FANCY BASTARD ASSEMBLE Limited print update: The prints are at my house and will start shipping this week. Thank you for your patience.
Josh may be a bit off base, but Jesus, are those shows really 20 years old? I guess I’ll just crawl in bed and wait for my organs to fail. I came up for the idea for this comic while watching YouTube videos of the 80’s cartoon Kidd Video. Each animated episode would feature a live action music video from the show’s real titular fake band. I couldn’t help but thinking things might not have gone well for the four ethnically diverse, hair teased teens miming those instruments. That’s when I remembered that Nickelodeon offspring channel TeenNick recently started airing many of the early 90’s shows I used to watch as a kid.
All That (the preteen’s answer to SNL and the pedophile’s answer to Kids In The Hall), Hey Dude (another Nick show about 16 year olds that NEVER EVER EVER leave their summer jobs) and Doug (which broke new ground in racial discourse by featuring the only white kid in an all colored neighborhood) are all part of the “90’s Are All That” block. This sent me down a man eatin’ jack rabbit hole of Youtube videos and wiki articles. I emerged on the other side, feeling so much older and hardly any wiser, yet grasping on to this fundamental truth: Out Of Control and Weinerville were actually things, and not just chickenpox induced fever dreams.
Like it or not, these shows (along with Clarissa Explains It All, Welcome Freshman, Double Dare, The Adventures Of Pete And Pete, Salute Your Shorts, etc) really informed my sense of humor and popular culture at an impressionable age. Back in the early 90’s Nick was a sort of content generating machine geared specifically to my age group. You also never needed to change the channel. I also wasn’t really allowed to. At the time, we had basic cable and I was allowed to watched the 3 major networks, Disney (11) and Nick (31). I was NOT allowed to surf through the channels in between. I had to dial those particular stations in directly, lest my young mind be inappropriately influenced by C-SPAN or worse yet QVC. This limited selection is actually the main reason I am so well versed in 50’s black and white TV. I pretty much dialed in channel 31 and left it there from afternoon cartoons to Nick at Nite. Well, except for when I was watching The Mickey Mouse Club. I was only human.
COMMENTERS: Any special affinity for 90’s Nick TV? Remember those weird british Sci-Fi shows they used to import? Alien tweens in search of their parents or some such. Also did you, like me, breathe a big sigh of relief when you finally realized a lot of Nick’s shows were filmed in Canada and that accounted for why they seemed ever so slightly off? No? Just me? I’m going back to the organ failure thing.