If you were a girl child in the 90’s, you lived for the direct-to-video release of an MK & A party.
Each 30-minute party let you live out your bff fantasies as they played directly to the camera, a.k.a. totally looking right at you because you are bffs and they invited YOU to their party.
But which parties were the best?
Which could you skip out on and which could you not afford to miss?
Fear not friends, The Very Special Blog now contains the definitive ranking of the You’re Invited series:
10. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Costume Party (1998)
This one is really just plain boring. They basically play dress-up the entire time and are like “oooh this is an outfit from the 50’s.” The songs are super-grating even for an MK&A special. I feel like this one was just filler for them to stay on schedule with releasing these VHS tapes.
9. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Birthday Party (1997)
This one is cute, but there’s not much to it. (Well, there’s not much to any of these, but that means there’s even less going on in this one.) The twins have invited their friends over to celebrate their birthday, but they’ve forgotten to make any plans for the party. Like how did you even let it get to this point, girls?? So they spend their time fantasizing about what they can throw together, only to end up going to Six Flags instead.
8. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Hawaiian Beach Party (1996)
This one is primarily just scenes of Hawaii, which makes me really jealous. The songs are much less annoying than some of the other episodes, thankfully. But ultimately, all this episode will do is make you sad you’re not splashing around in the Pacific.
7. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Mall Party (1997)
This is pretty much just one big commercial for the Mall of America. But nothing was cooler than the Mall in the 90’s and the Mall of America was the king of all that. Plus, they’re like actually doing things in the mall. So much of this series is just like “I’m singing a song about doing this thing! And I’m doing some lame choreography!” (which I loved as an eight year-old, so seriously no hate.) But in this episode the girls like destroy some boys from school in mini-golf and then they perform with their band for the entire mall. Pretty sweet.
6. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Christmas Party (1997)
It’s really hard to mess up Christmas. There’s some bad remixes of classic songs, but there are also a lot, a lot of cookies to make up for that. And there’s a song dedicated to skiing. This episode has made me long for winter and I probably ranked it higher than I should have because I love Christmas.
5. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Fashion Party (1999)
I’d like to think the twins pushed for this plot line because they were already budding-designers, over the whole acting thing. One of their friends has an older sister who gives them a tour of her college, Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. Then MK&A get to be in a fashion show. They also start sketching their own designs and learn about how clothing is constructed. I feel like they seem to be genuinely more interested in this than like any other episode, which makes sense because that’s how they make their living these days. Also, it is the 90’s so Mary-Kate’s fashion show outfit is one of those cultural appropriating “Chinese Dresses” that everyone liked to wear. Thankfully, they didn’t give her one of those purses fashioned in the style of a take-out box.
4. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s School Dance Party (2000)
Points for this one actually having a plot. MK&A are stressing because of the school dance. Ashley is worried that her boyfriend will be voted king of SpringDance.com (the title of the event) without her being voted queen, and Mary-Kate is trying to ask out the bad-boy of jr. high. They sing a really, really terrible “rap song.” The choreography is horrible and it seems like everyone learned it at the last minute and can hardly remember the pacing. Also, they must have recruited the supporting cast from Disney because the mermaid kid from The Thirteen Year and the mean-girl from Zenon are both in this. At this point, it’s undeniable that the Olsen Twins are not singers and it’s no longer cute to hear them sing simple songs. You can also tell this must have been an entirely contractual obligation and they do not want to make this video.
3. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Camp Out Party (1998)
In this episode, Mary-Kate shows all of her friends that nature can be fun. Everyone is like really bad at fishing and co-existing with bugs, but she gradually wins them over with some butterfly chasing and marshmallows. Then they get scared of shadows outside their tent and decide to go sit by the fire (after we endure another awful song). Then they get freaked out by noises as they sit by the fire and run back into the tent without putting out the fire. I’m freaking out on behalf of the viewers-at-home by this point, until their mom yells at them to go to bed and says their dad is putting out the fire. It turns out they’ve been camping out in the backyard this whole time. I still think they deserve a lecture from Smokey the Bear on this one though.
2. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Ballet Party (1997)
This one is just so sweet. The ballet numbers are adorable and the songs are 72,000 times better than the rest of the series. Mary-Kate and Ashley take a trip to Lincoln Center to practice ballet and there are some legit ballerinas that you get to see dance too. Also, MK & A are much better at dancing than they are signing. They must kind of like ballet too because they seem a lot more invested in selling this than their lame-choreography in the rest of the series.
1. You’re Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley’s Sleepover Party (1995)
The one that started it all is clearly the best You’re Invited episode. This one is just adorable and makes me miss sleepovers. Maybe when I get married, I’ll have a sleepover bachelorette party instead of going out to bars wearing a bachelorette sash and being harassed by creepers. Anyway, this episode is sweet and has pretty decent music. I mean there’s still some weird stuff. Like one girl wants to put a raw fish on their pizza and they make the black girl wear a Tina Turner wig in this episode: