From 'Thriller' to Snooki: 30 years of MTV
August 1st, 2011
01:46 PM ET

From 'Thriller' to Snooki: 30 years of MTV

Thirty years ago, a network that's now synonymous with pop culture and providing some of the best entertainment of the century was born.

Although we've lost count of how many jaw-dropping moments and reality TV shows MTV has produced, the network has managed to hold our attention, even though most viewers have gone from anticipating the latest music video to watching what the cast of "Jersey Shore" will do next.

Take a look back through MTV's history, as it's evolved from an authority on what the cool kids are watching to what some would call a highly addictive, albeit perhaps mindless source of entertainment.

1. MTV launches with the Buggles' "Video Killed the Radio Star"

The Buggles' "Video Killed the Radio Star" became the first music video to premiere at midnight on August 1, 1981, after one of the creators, John Lack, spoke the iconic words, "Ladies and gentleman, rock and roll."

2. Michael Jackson's "Thriller" music video

The King of Pop's 14-minute video - which has become one of the most influential music videos of all-time - aired on MTV December 2, 1983.  The video even won a Grammy in 1985.

3. Video Music Awards with Madonna's "Like a Virgin"

Before Kanye West famously interrupted Taylor Swift, the world gasped as Madonna rolled around the stage in a wedding dress singing "Like a Virgin" at the first-ever Video Music Awards. Her 1984 performance seems tame by today's standards, but the song inspired controversy - and huge record sales - from its beginning.

4. Cindy Crawford on "House of Style"

Hosted by supermodel Cindy Crawford, "House of Style" fed into the fascination of the modeling industry. The show premiered on January 1, 1989 and although it ran for 11 years, it started losing viewers after the gorgeous and poised Crawford left in 1995.

5. "Beavis and Butt-head"

The obnoxious cartoon "Beavis and Butt-head" - known for taking everything a step too far - premiered on MTV March 8, 1993 and ran until 1998. Although its many fans mourned the relatively short-lived series, the show is set to come back in October 2011 with new episodes.

6. "The Real World"

Who knew that throwing a group of strangers together in a house could be so fascinating? The mother of all reality shows - "The Real World" - began in 1992 and hasn't faltered since. The show, heading into its 26th season, set the tone and structure for countless reality shows since then - dealing with teens who wanted fame, drama and, of course, sex.

7. Nirvana on "MTV Unplugged"

Although "MTV Unplugged" first aired in 1989, it was the November 1993 recording with Nirvana that cemented it in music history. Frontman Kurt Cobain and the band opted for an acoustic, more intimate performance than the previous concert-like iterations of the show. Sadly, five months after the session, Cobain committed suicide.

8. "Jackass"

With its skull-and-crutches logo, 2000's "Jackass" showcased what would be uploaded to YouTube in seconds today. Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, Brandon Dicamillo, Ryan Dunn, Steve-O and the rest of the cast risked their lives and sanity to film crazy stunts, ranging from bull-fighting to setting one's hair on fire. It might not have been responsible, but its audience loved it.

9. Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and Madonna

The divas of the pop world collided - literally - at the 2003 VMAs, when Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera paid homage to Madonna with a reprise of "Like a Virgin." Madonna herself joined them on stage as she kissed both Aguilera and Spears, sending shock waves through everyone's television screens.

10. "MADE"

So you're the unpopular kid in school who wants to be crowned the homecoming king? The reality show "MADE" was the stuff of dreams, as it promised to transform and coach teens to meet goals, ranging from becoming a rugby player to getting a first date.

11. "16 and Pregnant"

It was somewhat of a grim departure from the "Jackass"- and "The Real World"-style reality shows, but "16 and Pregnant" quickly gained a following after being broadcast on June 11, 2009, showing teen mothers and their challenges in having children. In fact, MTV launched the show's spin-off "Teen Mom" in December of that year.

12. "Jersey Shore"

No matter what controversy it causes, MTV consistently manages to pervade American culture with its programming, as is the case with "Jersey Shore," a reality show that follows a semi-Italian American cast and their hyped-up drama and wild partying. It's hard to imagine that before December 3, 2009, we wouldn't have recognized the Snooki hair bump or The Situation's abs.

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Filed under: MTV VMAs • television

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    November 18, 2012 at 10:37 am | Report abuse |
  2. 25 amp fuse

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    May 29, 2012 at 6:46 am | Report abuse |
  3. Tatiana

    I miss coming home from school and catching the last 20 minutes of TRL 🙁

    August 8, 2011 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  4. richie

    MTV sux

    August 3, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Natasha

    How do MTV air the VMAs when they don't show music videos anymore?! Boy I miss the old MTV.

    August 3, 2011 at 9:10 am | Report abuse |
  6. Vekara

    MTV retro...that would make a lot of money. No new money put into it. Just play all old episodes of the music and shows of MTV. That would be awesome.

    August 2, 2011 at 5:20 pm | Report abuse |
  7. the_dude

    What???? There used to be music videos on MTV? I thought it was a reality tv channel for teens.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  8. bezerkur

    i remember as a early tween watching only mtv and praying to see a ozzy video and got my wish when they finally played crazy train. it was almost a spiritual experiance. ozzy wasnt very popular then with mainstream. most the time they played top 40 crap and we get stoned and laughed at them but at least it was music videos and they would show concerts at nights on the weekends. videos have also morphed to a 1 to 2 second shots all through out the videos in almost every video. like quick snapshots. its as they're saying the artist actually sucks so we have to do perfect snapshots to make them look good. i barely watch mtv anymore for obvious reasons that its a teen channel. it just amazes me how fake, materialistic and superficial the programing is. i imagine my parents felt the same way. man i miss them days.

    August 2, 2011 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
  9. Ines

    They used to be so relevant back in the days and feature real talent now it's like Stupidland to the extreme.

    August 2, 2011 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
  10. PaulieJ

    All I read was the headline. And while I'm not big fan of Michael Jackson (respect his musical legacy, yes, but not a fan) I just have to think that 30 years from now when I'm in my retirement, people will still be commenting in musical circles about how great an album Thriller was/is and have zero clue who the heck Snooki is.
    To MTV, you started something great (music television) and years later you started some crap (reality TV with The Real World.) While some reality shows have had their staying power and indeed may well be remembered a decade or two down the road, I don't think any of them will stand the test of time that great musical performances will.

    August 2, 2011 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
  11. Rob

    MTV is just a sad, money-grubbing version of what it once was. A station that once made a living on popular music of several genres and shows that questioned social norms and values is now a carnival of bad behavior.... playing up every ounce of drama that it can capture on camera.

    I haven't watched MTV regularly in well over a decade. So sad to see that so many still are. Why change when you are making money? Quality isn't a virtue to MTV.

    August 2, 2011 at 9:06 am | Report abuse |
  12. olive

    30 years of MTV.
    28 years of horse manure.

    August 2, 2011 at 7:45 am | Report abuse |
  13. JC

    Dear MTV, I was wondering if I could get my "M" back... you know, since you're not using it. Sincerely, _usic.

    August 2, 2011 at 7:44 am | Report abuse |
  14. Frosty

    Well I still like MTV for the most part.. And for those of you who think my generation ruined it (those born between 1989 and 1999) get over it!! Its life.. I guarantee ill be saying the same thing in 15 years! Reality TV turned out to be cheaper with better ratings so the network went with it.. Plus who really wants to see a bunch of people all dancing the same way to beats that have been rearranged? Its boring!

    August 2, 2011 at 4:37 am | Report abuse |
  15. BigEasyinNewOrleans

    You can thank the Beatles for music videos.

    August 2, 2011 at 3:36 am | Report abuse |
  16. daverrr2001

    now in sted of videos, they have a nonstop G#Y peomotions, MTV=multi tra$$y versions...bow down to your are eternal beings on the hwy to he%%...turn or burn...

    August 2, 2011 at 2:56 am | Report abuse |
  17. LoJenk

    August 2, 2011 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
  18. gggg

    Michael Jackson is dead, and that is sad. However, I wish Snooki and the entire cast of Jersey Shore would please die soon and stop tormenting people with that awful show. To be completely honest, if MlessTV were to shutdown tomorrow I would probably be quite pleased; just so a whole array of terrible shows would disappear and cease turning minds to green jello.

    August 2, 2011 at 1:18 am | Report abuse |
  19. holycrap i wanna die

    "Thriller" to snorki

    wow, how low has MTV gone

    very very very sad

    August 2, 2011 at 12:28 am | Report abuse |
  20. jc

    MTV has gone from an incredible source of music and music news to complete and udder BS. Pretty much all there spewing out is crap. MTV, get back to music and quit exploiting ignorant, stupid people and making some of the most vial,JS, stars! Get REAL again, right now you SUCK! They have a word in music for you, "SELLOUT"!

    August 2, 2011 at 12:27 am | Report abuse |
  21. tracie

    Snookie eats her own poo. I would like her to squat over me and leave a nice steamy pile of poo on my chest.

    August 1, 2011 at 10:20 pm | Report abuse |
  22. soggynode

    Imagine old school MTV in HD on a 60" flat screen with good sound. Sometimes, getting creativity and technology in the same place at the same time is hard to do.

    August 1, 2011 at 10:17 pm | Report abuse |
  23. The Real LC

    Where is Laguna Beach and The Hills on this? I mean those were HUGE shows in that generation and certainly helped keep MTV relevant BEFORE Jersey Shore + really created a genre that did not exist before right?

    August 1, 2011 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Real Old

    I guess the mtv lovers must be stuck to the tv screens and not here supporting their channel. Do remember, people who value mtv don't value much. I bet they all have maxed out credit cards and no jobs.

    August 1, 2011 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
  25. kdub

    MTV sucks now....period! I remember when it actually played MUSIC videos now it's just a bunch of reality TV crap!

    August 1, 2011 at 9:32 pm | Report abuse |
  26. ScorpJam

    MTV destroyed Rock music, and has brainwashed today's teenagers into being disrespectul, uneducated, arrogant, lowlife – aspiring m&th3rf*cer$. MTV should be destroyed for their contribution to the decline in American cultural standards.

    August 1, 2011 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Cynicism Incarnate

    We, the people, allowed MTV to self destruct itself into this load of b.s. with nothing but reality shows that for the most part, are anything but real because we cared more for "Real World", "Road Rules", & "Jersey Shore" than we did about the music. You're welcome America. You now have what you deserve; a steaming pile of excrement fed to you on a regular basis that you thoroughly enjoy. Oh, and the fact that Snooki and "the SItuation" are famous for absolutely no valid reason whatsoever makes me fear for our society in general. We're pretty much farked.

    August 1, 2011 at 8:58 pm | Report abuse |
  28. shetay

    MTV has fallen. The slide began a while back, but when "Snooki" becomes a CELEBRITY for exhibiting bad, outrageous, uneducated, and downright STUPID behavior...the mighty MTV has definitely fallen. R.I.P.

    August 1, 2011 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seriously?

      Are you kidding? It was all downhill once MTV realized people care more about "reality" shows than music. Cue the original Real World.

      August 1, 2011 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  29. SomewhatAllKnowing

    I remember watching Young Ones and Andy Warhol's Fifteen Minutes, and Austin Stories...and videos! I haven't watched MTV in 10 years.

    August 1, 2011 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Susie Tew

    MTV killed music videos and thus itself.

    August 1, 2011 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Jeff

    I thought Madonna only kissed Britney??? Also, MTV used to mean Music Television, the acronym needs to be changed.

    August 1, 2011 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Charles

    MTV was the very reason why America people are more stupid than the rest of the world.

    August 1, 2011 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Mo

    They should change their name to RTV. It's all that reality garbage. Sell outs!

    August 1, 2011 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
  34. harbharb

    Where are videos being shown besides on YouTube these days? At least they've given work to Oompa Loompas.
    Gym, tan, laundry!

    August 1, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
  35. Jagged

    MTV Blows!

    I have it blocked on my TV.

    Ugh, suckage times ten.

    August 1, 2011 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
  36. DC-JD

    For their birthday, they should get...a NAME CHANGE! Call them 'BS-TV'...yeah, I said that! See, I grew up with these guys and remembered when they used to actually play these things called, um, I think they were called 'videos'...and I aslo seem to remember them being an engine for social change that was second to none!

    Dude, what happened to you guys!?!?! 🙁

    August 1, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Willy Brown

    Gosh it used to be a blast to watch Music Television when all they played was hit music videos now they produce booger eating morons shows and trailer trash ½ pints with the intelligentsia of a ground hog saying “party on dudes” . Yeah they made new music channels but they too were turned into booger eating moron stations. The Dead Kennedy’s had it right “MTV get off the air!”

    August 1, 2011 at 7:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • DC-JD

      Brother, I couldn't have said it better! What HAPPENED to these guys?!?!? I haven't watched this channel in sooo long. No reason to, unless I want my IQ to drop–and I have plenty of ways to do that which are much funner

      August 1, 2011 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  38. gizmoid

    It just gets worse and worse. What an embarrassment. Not a happy birthday to you MTV.

    August 1, 2011 at 7:10 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Mike T

    MTV has ruined our culture. MTV is keeping our society dumb. Do something about it and quit watching it.

    August 1, 2011 at 6:59 pm | Report abuse |
  40. SciTech

    MTV has become what it set out to not be. MTV (originally) wanted to change the way we watched television and listen/watch to MUSIC. It has now become a station showing what the corporate bigwigs THINK the people (mostly teens) want to see. They are sell-outs. Plain and simple. MTV was about a revolution in how things were. It is now a traitor to fans who like music. Whoever owns MTV (& the spinoff stations) should be ashamed.

    August 1, 2011 at 6:52 pm | Report abuse |
  41. danny bonaduce

    well one thing I can say about MTV is it is big on G ay rights. we all know situation is a ~ho mo~ so score one for the dick smokers.

    August 1, 2011 at 6:38 pm | Report abuse |
  42. hansbronson

    MTV doesn't care what we think about it. All they look at is the ratings. Look at what Nick at Night and TV land use to be and what it has become now.

    August 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
  43. jujubeans

    Look at Snookie kissing that guys belly! She can't wait to get in private and go lower.

    August 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big Richard

      I'd like to be on the receiving end of a snookie job!

      August 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big Wally

      and her bewbs are big enough for one of those jobs!

      August 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • tracie

      I want Snookie to leave a steamy loaf on my belly. I would play with it and rub it all over my face like Al Jolson.

      August 1, 2011 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
  44. DW Alexander

    MTV needs to go back to its' original roots, but that's asking too much, isn't it?

    August 1, 2011 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Mike

    Wow! Did you see that great new World Premier music video on MTV last night?

    Me neither.

    August 1, 2011 at 6:06 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Michae l J.

    Thirty years, and, what, only 10 of those years worth mentioning? The rest is just worthless, useless crap.

    August 1, 2011 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
  47. MTVn't

    Anybody remember MTV used to play whole concerts Wednesday and Saturday nights? Our family didn't have MTV quite yet; I'd go to my neighbor's and watch live concerts from the likes of The Eurythmics & Level 42... Man, that was awesome.

    August 1, 2011 at 5:55 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Mike

    I no longer want my MTV.

    August 1, 2011 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
  49. jillmarie

    I loved House Of Style! I forgot about that one- Cindy Crawford was such an icon. I also loved 120 minutes with all the alternative music. I loved the countdowns they used to have, and the VJ's/MTV personalities. OK< I didn't like all the VJ's, but the concept was cool.
    MTV can keep their pregnant teens (I'm pregnant and haven't been a teen for a decade, does my pregnancy seem less cool then theirs, lol) and Jersey Shore with a cast that's not from NJ.
    It's OK to evolve, and times change, but with these shows, the network hasn't, IMO.

    August 1, 2011 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  50. I miss my MTV

    It took thirty years to go from one of the most cutting edge channels on TV to one of the absolute biggest pieces of crap. MTV please die a quiet death and come back as the MTV we all loved from the 80's!!

    August 1, 2011 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Jon

    MTV is still on? The first video ever shown was right "Video did kill the radio star".

    August 1, 2011 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Gumby

    MTV died many years ago.

    August 1, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  53. VoVo

    Someone must know someone at MTV, send them a link to these comments!

    August 1, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  54. Joshua Ludd

    Yes, and much like other 30 year olds... getting more and more out of touch with the youth with every passing year.

    MTV Mindless, Tepid, and Vapid.

    August 1, 2011 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Hank

    Thanks MTV, for spending the last 15 years bringing the trashiest people you could find into the public eye.

    August 1, 2011 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  56. rachel

    I miss the old days of MTV...when the "king" ruled the channel...........MJ...........

    August 1, 2011 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Brian

    I'm sorry, but MTV died years ago. There's nothing on it but useless drivel that makes me want to put a power drill to my eyes every time I flip past it on TV. There's a reason they don't call it Music Television anymore; there's more music playing on The Weather Channel than there is on MTV. It's ridiculous.

    August 1, 2011 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
  58. ProperVillain

    As a child of the 80's ( I was in my teens) I really miss the old days of MTV when it was all about the videos and personalities of the VJ's (JJ Jackson and Goodman were the coolest. I still have a crush on Martha Quinn). C'mon MTV, bring back the music!!!!

    August 1, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
  59. FerdinandIX

    30 years of frivolous is dead.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  60. Cat

    I watched MTV faithfully, religiously in the 80s, watched all of Beavis and Butthead in the early 90s, then.... phttttt. Haven't even checked in since probably '95. Nothing there worth watching since then.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
  61. steeve-o

    They said Nirvana's Unplugged show was "an acoustic, more intimate performance than the previous concert-like iterations of the show. " where did they get that info? Remember Eric Clapton Unplugged? Layla?
    It was out of character for Nirvana, not for Unplugged. That's what the show was, an acoustic concert by hard rock artists.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      Not to mention the wonderful acoustic rendition of "Living on a Prayer"and "Wanted Dead or Alive" by Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora at the MTV Video Music awards in... 1988 (or 1898?) before Unplugged aired, and was, from my understanding, one of the performances that actually kicked off the series.

      August 1, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  62. Mike

    MTV stopped being relevant eons ago.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
  63. comeon

    Back then we watched MTV b/c of the music and we wanted to be like the stars we saw on their shows. Now we watch because we want to feel better about ourselves by watching how utterly pathetic people can be – and how little it takes to be famous and rich.
    What once was a preset favorite channel is now a blackhole... way to divide by zero MTV

    August 1, 2011 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  64. JeffB65

    MTV has become its own version of Frankenstein and is nothing like the vision that initiated the network. True videos ARE not as big a deal in the music industry today as they once were ... so obviously, they had to evolve, but MTV could at least be more about THE MUSIC and not the REALITY CHANNEL. They've devolved in the last 30 years!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 1, 2011 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
  65. Luke

    MTV was pretty bad to begin with unless you were into mainstream Pop/Rock.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lman

      So yes The Breeders,Lush,Prefab Sprout,Toad The Wet Sprocket,Live were all mainstream?......nice try

      August 1, 2011 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Jeff

    I would love it if MTV just played music videos. The only time I ever see music videos anymore is on You Tube.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:31 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Thomas

    As I scrolled down the article, it became so apparent how steadily MTV had deteriorated over the years. It was a force to be reckoned with throughout the 1980s and it peaked in the early 90s, but ever since then, it's been an ever-accelerating downhill slide.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Callie75

      It did started to go down hill in the mid 90's. So much crap on that station now, what a waste.

      August 2, 2011 at 6:52 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Yo!

    What about "Yo MTV Raps!!"

    August 1, 2011 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • steeve-o

      Yeah boy! Fab 5 Freddy and Ed Lover baby! THAT show was the JAMM!!! Best thing about MTV ever!!!

      August 1, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  69. Roger Ogilivy Thornhill

    "What happened to integrity? I don't see it on MTV. All I see is choreography - and I'll never be a dancer." – Goldfinger (from "Spokesman")

    August 1, 2011 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
  70. leb

    With youtube in the world now. you dont have to sit and watch a buch of main stream crap. Main stream big busness = crap MTV can just fade into the sunset :).. From what I can remember it just caused a bunch of social pressures at schools mindless people being told whats cool and whom.. MTV you can die :)..

    August 1, 2011 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
  71. curt

    The general realization I've come to is CNN is a Propaganda pumping machine....
    Probably payed for the show Glee to start up.. Not only that, its probably Jewish people. Since some think they are better then average person.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
  72. RS

    They went downhill when they stopped showing music videos. That real world crap has an audience I guess, but I just don't know anyone that admits to watching it. Maybe you have to be under 25 years old to get it. Anyway...MTV sucks.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:19 pm | Report abuse |
  73. erich2112x

    But music doesn't factor into the equation anymore so why keep calling it Music Television? Why not call it, " A Bunch of Spoiled Kids Playing House and Throwing Up on The Sidewalk TV? " You gave music an outlet to reach millions and then set it off a cliff. Get back to the music, there's enough reality there to fill all your prime time slots, but get back to the music.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Rob

    Too bad MTV sucks now. Loved it when there were music videos on it. I still remember sitting around with all my friends watching the very first music video. I avoid it like the plague that it is now.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
  75. curt

    I'm sick of CNN sucking off other corporations... Corporations have no love for people just for other corporations.. We could design computers to replace humans all together.. And we call all just kill ourselves and let the computers take over... That's where were headed with the morons in charge.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Broncomax

    Youtube is the new MTV

    August 1, 2011 at 4:10 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Curt

    Except MTV didn't even want to play Michael Jackson's stuff when he was black.. They are bigots... There whole network is a scam... Owned by the people we all hate. Of course they won't admit it, because they are liars too.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
  78. phearis

    Why is this channel even called MTV anymore?!?! When was the last time they even showed a music video. It's been years, if not over a decade.

    August 1, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lydia

      It doesn't stand for "Music" anymore; And, they don't care what we think because none of us lamenting the death of MTV are 14 years old, we are all past their age demographic....Sad.

      August 1, 2011 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Juan

      MTV should be called EMPTY V.

      August 1, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Andrew x80

    maybe I shoukd write a new song to kick off the next 30 years "Reality Show Killed the Video Star" !!!!

    August 1, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  80. FLGuy

    Ran home everyday afterschool to watch MTV – ran to school every morning to talk about videos on MTV – its was a peaceful circle of life for an 80s high schooler – I miss my heavy rotation of Human League, Depeche Mode, VJs, astronauts, and proudly cheer – I WANT MY MTV (back)!

    August 1, 2011 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  81. Mysteria Kiito

    I miss the old days when MTV actually lived up to it's name. I blame today's generation for ruining everything.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  82. arale norimaki

    MTV=More Trash Vision

    August 1, 2011 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  83. dutterman

    MTV killed the video star

    August 1, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  84. nino

    from Videos to Garbage.. I havent watched mtv in about 5 years now.. and probably never will again... hopefully it just goes away.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  85. USA

    Can't believe MTV has lasted this long. They s.u.c.k.! I remember they actually used to play music videos now all you get is this reality crap.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  86. someoneelse

    Like almost everything else, it got uglier and out of touch as it got older.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
  87. chucky

    From ruining the radio – to ruining music. To another 30years of big label crap!

    August 1, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  88. Christopher

    MTV destroyed itself. MTV was a huge part of me growing up. I used to stay up late to watch 120 minutes. It was the soundtrack of my life. THEN CAME REALITY TV. Which I despise with a passion. then MTV went to CRAP that had nothing to do with music. Even VH1 now has followed suit. I;d be interested to know how many people watched the first hour replay last night and then how many promptly turned it off again for good when jaca66came on after that. In my mind it;s a neon sign advertising why MTv is a dead relic now.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  89. Melissa

    Mtv used to be good. Now its crap.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
  90. FrauSchmitd

    Love the "semi-italian" quote. These kids do not look/act Italian at all. But again, that is all you get whenever you go to an Italian restaurant in America. Not even close to the real thing.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • dirtystone

      I think it is funny that snooky is a Chilean, and from a country of beautiful latina women, and yet wants to throw that heritage away and pretend to be an Italian. What a dimwit.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Syndrome Zed

      @dirtystone – The Chileans are probably pretty happy with it....and I tend to think the real Snooki reminds me more of the creature from the South Park episode than a hot Latina woman, so on Chile's behalf, I'm gonna go with "lucky us!"

      August 1, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
  91. Puck

    I liked the Real World.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
  92. Matt

    I want to know what losers are watching that fat pig Snooki and the rest of those punks from Jersey?

    August 1, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
  93. James in Space

    Like CNN, it went down hill and fast trying to cater to the limited attention span audience.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  94. Matt

    From Thriller to Snookie. From Classic to Classless, respectively.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  95. Clavius

    There was a time when MTV used to be a very cutting-edge and groundbreaking channel which in it's day, changed the face of popular entertainment. (one's own personal opinion will determine whether that's a good or bad thing).

    A new "world premiere" music video on MTV used to be very exciting and quite an event back in the good-ol days, and dozens of great artists got their start there. Had they stayed focused on the music, they could still be a venue for lots of great talent to get exposure.

    Unfortunately now it shows nothing but the lowest form of trash imaginable aimed at the lowest common denominator. It's nothing more than the "Reality TV" network. It's such a shame, because it really had a chance to rise above all the crap.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • TheresaK

      I remember when MTV was new and good with the old VJs. I really hate reality TV, all the fighting, crying, woe-is-me pregnant or irresponsible wannabes. I got sick of hearing it from my office. I cancelled my DirecTV, which in addition to saving me 40-something a month, got my kids off their asses and they found jobs to satisfy their boredom. Now they have their own music and YouTube. Thank GOD.

      August 2, 2011 at 9:48 am | Report abuse |
  96. Theresa

    They forgot Daria on their list. It's one of my favorite TV shows of all time.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
  97. pk

    MTV created the monstrosity that is Reality TV with the "Real World." If they had any integrity, they would either change their name to RTV or go back to featuring music videos.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lydia

      Yes, they did, but it seemed innovative and different and that time (and it was!). NOW, it is the same thing pumped out over and over, reality crappola....I'd kill for 24 hours of videos.

      August 1, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  98. Tom Mc

    I have always thought MTV began its decline when Michael Jackson and Prince danced in their videos. From that point on everyone had to have dancing in their videos. It became "if there's no dancing, we won't play your video!" When I saw Pat Benatar trying to dance to "Love Is A Battlefield" I knew it was over. The music became unimportant. Should have changed the name to DTV at that point.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Syndrome Zed

      Well, I don't think that really was the downfall, though I did complain a lot about the "impromptu breaking into a dance routine for no reason" schtick back in the "old days" of the 90's too. 🙂 But there were still a lot of creative, non-Bollywoodized videos (cause let's face it, those dance-intensive vids were a lot like Bollywood movies) – look at REM's Losing My Religion, Stone Temple Pilots (Sour Girl, perfect if you thought Teletubbies were really evil), and Alice in Chains' Man in the Box for examples.

      And some of those dance-y videos were stupidly fun – heck, Hall n Oates probably got awards from Wisconsin for their video cheese. 😀

      August 1, 2011 at 5:52 pm | Report abuse |
  99. Seer

    I knew back in the 80's that MTV would eventually turn to crap, i.e. rap & reality, so I began making VHS tapes (hey, like I said, it was the 80's) in the 90's while MTV was still playing metal, hard rock, & hair bands. I have all that good music to transfer to DVD now. Anyone wanna buy copies?

    August 1, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  100. DGReed

    MTV once was cool, when they showed music. Now it is a joke, and a bad one at that......

    August 1, 2011 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  101. Todd

    Anyone notice how the icon used, the astronaut with the MTV flag, was an early creation before reality TV set in? I watched Pauly Shore more than Jersey Shore. Geez MTV, what happened?

    August 1, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  102. Victor

    Ah, MTV, Íf your creators knew then what you would eventually turn into today, would they have even bothered?

    August 1, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  103. TRH

    MTV has been destroyed by rap and hip hop. I haven't watched it or VH1 for years.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Furious Styles

      Uhh, You lost everybody when you singled out rap/hip hop. They were fine till the started playing with TV PERIOD.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Helena22

      You're an idiot. Like every other genre of music there has certainly been a decline in quality, but early Hip Hop showed the creative genius of urban poetry.

      August 1, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • 80sgirl

      I seem to recall a little show called Yo! MTV Raps...

      August 1, 2011 at 7:16 pm | Report abuse |
  104. darthesquire

    I am pretty sure MTV died tragically at 27

    August 1, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Frank

      27? Im sorry to say it, but MTV stopped playing music all the way back in 1997. It died at about age 16.

      August 2, 2011 at 8:16 am | Report abuse |
  105. Helena22

    From "thriller" to "snooki" is a testament to how the quality of pop culture has declined at such a disgusted rate.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tevii

      You beat me to it. I cannot agree more....

      August 1, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • J

      Yup. That pretty much sums it up right there.

      From iconic music videos that showcased talent, art, style and creativity.... to, mindless, self-important drivel.

      Seeing it put into such a simple time line highlights the tragedy of it.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ian

      I was about to say the same thing, until I realized how much pleasure I get from watching Jersey Shore 🙂

      August 1, 2011 at 6:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Your Name Here

      A-Freaking-Men. It's sad, really.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  106. Robert

    I want my MTV... back. You know, the one that used to play music videos about 23 hours a day, then gave me an hour of game shows or cartoons? Can I have that one back?

    August 1, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
  107. Vip

    I saw the words, "Like a Virgin" and I immediately thought of that YouTube video, "Like a Boss." LMAO.

    August 1, 2011 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
  108. Vip

    I saw the waords, "Like a Virgin" and I immediately thought of that YouTube video, "Like a Boss." LMAO.

    August 1, 2011 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  109. The Måd Råp3r

    I was going to say how could ODB storming the stage at the MTV VMAs not make the list, then realized he did it at the grammys, badäss.

    August 1, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  110. Boof

    IRemember when MTV actually showed music videos? Ah, the good old days.

    August 1, 2011 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ana L

      I heard a rumor that MTV2 & VH1 used to show music videos at one point also.

      August 1, 2011 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sean


      August 1, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • david

      I remember music videos too... went away with the welcoming of the year 2000 I believe.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Matthew

      When MTV went away from their original music video/ music news format it started the decline of the music industry. We would go out and buy the albums and tapes of the groups we saw on MTV. MTV drove sales, the less videos they showed the less music I bought. Then when the internet came along the coffin was prepared and the nails are being driven home.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Josh

      Me too.

      When exactly did MTV loose its "M" ???

      August 1, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • music fan

      MTV used to be relevant. Then they forgot about the most important thing in their name: MUSIC.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Måd Råp3r

      Lets not kid ourselves, even when they showed videos most of them were of overplayed bubblegum pop. Especially after grunge/gangsta rap tanked, it was wall to wall "Barbie Girl" after 94-95. That's just my opinion, maybe i'm still mad they never gave dance music a chance and walled my people off in the late-night Amp ghetto.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • dirtystone

      I remember that's a shame what it has become, but then that's why they made their other channels that show's videos / music are nothing that will even be remembered in a few years.

      August 1, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Broncomax

      Youtube is the new MTV. Less commercials, the vids you want, when you want. I used to hope MTV (The real one, with music vids) cam back. Now, I just hope it keeps it's hands off youtube.

      August 1, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stu

      Ya, we used to have parties on the early 90's where we would just leave mtv playing in the background. Sometimes we would be playing other music, but leave MTV on muted. Soon after, I started taping the MTV top 100 countdown, editting out the commercials and then just playing that at my parties. Is thriller still the #1 video of all time? I think it shoud still be since no one sill ever invest in a single video again like MJ did for that one.

      August 1, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • ScottySD

      Yeah our beloved MTV was laid to rest as soon as YouTube came around. But I used to watch MTV to discover new music that wasn't played on the radio here from all different genres (except country, just wasn't part of the format I guess). Now I turn to my Pandora app for that. I can't really blame MTV for turning us away. Technology is killing everything that made it great so it's just trying to survive by pandering to simple masses (teeny boppers). I miss you MTV and I still have a crush on Martha Quinn!

      August 1, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • BossJones

      It was a unique channel back in the day. I can't believe they have music awards anymore or do they? It was a good way to see/hear new American and International music. Lose the M you don't deserve it anymore. Fuse has new music. It just isn't the same.

      August 1, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Iglick09

      Sadly 16 and Pregnant and Jersey Shore have become the prime time entertainment for my generation. The people in these shows make Beavis and Butthead look like geniuses. Why do we have to continue making the dumb rich. Spending money on hair products and tanning beds doesnt help the economy very much.

      August 1, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • MindlessTelevision

      Reality TV killed the video star.

      August 1, 2011 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • kelton

      Notice that, here on the 30th anniversary, MTV is showing "Teen Wolf" and some other junk. No retrospective? It is like MTV's only connection to their past is that they still use those still three letters! You'd think there would be all sorts of specials. Instead, we have to find here. Weird.

      August 1, 2011 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • MaryInBoise

      Ah, yes, I remember back in the days of scary hair and parachute pants, when I was a middle school kid and watched MTV every day after school. I think MTV has gone from standing for Music Television to Mediocrity Television. (This article sure hypes up some vapid shows!)

      August 1, 2011 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stephanie

      Mtv is a joke. They show about one hour of videos a day, if that. I'm in my 30s and really wish they'd grow some balls and start showing MUSIC again.

      August 1, 2011 at 9:56 pm | Report abuse |

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