The most iconic 90s TV shows to watch for your nostalgia fix

From Friends to X-Files—these are the most iconic 90s TV shows to bring on those old-school vibes

Iconic 90s TV shows: Stills from Sex And the City, Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Buffy The Vampire Slayer
(Image credit: Alamy/ HBO/ © Warner Bros./ Courtesy: Everett Collection/Pictorial Press Ltd / )

From 90s fashion trends to 90s hairstyles, our love for the decade that brought us mom jeans, the Backstreet Boys and fluffy blowouts knows no bounds—especially when it comes to television. Some of the most iconic TV characters ever came from the plethora of TV shows that hit the silver screen back in the 90s. So why not feed our obsession with nostalgia with a big binge-watch of all the most iconic 90s TV shows? 

While there are great new series out there, like House of the Dragon and The Kardashians season two—plus some seriously trending crime docuseries like Monster: the Jeffrey Dahmer story—sometimes you just watch to revisit some old faves, like the best teen movies on Netflix and soak up all those nostalgic vibes.

Whether you just want to rewatch old faves like Friends or are curious about the OG 90210 that inspired the remake—these are the most iconic 90s show to sink your teeth into…

These are the most iconic 90s TV shows to watch ASAP

'Friends'

A still from Friends the TV Show, starring Matt LeBlanc, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, JJennifer Aniston, David Schwimmer, Matthew Perry

(Image credit: Alamy/ Photo12/7e Art/Warner Bros Television)

Release Date: 1994| Seasons: 10 | Genre: Sitcom/comedy

Is there a more iconic 90s TV show than Friends? Rachel Green's outfits alone make this series worth a watch, not to mention Monica's hair—which is having a major moment right now.

The show revolves around six friends; Monica, Rachel, Phoebe, Ross, Chandler and Joey all living in New York City Apartments (four of which live opposite each other) and trying to navigate their 20-somethings. We see them fall in love, get jobs—lose said jobs and slowly figure their lives out. 

Friends is the ultimate feel-good show, for those days when you just want to watch something easy—plus it pretty much created the whole 'will they/won't they' relationship trope.

'Buffy The Vampire Slayer'

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER US TV series with Sarah Michelle Gellar

(Image credit: Alamy/ Pictorial Press Ltd )

Release Date: 1997| Seasons: 7 | Genre: Drama

Buffy The Vampire Slayer is definitely one of the best nostalgic TV shows and is a must-watch if you're a lover of shows like The Vampire Diaries or films like Twilight. It features iconic stars like Sarah Michelle Gellar (who most recently featured in the Do Revenge cast), How I Met Your Mother's Alyson Hannigan and 90s heartthrob, David Boreanaz.

The series follows Buffy, who is just trying to make it through high school while also juggling her destiny as a—you guessed it—vampire slayer. We see her battle all sorts of supernatural beasts and demons, plus all the dramas that come with being a teenage girl.

'Dawson’s Creek'

DAWSON'S CREEK, Katie Holmes, James Van Der Beek, Michelle Williams, Joshua Jackson

(Image credit: Alamy/ ©Columbia Tristar/Courtesy Everett Collection)

Release Date: 1998| Seasons: 6 | Genre: Drama

Dawson's Creek gives you nostalgia on a plate, from teenage romances to Joey's dreamy collection of mom jeans. This show is a MUST if you want to relive your adolescence.

The plot follows Dawson and his best friend Joey as their friendship begins to change into something more—and then grapple with new relationships with the arrival of new girl Jen and Joey's growing feelings for Dawson's friend (and hunk of the whole show *no we're not biased*), Pacey. Things get complicated, much like they do in life but the romances are definitely worth the watch!

'Beverly Hills, 90210'

BEVERLY HILLS, 90210. English Title: BEVERLY HILLS, 90210. Year: 1990. Stars: LUKE PERRY; TORI SPELLING; JASON PRIESTLEY; IAN ZIERING; JENNIE GARTH; BRIAN AUSTIN GREEN.

(Image credit: Alamy/ FOX/BROADCASTING CO. / Album )

Release Date: 1990| Seasons: 10 | Genre: Drama

If you tuned into 90210 in your teens, you may be surprised to know that the show was actually a remake of 'Beverly Hills, 90210' which starred the likes of Riverdale's Luke Perry and Tiffani Thiessen—known for her role as Kelly in another 90s classic, Saved by the Bell.

The show follows a group of teenagers in Beverly Hills as they navigate high school and all the dramas that come with being a teen. Much like the remake, it's packed with drama and covers some grizzly topics, but definitely fills the 90s nostalgia assignment.

'Sex And The City'

NIXON,DAVIS,CATTRALL,PARKER, SEX AND THE CITY,

(Image credit: Alamy/ HBO / Maximum Film)

Release Date: 1998| Seasons: 6 | Genre: Sitcom/Comedy/Drama

As the title suggests, this series consists of a lot of sex in the city—New York City to be exact. We follow the lives of 30-something-year-olds; Carrie, Miranda, Samantha and Charlotte as they date, work and party in the big apple.

Much like Friends, it's an easy and often fun watch as this ultimate girl gang lives out their single lives in Manhattan. 

'The West Wing'

A production still from The West Wing with Martin Sheen

(Image credit: Alamy / PictureLux / The Hollywood Archive)

Release Date: 1999| Seasons: 7 | Genre: Drama

Now The West Wing might not be snuggly, hot cocoa in one hand and fuzzy blanket on your knee viewing—but boy, is it good!

This show is quick-witted, intelligent and filled with political drama as you're given a glimpse into the inner workings of the White House. The story follows newly elected American president Josiah Bartlet and his administration as they tackle various political issues in order to maintain peace and invoke positive change throughout the USA.

It stars the likes of Martin Sheen, Bradley Whitford and Allison Janney and when you watch it, we wager that a lot of references in other movies and TV shows will finally start making sense...

'The X-Files'

Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny in The X-Files

(Image credit: Alamy/ 20TH CENTURY FOX TELEVISION / AJ Pics )

Release Date: 1993| Seasons: 11 | Genre: Sci-Fi

The truth is out there! 

The X-Files is a true sci-fi classic, starring Sex Education's Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny as FBI agents who investigate bizarre and unexplained cases, that nearly always point to alien or supernatural happenings.

Unless you love crime documentaries or horror movies, we wouldn't necessarily say that this is cozy-viewing but it's definitely nostalgic—especially the theme song. And if you love all things sci-fi, this series is a must-watch but maybe keep the lights on when you do...

'Sister, Sister'

Film Still from "Sister, Sister" Tamera Mowry, Tia Mowry 1995

(Image credit: Alamy/ PictureLux / The Hollywood Archive)

Release Date: 1994| Seasons: 6 | Genre: Sitcom

Another absolute classic—Sister, Sister is a sitcom that sees twins Tia and Tamera, who were separated at birth and adopted by different families, reunite by chance one day. Once their families meet, Tia and her mother move in with Tamera and her adoptive father—but while they may look alike, Tia and Tamera couldn't be more different and let's just say, things get interesting!

This show will no doubt brings back some childhood mems, plus you'll spot some very nostalgic 90s trends throughout!

'Fresh Prince of Bell Air

ALI,RIBEIRO,REID,SMITH, THE FRESH PRINCE OF BEL-AIR,

(Image credit: Alamy/ NBC /Maximum Film )

Release Date: 1990| Seasons: 6 | Genre: Sitcom

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is where Will Smith got his start and has one of the catchiest theme songs maybe ever. As the said song describes, Will is sent by his mom to live with his rich relatives—Uncle Phil and Aunt Vivian and their three children Carlton, Hilary and Ashely—in Bel-Air after getting 'one little fight' in his hometown of West Philadelphia.

The show is light-hearted and definitely a fun watch!

'Sabrina, The Teenage Witch'

ABRINA, THE TEENAGE WITCH, Salem the Cat, Melissa Joan Hart, 1996-2003,

(Image credit: Alamy/ ©Warner Bros/Courtesy Everett Collection)

Release Date: 1996| Seasons: 7 | Genre: Sitcom

Sabrina, The Teenage Witch is everything that's great about the 90s—Sabrina's outfits alone are iconic!

The show follows Sabrina, who discovers on her 16th birthday that she and her entire family are witches and warlocks—even her cat, Salem. With the help of her aunts, Hilda and Zelda she begins her witch training which she must juggle alongside high school. As you can imagine, she struggles to contain her magic abilities at school, especially around her crush Harvey Kinkle...

'Saved By The Bell'

"Saved by the Bell: The College Years" Dustin Diamond, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Mario Lopez 1993

(Image credit: Alamy / PictureLux / The Hollywood Archive)

Release Date: 1989| Seasons: 4 | Genre: Sitcom

Saved By The Bell is another teen-show classic and while it technically first aired in 89, the series was watched by every 90s baby we know—plus its last season aired in 93.

It follows six high schoolers Zack, A C, Samuel (aka Screech), Kelly, Lisa and Jessie. With the principal always on their back, the friend groups navigate their adolescents with Zack and A C constantly competing for Kelly's attention.

This series, much like Fresh Prince, has one of the most iconic theme songs and is the ultimate watch for anyone who loves denim and side ponytails.

Naomi Jamieson
Lifestyle News Writer

Naomi is a Lifestyle News Writer with the Women's Lifestyle team and has recently earned her Gold Standard diploma in Journalism with the NCTJ. She has a background in design, having studied Illustration at Plymouth University but has taken a leap into the world of journalism after always having a passion for writing. She currently writes pieces on beauty, trends, fashion, and entertainment for GoodTo and My Imperfect Life. She also tests and reviews beauty and skincare products and tries out the latest TikTok hacks for My Imperfect Life.


Before working for Future Publishing’s Lifestyle News team, she worked in the Ad production team. Here she wrote and designed adverts on all sorts of things, which then went into print magazines across all genres. Now, when she isn’t writing articles on celebs, fashion trends, or the newest shows on Netflix, you can find her drinking copious cups of coffee, drawing and probably online shopping.