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40 Photos Showing Millennial Fan Culture

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It was the best of times. And it was the worst of times if your parents refused to drive you to the mall.

1.

If you were a teenager during the late 1990s and early 2000s, then you know it was the glory days of fan culture.

2.

The internet basically didn’t exist so you actually had to work for your fandom.


Dave Allocca / The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images

3.

It was life.


Star Tribune Via Getty Images / Getty Images

4.

Back when people had real, film cameras.

5.

Or more likely, a disposable camera.


Matt Stroshane / Getty Images

6.

Like you know there was a one-in-three chance of this picture turning out good.


Frank Micelotta Archive / Getty Images

7.

When you had to show up to get noticed.


Chris Hondros / Getty Images

8.

You made homemade gifts for your faves.


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9.

There were autograph signings at CD stores.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

10.

Honestly, there was an autograph signing for everything.


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Those are Destiny’s Child dolls.

11.

Like this girl has the guy from O-Town signing her arm. A memory I’m sure she’ll never forget (lol).


Scott Gries / Getty Images

12.

Concerts were a sea of colorful signs.


Ethan Miller / Getty Images

13.

You had to stand out.


Steve Eichner / Getty Images

14.

You wanted your fave to notice you.


Christopher Polk / FilmMagic

15.

I think we all have a picture like this at a ’90s concert.

16.

We also were really into radio contests. Everyone’s favorite top 40 station always had contests leading up to a big concert event.


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17.

You identified intensely with whomever you were a fan of.


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18.

There were the Backstreet Boys fans.


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20.

Or a fan of the pop girls.

21.

The Britney fans, I’m sorry, were the most fiercely loyal.

22.

There were other subsets of fans like Hanson fans.


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23.

The elusive 98 Degrees fan.


Kmazur / WireImage / Getty Images

24.

These girls were Jessica Simpson fans, which were rare.


Frank Trapper / Getty Images

25.

And Eminem fans.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

26.

Everyone was a Spice Girls fan.


Peter Bischoff / Getty Images

27.

Regardless of whom you supported, you were in through thick and thin.


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28.

The TRL Studios were a sacred place.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

29.

And Times Square was a mecca.


Todd Plitt / Getty Images

30.

Through good times…


Scott Gries / Getty Images

31.

…and bad.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

32.

Signs were carefully crafted and your chance to be noticed.


Chris Hondros / Getty Images

33.

“LET ME UP” —Everyone.


George De Sota / Getty Images

34.

“Brit, you are the BEST!!! I love Britney. Love, Judith.”


Stefan M. Prager / Redferns / Getty Images

35.

“What’s next for Chris’s HAIR?”


Kmazur / WireImage / Getty Images

36.

It got so bad that Times Square had to routinely be shut down.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

37.

That’s when you know it was a big deal.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

38.

People were just losing their shit constantly.


Peter Kramer / Getty Images

39.

It was the best.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

40.

In conclusion, everything was better then because there was no Twitter or Instagram and people weren’t so blatantly terrible and blah blah blah I’m going to shut the hell up because we’re old now.


Scott Gries / Getty Images

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