Nostalgia Chick: Spice World

Posted on December 11, 2008 By

The Nostalgia Chick takes on the 90s Pop sensations the Spice Girls, and reviews their movie Spice World.


  • No-Personality

    I look at the Spice Girls the same way I was instructed to look at Ke$ha, Lady Gaga at her worst, Taylor Swift (pre-“Blank Space,” which even as a song is nothing short of brilliant), Britney and Christina, and Katy Perry… “It’s okay.” I can’t really say the feminism in-name-only thing ever bothered me. I still love the Spice Girls as much today as I did in the 90’s.

    Genuine pop music was in short supply at the time thanks to (and I in no way support the shit-talk against these genres as Eminem did against one and a ton of stupid white people did against the other) electronica / techno and rap / hip-hop. Everything else was either Lilith Fair road-music (Jewel, Crow, Etheridge, McLachlan, Loeb, Osborne, Amos, Cole, Colvin, Brooks, Arden, Hatfield, Nova, Hawkins, Shocked, Phillips – Sam not Wilson, Kreviazuk, the Indigo’s), r&b, or bubblegum “jock jams” (La Bouche, Aqua, Real McCoy, Vengaboys, Culture Beat, Crystal Waters, Haddaway).

    (Before the boybands, the Ricky Martin / Jennifer Lopez / Enrique Iglesias, and Britney/Christina/Mandy/Jessica/Hoku/Vitamin C explosion) the only groups making true pop were European acts: The Cardigans, Lightning Seeds, Robyn, Blur, Saint Etienne, etc. Even compared to some of these artists, the Spice Girls’ sound was incredibly lush and sophisticated. Just for the sake of influencing the style of popular music, even if it lead to the undiscerning Mickey Mouse Club tweeny bopper dregs, I think we needed them. Songs like “Say You’ll Be There,” “Stop,” “Too Much,” and “Who Do You Think You Are” aren’t even guilty pleasures. They’re just damn fine pop music. And a good alternative to the sometimes too-William Orbit-ty late 90’s.

    At the end of the day…so what if they were not good role models? At a certain point, you do have to wonder how much progressive pop culture actually effects the behavior of the audience. Over other factors like intelligence and upbringing. Etc.

    I also enjoyed this film. A lot more than I thought I would. The words I need were best summed up by the cast of The Real World (Miami season) when they reunited in the 2000’s. That, looking back, they realized that the show didn’t capture how much fun they actually had when the cameras weren’t rolling. It’s valuable to remember that people have fun in the worst of times as well as the best- as Roseanne pointed out (in the season 6 episode, “A Stash from the Past”) was true even of the 60’s. A decade so war-torn and socially tumultuous that it gave us Night of the Living Dead at its rather sad closing.