Not to be biased, but it’s safe to say that 90s and early 2000s babies grew up with some of the best, age-defining television shows. The entertainment quality was second to none, and the shows seemed to really connect with their age demographic. Whether you were a more Nickelodeon or Disney fan (let’s be honest, probably both), the two stations pretty much dominated the elementary and middle school market throughout the 2000s into 2010.
The greatest part about growing up in that time was seeing all of your favorite stars evolve in the industry. Many Nick and Disney stars are now big names in the box office or selling out stadium tours. While we love seeing our favorite childhood actors becoming adults, VALLEY is taking a little trip down memory lane to recap some of the greatest shows to ever air.
Your favorite spinoff of “Degrassi” (1987-)
“Degrassi” has had different versions of the same show since the late 80s. Most “Gen Z-ers” now recognize the series because of Drake. Yes, the Canadian rapper got his start on the longest running TV drama, taking on the role of Jimmy Brooks in “Degrassi: The Next Generation.” Every rebrand of “Degrassi” sets out to tackle tough life situations that many young teens and high schoolers face in their everyday life. For many young kids in the early 2000s, “Degrassi” was a controversial show.
The most iconic show of all time. No arguments. Next.
“All That” (1994-2005)
“All That” was something truly unique: a sketch comedy show geared toward kids young and old. This show is credited to introducing the world to some of the funniest and, now, most notable actors of its time, including Amanda Bynes, Keenan Thompson, Nick Cannon, Kel Mitchell and Jamie Lynn Spears.
- Kenan & Kel (1996-2000)
- The Amanda Show (1999-2002)
- Zoey 101 (2005-2008)
The Fairly OddParents (2001-2017)
Every one of you wished you had Fairly OddParents to help get you out of every situation (and you probably still do). Timmy Turner and his two OddParents faced the world together, while seemingly finding themselves in sticky situations.
Lizzie McGuire (2001-2004)
Hillary Duff’s most iconic role as Lizzie McGuire may be making a comeback soon. Rumors swirled late last year that it may be a possibility.
That’s So Raven (2003-2007)
We can never forget favorite teenage psychic Raven-Symoné who could see what was about to happen in the world, often getting herself in trouble in the process.
- Cory in the House (2007-2008)
Drake & Josh (2004-2007)
One of Nickelodeon’s best duos, Drake Bell and Josh Peck were the stepbrother turned best friends we still love today. Who can forget Josh’s signature line “hug me brother” or both Drake and Josh always getting caught in some scheme set up by little sister Miranda Cosgrove, aka “Megan.”
Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide (2004-2007)
Ned was truly a pioneer of his time. His survival guide was almost the bible of middle school. It is safe to say that now some of the situations Ned and his friends faced aren’t exactly accurate, but for the most part, those lessons were helpful during the most awkward times of our teenage lives.
The Suite Life of Zack & Cody (2005-2008)
Another dynamic duo in the television world was Dylan and Cole Sprouse. The twin brothers played two boys of a single mother living in a hotel and getting caught up in as much mischief as young boys can get in. Ashley Tisdale and Brenda Song were two of their most notable co-stars.
Hannah Montana (2006-2011)
Miley Cyrus portrayed one of the biggest stars of the mid to late 2000s, Hannah Montana. The storyline of a pop star living a double life had every young girl thinking that they could do the same. Miley is still the bigger-than-life star she was back then, but it is safe to say that everyone misses her balancing two lives.
Wizards of Waverly Place (2007-2012)
Selena Gomez looked like an average teenager, but her role as Alex Russo was much more complicated. Alex and her brothers were wizards trying to hone in on their power while living a normal life in the real world and working in their parents business.
iCarly was a bit ahead of its time. Miranda Cosgrove played Carly Shay, who lived with her brother and made a web show with her best friends Freddie Benson (Nathan Kress) and Sam Puckett (Jennette McCurdy). They played viral internet stars that lived a normal life offline, something that has become a more-than-normal phenomenon in today’s society.
Big Time Rush (2009-2013)
Another story of “normal teenagers turned famous” is Big Time Rush. The boy band’s show features their rise to fame, along with hilarious side plots to heighten the entertainment value. Big Time Rush was more than a Nickelodeon show, taking their talents on the road for concert tours and other events.
Last but certainly not least is Victorious. This show was about Tori Vega (Victoria Justice) and her talented friends at her arts high school. Many original songs spawned from the show, as did mega pop star Ariana Grande, who played the infamously simple sidekick Cat Valentine.