Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 20
  1. #1
    Astonishing Member mathew101281's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    2,655

    Default Why was 90's pop culture so edgy?

    You had the Grim and Gritty era of comics. Wrestling had its attitude era. Gangster rap and Grunge had its hay day. trash tv became mainstream( Jerry Springer and his ilk). What happened in the 90's that turned everybody into an edge lords? I think it was essentially a backlash to the conservative 80's combined with the mainstreaming of cable(and it's looser standards) and the rise of the internet (the complete destruction of standards).

    It's funny, looking back now, its crazy what kind of stuff was normal even in children's programing.

    Even the commercials, were edgy. (or at least as edgy as corporate propaganda can be.)
    Last edited by mathew101281; 10-15-2020 at 06:49 PM.

  2. #2
    The Undead One The Chou Lives's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    6,187

    Default

    They confused edgy with cool then.

  3. #3
    Incredible Member OopsIdiditagain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2020
    Posts
    776

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mathew101281 View Post
    You had the Grim and Gritty era of comics. Wrestling had its attitude era. Gangster rap and Grunge had its hay day. trash tv became mainstream( Jerry Springer and his ilk). What happened in the 90's that turned everybody into an edge lords? I think it was essentially a backlash to the conservative 80's combined with the mainstreaming of cable(and it's looser standards) and the rise of the internet (the complete destruction of standards).

    It's funny, looking back now, its crazy what kind of stuff was normal even in children's programing.

    Even the commercials, were edgy. (or at least as edgy as corporate propaganda can be.)
    I was thinking about this too this week and did some digging. It's actually the opposite to corporate propaganda. It was apparently a counter culture movement against bright and cheery consumerist 80s culture. But like all subcultures, it went mainstream and got commercialized.

    OP characters make me itch

  4. #4
    Loony Scott Taylor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Running Springs, California
    Posts
    6,554

    Default

    Because of Nirvana. They boldly body-slammed the dwindling, corporate thing the 1980s pop culture had become and the rest of the 1990s didn't look back. Its ok, 1980s pop culture deserved the death sentence by the time the 1990s came along.

    However I'm not convinced we all deserved the 1990s!
    Every day is a gift, not a given right.

  5. #5
    FF purist/snob CaptCleghorn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    7,350

    Default

    This was part of the 70s top 40. Sorry, but the 90's were weaksauce.


  6. #6
    Ultimate Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    17,695

    Default

    I was thinking about this too this week and did some digging. It's actually the opposite to corporate propaganda. It was apparently a counter culture movement against bright and cheery consumerist 80s culture. But like all subcultures, it went mainstream and got commercialized.
    Best explanation I've heard.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 10-16-2020 at 06:51 PM.
    "They can be a great people Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you. My only son." - Jor-El

    "“Your boos mean nothing, I’ve seen what makes you cheer!”

  7. #7

    Default

    Without dissecting the the decade prior I think a lot of it just had to do with the rise of certain genres of music and film.

    Musically speaking, the 90's saw the rise in the popularity of gangster rap, hitting its peak with Death Row Records, which turned the genre into a pop culture phenomenon that gave rise to movies like Menace to Society and Boyz in the Hood

    This coincided with a nostalgic romanticism for 1970's mob culture films, which resulted from the release of Goodfellas, and Tarantino films (Back then the Italian mob was still a thing)

    Finally, post punky grunge music went mainstream, and metal went extreme with the rise of Death Metal in Florida and Norwegian Black Metal.

    Things had started to get gritty since the 1970's, I think it just finally hit its apogee in the 90's until enough people said i'm sick of this depressing bs.

  8. #8
    Astonishing Member Joker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    4,802

    Default

    CNN covered it pretty well in their ‘90s documentary, if you’re interested.
    Hey gang! Looking to sell of some of my TPB/HC collection. PM me if interested.
    Lots of Batman, Image and some Marvel. Lower 48 only, please.

  9. #9
    Astonishing Member mathew101281's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    2,655

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptCleghorn View Post
    This was part of the 70s top 40. Sorry, but the 90's were weaksauce.

    That was in no way indicative of the era though. Every era had its transgressive artist. But to me the 90’s (and maybe the 60’s) was the era were edgy went mainstream and saturated everything.

  10. #10
    Extraordinary Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    With the Orishas
    Posts
    6,988

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by OopsIdiditagain View Post
    I was thinking about this too this week and did some digging. It's actually the opposite to corporate propaganda. It was apparently a counter culture movement against bright and cheery consumerist 80s culture. But like all subcultures, it went mainstream and got commercialized.

    This is it basically.

    The 90s was the age of "counter culture".
    "Obviously not all conservatives are racists/bigots but all racists/bigots claim to be conservative"- Unknown

    "BE WOKE, VOTE!!"

  11. #11
    Ultimate Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    16,391

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by OopsIdiditagain View Post
    I was thinking about this too this week and did some digging. It's actually the opposite to corporate propaganda. It was apparently a counter culture movement against bright and cheery consumerist 80s culture. But like all subcultures, it went mainstream and got commercialized.

  12. #12
    Boisterously Confused
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    6,633

    Default

    Aside from push back against the hyper-conformist 1980s, a lot of things were going on that motivated creatives to get very In Your Face:
    • The Reaganomics economy began heading south
    • Reaction to the non-response against AIDS had mobilized the LGBTQ community and allies who were questioning all status quo
    • Rap and Hip Hop were providing expression for anger at the same time badly-designed laws were incarcerating record numbers of African-Americans
    • The internet was creating new ways of distributing content, evading informal censors


    As others have said, it made for a very anti-80s counter culture, but the second cable producers realized where sentiment was heading, they commercialized it, magnifying the only parts of it they could understand. Namely, the noisy, shocking parts.

  13. #13
    Astonishing Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Posts
    2,125

    Default

    A lot of people credit Nirvana and "Smells Like Teen Spirit" for starting it all - and I'm not denying that one bit.

    However, I always look to the song "Longview" by Green Day as perfectly describing the state of mind of young people in the 90s.

  14. #14
    Loony Scott Taylor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Running Springs, California
    Posts
    6,554

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DrNewGod View Post
    Aside from push back against the hyper-conformist 1980s, a lot of things were going on that motivated creatives to get very In Your Face:
    • The Reaganomics economy began heading south
    • Reaction to the non-response against AIDS had mobilized the LGBTQ community and allies who were questioning all status quo
    • Rap and Hip Hop were providing expression for anger at the same time badly-designed laws were incarcerating record numbers of African-Americans
    • The internet was creating new ways of distributing content, evading informal censors


    As others have said, it made for a very anti-80s counter culture, but the second cable producers realized where sentiment was heading, they commercialized it, magnifying the only parts of it they could understand. Namely, the noisy, shocking parts.
    Oh man the 1990s and the internet. Dial-up and no censorship whatsoever. Newsgroups. DWANGO. I never, ever want to go back to most of that. But Ebay was nice when it first started, I wish it was a bit more like that again.
    Every day is a gift, not a given right.

  15. #15
    Amazing Member Adam Allen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Minneapolis, MN
    Posts
    371

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Taylor View Post
    Oh man the 1990s and the internet. Dial-up and no censorship whatsoever. Newsgroups. DWANGO. I never, ever want to go back to most of that. But Ebay was nice when it first started, I wish it was a bit more like that again.
    Pfft, no way man ... newsgroup flame wars were epic, and culturally different from the toxic echo chamber social media fighting we see online today. It was a frontier, completely uncharted territory for how we shared information and engaged conflict, and it was glorious!

    Anyway, somehow belatedly recalling that edgy 90s culture was at one time very much not an abstract for me, so my two cents on where it came from: Yeah, grunge and gangster rap music were part of it, but they were more expressions of it than a cause ... at least, not an initial one. More like they amplified and continued something that was what created them, in the first place?

    That something was I would say, in a word, disenchantment. At least as far as our view of the cultural narrative at the time, the 90s followed the Greatest Generation and baby boom following World War 2, where the country saw incredible economic growth and the huge surge of the suburbs and the middle class, and while the 50s television tried to present a rosy and clean-cut picture, in reality there was a great deal of strife, from the ongoing problems of racial desegregation and resistance to that, the Cold War and the Red Scare and House on UnAmerican Activities all along with that ...

    Follow the 50s with the Civil Rights and counter-culture stuff of the 60s, which for all the difficulties gave some people hope that things could really improve, that maybe the ideals of freedom and equality America was supposed to be about could be more than just lip service ... but you have the Cold War continue for decades, the Vietnam War and continued military and economic strife in the 70s, while at the same time tv and movies continued pushing a very cheery counter-narrative to all the real world conflict. Culminating in the 80s by which time you have adults who grew up with nuclear annihilation as an ever-present threat hanging over them, you have a second and third generation born into that reality, and after all of the conflicts in previous decades when Civil Rights protestors and anti-war protestors and outright political dissidents very openly opposed the political and economic status quo ... Reaganomics, consumer culture and it's proliferation through endless hours of television appeared to win the culture wars.

    By the 90s, it seemed like people had fought for real change for multiple decades prior, but that hope had ultimately been a pipe dream. So yeah, gangsta rap and Seattle grunge and Wolverine, Lobo and Punisher setting a new standard in comics that made Captain America and Superman look out of step with the times. A bit of an over-correction to be sure, but understandable, in context.
    Be kind to me, or treat me mean
    I'll make the most of it, I'm an extraordinary machine

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •