A time when technology had not yet taken over completely leaving therefore the simpler pleasures of life still worthy of charting out in all the wonder of innocence, the 90’s had been a blessed era for those marking their beginnings in life there and then. In its peculiarly charming experience of life across two thresholds, this had been the decade where the new and the old intermingled to create a realisation of time unique than anytime else ever in history. With the avenues for entertainment exclusively sprawling upon the realms of the real and the stupor of the small screen, the immersive experience entailed out of both had been phenomenal indeed. As the time when some of the most iconic shows aired on television, kids of the 90’s has access still to a legacy that is unlike anything of the present day flamboyance of a bit too much advancement.
Singling out some of the most popular shows that made for some of the most awesome childhood experiences every 90’s kids still yearns for-
Tom and Jerry
Alluding to the forever entertaining cat and mouse reference had been the cartoon show Tom and Jerry that managed to emerge as one of the most popular watches not just for the 90’s kids but of all time in fact. A silent series documenting the rivalry between the cat Tom and his forever mouse nemesis Jerry, this used to be a show hilariously entertaining. A forever scheming Tom on the lookout to trap Jerry failing every single time made the premise of the show, unfolding as sequences of events that had stirred our sympathies for the feline even as one could not help but applaud the clever and adorable Jerry’s ample presence of mind.
Joyously colorful, adorably childlike and instantly endearing, the four Teletubbies of Tinky-Winky, Dipsy, Laa Laa and Po brightened up the television screens of excited kids all over as they played out their happy adventures in the as bright and beautiful Teletubbyland holding immense delight for all who watched them on screen. Aptly scheduled for the evening runs of childhood that fitted in well into the routine of school going kids of the times, this is one of the classic 90’s shows that imbibed essentially the very carefree essence of childhood.
A young girl Fruity summoning the fairy Son Pari and her friend Altu by means of a magical ball might seem to be a draw upon the globally popular folk character of Aladdin but the resemblance ends then and there. But the fantasy adventure series of Son Pari did well in basing itself upon the enticing premise of magic to emerge as one of the desi 90’s shows loved by Indian kids. Friendship, magic and adventure all running parallelly through the plot of the show made for indeed an unmissable watch that had young people hooked to it.
Easily one of the most popular shows of the 90’s though not just for kids and one that commands global adulation, Mr. Bean also is different in its premise from the rest of the lot. Revolving around the eponymous protagonist, a childish, naive, almost unbothered goofy seeming man, in fact “a child in a grown man’s body” who goes about his own eccentric way in dealing with situations of everyday life and malfunctioning at that to hilarious effect, this has been a show that has managed to stay relevant even today even as it sparks emotions of a different kind altogether in the hearts and minds of those who have been following Bean’s antics from the very beginning.
Any Indian kid of the ’90s would never be able to do without the regular weekend dose of their Shaktimaan fix when it came to exploring the ultimate entertainment medium of the times. A superheroic tale albeit still one ‘spun’ from the common man allegory and physically as well, Shaktimaan was the ‘it’ show of the times that delivered not just the awe of fantasy but also lessons of real leanings.
With that singular entity birthed by the seven vital elements of the world taking on villains as imaginative and amusing as they could get while being indeed as frighteningly menacing as well, our very own Indian superhero sure had a legion of young fans looking up to him. As one of the most popular and longest-running television series meant for kids in Indian history, Shaktimaan sure has to be the OG of the 90’s shows that children of those times thoroughly enjoyed.
The very mention of Duck Tales should conjure up images of the most published cartoon character ever of Donald Duck but the series follows instead the adventures of his nephews with his uncle for another of the epic Disney shows of the 90’s that kids thoroughly enjoyed. The bubbly young ducklings and their miserly granduncle made for episodes of fun and excitement that had a whole generation of children glued to the television set eager to not miss out on this journey of energetic entertainment.
A burst of vibrancy flashed across the television screen every time SpongeBob Squarepants took over with his jolly vibes and enthusiasm, very aptly and further endowed upon him in his bright yellow appearance that had kids take an instant liking to this blob of sea sponge. The settings of his living are no less exciting as well- inhabiting an submerged pineapple in the interestingly named underwater city of Bikini Bottom, SpongeBobs embarks upon his own world of diverse adventures with his other aquatic friends who are no less interesting than himself.
Happy, exuberant and thoroughly enjoyable a show brought to life by as happy spirited characters, SpongeBob Squarepants live on as a forever favorite- then on TV screens and now through internet memes. Growing up, it however has been the character of Squidward Tentacles from the show that seems and feels far more relatable in assertion of the sad realities of life.
Popeye The Sailor
Spinach might have been unanimously hated by all of us as kids but the famously green eating sailorman called Popeye still ruled the charts when it came to enjoying animated shows during the years of the 90’s. And yet, the series had been a much earlier production that still was popular enough in the following decades even when it did not account for as large a base of spinach lovers. Popeye grew stronger by eating spinach and our love for watching him on television screens did as well as the muscular sailorman ruled over hearts in all assertion of his power.
Karishma kaa Karishma
A science fiction show remade the Indian way from another almost contemporary popular American sitcom titled Small Wonder, Karishma kaa karishma revolves around the robot protagonist Karishma who captivated indeed the imagination of the young viewers to significant extents. As a show different from others in the very nature of its title character, Karishma Kaa Karishma stood out when it came to being one of the popular shows among the 90’s kids.
The New Adventures of Winnie The Pooh
A big bellied bear often found indulging in his love for honey and asserting his friendly flair most prominently with a pig and a tiger sums up the loved trio of Winnie The Pooh, Tigger and Piglet even as a host of other characters delivered also a picture in as endearment in this cartoon show from the 90’s. Making for a sweet, pleasant and instantly likeable watch across similar attributes of personality of the protagonist himself, Winnie the Pooh has been another of the 90’s memories kids back then conjured through this of the many Disney shows.
Shaka Laka Boom Boom
A pencil of such magical powers that brought to life everything that was drawn with it was the premise along which the hugely popular Indian show Shaka Laka Boom Boom unfurled across four seasons of its running. Deeply enticing of young minds for whom the very mention of magic presented a different dimension of fascination altogether, this was one of the shows that has the then kids of the 90’s still swearing by its immense appeal. Such was the craze of this tele series that the namesake pencil even found way into our real lives as merchandise we so desperately wished to have our hands on.
The classic magic tale in which a quick witted and essentially good looking lad stumbles upon a genie yielding lamp was brought to life upon television screens of the 90’s as another of the Disney shows that kids everywhere had been so fascinated with. Stemming from a Middle Eastern folk tale has been the titular character of Aladdin whose adventures tell stories of magic, friendship, love and like alike in this small screen series that follows up in fact the journey of Aladdin as depicted in the first sequel of a three part franchise. Making for a charming dive into the radiant world of Aladdin and his gang, this is one show that has more than lived up to its continued popularity in folk tradition.