It is very easy to make a millennial nostalgic. Just mention things in pop culture like the Spice Girls, Nickelodeon All that and the original Disney Channel films. Every generation will tell you that something isn’t as good as it used to be, and for millennials, that’s DCOM. “They just don’t do them like they used to” is an annoying feeling until you have to say it about something from your childhood.
So when Disney announced in December 2013 that it would be launching a new DCOM called Offspring, a live-action adventure comedy about teenage children of famous fairytale heroes and villains, skepticism grows with anticipation. Do we really need a teenage story about characters that have been reimagined time and time again? Will this film finally bring DCOM back to life? Will this be the material that takes Disney Channel out of its rut? I’m very excited to see Kristen Chenoweth as Maleficent and Kathy Najimy as the Evil Queen, although I’m not too thrilled to see their children Mal and Evvie, respectively. While waiting to see what will happen, let’s go back to those who make us nostalgic and wish it was 2000 again.
10. Miracle of the full court
Has there ever been another film about a Jewish basketball team? Disney Channel had some great Christmas movies (eg. The ultimate Christmas present), and it was a great way to diversify the lineup without resorting to an overused Chanukah trope.
9. Eddie’s Million Dollar Kitchen
A baseball star just wants to cook. It encompassed the classic Disney message of following your heart and making your dreams come true, despite what your parents may wish for. It’s also the movie that made you want to learn how to crack an egg with one hand and made you recognize Bobby Flay as a preteen.
8. Double team
Despite the fact that the actors playing twins weren’t exactly alike, this was a great movie about the real-life story of WNBA twin sisters Heather and Heidi Burge. It was one of the most adult films produced by Disney, and it’s truly memorable. Disney also gets points for the positive portrayal of female athletes whose talent was never questioned and instead, sibling rivalry, social life, and injuries challenged the twins.
7. The phantom of the megaplex
Based on The Phantom of the Opera, this classic DCOM was a must-see in October. This is the film that introduced you to Mickey Rooney and the magic of cinema and made you want to spend a good part of the evening in a movie theater.
6. Cadet Kelly
This film combines two Disney giants: Hilary Duff from Lizzie McGuire and Christy Carlson Romano from Even Stevens. He also used the standard DCOM storyline of the main character moving to a new location and struggling to fit in with the locals (see: Johnny Tsunami, Tear up the girls). There was a physical comedy, a love triangle, and an amazing exercise team routine at the end. What more could you ask for?
5. The color of friendship
Remember when Disney Channel material won awards? This incredible DCOM won the Emmy Award for Best Children’s Program in 2000. That’s right. An Emmy! It’s safe to say this was the most racist play Disney has ever produced. Sure, it’s a bit campy at times, but it was a big drama that taught the kids acceptance.
4. On the brink!
And it was DCOM that made everyone want to become a skateboarder. Totally ’90s, right? That’s the traditional setup: baddies versus good guys (in this case sponsored skaters versus freedom skaters), a son trying to help his family, the good guys get it all because that’s totally how the world works and some gentle skating movements. It’s a classic DCOM. In addition, Erik von Detten was a true idol.
3. Smart home
No one has ever been satisfied with their own home after seeing this movie. Why isn’t my house showing video clips on my bedroom wall? Why do not this clean up my mess? It was such a unique idea and it was executed to perfection, especially with Katey Sagal as the ultimately dominant focus. Sagal doesn’t hurt.
2. Halloween Town
There is the classic DCOM, and then there is Halloween town. Everything about this movie is amazing: classic Hollywood actress Debbie Reynolds plus DCOM’s “it girl” Kimberly J. Brown, a town that’s Halloween 24/7 and a Well scary story (none of that overly-sensitized material they are posting now).
1. Zenon: the girl of the 21st century
When people talk about good DCOMs, they usually talk about Zenon and it usually follows with a chant of “Zetus lapetus!” and “Supernova girl”. Zoom zoom zoom, you make my heart beat boom boom, old DCOM. It doesn’t need an explanation as it is the ultimate DCOM.
These are the movies that give you an inexplicable wave of nostalgia every time they are mentioned. You haven’t seen them since they were repeatedly shown on TV and now all you want to do is watch them. Hopefully in the future the next generation will say this about the DCOMs that are coming out now. But let’s face it. Nothing will ever surpass our supernova girl.