Why People Romanticise the 2000s
On the tail end of 90s nostalgia, the 2000s have been seeping into pop culture for quite some time now. Aside from the over-saturation of denim, 2000s throwbacks have steadily gained traction through people's rose-tinted reminiscences. Nostalgia is cyclical, and I was looking forward to this decade's resurrection.
Movies you could watch on repeat
Shrek. Enough said. It was in excellent company with Ice Age, Finding Nemo, and The Incredibles, all of which had underwhelming follow-up movies in the last decade. The lesson here is that if you are going to make bank on people's yearning for the past, the sequels should at least live up to Shrek 2 standards. The 2000s was also the origin of iconic chick flicks like Mean Girls and Legally Blonde, whose iconic quotes are still being referenced today. There was also Sam Raimi's game-changing Spider-Man trilogy, the birth of the beloved MCU, and the Harry Potter adaptations that led to entire subcultures.
A gilded age for pop music
The aughts saw the emergence of artists like Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, Eminem, Kanye Wes, etc. who are still making waves in the music industry today. Most Gen Z kids started developing their music tastes around this time and they likely had their first favourite songs and artists in that decade.
Games you could also play on repeat but they only last one hour
The graphics may not have been awe-inspiring, and the gameplays are not known for their flexibility, but they still had their charms. Some of gaming's biggest franchises launched in this era and redefined the industry. While many fond memories were made playing House of the Dead and Grand Theft Auto, it is difficult to imagine being entertained by them now given the masterpieces with monster budgets we have gained access to in recent years.
Tech knew its place
While tech has seeped into every aspect of our lives throughout the decade, its role back then hit a sweet spot: it was novel enough to be exciting, advanced enough to be useful, but not saturated enough to cause the total digital immersion that is presently in the centre of privacy controversies. Not that I regret the invention of iPhones and Instagram, but moderation is key for everything.
Fashion – the ugly and the ok
This is last on the list for a reason. The aforementioned denim left its scars. It was not all bad though, and the tolerable bits are making a comeback thanks to TikTok. Baguette bags, spiky buns, highlights, tinted sunglasses, and low-rise jeans, to name a few, have already made rounds on social media.
Studies have shown that nostalgia for old things resurfaces when people are going through a transition period. This might be a cause for the 2000s resurgence since the oldest members of Gen Z are now college-aged and some have even started entering the work force. Of course, it could also be a classic case of "old is gold" mixed with a healthy dose of nostalgia. Whether it's the former or the latter, it has been a fun renaissance so far.
Ziba Mahdi is your resident pessimist. Cheer her up at firstname.lastname@example.org