“That ’90s Show” Brings “That ’70s Show” Back to Life

On Jan. 19, Netflix released “That ‘90s Show”– a spinoff of “That ‘70s Show”– after the original ended 17 years ago. Taking place in the same setting of “That ‘70s Show” and through bringing back old characters, the new show allows for a nostalgic sense of the old and highlights the 90’s era. Available to watch only on Netflix with 10 episodes, the show offers the perfect throwback along with a new spin to an iconic tv show. 

The show follows six friends– Leia, Gwen, Jay, Ozzie, Nate and Nikki who bring life back to the Foreman basement in an exciting and coming-of-age style series. Their first group hangout involving the use of marijuana brought back the vibe of the 70s when the use of drugs was rising amongst teenagers. The show also dives into the lives of parents Kitty and Red Foreman, who differ on their parenting styles of the kids but similarly care about them.

Awkward friendships budding into relationships while trying to enjoy their summers leads to many awkward, yet exciting situations in the group. From getting caught at a rave, to hanging out in the Foreman basement all summer, the show is very upbeat and exciting. Breaking outside of the normal duos inside the friend group prominently seen in “That ‘70s Show”, allowed for funny moments throughout the season. 

Social media platforms, such as TikTok, showed fans had high hopes for the show’s premiere, however, many were disappointed specifically with the style of clothing the characters wore. The show highlighted many pop culture references seen later that the 90s, bringing controversy over how well the show is at expressing the 90’s culture. Overall, “That ‘90s Show” gives off a very Disney Channel vibe due to the frequent use of a laughing soundtrack in the background. Similarly, the plot of each episode is also similar to many newer television shows, rather than the vibes of the original show. 

Additionally, a debate on TikTok has also arisen over which of the kids in “That ‘90s Show” would be the original characters in “That ‘70s Show.” Many have agreed that the main character Leia represents the past main character– Leia’s father–Eric Foreman. Ozzie as Fez, Gwen as Hyde and Nikki as Jackie are other connections that fans have agreed on. The real debate is over who represents Kelso, the most obvious option is his son Jay, however Nate, who is Jay’s best friend also molds into a Kelso stereotype. 

An unexpected love triangle between Leia, Jay and Nate appears toward the end of the season and end of the summer as Leia prepares to go back to Chicago–supporting the idea of a second season. Fans are hopeful of more old characters being brought back in a second season, as well as more of a 90’s style.