Nostalgia can be a powerful thing. For almost as long as online social networking has been a thing, online petitions have been thrown up in order to convince Nickelodeon — considered by many a fan to have been in its death throes since 2008 — to resurrect its old shows in reruns.
As you could tell by this page, it worked in a way no one expected — Nick dusted off the Big Orange Couch, gave Kenan Thompson a seat on it, and created the two-hour block The '90s Are All That, which airs on Teen Nick from Midnight to 2:00 AM Eastern. The show's website is very active, encouraging viewers to log in to it via Facebook or Twitter, has noted and embraced the resulting memes (#ThingsClarissaDidntExplain is a common hashtag), and frequently polls on favorite shows and related topics.
In October 2011, the block resurrected Stick Stickly of "Nick in the Afternoon" fame as part of "U-Pick with Stick", a Friday-night feature with online voting for what shows would be aired that night.
Did we mention that the block is giving Teen Nick its highest late-night ratings ever, and outperformed Leno, Letterman, Fallon, Lopez, and Kimmel in two demographics on its first night along with outperforming Conan in a third? It's true!
Programs include (all times Eastern):
Move times up two hours between October 7 and 23, 2011.
- 12:00 AM:
- All That (July 25, 2011 - )
- 12:30 AM:
- Kenan and Kel (July 25, 2011 - )
- 1:00 AM:
- 1:30 AM:
These programs are then rerun immediately afterwards--the same episodes, in the same order.
The following shows have aired on U-Pick special event nights and/or had episodes posted on the block's website but are expected to join the lineup at some point:
- Aaahh Real Monsters
- The Adventures of Pete and Pete
- The Angry Beavers
- Are You Afraid of the Dark?
- Cat Dog
- Double Dare 1986
- Figure It Out
- Ka Blam!
- Legends of the Hidden Temple
- My Brother and Me
- The Ren and Stimpy Show
- Rocket Power
- Salute Your Shorts
- The Secret World of Alex Mack
- The Wild Thornberrys
This block contains examples of:
- Adored by the Network
- Ascended Fanon: Originally, there were rumors circulating around the Internet that one of the higher-ups at Nickelodeon sent the okay for the production of new seasons of several old 90s cartoon shows, including Rugrats, Hey Arnold, Rocket Power, Doug, and several others. Though false, the rumors generated such a buzz that the execs did pick up on it and decided to create the late night block for Teen Nick.
- Channel Hop: Nick finally takes advantage of their legal right to show pre-sale-to-Disney episodes of Doug.
- Content Warnings: "The following block may not be suitable for people who did not grow up on '90s Nick."
- Edited for Syndication: One of the drawbacks. Teen Nick cut out the musical performances from All That. A lot of the more risque stuff is missing from Rocko's Modern Life, as well, since Nickelodeon lost the original masters at some point. (Similarly, these versions are also on the Rocko DVDs.)
- Follow the Leader: The success of the block is most likely what lead to Cartoon Network rebooting Cartoon Planet and Toonami.
- And Disney to launch a Youtube channel showing their old work. (Not literally a block, but a channel to watch the old shows as well as new ones too.)
- Merchandise-Driven: Sort of; the block probably sparked more demand for Shout Factory's DVDs.
- Nostalgia Filter of all things '90s.
- Periphery Demographic: Invoked. The block is explicitly geared towards the shows' original target cohort, now about 10-20 years older than the originally planned demographic. Face and Stick Stickly have upped their jokes to levels deemed inappropriate for the original targets
- Ratings Stunt
- The Cameo - Stick's brother Woodknot and Nick Jr. host Face during Stick's New Year's Eve special
- Theme Tune Rap - "The '90s Are All That Anthem"