Avon Park Library Library Columns

Blast from the Past by Vikki Brown

vikkiThe nineties were full of color, music, and fun. I was born in the late 1980s, so I grew up in the nineties, and I can tell you nothing tops the music and shows of that era. Lately, at the Avon Park Public Library, patrons have been living for and asking for all of their favorite shows of the 1980s and 1990s. With multiple streaming services, your shows are not in one place anymore, until now. All of these shows mentioned in this article are available through the Heartland Library Cooperative.

My all time favorite show from my childhood is Boy Meets World starring Ben Savage, Danielle Fishel, Rider Strong, Will Friedle and William Daniels. I have rewatched this show multiple times over the years, so much so that my very young children now love Boy Meets World. The show centers around a young boy (Cory Matthews) trying to navigate life, love, friends, and family. Cory Matthews (Ben Savage) and Shawn Hunter are the ultimate best friend goals, always getting into scraps and driving their teacher, Mr. Feeny (Williams Daniels), insane. They excel at finding themselves in awkward situations and making their messes even bigger, but through it all, they always got each other’s backs. Boy Meets World may be known more for the love story of Cory and Topanga, though. Cory and Topanga (Danielle Fishel), with her long, flowing, red locks,  have the most beautiful high school sweetheart romance. They make time for each other, for friends and for family. This show speaks to me for the  relatability of the characters. The characters were shown as regular kids and teens just getting to know the world. Cory is anxious and unsure. Shawn is often alone and has a broken family, but finds comfort in the Matthews family. My favorite portrayal is Topanga, with her funny name and odd quirks.  Throughout the first few seasons, she is shown to be quite strange, but highly intelligent. As the show progresses and she blossoms into a beautiful young lady, she continues to excel academically and grow into her own person. She shows you can be beautiful, smart, and confident!

Another one of my personal favorites is Family Matters. Almost everyone is familiar with this one. “Did I do that?” Is it ringing any bells yet? This show centers around the close-knit African American Winslow family and their “annoying” next door neighbor. The head of the family is Carl Winslow, played by Reginald VelJohnson. He is a police officer known to pinch pennies by trying to fix things around the house, but rarely succeeding. He works to instill good ethics and values into his family of three children, that he parents with his wife Harriet, played by Jo Marie Payton for many of the show’s seasons. Their oldest child is  Eddie, a known slacker with a good heart and athletic ability. Middle child is Laura, beautiful, intelligent and the crush of that annoying next door neighbor. Finally there is Judy, the baby of the family. Many times the Winslow family is trying to avoid or escape the antics of that annoying next door neighbor, the infamous Steve Urkel, played by Jaleel White. I have to tell you that he stole the show for me. Odd piece of knowledge about me, I like Steve better than Stefan.

These shows are still so relatable and if you watch today, it may seem like they were a little bit ahead of their time in addressing issues, issues we are still facing today. There are so many more shows from the 1980s and 1990s that were amazing. In fact, this article has been difficult to keep short because I love so many of the shows from that time. More favorites of that time include Living Single, Full House, Golden Girls, and Friends.

If your favorite show isn’t listed, just check at your local library to see if it is available because we have hundreds of shows and movies for you to watch. We can help transport you back to a different time, for a moment at least. If we don’t have your favorite shows at all, let us know what you like and what we’re missing. We can’t wait to see you soon! Remember, we are always available online at www.myhlc.org.