The Adventures of Mary Kate & Ashley (1994-1997)
The best part about having a younger sister (I’d say greater access to biddies, but it didn’t work out like that)? Having ample opportunity (and excuses) to watch Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen (that and Lindsay Lohan’s finest hour: PARENT TRAP).
Initially, I likely made a stink about being forced to watch Mary Kate and Ashley all the time because that’s what Robin wanted to watch, but it wasn’t long before I was more than amenable to watching the ridiculous detective movie series. Why? Because I had a massive crush on the twins (the tom-boyish Mary Kate was my preference, of course) like every other boy (and older creepers) on the planet. They were probably more responsible for realizing I had a penis than any other girls in pop culture, and I had the keen pleasure to grow up along with them, as they grew out of movies like THE CASE OF THE HOTEL WHO-DONE-IT and moved into more “mature” TV series or boys-obsessed adventures.
I also loved watching the twins adventures because it offered some of the few times in our respective childhoods when my sister and I weren’t arguing or at each other’s throats, or needling the other one about our insecurities. When MK&A were on screen, we really did love each other and enjoyed each other’s company, and weren’t taking part in an eternal game of comeuppance that left us both jilted and defensive for far longer than I’d like to admit to. While we obviously watched it for wholly different reasons, THE ADVENTURES OF MARY KATE & ASHLEY transcended gender and put the skids on sibling rivalry, and for that I’m grateful.
The sheen had worn off well before NEW YORK MINUTE happened, but from 1994-1997, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen were inescapable, and I was okay with that, watching every one of their 11 thrilling tales of mystery, each multiple times. Perhaps the film that had more impact than any of the “Adventures” films occurred during that same time frame, and that was DOUBLE, DOUBLE, TOIL AND TROUBLE (another 1993 classic), which is creepy as fuck thanks to Cloris Leachman’s turn as their Aunt Agatha. I remember the flashback sequences seriously disturbed me.