Hold on to your trucker hat, here comes aughts nostalgia

It was the perfect of occasions, it was the Durst of occasions. It was the period of click on wheels and Sidekicks; MySpace Tom and TomTom GPS; the second that digital digital camera costs fell decrease than low-rise denims, and the variety of VH1 reveals starring Taste Flav rose increased than the frosted tips on Ryan Cabrera. Of all of the detritus to emerge from the cultural wasteland that was the flip of the millennium, nonetheless, maybe nothing is extra iconically aughts than the Von Dutch hat.

The mesh-sided snapback trucker hat was probably the most environment friendly manner to align your self with the second in 2003. It marked the triumphant return of irony, post-9/11: Members of the leisure class paying wherever from $42 to $129 hilarious dollars to put on a part of a laborer’s unofficial uniform, typically at a functionless 45-degree tilt for additional Now factors. The garment was so ubiquitous (and flamed out so rapidly) that it grew to become perpetually enshrined as sartorial shorthand for its time interval, the identical manner JNCO denims did for the grunge period. If Hulu’s new documentary, The Curse of Von Dutch, appears designed to elicit nostalgia for that period, although, it’s completely in step with a second when everybody appears to be wanting again at—or reckoning with—the aughts.

Unnecessarily divided into three episodes, The Curse of Von Dutch, which premieres at this time, is concerning the origin, rise, and fall of the once-coveted vogue model. Though viewers could have to be deeply concerned about intracompany intrigue to keep engaged all through the entire affair, it’s nonetheless an eye-opening Segway trip down reminiscence lane. A serious early chapter of Von Dutch historical past takes place at Tommy Lee’s home whereas filming an episode of MTV’s Cribs, as an illustration, which will be the most Y2K sentence anybody has ever written.


The perfect second of the doc is probably its most revealing. In camcorder footage from the time, Whitney Houston absently sings “I’m Each Girl” to herself as she and a 30-person entourage browse the Von Dutch retailer on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles for a free of charge VIP purchasing spree. It’s a sweetly endearing second for the singer, but in addition a reminder of how a lot the celeb publicity machine has advanced prior to now 20 years.

The common particular person was a bit extra shielded from the enterprise of superstar within the pre-social media period, and will not have understood that the rationale so many white-hot stars on the time have been all of a sudden rocking Von Dutch was as a result of the model was freely giving as a lot product as any celeb who stopped by the shop was keen to take. May the attract of superstar endorsement saturation again then work on the extra doubtful client of at this time? Von Dutch seems to have tried the identical technique just lately with stars like Megan Thee Stallion and Saweetie, and judging from the dearth of trucker hats on the streets at this second, only a few folks fell for it.

Nonetheless, loads of different artifacts from the Von Dutch period have come roaring again 20 years later—together with wired headphones, apparently. Featured closely within the doc is Paris Hilton, who’s all of a sudden in every single place once more, for the primary time in ages. Her music, “Stars Are Blind,” a kind of tunes so typically cited as underrated that it has since grow to be overrated, was featured prominently in 2021 Oscar nominee Promising Younger Girl. Over the summer time, Hilton debuted a cooking show on Netflix, and she or he has one other actuality present on Peacock about getting married.

Different relics from the period of tv that spawned Hilton’s Von Dutch-flecked present The Easy Life are in every single place as nicely. The Sopranos has returned, within the type of its largely panned prequel film and a attainable upcoming sequence. Intercourse and the Metropolis can also be again, with the Samantha-less And Simply Like That due subsequent month. Even justly forgotten initiatives like the truth sequence Joe Millionaire are getting a second life, with executives banking on an abundance of “Hey, I do not forget that” views.

On the music entrance, aughts legacy bands just like the Strokes are nonetheless commanding consideration in any case these years, and 2022’s Just Like Heaven Fest affords a return of Pitchfork’s hottest bands of 2005—from the Shins to the Go! Group to Santigold. However music can also be most likely the world by which probably the most significant side of revisiting the aughts has emerged.

The New York Occasions TV manufacturing wing has bookended the 12 months with two reclamation initiatives for girls musicians who have been handled horribly within the aughts. First up got here Framing Britney Spears, a surprising documentary concerning the singer’s questionable conservatorship that appears to have jump-started the method that ultimately freed Spears from its grasp simply final week. On Friday, The New York Occasions Presents sequence unveils its subsequent documentary, Malfunction: The Dressing Down of Janet Jackson, a glance again on the Tremendous Bowl scandal that hobbled the famous person’s decades-spanning profession. What each initiatives have in widespread is an intensive examination of the period that reveals how completely institutional misogyny had polluted the cultural airstream on the time. Looks as if the “Leave Britney Alone” kid was proper all alongside.

It’s most likely not a coincidence that in the identical 12 months as these documentaries, Hilton made her personal mini-reclamation challenge by revealing that the ‘Cease Being Poor’ shirt she as soon as sneeringly wore was really a Photoshop hit piece. Who is aware of how many individuals had internalized the concept of Hilton as cartoon wealthy villain perpetually from that picture?


The rising fixation on aughts nostalgia (aughtstalgia?) is much less about wanting again longingly than it’s about understanding how the errors of a earlier period have knowledgeable our present one. If we arm ourselves with sufficient forensic findings, maybe we will transfer ahead with each grace and vigilance, in order that by the point the Trump period slides into nostalgia eligibility, we could have no use in any respect for a documentary on the MAGA hat.