The Spice Girls were probably one of the most influential girl groups of the decade, releasing Wannabe in 1996 (which remains the most successful song ever performed by an all-female group), as well as other hits such as Say You’ll Be There and 2 Become 1. The group formed in 1994 and were together until 2000, however they then reformed in 2007 – only to split up again a year later. Although, in 2012 they did make an appearance at the closing ceremony for the London 2012 Olympics, and it is believed it was the last time the Spice Girls will perform together as a five.
Their debut album Spice sold more than 30 million copies worldwide. According to Rolling Stone journalist and biographer David Sinclair, “Scary, Baby, Ginger, Posh and Sporty were the most widely recognised group of individuals since John, Paul, George, and Ringo”
Mø, the 25 year old Danish singer, recently covered Say You’ll Be There and performed it at The Secret Garden Party in Abbots Ripton this weekend.
The novel Bridget Jones’ Diary by Helen Fielding, 1996, follows Bridget Jones, a thirty-something, single woman who lives in London in the 90’s throughout her struggles of maintaining a job and finding a man. Since 2006 the novel has sold over 2 million copies and, as the Telegraph put it, “Fielding’s success in the 1990s meant that Bridget Jones came to define the Chick Lit phenomenon”.
Many parallels can be found between this book and Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, most noticeably between Fitzwilliam Darcy and Mark Darcy. Also, Helen Fielding has said in many interviews that Bridget Jones’ Diary was based upon both Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and the 1995 BBC adaptation of it. The decision to cast Colin Firth as Darcy reflects this as he played the ‘real’ Mr Darcy in the BBC adaptation.
The Telegraph describes the third new novel Mad About the Boy perfectly, saying “And Bridget also finds herself having to compete in a vastly changed, less innocent world; as one blogger has put it at the weekend, we were all “drunker, thinner, richer” when Bridget started in 1995 – a pre-9/11 age where the housing market was starting to boom, being able to dial 1471 to find out who had called your landline was a thrill and (try to explain this to the twerking generation) a man getting out of a lake in a wet shirt could be seen as the erotic moment of the decade.”
Does this show us, in this decade, in a positive light? Or does it make us reminisce about the “good old days”, when people were more easily amused, and the smaller things made a person happy….?
Princess Diana was the first wife of Prince Charles as of their marriage at St Pauls Cathedral in London, 29th July 1981.
A fashion icon throughout her life, this photograph shows her wearing a black pleated chiffon dress, with floating side panel, by Christina Stamboulian, during a party given at the Serpentine Gallery in London in 1996. This dress was also known as ‘The Revenge Dress’ as she was seen wearing it on the night Prince Charles admitted adultery on a TV show.
Diana was said to “reflect the times” through her fashion choices – the dress is elegant and sleek – showing off her shoulders and pulling in her waist. It’s an iconic photo of the princess; taken by Jayne Fincher who was a professional and royal photographer for almost 20 years and capturing many memorable photos of Princess Diana.
The film version of the book – written by Roald Dahl – was released in 1996. 1996 was also the year of Mission: Impossible and 101 Dalmations which were both in the top ten highest-grossing films of the year.
I remember sitting in my room for ages after watching the film, trying to move pens and pencils and pour myself milk telekinetically (as I’m sure every child did). I sat in numerous lessons praying for a glass of water to tip onto my teacher or to be able to do long division in my head.
Roald Dahl was possibly one of the most influential children’s author of all time. Accompanied by the simple illustrations from Quentin Blake, books and films like Matilda, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory and The Twits became a must-have for every child (and adult!) everywhere.
Sadly, 1990 was the year of Dahl’s death – however he’s still very much a part of people’s lives now as much as he was for 74 years.