beach, MTV had Rich Girls, which follow Tommy Hilfiger’s daughter Ally, and her best friend Jaime, whose late father was a millionaire. Their life in New York was fascinating to me, and my main takeaway from the show was that to calm themselves down, they used one finger to tapp their “Third Eye” aka the space right above your eyebrows on your forehead, to keep calm. I did this before going on stage in high school. I don’t think it really worked.

Room Raiders

I just want more of this.

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Pop Culture Reunions That Need To Happen

The reunion issue of Entertainment Weekly came out last week, and we got to see what the casts of Bring It On, Felicity, Family Ties and more are up to now. This issue is one of my favorite annual issues from EW, especially when they cover shows or movies I’m particularly interested like Gilmore Girls or Clueless or The West Wing (have you SEEN the vid of Bradley & Janel talking about present-day Josh & Donna?!). There are of course millions of things to choose from when it comes to narrowing it down to a few for each issue, but I too have hopes and wishes for future get togethers by some of my (used-to-be) favorite stars. Here are just some of them.

Good Morning, Miss Bliss

Before Zack and Slater in California, there was Zack and Mikey in Indiana. The latter lasted approx one season, but thanks to the magic of syndication, the 14 episodes were rolled into repeats of Saved by the Bell. This explains why as a kid you saw two middle schoolers – Mikey and Nicki – suddenly turn into high school Slater and Jessie. Call it The Tori Complex, if you will. While we know Zack, Lisa and Screech and even Mr. Belding went on to find fame with SBTB, the actors who played Mikey and Nicki, Max Battimo and Heather Hopper, didn’t quite reach that level. Even Miss Bliss’ teachers Miss Tina Paladrino and maintenance supervisor Mylo Williams had few roles here and there. I think the reunion, more than anything, would be to ask the question – what went wrong with this show?

Notting Hill

When we were growing up in the 90s, Julia Roberts was (and arguably still is) the Queen of Romantic Comedies. After seeing My Best Friend’s Wedding for the first time, I became obsessed both with her and the movie, and when Notting Hill came along, that became my favorite. Like, I have it on VHS currently in my room and have seen it way too many times to remember. Pairing Julia with the King of Romantic Comedies, Hugh Grant, was a no-brainer and they had great chemistry. It also stars a young Mischa Barton, Alec Baldwin AND his 30 Rock frail-boned co-star Emily Mortimer, and the dude from The Wire. But it’s also the first introduction I had to Hugh Bonneville aka Lord Grantham on Downton Abbey, as Bernie, Hugh/Will’s friend. He has a very understated comedic charm to him we don’t get to see as much on Downton.

Ally McBeal

Most of the Ally McBeal cast reunited at the TV Land Awards earlier this year, but I want a full get together with Robert Downey Jr., Jane Krakowski, Lucy Liu, Taye Diggs and Portia De Rossi, otherwise it would be for naught. Also, didn’t know until right now that Renee Elise Goldberry of Hamilton fame played one of Vonda Shepard’s backup singers in the bar throughout the entire series. BRAND NEW INFORMATION. She should be invited to the reunion too.

Ed

Ed, the show about a big town lawyer who moves back to his small hometown and becomes the owner of a bowling alley. This show ran for four seasons and through the entirety of my high school career. I loved this show, but like most programs I watched back in the day, I wasn’t necessarily the target demographic. None the less, the show was a lovely dramedy with sort of a Gilmore Girls vibe. It also produced stars like Modern Family’s Julie Bowen, Michael Ian Black, and a young Justin Long and Ginnifer Goodwin (again, learning so much. I forgot she was in Ed, but very clearly remembered their scenes together in classic He’s Just Not That Into You). Most of these actors have gone on to do great things, but like, where’s Lesley Boone/Molly? Jana Marie Hupp/Nancy (SHE WAS MINDY IN THE ONE WITH BARRY AND MINDY’S WEDDING #COPACABANA).

Rent

I was introduced to Rent when I was approx 13 years old, around the time Rent first hit Broadway. I’d listen to the OBC soundtrack on repeat, and for sentimental reasons, is still one of my favorite musicals. Despite getting together for the polarizing movie and the 10th anniversary show, I will always be available for this OG cast to get together once more. Especially Taye and Idina.

Newsies

Speaking of musicals, Newsies was a childhood staple for many kids my age, and starred a young Christian Bale before he became Batman. If I could just get a current group picture of everyone in this cast in the exact same pose, crutch and all, that would be fantastic.

Dirty Sexy Money

It’s like a given we would all like a reunion of Six Feet Under, so that aside, he’s another addicting show Peter Krause was a part of. I binged this a few years ago when it was still on Netflix Instant, and I don’t even remember why. Maybe it was Peter I was intrigued by. Then again it was also Donald Sutherland, a girl from Passions, Lucy Liu (again) and William Baldwin. This would be a fun reunion, specifically because it was cancelled after just two seasons with a total of 23 episodes. What happened to this Darling family??

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip

Is Studio 60 polarizing, too? Probably. Did I watch it because I appreciate Matthew Perry? Of course. Did I expect to like it so much that I bought the DVDs? Absolutely not. Studio 60 had some problems with it, of course, but all the cast members were extremely talented and made the show watchable. Also, Columbus Short, aka Harrison from Scandal was on it, along with Dawn from the British The Office, and it’s weird seeing them not as the characters you most associate them with, despite the fact Scandal came after this show. Anyways.

Laguna Beach

Molly & I didn’t even go to our own high school reunion, so I can’t say I entirely expect the cast of Laguna Beach to take part in a reunion. However, it would be itneresting to see what’s changed dynamics wise. Is Kristin still mad at ‘Stephennnnn’? Does Stephen pine for LC at all? What happened to Christina’s Broadway dreams? Is Trey still the best human on the show (besides LC)?

That Thing You Do

In addition to renting this movie on VHS, for some reason, That Thing You Do! was constantly, or what seemed to be, on repeat on VH1. It wasn’t a blockbuster in the box office, but it wasn’t a flop either. What it does have is a strong, passionate fan base who will be able to sing the titular track for you at a moment’s notice. They’ll know the different between The Wonders and The Oneders, and know how to pronounce the latter. They’ll also want to get the band back together one more time.

2Ge+her

2ge+her

And one final segue – SPEAKING OF BANDS GETTING BACK TOGETHER – I’ve spoken about this before, but as a young lass, I was a teenybopper to the max. BSB was my jam, and that love of boy bands extended to pretty much everyone (except ‘N Sync, duh), including the fake boy band put together on MTV to mock the genre. That ultimately backfired since they had a ‘hit’ song with U+Me = Us (Calculus) and their follow-up hit, The Hardest Part of Breaking Up (Is Getting Back Your Stuff). Both their albums made it into the Billboard top 40, including their sophomore record, 2Ge+her Again, which hit 11. While it wouldn’t be the same without the late Michael Cuccione as part of the reunion, it would be great to see them 2GE+HER AGAIN.