For a large demographic, nostalgic look-backs at the 80s and 90s are a big draw, which means nostalgia-laden shows and films are big money makers right now. MTV is the latest network to try to cash in on this obsession with the past, as it sets plans in motion to rebrand VH1 Classic as MTV Classic. The new-old network will bring back beloved favorites, as well as some not-so-favorite offerings, in an effort to recreate the MTV of the past. Take a look below to see which shows MTV Classic feels will best speak to the largest segment of nostalgia-seeking adults.
What Exactly Do They Mean By MTV Classic?
In offering up MTV Classic, the MTV parent company says the rebranded network will offer up favorites from the original channel’s line-up of the 1990s and early 2000s, because it recognizes that the ’90s era is now as much of a classic era as the bygone ’80s. Business Insider reveals that MTV Classic will top its line-up with syndicated runs of Beavis and Butt-Head, Daria, and Total Request Live when it launches its run on Monday, August 1.
The August 1 launch date is just a couple of days away, but more significantly is the fact that the date is an MTV anniversary. The day marks the 35th anniversary of MTV’s worldwide premiere back in 1981. For those too young, or too old, to remember, MTV was launched as an all-music television station and, as such, played “Video Killed The Radio Star” by The Buggles as the first music video.
Since that 1981 premiere, MTV has gone through a series of evolutions, ultimately phasing out music videos almost completely in favor of original programming and reality shows. Even the ’90s saw an MTV that was more melodrama than melody, but some staples of that era, like the aforementioned Total Request Live, did offer a weekly sampling of the then-current music tastes of the generation and, as reruns, will now offer an opportunity to relive the era.
More MTV Classic Programming: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly
While MTV Classic will bring on some of our favorite shows from that past era, Metro Times brings attention to the fact that the new network will also let us experience something else, something possibly more precious than reruns of Daria and Beavis and Butt-Head. Music videos from superstars of the past will also be interspersed throughout the MTV Classic programming schedule, which will give us a chance to experience performances from recently lost artists such as David Bowie, Prince, Glenn Fry, and Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead.
A side benefit of re-airing these shows from MTV’s past is the opportunity to experience once more the network’s personalities and veejays from that past era, people like Kurt Loder and Kennedy. Remember Kennedy? While she was once a beloved veejay for MTV, Lisa Kennedy Montgomery has gone on to pursue a career as a blogger, a political satirist, and an author.
It’s worth mentioning Kennedy and her early veejay days, because MTV Classic will launch a retrospective of their Total Request Live series, which was responsible for making the careers of many pop icons of the era. This, of course, was long before social media presented the opportunities it does today. As hard as it is to believe, this was even before Myspace. My-who?
We’ll also be able to relive the best of the best, thanks to reruns of MTV Unplugged. MTV Classic plans to air their most memorable moments, performances by Bob Dylan, Nirvana, Neil Young, Erykah Badu, Oasis, and Alice in Chains.
Sadly, that’s as close as we’re going to get to one of MTV’s best music-related shows. There are currently no plans to rerun episodes of Headbangers Ball.
Instead, MTV Classic will also run a selection of original programming from the ’90s, such as Aeon Flux, Jackass, Cribs, and Punk’d. Also on deck for a return via MTV Classic are earlier seasons of Real World and Road Rules.
[Image via MTV]