Another decade has come and gone. Time marches on. Like sands through the hourglass, so our the days of our lives. And now we get to look back at the amazing crap that took place these past ten years.
For me personally, it’s been a whacky decade. Middle school. High school. College. Yup, I’ve basically done it all. I’ve lived on the edge – you ever chug TWO bottles of Jolt Cola in a single night? I took a couple rides in the fast lane. I’ve reached speeds of like, 65 mph. And I certainly rocked more than a few boats. (Okay, so only one, and I didn’t really rock it, ’cause it was a big boat. Actually, it was a cruise ship. Those are pretty hard to physically rock. But I totally started a tidal wave in the lido deck pool.) I won’t regale you with too many epic stories of my legendary and hilarious misadventures, though. I’m here to talk about how the 2000’s changed the world as a whole.
The Aughts didn’t bring us into The Jetson‘s future as some may have predicted in years of yore – no flying cars or robotic housekeepers just yet. But we do have the Segway and the Roomba. And just about everyone in the First World has a computer, a cellphone, and an MP3 player – didn’t McDonald’s start giving out iPods in Happy Meals at some point? Hybrid cars became more than a possibility, entire lives can be planned in hand-held PDAs, and you can even carry your entire library with you in a tree-friendly e-book. And if you’re super lucky, you only need one techno-gadget and can replace everything else with a couple apps! Now that’s what I call future!
But outside of all the digital stuff, what’s most exciting about the 2000’s is that in the future, terms like “geek chic” will probably be to the Aughts what “grunge” is to the ’90s and “Bubonic” is to 14th century Europe. It never paid to be a nerd like it did in this golden age of comic book graphic novel movies and franchises aimed directly at the biggest fanboy communities in the known-cosmos. Fantasy geeks got to be a part of literary history when book series like Harry Potter made reading so cool, you had to wait in line to do it. TV got a piece of the action with dramatic shows such as Lost and Firefly and comedies like Scrubs and The Big Bang Theory. The geek sub-culture has officially passed into the mainstream, and here’s hoping it stays! (If for no reason other than I like being “hip” for owning the complete works of Shakespeare as well as every episode of Buffy.)
And in a fit of nostalgia, I’d like to list some movies of the 2000s that will certainly leave their imprint on Hollywood for a very, very long time:
- 2000 – X-Men, for effectively kicking off the trend of superhero flicks.
- 2001 – Shrek, for changing the face of animated cinema.
- 2002 – Amélie, for being the first foreign-language film many US citizens actually watched.
- 2003 – The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, being matched only by Ben-Hur and Titanic for Oscars.
- 2004 – Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, for giving us the greatest lovable sleazeball of all time.
- 2005 – Brokeback Mountain, for its bravery in becoming the ultimate “gay cowboy movie.”
- 2006 – Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, for perfecting the “art” of horrible sequels.
- 2007 – Juno, as a pioneer in finding a place in the mainstream for small-budget flicks.
- 2008 – The Dark Knight, because who in the Sam Hill didn’t see that friggin’ movie?
- 2009 – Avatar, for being super-duper expensive (and worth every penny!)
It was a truly colorful decade. It did give us Perez Hilton, Legally Blonde: The Musical, and the ShamWOW! But on a serious note, many historic marks have been made and undoubtedly changed our culture. We happen to be existing at a special time to have been able to witness it all.
As we look to the future, one can’t help but wonder what the 2010’s will bring. But let’s hope they top the Aughts in outrageousness. Afterall, the millenium’s just begun! Assuming we don’t all die in 2012, of course.