The major criticism that popped up regarding the VMAs this year (aside from that overhyped, anticlimactic Taylor/Kanye rematch or Justin Bieber's less-than-perfect lip-synching) was the utter irony that MTV devoted two hours of its programming to celebrating music videos, when the network hasn't devoted more than two minutes of its programming to actual videos since Beavis and Butt-Head were still on the air. Come on, did anyone ever even see that Florence + The Machine video on MTV? Didn't think so.
Anyway, it's enough to make nostalgic music fans yearn to travel back in time, to an era when the "M" in MTV still stood for Music and video vanguards like Duran Duran and Human League still ruled the airwaves. And now...they can, thanks to a genius invention called the YouTube Time Machine!
The YouTube Time Machine allows users to virtually surf through time via a random sampling of videos sorted by their original year. The site was created by Justin Johnson (already famous online for his Tumblr marriage proposal), who explains on his blog that he was inspired after a night of watching Michael Jordan videos from 1996. "It was like it was Sunday afternoon, and I was 14, sipping on a milkshake and watching my fav team play. That Jordan-fest lurched into a 4am search for Primal Rage videos, and countless other mid-'90s stuff. I realized then, that it wasn't specifically Jordan or Primal Rage videos I was searching for…it was 1996…the feeling of being in 1996."
We, on the other hand, craved the feeling of being back in 1981, the year MTV launched. So we went to the YouTube Time Machine, slid the bar across the timeline to that fateful date, and ticked the buttons next to "Music" and, since this was the pre-DVR age, "Commercials." Here are the first five videos that came up:
Wow. Just wow.
What year do you long to relive? This time machine goes all the way back to 1860. Go back to the future by test-driving the YouTube Time Machine now!