The human being is made to consider that everything lived is part of a broad present until the audiovisual reminds us that it is not. Now television is obsessed with exploiting the 1990s to put it into perspective, highlight the cultural and social changes that have taken place since then, and squeeze its potential on a nostalgic level.
In this list there are eight series that exploit the nineties from all possible perspectives: from humor (Derry Girls), mystery (Yellowjackets), the characteristic criminal and gloomy atmosphere that we attribute to the time because of the thrillers that marked the decade (with Clarice, which serves as a sequel to The Silence of the Lambs) or relocating media cases such as the murder of Gianni Versace or the leak of Pamela Anderson’s intimate video.
If the other day we were talking about heir series of lost that were infumable, here we have a case that brings out the best of the science fiction classic: a plane crash, a mysterious environment and the question of whether we are facing a classic fight for survival or if the facts are more than inexplicable. The story begins when a high school girls soccer team crashes a private plane in the middle of the woods in 1996.
yellowjackets It takes place in two timelines. On the one hand, we see what happened to the girls in 1996 while they spent 19 months incommunicado (and, as the pilot anticipates, even practicing cannibalism with a kind of sect). On the other hand, we see the few survivors in 2021 keeping the events that occurred secret and seeing themselves persecuted precisely by that past.
Real-life husband and wife Ashley Lyle and Bart Nickerson seamlessly blend teen drama, adult thriller, and mystery with a sprinkling of “gothic fairy tale,” which is how they sold the proposition. And how lucky they were when they cast Melanie Lynskey, Tawny Cypress, Juliette Lewis and Christina Ricci as the adult versions of the characters and found very solid up-and-coming actresses for the young ones.
Amazon Prime Video
Clarice Starling (Rebecca Breeds) has become the fashionable woman of the FBI after finding Buffalo Bill (Simon Northwood), the serial killer who kidnapped women to murder them and make a suit with their skin. Yes, we are talking about the argument of The silence of the lambswhich here serves as a precedent to create a new story: Clarice’s passage through an FBI that does not quite understand her status or understand her value in a club that many still consider should be exclusively for men.
The reviews in the United States were not enthusiastic but it is a highly enjoyable series for those who are looking for a hybrid between procedural series (that is, one case per episode) while developing a main mystery (the one that is already presented from the first episode) .
The only weird thing? That you can’t talk about Hannibal Lecter because the studio that produced the series had the rights to the characters created in the novel by The silence of the lambs by Thomas Harris but not those that had been created in earlier novels, such as Hannibal Lecter, who first appeared in The Red Dragon.
‘Pam and Tommy’
One of the most trashy stories in the popular culture of the nineties was the appearance of the amateur porn tape of Pamela Anderson and her then-husband Tommy Lee. That’s what we believed. In reality, we were facing a clear injustice: the robbery perpetrated by a carpenter who decided to market the video, violating Anderson’s right to honor and privacy. But at that time the public and the media preferred to label a woman for the free decisions she had previously made regarding her body.
Robert Siegel’s miniseries doesn’t have all the pace that the first three episodes do, partly because of Craig Gillespie’s direction, but they are a funny and critical testament to the decade, relocating Pamela Anderson in the popular imagination and revealing Lily James. (Cinderella) as a chameleon actress. Her transformation is amazing.
Derry Girls narrates the effervescent, absurd, chaotic, pretentious and ridiculous adolescence of four girls and a boy who study at a convent school. The comedic side of all of them, who are Saoirse-Monica Jackson, Louisa Hartland, Nicola Coughlan, Jamie-Lee O’Donnell, and Dylan Llewellyn, is priceless. But, in addition, the Lisa McGee series is brilliant for other reasons.
It is the vindication of a youth who lived with a forced normality the conflict that Northern Ireland suffered in the streets, from the attacks of the IRA to the feeling of occupation of these families of Derry. And, when the series veers away from teen affairs to recall that those ’90s had a very tough face, Derry Girls it rises as a comedy even smarter than its infallible jokes would lead you to believe.
The assassination of Gianni Versace
And, if we talk about updates of past media cases, here is the most stimulating work: The assassination of Gianni Versace which is part of the franchise american crime story. Scriptwriter Tom Rob Smith wrote nine episodes that serve to vindicate the figure of Gianni Versace, here played by Édgar Ramírez, and make known Andrew Cunanan, the psychopath who murdered him in 1997 at the doors of his house in Miami Beach, here played by a Darren Criss who finally distanced himself from the image harvested with glee.
Not only the interpretations of Ramírez, Criss and Penélope Cruz as Donatella Versace are to frame but the series knows how to denounce the homophobia of the time. There are many who were unaware that the designer had been the victim of a serial psychopath with whom he had nothing to do. The reason? The media and the public did not have much interest in delving into events related to homosexual men.
It has episodes that are introspective drama. It has episodes with a disturbing self-confidence. Y The assassination of Gianni Versace It has episodes that are pure terror. And, between one and the other, they tell of the creation of a monster: that Andrew Cunanan obsessed with being famous, an unconscious victim of this modern mentality of being a celebrity at all costs.
Being an executive producer and leading actress of The Handmaid’s Tale it does not prevent Elisabeth Moss from working on other television series. In the luminaries She is also traumatized: she lives marked by her encounter with a psychopath who left scars on her body but was unable to kill her. When dead women with the same scars start turning up, it’s up to her to face her demons.
Silka Luisa adapts the novel by Lauren Beukes, which takes us back to the city of Chicago in the nineties, which, like those of Clarice, they are dark, decadent, cloudy. And the most interesting thing about the proposal? That the nature of the murderer, played by Jamie Bell, is not fully understood, nor is the mental state of Moss’s character, whose perception of reality changes in each scene.
Amazon Prime Video
cruel summer was the most popular revelation series of last summer with a story that takes place in three consecutive summers marked by the disappearance of Kate Wallis (Olivia Holt), the most popular girl in a Texas town, and the role that Jeanette Turner (Chiara Aurelia ) may have had on the facts surrounding the case.
This teen thriller dominates the characterization of the characters and the jump between the different time lines. Jeanette’s outfits automatically locate the viewer and can be perfectly justified: a teenager can drastically change her image and attitude in a matter of months. And, while the mystery is developed based on hooks, there is no lack of an accurate x-ray of adolescence, the obsession with popularity and other concepts that she is worth not revealing.
If someone is also looking for a series that sounds very nineties, cruel summer is their series with songs by Gabrielle, Garbage, The Cranberries or Skunk Anansie that they use to create atmospheres and represent the emotional state of the characters.
everything is bullshit
And, to close the list, a series that should have had better luck and that Netflix canceled in 2018 after a single season: a portrait of a gang of misfits who found their reason for being in the video club of the Boring high school (yes , they feel that their town is as fun as its name suggests).
everything is bullshit slyly moves through comedy, drama, and coming-of-age themes with plots around the need to belong to a community, the importance of friendship in high school, how family structure affects young people, or how complicated it is to discover homosexuality in a context and at a time when you can’t afford to come out of the closet.
The series also serves to discover the first steps of a Sydney Sweeney who shortly after was in The Handmaid’s Tale and now triumphs with euphoria either The white lotus.