The internet screamed and Nickelodeon listened: Millennials, that post-Gen-X generation who grew up online, want their '90s Nick shows back. And in a ringing confirmation of their worldview, they're getting what they want.
Starting tonight at midnight on TeenNick, the network will dust off their archives and re-run hit shows like “All That,” “Clarissa Explains it All,” and “Doug.” The four hour programming block is called “The '90s are All That,” a nod to the popular sketch show.
Although the shows have been off the air for years, they continue to have an online fan base. On YouTube, a rap dedicated to bringing back old Nick shows has nearly 9,000 views. Another fan video, compiled of show logos and scenes, has more than 560,000 views. Even a compilation of Nick’s commercials and program bumpers has racked up more than 230,000 views.
Facebook users have also been active in demanding their '90s Nick back. “Nickelodeon was better in the '90s” has 2,000 fans and another group called “'90s Nickelodeon” has more than 18,000 fans. A search for “'90s Nickelodeon” brings up pages of groups filled with excited members.
The official Facebook fan page has more 104,000 fans, and growing. Excited users on the page are counting down the hours until the premiere, suggesting shows to be aired and one fan showing off their channel guide.
All this anticipation and passion didn’t go unnoticed to Nickelodeon executives. The internet helped fans voice their excitement and persuaded the network to launch the programming block.
Executives were impressed by people’s tributes and homages on YouTube. “It wasn’t so much about our stuff, it was their take” on it...one guy that sang a great rap song about wanting his old Nick back,” said Nickelodeon president Cyma Zarghani to the New York Times.
Zarghani said she will continue to use the leverage of the internet to help promote the block of shows and decide what shows will be aired in the future.