One day, in the not too distant future, we will have a president who has been photographed wearing Zubaz pants. This fate is impossible to avoid because, defying all reason and decorum, Zubaz pants were cool. Anyone who wore Zubaz pants in the past will defend them by saying, "They were comfy," or "I only wore them while working out." No. They wore them because they were cool. For that, society should feel collectively embarrassed.
Just because a guy with "cafeteria fishstick" greasy hair backed by a bunch of horn-blowing, zoot suit-wearing "cool cats" tells you to jump, jive, wail, and buy khakis doesn't mean you have to. A lesson many in the 1990s found out entirely way too late. With fashion that gaudy and music so fedora flipping awful, it's no wonder The Mask wanted somebody to stop him.
Let's not pretend that boy bands weren't fun. They danced around and made catchy music that, years later, you still know all the words to. If a Backstreet Boys or *Nsync or 98 Degree song comes on the radio, you are instantly infused with pre-9/11 levels of cheerfulness. That's powerful stuff. We can give credit where credit is due. They defined a specific time in popular culture. But, good god, didn't you just want to punch those annoying anuses in the face?
Also known as "The Weasel," you might remember him from such films as Encino Man, Son in Law, In the Army Now, and Bio-Dome. If you don't, you were probably one of the many, many people high enough to find his Valley dude brand of humor enjoyable. After spending his teenage years as a stand up comedian, Pauly got his big break as an MTV VJ and was eventually given his own show. He even recorded and released his own music video. Which really helps explain why neither are around anymore.
There is no better example of the profound optimism of the 90's than the McPizza. The fact that McDonalds thought that they could just start making pizza and everyone would be cool with it is a sign that things were going too well for America. We know our limitation better now. We know McDonalds can't make pizza, Taco Bell can't make french fries, KFC can't make salad, and Britney Spears will never be a cute 17 year-old again. Let's just move on.