Alarm bells about the 90s revival went off for me when I was told last week that the Spice Girls actually made some important headway for feminism. Excuse me while I laugh up a lung. (Don't worry it's better off out anyway after all the damage I did it in the 90s smoking Marlboro Reds as it was cool.)
Any student in 2012 who regurgitates this Spice Girls-helped-feminism baloney in a dissertation should have the whole thing shredded and be made to wear a dunce cone in graduation pics. The Spice Girls' feminism consisted of shouting "Girl Power!" and doing peace signs in latex catsuits or a babydoll nightie with paedo-magnet hair bunches.
When asked to expand further on Girl Power, the Spices would shriek something about "fwends to the end, cos you need your fwends" and then something else about their role model Margaret Thatcher, whence they'd be told to STFU by their PR.
Within a few years 90s' Girl Power turned out to be: the posh one being Britain's most famous Wag, the sporty one admitting she kept so slim through eating disorders, the scary one giving half her money away in a quick divorce to an idiot, everyone glossing over the fact that the baby one dressed like a child (a bit like we did with wee Jimmy Krankie) and one of them being Geri Halliwell, a woman rumoured – although perhaps this is just wilfully brilliant conjecture – to have tried to hire a real unicorn for her child's birthday.
Having thought deeply about the best bits of the 90s and the reasons for its deep appeal to pop-culture historians, I put it down to two things. One: strong drugs. In the 90s ecstacy was so strong Ian Brown sounded all tunesome like John Denver, "Ebeneezer Goode" by The Shamen was tolerable and Ocean Colour Scene were profound lyrical gods. Secondly, due to the lack of mobile phones and Facebook, one could make a big tit of oneself and no one would really remember.
But I remember the 90s vividly. Kids: don't believe the hype.
- More about:
- Emma Bunton
- Geri Halliwell
- Girl Bands
- Melanie Brown
- Mel C
- The Spice Girls
- Victoria Beckham