I don’t remember much of my childhood when it comes to interests and hobbies. There are the usual suspects of watching cartoons and reading books and magazines, but nothing much beyond that. I’m not joking. I literally had no music taste until well into my late teens and even then, I was listening to country at all times, which is no longer the case, surprisingly.
Yes, I’m a late bloomer when it comes to developing my tastes, interests and hobbies. I’m such a late bloomer that I often think I was a child in the early to mid-2000s because that’s when my likes, interests and tastes developed. Yeah…I was 14 in the year 2000 and legally an adult in the mid 2000s. Ugh. I’m sad. 🙁
One of the many, many things I am nostalgic for is the Disney Channel. I did not discover the Disney Channel until I was 13. As a child, I mostly relied on Fox, the WB and Nickelodeon for my cartoon watching. I didn’t move on to the Disney Channel and Cartoon Network until my teens.
Like with most TV channels, the Disney Channel is nowhere near as good as it used to be. I honestly can’t think of anything in pop culture that got better over the years. YA fiction books maybe? They’re not as sad and angsty as they used to be but, then again, that was the trend in the early to mid-2000s.
Now, people do still talk about old movies and TV shows from the Disney Channel but they’re, of course, going to be the more popular favorites like Lizzie McGuire, Even Stevens, Kim Possible, That’s So Raven, Cheetah Girls and High School Musical. I am going to go on the opposite end of the spectrum and stick with shows and movies that are not talked about as often.
Based on the popular fill in the blank book series, teams of two go up against each other in wacky challenges in order to fill in the black of various incomplete passages.
A girl investigates the paranormal while traveling with her family.
Inspired by the X-Files, So Weird was completely different from any other show on Disney. It was one of the very few shows that had a more serious tone and explored topics that were not commonly found in children’s television. In this case, ghosts, aliens and clones. It’s a nice breath of fresh air to watch a serious children’s shows when most are comedic and light-hearted. It shows a different side to Disney. “Hey, we’re silly, but we can be serious when we want to be. Here’s an episode of a group of kid being kidnapped and trapped inside the Internet against their will. Have fun!”
Phil of the Future
A family from the year 2121 is stuck in the 2000s when their time machine crashes.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, Phil of the Future is an exaggerated version of a family sitcom. It has all the elements of a family sitcom: A loving family, awkward situations, heartfelt moments and some drama. There just also happens to be a broken-down time machine, futuristic gadgets and a caveman. It adds another level of humor that you don’t get with most family dramas with a more traditional premise.
Alley Cats Strike
A group of misfits have to work together in order to beat a rival high school in a game of bowling
Back in the early late 90s and early 2000s, the Disney Channel would churn out Original Disney Channel movies pretty much every month. This is one of the most underrated and lesser known ones from that time period. It’s a simple movie. There is no flash. There are no gimmicks. No one is singing and dancing in a high school gymnasium. It’s just a simple good feel movie about a group of misfits trying to win a trophy for their town. How wholesome is that? And isn’t this a great prequel for a future Hallmark channel movie? The hero moves to the city to go to college, finds a job, is happy for a decade or so, but moves back home to take care of his dad’s bowling alley and reunites with his friend and his childhood love interest to battle once again for the trophy? Ugh. I’m a genius.
Stuck in the Suburbs
Two new friends go on an adventure when they realize that one of them accidentally switched phones with a well-known pop star.
This is clearly a movie that would mostly attract teenage girls. Or girls in general, rather. So why is a 33-year-old man nostalgic for a movie geared toward 13-year-old girls who love rainbows, cute puppies and One Direction? First , I like movies that are centered around friendships rather than love interests. While the protagonist has a crush on the pop star, it’s obviously nothing serious. The spotlight here is on the friendship between the two girls and how it evolves through a short period of time
I also enjoy the concept of a movie with a premise of two people, the protagonist and the pop star, and how much they have any impact on each other with not having met each other until the end of the movie. It’s not used frequently, but it’s an interesting concept.