Maija Gustin | Wednesday, April 25, 2012
As part of AnTostal 2012, the Student Union Board will sponsor a screening of five favorite ’90s Nicktoons tonight at 8 p.m. The Third Eye Blind concert and the continuing popularity of Fruit Roll-Ups as a topic of conversation prove that Notre Dame students still love the ’90s, and Nickelodeon’s cartoons remain one of the best parts of the decade.
In case you’ve forgotten just why you loved being a kid in the ’90s, Scene is here to remind you about some of your favorite childhood shows.
Long before Stewie Griffin became the most quotable baby in town, the precocious tots on “Rugrats” were having adventures we could only dream of. From finding an Indiana Jones-like cave in the backyard to defeating “The Meanie of Hanukkah,” the “Rugrats” taught us to ask questions, protect our friends and explore the world. Tommy was the bravest kid in town, Chuckie an unexpected hero and Phil and Lil determined though sometimes clueless – and they were all still in diapers. Let’s also not forget the great debt Sue Sylvester of “Glee” owes to Angelica Pickles.
Conjoined half-dog, half-cat twins Cat and Dog were outcasts in their own city, but their optimism and friendship gave us a model for staying true to oneself even in the face of adversity. Cat and Dog were often in complete opposition – with Dog wanting to chase cars and Cat wanting to sit at home and read – but their brotherhood never wavers for long. Fiercely loyal, “CatDog” proved that some bonds can withstand any resistance.
“The Amanda Show”
The star of “She’s the Man,” “What a Girl Wants” and a recent mugshot got her start on Nickelodeon. Amanda Bynes’s success as a cast member of Nickelodeon sketch comedy show “All That” propelled her to starring in a self-titled comedy show, “The Amanda Show.” In it, Bynes stars as a host of quirky characters in recurring sketches, lampooning everything from girls’ bathrooms to “Dawson’s Creek.” “The Amanda Show” launched the careers of fellow Nick stars Drake Bell and Josh Peck as well as current “Saturday Night Live” cast member Taran Killam, who many remember fondly as Spalding on “Moody’s Point.”
Arnold, otherwise known as “football head,” was a wise-beyond-his-years fourth-grader dealing with growing up in a hybrid city reminiscent of many of our own. “Hey Arnold” dealt with topics ranging from heat waves to bullying, social outcasts to imprisoned wild animals, always providing lessons for children and their parents alike. The endlessly funny show also taught many that sometimes, kids are mean because they like you – and that even kids can enjoy jazz.
“Rocko’s Modern Life”
One of the first in a new string of “edgy” cartoons on Nickelodeon, “Rocko’s Modern Life” was only the network’s fourth original show, and remains one of the most beloved. Following the antics of Australian ex-pat wallaby Rocko, his cow of a best friend Heffer, a phobic turtle named Filburt and loyal dog Spunky, “Rocko’s Modern Life” again aimed to enchant both kids and their parents. Dealing with the problems of everyday life, the animation was delightful and the stories both comedic and poignant.