1. Rodney King, who died this weekend, was brutalized by the L.A. police over 20 years ago, and Nicole Brown Simpson has been dead for 18 years. If the length of her death were a child, it would have graduated high school this year. Notorious B.I.G., Allen Ginsberg, Princess Diana and Jeff Buckley have all been dead for 15 years. Thuy Trang, who played the yellow Power Ranger, has been dead for over a decade, as has Aaliyah. Maude Flanders died the year before that. Tim McVeigh and Lisa “Left Eye” Lopez died the year after. If a baby were born the day John Ritter died, that child would now be entering the 4th grade. That child would also have no memories of September 11, because it wouldn’t have been born by then.
2. Sabrina, the Teenage Witch first aired over 15 years ago. If Sabrina were a real person, she would be 32 and old enough to have her own 16-year-old daughter. The Nickelodeon TV shows Doug and Ren and Stimpy debuted over 20 years ago, the same year as Rugrats and two years before Rocko’s Modern Life. If the characters from these shows aged appropriately, the Rugrats would all be either at or approaching drinking age; Doug would be in his 30s; and Rocko, Ren and Stimpy would be dead. Willy (from Free Willy) has been free for 19 years and Keiko, who played Willy, has been dead for almost a decade. All of the cats who played Salem (on Sabrina) are also probably dead.
3. Bambi’s mom, Simba’s dad and Nemo’s mom have been dead for a combined 107 years. Jack died in the Titanic film 17 years ago, but if he were real, he would have died 100 years ago. This would make him about 120 now — and still frozen at the bottom of the ocean.
4. Saved By The Bell and The Cosby Show have now been off the air for almost 20 years. Roseanne has been off the air for 15 years. Ellen DeGeneres hasn’t had a sitcom in 10 years and has been out for 15 years. If a child were born on the day she came out, that child would be a sophomore in high school right now and reading lots of Sylvia Plath.
5. Ellen, Rosie O’Donnell, Elton John, Ian McKellen, Melissa Etheridge and Freddie Mercury came out a combined 142 years ago, and Mercury has been dead for 20 years.
6. Jennifer Aniston filed from divorce from Brad Pitt seven years ago. Bruce Willis and Demi Moore haven’t been together in over a decade. Sean Penn and Madonna divorced 25 years ago. Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon announced they were getting a divorce six years ago, and if that announcement were a child, it would be entering the 2nd grade. Conversely, Woody Allen and Soon Yi have been together for two decades.
7. Mariah Carey’s breakdown happened 11 years ago, during which she famously dropped in on Carson Daly on TRL, unannounced, to deliver ice cream. Carson Daly hasn’t hosted TRL in a decade. The show itself hasn’t been on in four years. Elsewhere in MTV shows, The Tom Green Show hasn’t aired in 12 years and Beavis and Butthead premiered almost 20 years ago. If that duo aged appropriately, they would be turning 35 soon. If Daria (whose show premiered 15 years ago) were a real person, she would be turning 31 this year. The first edition of The Real World first aired 20 years ago and Pedro (of The Real World: San Francisco) died 18 years ago.
8. The AIDS epidemic turned 30 last year, and E.T. just turned 30 this year. Child actors Anne Hathaway, LeAnn Rimes, Kieran Culkin, Jessica Biel and Kirsten Dunst will all also become trigenarians in 2012 — as will the younger sister from Hocus Pocus, the girl from Field of Dreams, Dawn Wiener of Welcome to the Dollhouse, Icebox of Little Giants, Brink from Brink! and Gretchen Weiners from Mean Girls. Zenon and Alex Mack will join that club soon. Lori Beth Denberg joined six years ago and Jonathan Taylor Thomas joined last year. Only one of the principal cast members from Home Improvement or Boy Meets World is under 30, and Dionne of Clueless is almost 50. If you combine the current ages of the 10 young leads from these programs, you get 332. Also, Brittany Murphy has been dead for almost three years.
9. Samara from The Ring and the kid from Jerry Maguire are now of drinking age, and Frances Bean Cobain will be able to legally drink next year. Dakota Fanning can now buy her own cigarettes. Eminem’s daughter can drive. You can now legally have sex with every one of these people in 30 of the 50 states.
10. Neither Freddie Prinze, Jr., Jennifer Love Hewitt nor Rachael Leigh Cook have acted in a commercially successful film in almost a decade, and none have even appeared in a major film in the past five years. Sarah Michelle Gellar’s last hit film came out in 2004. Neve Campbell (aka. Sidney Prescott in Scream) has now been outrunning Ghostface for 16 years. Sidney’s mother has been dead for 17 years, and Sidney killed her brother 12 years ago. Her best friend, Randy, has been dead for 15 years.
11. If the characters from Buffy The Vampire Slayer aged appropriately, Giles would be around 48, Dawn Summers would be 26, Buffy Summers would be 31 and the original Buffy (played by Kristy Swanson) would be 35. Joyce Summers has been dead for 11 years and the show was cancelled nine years ago. Also, Joss Whedon’s television shows have been off the air for a combined 38 years. Joss Whedon got his start as a writer for Roseanne, whose star also gave Judd Apatow his start. Judd Apatow’s TV programs have been cancelled for 22 years.
12. You’ve now known who Avril Lavigne is for 10 glorious years. You might have been still in high school the last time Missy Elliott released an album. Some people you are friends with on Facebook were still in middle school or elementary school at this time.
13. Britney and Madonna made out nine years ago. Britney shaved her head five years ago and broke up with Justin Timberlake 10 years ago. This was also the last time she acted in a film. According to her mother, Britney hasn’t been a virgin in 16 or 17 years. If Britney conceived a child during that alleged encounter, it would have been born during the Clinton administration. Madonna sang “Like a Virgin” almost three decades ago and likewise hasn’t acted in a film in 10 bliss-filled years. Those two people have four biological children between the two of them. If you combined all of these children into one person, they would be 37 and as old as Drew Barrymore and Blossom, who has her PhD now.
14. Christina Aguilera hasn’t been “dirrty” for a decade. Aguilera also hasn’t had a number-one single as a solo artist since 2000, which was the same year that Mandy Moore last released a successful single. Jessica Simpson hasn’t had a song in the Top 20 in nine years. Ricky Martin hasn’t had a song in the top 40 since 2001, the same year the first Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter films came out.
15. Judi Dench hasn’t won an Oscar since 1999, the same year the actress who plays Sally Draper was born. Once perennial nominee Susan Sarandon hasn’t won since 1996, the same year Abigail Breslin was born. Gene Hackman hasn’t won since 1993, the same year that I, Carly and the half-man from Two and a Half Men were born. Hackman hasn’t even acted in a film since 2004, the same year Coco Arquette, Apple Martin and the Gosselin kids were born.
16. Charisma Carpenter (who played Cordelia on Buffy) is now 42. Gabrielle Carteris (Andrea Zuckerman, 90210) is now 51. Keiko Agena (Lane, Gilmore Girls) will be turning 40 next year, and her former castmates Liza Weil (Paris Geller) and Alexis Bledel (Rory) will be turning 36 and 32, respectively.
17. The principal cast of I Love Lucy has been dead a combined 125 years, and the last castmate died two decades ago. The leads of The Honeymooners have been dead for 49 years, except for Joyce Randolph, who will be turning 90 soon. The Cleavers of Leave It to Beaver have been dead a combined 31 years.
18. If you combined the real-life ages of Stymie, Spanky, Alfalfa, Uh-Huh, Waldo and Buckwheat from the movie The Little Rascals, you get 150, and Bug Hall (Alfalfa) will be turning 30 in a few years. The original castmates from the early shorts of Our Gang, which the film was based on, have been dead for a combined 273 years.
19. Anne Rice hasn’t released a Vampire Chronicles novel in almost a decade. R.L. Stine finished the last volume of the original Goosebumps series 15 years ago. The last book in The Babysitters Club series came out 12 years ago and the movie came out 17 years ago. The original writer of The Boxcar Children books has been dead for 32 years. She died during the Carter administration.
20. Miley Cyrus is now engaged, and she is old enough to actually get married. She was born 20 days after Bill Clinton was first elected to office.