Boy bands, girl groups, and other puppets
From time to time the music industry came up with something new that they thought was innovative, and in the late 1980s it was the wave of boy bands and girl groups that should dominate teen pop in the 1990s. If you’re old enough, then you probably still remember acts such as New Kids On The Block, Boyz II Men, Take That, Backstreet Boys, NSYNC, the Spice Girls, and Westlife. Such teen groups don’t write or produce their own music, they’re usually being casted, which means that the A&R division or their producer simply puts them together while they usually have no common past. Such groups always existed, even back in the 1960s (think of the Monkees or the Supremes for example), and some of them actually made really good music – but since the 1980s, this was no longer the case.
What changed in the late 1980s and in the 1990s was that those groups were heavily pushed by major record companies, with teens and kids targeted as primary audience. Those groups consisted of different characters of boys or girls, those characters being defined by both their looks and their behaviour. They were purely commercial products, their music was targeted at teens, and they were mostly hated by everyone else. They were like the Monkees or the Supremes if you want, minus all of the talent and quality. Every adult with a minimum of intellect seemed to dislike boy bands and girl groups in the 1990s, but back then nobody expected the evil things to come in the 2000s, namely the sheer mass of brainless and talentless puppets that would dominate the charts in the 21st century.