Singer Jewel gets dressed up for prom at Bulgari in 1996.
Season: 8 Episode: 49
Title: Prom Edition
Original Airdate: 5/20/96
Appearances: Jewel, Selma Blair
MUSIC AND FASHION: JEWEL GETS A PROM UPGRADE
Remember Jewel’s origin story? Before her debut album, Pieces of You, went FIFTEEN TIMES PLATINUM, she grew up in Alaska, was super-poor, had an outhouse, and had to busk for money. Well, she also didn't get to go to prom and it’s why this Pygmalion transformation is compelling. Jewel goes to Manolo, a boutique named Anna, and diamond mecca — Bulgari (or BVLGARI if you’re going by logo) — and even though you know that the jewelry has to be returned (because you’ve seen Pretty Woman), you can’t help but wonder if she got to keep the other stuff. (Is this the televised precursor to the gifting suite?) It’s great to see Jewel’s taste across the board. I hope she made off with the three pairs of shoes because putting that necklace back had to hurt.
+ WATCH JEWEL GOES PROM SHOPPING
POP CULTURE AND FASHION: SELMA BLAIR’S PROM PSA
Actors Anson Scoville and Selma Blair get ready for the prom in 1996.
In this faux ’50s instructional video purporting to demystify prom, the things you notice straightaway is that actress Selma Blair is in it, and that she’s a tiny, baby child. The delivery is a little hokey, but the service elements are actually fantastic. I can totally imagine being a girl and hoping my date would watch it in advance, because the advice is sound: Dudes should absolutely wear a tux; you should practice dancing and walking in heels; you should opt for a wrist corsage instead of a pin; and you need to make the call on whether or not to kiss your date based on how receptive he is to handholding and whether he laughed at your jokes. All solid.
It’s funny because part of me thinks this is all hideously outdated and that kids nowadays are no longer this innocent because of sexting and being on Facebook from the second they’re born, but for each 11-year-old girl in my Brooklyn neighborhood that dresses like a 27-year-old woman, there must be a young lady who never wears heels. And guys who may be able to download as much free porn as they want may not know a single thing about how to tell whether or not a girl likes them. I choose to think this corny piece endures because I am a million years old and this sort of good, clean fun makes me smile.
+ WATCH SELMA BLAIR PROM TIPS
DEMOCRATIZING STYLE: THINGS THAT ARE COOL AND THINGS THAT SUCK
Things That Suck For Prom in 1996.
The marketwork on this is also prom-themed, and while things like “Comme des Garçons” sneaker loafers merit a bit of side eye (what kid can afford them or cares enough to buy them?), I do love that there’s the equally unattainable but awesome inclusion of a Motorola Startec mini phone. Retro technology’s cool because it sucks.
+ WATCH THINGS THAT ARE COOL AND THINGS THAT SUCK
POP CULTURE AND FASHION: 'SEVENTEEN' MAGAZINE'S PROM SHOOT
For the latest prom trends, we go on location in San Diego with Seventeen magazine to check out cowl neck dresses, full-length pouf skirts and bias-cut silhouettes in fabrics from chiffon to satin to velvet. There are a couple of tux alternatives shown in festive textures and accessories cover the right necklace for your neckline and the power of a single cocktail ring.
+ WATCH 'SEVENTEEN' MAGAZINE'S PROM SHOOT