Photographs by Sean Chin.

Atomic Lollipop took over the Ontario Science Centre last weekend for three busy days to indulge your inner nerdiness and 90’s nostalgia. Between a scheduled packed with events (hello real-life Mario Kart) and the chance to show off your finest Sailor Moon costume, it was easy to keep busy and there was a whole lot to see.

My Atomic Lollipop experience mostly centred around the musical offerings, with Wooden Wisdom playing a DJ set on Saturday night. Of course, the main attraction to them over other DJs is the fact that Wooden Wisdom involves Elijah Wood. And boy oh boy, do people love Elijah Wood.

Fans in the front row clutched copies of Lord of the Rings novels, shouting out “We love you Elijah!” whenever possible. It was much appreciated when Wood took a couple of minutes post-set to sign various limbs and take a couple of selfies with those in attendance.

As for the music, the DJs (rounded out by the much less Hobbit-y Zach Cowie) brought their best in topical vinyl – including the Super Mario Bros. theme. It was fun to see them and they seemed to be enjoying themselves, too… or at the very least they seemed to be enjoying the laser show going on in the venue.

Of course, if you’re anything like me, then the main draw was undoubtedly the reunion of cartoon pop heroes Prozzäk. The soundtrack to many a Canadian childhood, Atomic Lollipop marked Simon and Milo’s first show in a long, long time. Excitement was high – many in the crowd awaiting the chance to sing along to hits like “Sucks To Be You”, with a special appearance of Lowell, and “www.nevergetoveryou”. 

Luckily, nostalgia is a very powerful thing when it comes to enjoying a performance. Between lip syncing, technical problems, and a near-early shutdown from Toronto’s fire marshals due to a packed room, there were a lot of distractions that nearly derailed Prozzäk’s return to the stage. But for all the negatives that could be brought up, I also need to stress the point that it was still overwhelmingly fun.

Playing behind giant cartoon head stands, Jay Levine (Simon) and James Bryan McCollum (Milo) were quick to pull out the staples of the Prozzäk discography – instantly launching the crowd back into the late 90’s and early 2000’s. They also threw out tiny Simon and Milo dolls to eager, outstretched hands. Sadly I missed my opportunity to pluck one of these from the air, but those that took one home got a pretty great souvenir.

There was also the introduction of a new song about a pussycat: giving us all plenty of hope that maybe – just maybe – we’ll get more of their campy Europop stylings in the years to come. For anyone that remembers sitting down in front of their television to watch YTV’s the Hit List, this is good news indeed. Give it some more time and they’ll be able to work out the kinks that plagued their return – and hopefully look a little less stressed about the entire situation.

A video posted by Sean Chin (@seanchin) on