The world in the year 1990

Every year has its moments; things that make it unique or some small act that will help those who lived through it remember it fondly or, perhaps in a negative way.

Advertisement

The year 1990 was no different. It was the start of a new decade that would see the internet start to take over the world, music would drift into several different genres, movies would be released making their mark on cinema forever, there was even an earthquake in London.

Advertisement

So with that in mind, we will take you through the year 1990 focusing on events of interest across the world.

Advertisement

January to April 1990

The year started with Glasgow being the European Capital of Culture as the Scottish city prepared for a year of hosting events that would help bring investment and regeneration. Glasgow was the sixth European city to be granted this status.

Advertisement

The film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was released into cinemas and was a huge box office success. In fact, it became the highest-grossing independent movie of all time. On a budget of just $13.5 million, it would bring in over $200 million and caught the imagination of kids everywhere.

Advertisement

In February, Nintendo brought out Super Mario Brothers 3 in North America to unprecedented success. The game shipped 17.28 million copies making it one of the most successful games of all time.

Advertisement

In April, the US conducted a huge census in order to find out the population of the country. The extensive survey eventually revealed that the United States had a population of more than 248 million people.

Advertisement

The Poll tax started in England to mass protest that would end up having severe political consequences for Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. As a headline policy in her manifesto, those wanting to abolish it knew they could not do so while Thatcher was still Prime Minister. She was challenged and won the first vote but resigned to be replaced by John Major after 11 years in power.

Advertisement

May to August 1990

In May, the third installment of the Back to the Future series was released in the cinemas. Universal had made changes to their opening logo for the first time in 27-years as part of the movies opening credits. The film was the final part of a famous trio of movies and grossed over $240 million at the box office.

Advertisement

In June, the FIFA World Cup began in Italy as West Germany would go on to win their third title. The competition was famous from an England point of view as the Three Lions made it all the way to the semi-final, their best effort since winning the completion in 1966, only to lose on penalties when both Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle missed vital spot-kicks.

Advertisement
The world in the year 1990

Excalibur Casino by popejon2 (CC BY 2.0)

Meanwhile, in Las Vegas, the famous Excalibur casino and hotel opened on the strip. Upon opening it was the largest hotel in the world containing 4,000 rooms across a 70-acre site which was amazing at the time. In the modern era, fans of gambling are blessed with a wealth of options with a number of online casinos competing for business. They entice new customers with some high-value casino bonuses, such as the one found on the Oddschecker website. These offers include such things as £50 cash upon registration or free spins. Excaliber, on the other hand, offered a unique medieval-themed experience which was greeted with huge excitement when it was opened in June 1990.

In July, Nintendo of American launched the first-ever Final Fantasy title on NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) which became the first instalment of a long-running series of games for publishers Square. The brand has now seen over 144 million copies of their games sold worldwide and they are still releasing new titles with Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringer released in July 2019.

On the 01 July, Germany was reunified as the economies of East and West become one and the Deutsche Mark became the official currency of the East as well. The internal border that had existed since the end of WWII in 1945, ceased to function.

The film Ghost was also released during the summer starring Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore. The movie was a huge success, finishing as 1990’s highest-grossing movie with over $550 million being brought in at the box office.

September to December 1990

In September, Celine Dion released her first-ever English language album, Unison, in the USA starting a successful run of albums for the singer.

Pizza Hut would open its first restaurants in both the Soviet Union and China marking a relaxation of controls by both countries. This was the beginning of some major changes in how the two nations interacted across the world. McDonald’s would open their first premises in China later in the year.

In October, Tim Berners-Lee would begin work on the World Wide Web which would change the world forever. His idea would usher in a new era of information sharing and business growth that allowed people to access things like never before.

In November, Margaret Thatcher would resign as the Prime Minister of Great Britain after 11 years in power with John Major taking over. In the same month, the iconic movie Home Alone was released into the cinemas making actor Macaulay Culkin an overnight star while becoming a commercial success.

In early December the worker on the Channel Tunnel would hit a landmark point as workers from both France and Britain would meet 40m below the seabed thus establishing the first land connection between the countries in 8,000 years.

Finally, Cliff Richard’s Saviour Day would be the Christmas number one in the UK.

Emma C
Freelance Writer