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By Lauren Dale on

Why the 90s was the best decade ever!

Ahead of our retro gaming event Power UP, we invited our friends and Lower Byrom Street neighbours from the Crystal Maze to tell us what they think makes the 90s the best decade ever.

The television

We can’t start with anything else really, can we? We’re the flipping Crystal Maze and dare we say, it was up there as one of the best TV shows of the 90s. Although we’re lucky to have HD and other visually enhanced televisions now, there was nothing quite like running home from school, grabbing a pack of Salt ‘n’ Shake, turning on this bad boy in the corner and watching Richard O’Brien take an (utterly rubbish) team around four adventure zones in the hope they will earn crystals and take on The Crystal Dome.

We weren’t the only great thing on TV though. The 90s also saw the rise of some of the most popular, longest running shows in TV history: Friends, Seinfeld, Will and Grace, ER, Sabrina The Teenage Witch, Sister Sister and Keenan and Kel, just to name a few.

The Games

Remember the summers back in the 90s? I mean, we actually had a summer! Six-week-long school holidays filled with days of getting soaked with a Super Soaker or sliding headfirst down a Slip ‘n’ Slide. But what really made the 90s great for kids was the arrival of improved gaming technology, like the Tamagotchi, that had kids all over the world hooked, or the Nintendo 64, which brought us the likes of MarioKart 64 and Goldeneye, still a benchmark in first person shooter games.

The slang

Wassssssup? – that’s all that needs to be said.

The politics

Remember that one press conference when the sitting president, Bill Clinton said “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”? Thank God the days of sleaze like that in politics are long gone…

The tuuuuuuunes

We couldn’t have a list of a-MAZE-ing things from the 90s and miss out the music. Firing up your Walkman and being educated by Lauryn Hill, Tupac telling us to keep our heads high and being reminded why Big Poppa calls himself ‘Big Poppa’, and how could we forget the intro to pop princesses Britney and Christina Aguilera (not forgetting Mandy Moore and Jessica Simpson, of course…) We even found out what really made Shania Twain feel like a woman. No matter what genre—rock, rap, pop, punk or country—the 90s had it all!

The end of the world

In the year 2000, some people actually thought the world might come to an end, due to a computing oversight. People around the world stocked up on food, water and Beanie Babies and hunkered down in bunkers in preparation. For the rest of us though, well we all partied like it was 1999…


Three words we all got giddy about were “You’ve got mail”. Younger generations will never understand the sheer excitement one felt when someone actually sent you an email. Like, WOAH. Or maybe you ran home to check your AOL inbox to see if you were popular enough to have chat room buddies who IM-ed you.

Well, that’s left us with all kinds of 90s nostalgia. Do you feel the same? Tell us your favourite thing about the 90s in the comments below.

And, if you want to relive those glory days, head to the museum this summer for our retro gaming event Power UP. Whether you’re a family dropping in for a 90-minute session, a hardcore gamer visiting for a half-day session or a night owl at one of the adult-only evening sessions, test your skills to the limit. Or if you want to find out how you can take part in the Crystal Maze Live Experience, click here.

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