Well it’s either this or get on with that rancid job I have to do. And we can’t have that now can we.
So strap yourselves in, grab your silly putty, put your Sony Walkman on pause, and enjoy my 80s themes extravaganza:
I lived for this show every Saturday afternoon. As I recall I would do all the cleaning and vacuuming before it started(I didn’t even get pocket money – buffoon!) then make myself a crisp sandwich and lemonade, then sit back and eat the helicopter fights. I always had a thing about helicopters. I read Chicken Hawk by Robert Mason when I was about 13 and loved it. Seems obvious to me now I should’ve been a helicopter pilot really but I think I was waiting for divine intervention to guide my careers choice. Yup – still waitin’.
2) Buck Rogers in the 25th Century
OK before I lived for Airwolf, I lived for Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. I still secretly(well not any more clearly) love that show.
Buck, the hero guys want to be and women want to be with, Wilma Deering looking positively edible in her skin-tight white lycra space outfit, Twiki with his inexplicable penis-shaped head. I’ll never understand that last part. The starfighters were so cool too. I think he fought some kind of bird man in one episode which suddenly seems lazy on the part of the writers but what the hell, you don’t question shit like that when you’re 9 years old. I want to rewatch all of those shows now. Oh my god – I just remembered Gil Gerard doing some kind of space dance involving people holding a tube with flashing coloured lights inside. Just terrible. But for all the 9-year-old me knew, that’s how space people would dance in the 25th century. And who am I now to say that is not how they will dance? Star Wars was set in the past – that always pissed me off. Dick move to mess with childrens’ fragile minds that way George Lucas. Shame on you. And a jihad on you for Jar Jar Binx, Annie, midichlorians and pod racing. That was some passive aggressive BULLSHIT right there.
3) Battlestar Galactica
OK if I say I lived for everything, you’re not going to take me seriously. So let’s just say I didn’t die for Battlestar Galactica. I once tried to make a battlestar out of Lego. I think I did pretty well given the restrictions of the available Lego and the impossibility of the task in hand.
Lorne Green was perfect as Adama. The main 3 guys, Apollo, Starbuck and whatshisname were great too, whizzing off in their Viper fighters to stop the evil Cylons in their tracks. There was a lovable robot dog called Boxy – this was like cocaine to an 80s boy you have to understand. The Cylons were fantastic robot bad guys for that era. Pretty scary. Like robot Mr Ts without the jive talk. I seem to remember one episode where they encountered a kind of heaven in space and Starbuck flew into it and his ship and clothes turned white. Again, a patently ridiculous plot, but you can sell any old shit to 80s kids.
4) Star Trek
What the hell can you say about Star Trek. It always seemed to air on a Wednesday night for some reason. Which was remarkably unfortunate as it coincided with Coronation Street which my older sister insisted on watching. See kids, back then you’d have one television per house, unless you were posh. It would be tiny yet as wide as it was long, and you’d have to get out of your chair to press buttons to change the channel or adjust the volume.
I remember fight after fight between me and my demented sister over who would watch what. She was older and horrible(I know you think I’m just saying that, but I’d submit it for scientific scrutiny ANY day of the week) so it was hard to get my way, but by God I tried cos I really liked Star Trek. She pulled a damn kitchen knife on me one time. Luckily she did not use it.
Fun fact – I actually thought Bowgly Go was a place they were travelling to on their five-year mission. I love that I thought that now!
Spock used to piss me off. I just wanted Kirk to beat him up. I thought Shatner was perfect as Kirk despite all the mean stuff everyone says about him now(nervously recalls mean blog post I made just the other day ridiculing him – Christ I’m shallow).
Anyway that was then and this is now and stupid is as stupid does. So HA in your face. That’s right.
I think I had a mini-crush on Nurse Chapel too. I was mad into drawing back then and I just remembered that I drew a huge scene in coloured pencils on a piece of A2 card with the Enterprise in a big fight with other space ships. I wonder what happened to that. No doubt the robots who inherit planet Earth will excavate it at some point and hail me as a passed-over genius. Then they’ll trace it back to my blog and a religion will spring forth in my name. Hello future robots. Your recognition is appreciated – it’s about bloody time is all I can say!
Gotta say, I was so disappointed when they did The Next Generation and it was all touchy-feely, let’s talk about it united nations peacekeeping claptrap. It grated against the original ethos like a balloon against a brillo pad.
This was probably a little old for me to watch but I’m glad they let me watch it. This was so perfectly cast, written and acted. A darkly humorous window into the life of a British 80s housewife trying to run a busy nuclear home with a depressive estranged husband, rampant Casanova teenage sons, and all the appliances but none of the cooking ability. There were some really neat little observations about life shoe-horned into the dialogue. Well worth a binge if you haven’t seen it
See I’ve got a serious side. I’m not just a weird offensive asshole!
6) Ulysses 31
This one came later on, maybe mid-80s. I loved the original mix of Greek mythology and sci-fi. I loved the way it was drawn and the ideas for plots. It was about the only TV programme aimed at kids I liked after ~1984. I always found kids’ TV fairly disturbing and poor. I resented the assumption that I was meant to automatically like it all because I was a kid and it was kids’ TV. Glaring ugly holes screamed out, like they have been ever since. Yes, yes, yes, I’ve always an awkward fucker.
7) Star Fleet
OK so the new rule means I’m no longer allowed to say I lived for this, but I used to get really excited when Star Fleet was on every Saturday morning. I can’t remember the finer points of the story but all I know is a bunch of good guys flew around in the X Bomber to defend everyone from these evil guys who flew around in a vaguely penis-shaped ship. And by the way, if you think this it’s just me projecting all this penis stuff onto the proceedings, think again my friend. In fact here is photographic evidence:
I give you Exhibit A – Twiki’s head:
… and Exhibit B – the bad guys’ ship from Star Fleet:
Admittedly if your penis looks a lot like that then you should probably seek urgent medical attention, but you get my drift, surely? Throw me a bone here?! Urgh – unfortunate choice of words.
The captain of the penis-shaped ship seemed to be some kind of androgynous unknown quantity called Commander McCara. Her underling was incredibly nervous and obsequious. She(it?) was always castigating him for … just telling her what was going on. He needed to be more assertive with her(him?) really. I wish I could talk to him now but it’s too late. I hope he understands.
Anyway, when the shit hit the fan and the X Bomber just couldn’t hack it any more, the 3 main guys, Shiro, whatshisface #1 and whatshisface #2 would abandon their positions and go get into these red space ships that detached form the main ship(thus leaving it completely open to attack presumably – grrrr 80s!). Then they’d fly off, fire a few lasers at the bad guys, then the 3 ships would somehow join up(again leaving both them AND the main ship completely vulnerable to attack though luckily the bad guys never put it together) into this huge red invincible robot, Di-X that absolutely nothing could beat. This leads one to wonder why the good guys didn’t just scrap the X Bomber and make more giant invincible red robots. But who am I to question 80s space logic.
The embarrassing thing about this show is I was going around for years telling everyone that British group XTC did the intro music. I got some surprised reactions to this claim, understandably so since it’s complete bullshit. This also happened with my claim that Fergie from The Black Eyed Peas originally came from my home city of Birmingham. I had full-on arguments with people defending this fact. I should really make a point of looking up facts before I go around blowing people’s minds with them. Incidentally, did you know that Mick Jagger from the Rolling Stones used to share a house with Santa Claus? True story. I’ll defend it with my life so just be careful.
There are no doubt other 80s shows I used to love but honestly, I’m absolutely done in now, and I need to go transform into a bat and hunt for new souls to feed upon to rejuvenate my arcane blogging powers.
I hope you enjoyed my 80s themes. If you didn’t, then GET OUT OF MY BLOG! No, just leave your coat and bag where they are, they’re mine now. JUST LEAVE! I don’t like your face and you smell of seaweed.
The rest of you, I’m so glad you enjoyed it.
Oh and if anyone’s wondering where The A Team, Streethawk, Bonanza, The Waltons, Little House on the Prairie, He Man, Terrahawks, Dr. Who, or Black Beauty are – I didn’t include those shows on account that those shows were a load of old shite not worthy of my precious 80s viewing time, and certainly not worthy of my high-brow blog.
To play us out here is a very lonely Dr. David Banner from another favourite show of mine which I nearly forgot to include, (8) The Incredible Hulk: