We Asked AI for Best '90s TV Shows – And Got Utter Nonsense
The '90s were a decade of some of the most iconic TV shows, no arguments here.
But what if we told you that we asked an AI to rank the best '90s TV shows and got a list that's, well, utterly nonsensical? We decided to dive into the world of machine learning to see what it would come up with. And boy, did it deliver... something.
How Does This AI Thing Work Anyway?
So, you're probably wondering how this AI magic works. Let's break it down. Imagine your brain is like a giant library. When you want to remember something, you go to the right shelf, pull out the right book, and then you've got your answer. AI works kind of the same way, but instead of books, it has data – lots and lots of data it was trained on (basically, data was kind of fed into it).
AI is trained to understand human language. It reads sentences and tries to make sense of them, just like you would. It's like having a super-smart friend who's read every book, article, and tweet ever written.
And so, based on that data, here's the (somewhat) bizarre list of '90s TV shows that our AI friend came up with. Some of these you might remember, and some might leave you scratching your head.
Editor's Note: please mind the fact that this list is essentially AI-based and might be biased in some way.
1. "Eerie, Indiana" (1991–1992)
Remember "Eerie, Indiana"? No? Well, that's probably because it was a short-lived series that followed the life of Marshall Teller, a teenager who moves to a small town where strange things happen. Think of it as "The Twilight Zone" for kids. Marshall, along with his friend Simon, investigates these odd occurrences, from Tupperware that keeps people young to a magical ATM that dispenses more than just cash.
2. "Space: Above and Beyond" (1995–1996)
This one-season wonder was a sci-fi drama that took place in the year 2063. Earth is at war with an alien species known as the "Chigs," and the series follows a group of young Marine Corps pilots fighting in this interstellar conflict. While it had the makings of a cult classic, the show was unfortunately canceled after just one season.
3. "The Pretender" (1996–2000)
"The Pretender" is about a man named Jarod, who is a genius capable of becoming anyone he wants to be. He escapes from a mysterious organization called The Centre, which had been exploiting his talents for nefarious purposes. Each episode sees Jarod assuming a new identity to help people in need while evading capture from his former captors. It's a great show, actually, and somewhat unfairly underrated – so at least AI got this one right.
4. "Nowhere Man" (1995–1996)
Imagine waking up one day and finding out that your entire life has been erased – that's the premise of "Nowhere Man." The show follows Thomas Veil, a photojournalist who discovers that his existence has been wiped out and he's being hunted by a shadowy organization. With each episode, Thomas uncovers more about the conspiracy against him, all while trying to reclaim his identity.
5. "American Gothic" (1995–1996)
Set in the fictional town of Trinity, South Carolina, "American Gothic" is a horror drama that centers around Sheriff Lucas Buck, who is not your typical lawman. He has supernatural abilities and uses them to manipulate the town's residents for his own dark purposes. We, viewers, follow the story through the eyes of a young boy named Caleb, who is caught in the middle of it all.
6. "Earth 2" (1994–1995)
"Earth 2" is a sci-fi drama that takes place in the 22nd century, where Earth is dying due to pollution and overpopulation. A group of pioneers embarks on a journey to colonize a new planet, aptly named Earth 2. However, they soon discover that the planet is not as uninhabited as they thought.
7. "Dark Skies" (1996–1997)
Set in the 1960s, "Dark Skies" blends historical events with alien conspiracy theories. The show follows John Loengard and Kimberly Sayers, who stumble upon a government cover-up involving extraterrestrials known as the "Hive." As they dig deeper, they find themselves entangled in a mess of secrets that could change the course of human history. It's "The X-Files" meets "Mad Men," with a dash of '60s nostalgia.
8. "VR.5" (1995)
Remember when virtual reality was the future? "VR.5" capitalized on that buzz with its story of Sydney Bloom, a young woman who discovers that she can enter a virtual reality world by using a special modem. However, this isn't just any VR; Sydney finds that she can access people's subconscious minds and influence their actions in the real world.
9. "Kindred: The Embraced" (1996)
Based on the role-playing game "Vampire: The Masquerade," "Kindred: The Embraced" is a drama that delves into the secret world of vampires living among humans. The series focuses on Julian Luna, the "Prince" of San Francisco's vampire clans, as he juggles the politics and power struggles within the supernatural community.
10. "M.A.N.T.I.S." (1994–1995)
"M.A.N.T.I.S." is a superhero drama that was way ahead of its time. Dr. Miles Hawkins, a brilliant scientist, becomes paralyzed from the waist down after being shot during a riot. Undeterred, he develops a powered exoskeleton called the M.A.N.T.I.S. suit, which not only allows him to walk but also gives him superhuman abilities. He becomes a vigilante, fighting crime and corruption while grappling with his new identity.