BySam Plank, writer at
"You have to be what you are. Whatever you are, you gotta be it." -Johnny Cash. Tweet a tweeter at my twitty twitter, @tw1tterintw1t
Sam Plank

Ah, the '80s. Oh, how we miss the '90s.

I'm about to make you miss them both a whole lot more.

Not sure about all of you other kids of the '80s, but this guy right here still feels young. I may be pushing 40, but I get told every day to grow the hell up and act my age, and every time, it makes me feel younger and more awesome. And when I think about Saved by the Bell, Roseanne, and Fresh Prince, I feel like the shows just ended a couple years ago.

I have so much bad news for you, you people out there like me, who grew up watching Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor. Ready for it? Here it is:

You and I.

Are old.

As balls.

Don't believe me? Here are some facts about 11 TV shows and movies of pre-Y2K to blow your feeble mind.

1. The Cosby Show

Bill Cosby was 47 when he started The Cosby Show in 1984, and so far, the only one of the Huxtable kids to pass him up so far is Lisa Bonet, who played Denise. She's 48! To make things worse, Phylicia Rashad, who played his on-screen wife Claire, was 36 when the first episode of the show aired. Guess who's 37 years old as of today, besides yours truly? You guessed it. LITTLE RUDY HUXTABLE.

R-Rudy? Is that you?
R-Rudy? Is that you?

2. Friends

You remember Golden Girls? Rue McClanahan was 51 years old when the show started. You know, that show about a bunch of old-ish women hanging out, doing old-ish women things? Well, both Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe) and Courtney Cox (Monica) are older than Rue was now — Kudrow is 53 and Cox is 52. Say it ain't so!

We feel you, Monica
We feel you, Monica

That's not all...Tom Selleck was 51 when he first appeared on as Monica's love interest, Dr. Richard Burke. I don't even want to know how old he is now...

Okay, I couldn't help it. I checked — 71. He's 71.

3. Home Improvement

Break out the grunts! Debuting in 1991, Home Improvement starred the 38-year-old Tim Allen as Tim "The Tool Man" Taylor. Patricia Richardson (his wife, Jill) was 40, and Richard Karn, who played Al, was a sprightly 35 years old.

Guess who is now 35?

Zachary Ty Bryan, who played eldest son Brad, just hit the big 3-5, and Jonathan Taylor Thomas, who played middle son Randy, has been there for a whole month. The kids of Home Improvement are now as old as some of the adults from the show!

4. Saved by the Bell

When this show hit the airwaves in 1989, Principal Belding was played by Dennis Haskins, who was 38, almost 39 at the time.

Get ready for it.

Dustin Diamond (Screech) hit 39 this year, Lark Voorhies (Lisa Turtle), Tiffani Thiessen (Kelly Kapowski), and Mark-Paul Gosselaar (Zack Morris) are all 42, Mario Lopez (A.C. Slater) just turned 43, and Elizabeth Berkley (Jessie Spano) is —brace yourself — 44!

The students haven't quite become the teachers, but they outgrew the friggin' principal!

...who is now 65.

5. The Wonder Years

It's hard to believe, but little Kevin Arnold and Paul Pfeiffer both turned 40 this year! Seeing how Dan Lauria was 41 when he started his role as Pa Arnold, and Alley Mills, Ma Arnold, was 37, that makes Fred Savage, Josh Saviano, and the rest of us OLD.

Daniel Stern was the narrator, and since he was a wee lad at 31 when he got the job, Kevin, Paul, and Danica McKellar (Wendy, now 41) are all older than he was when he first started by a decade!

6. Full House

This one is gonna get you right in the feels. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, as you may know, turned 30 years young this year. Which makes them far, far older than most of the actors in the original cast who played the adults. For example, do you know who was a baby-faced 24 when he started the show in 1987? John Stamos, that's who! Dave Coulier turned 28 the day before the show originally aired, and Lori Loughlin was also a mere 24 when she started the show in 1988.

Have Mercy!

Bob Saget, you dirty old man, you were 31 when you started the show, so they're catching up with you.

7. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

Let me tell you a story all about how...

Will Smith is now 48 years old. When The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air started airing in 1990, he was 21, almost 22. James Avery, who played Uncle Phil (R.I.P. big guy), was 44 when he got his start on the show. Daphne Reid, who played his wife Vivian (one of two actresses who did), was also 45 when she started in 1990, and Joseph Marcell, a.k.a. Geoffrey, was 42. Alfonso Ribeiro, that lovable dork Carlton, is 45. And last by not least, Karyn Parsons (Hilary) just turned 50 a few days ago!

At least little Ashley hasn't caught up with those numbers quite yet.

But it's alright, . You still get jiggy wit' it.

8. Boy Meets World

All the kids are now older than Mr. Feeny!

Just kidding, William Daniels was 66 when the show started airing in 1993. But Anthony Tyler Quinn, who played Jonathan Turner, the teacher and father figure to Shawn, was a young 32 when he got the role in 1994.

Cory and Eric, Shawn, Topanga, Angela, and Jack, played by Ben Savage, Will Friedle, Rider Strong, Danielle Fishel, Trina McGee, and Matthew Lawrence are now (respectively, and with all due respect) 36, 40, 36, 35, 47 (you heard that right, 47!), and 36.

9. Dawson's Creek

I have good news and bad news with this one. Jen, Joey, Pacey, Dawson...they're all 36, 37, 38, & 39, in that order. Mitch (John Wesley Shipp) and Gail (Mary-Margaret Humes) Leary were 43 and 44 when the show started in 1998.

Here's the bad news.

This is where Kerr Smith and Meredith Monroe (siblings Jack and Andie McPhee) are sitting right now. Kerr is a salt-and-peppery 44, and Meredith is a stunning 47!

Doesn't that just make you want to...

10. Home Alone

A list like this just wouldn't be the same with Home Alone!

Macaulay Culkin was 10 years old in 1990 when this classic came out. It would make you... know that little Kevin McCallister is now 36 years old! That makes him three — count 'em, three — years older than Daniel Stern was when he played Marv (he was 33 when the movie was released). As if that wasn't bad enough, his mom, played by Catherine O'Hara, was 36 when the movie came out!

Should I stop? I don't think so!

11. Roseanne

Let's leave Depression City on a slightly happier, younger-feeling note, shall we?

Roseanne hit our television screens in all its hilarious, lower middle class glory in 1988, when stars Roseanne Barr and John Goodman were 35 and 36.

I'm not even going to look at the bios of all the older Conner children. Something tells me they've already shot past their on-screen parents' ages. Let's take a look at little D.J. Conner, played by Michael Fishman. He was born on October 22, 1981, and the show started on October 18, 1988. That made him almost 7 at the beginning, and on the backside of 34 right now.

So, he's not quite there, but I bet that still makes you feel a little old, children of the '80s and '90s, now doesn't it?

The moral of this long, sad story? Damn near every kid from every show in the '80s and some of the '90s are now older than their on-screen parents were when the show started.

Screw this, time to turn off the computer and go stare at my lava lamp.


Which flashback made you feel the oldest?


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