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”).
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.
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.
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.
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
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).
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.
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.
I just want more of this.