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Posts tagged as 80s

Remember When Movies Used To Be Good? by Justin Geldzahler

Maybe I’m old fashioned, but I remember when the movies used to mean something.  When you saw a film, it was about something. It said things. Made ya think. About things. Like The Big Chill. Now that was a film. It had laughs, it had tears, and it really said something, you know? You don’t? Well, let me tell you. It was about people, mostly/all white people, and how even if you’re the champions of the world, life can never live up to expectations. Not like that navel-gazing crap you kids have.

I know you Millennials just want to see Thor fight ice Nazis and flirt with his brother, but I prefer [...]

Jason Bateman Sells NBC an 80s Comedy That Has Nothing to Do with Teen Wolves

Jason Bateman, once the star of 80s comedies like Teen Wolf Too, has sold an 80s comedy of his own to NBC. The prospective show, titled Then Came Elvis, will be produced by Bateman through his shiny new production company, Aggregate Films. It's Aggregate's first TV project and its second ever project in general, after the upcoming Bateman/Melissa McCarthy movie Identity Thief. Then Came Elvis was created by Up All Night producer DJ Nash and loosely modeled on his own life. The show centers on the teenage son of a family going through a divorce, with his adult self narrating the story. Jason Bateman seems like a logical [...]

A Look Back at the 1987 Crystal Light National Aerobic Championship with Host Alan Thicke

The 1980s were defined by myriad phenomena, and perhaps just below the end of the Cold War in terms of cultural relevance was the growth in popularity of group aerobic exercise. The Richard Simmons Show premiered in 1980; the next year brought Physical by Olivia Newton-John.  Jane Fonda’s first video workout tape was released in 1982, and John Travolta and Jamie Lee Curtis starred in the film Perfect three years later.

But on April 24, 1987, the ultimate merger of mass media and body mass reduction took place when at least one television station in the United States (KTLA in Los Angeles, as evidenced by the clip above) [...]

Grinning From Eyeball to Ear: The Psychic Timebomb of Steampipe Alley

The "classic" kids show of the days of early television have a curious amount of nostalgic pull, considering they did not flourish for long. I blame Baby Boomers, who consider all of their cultural touchstones vastly superior to what followed. Whatever the reason, the children's programming of the 1950s — Howdy Doody, Bozo the Clown, Captain Video, and the like — is still what many people think of when they think "kids show." A puppeteered or costumed ringleader, a series of corny recurring characters, a few cartoons, and a studio audience of cheering preteens. Think Krusty the Klown without the Percodan-addicted host.

In the late 1980s, decades after most [...]

Watch '80s Bill Murray Do a Bunch of Tongue Twisters

Here's Bill Murray's recently-unearthed appearance on an early '80s LaserDisc compilation called Fun & Games in which he does a bunch of tongue twisters. It's kind of hard to watch somebody as cool as '80s Bill Murray do something as uncool as tongue twisters, but he still manages to escape unscathed. (via Uproxx)

They're Making an 'ALF' Movie Because…?

What did you expect, Hollywood not to make an ALF movie? Sony has acquired the rights and is developing it to be a part CG-part live action feature. The man who spearheaded the piece of smurf Smurf movie, which made over $500 million worldwide (which is a terrifying fact), will oversee the whole thing with the show's original creator, making sure a real classic is made. No writer or director is attached yet. They're probably going to need all the gold on Melmac to convince someone to jump on this "hot" property.

Bateman Begins: It's Your Move

The Paley Center for Media, which has locations in both New York and LA, dedicates itself to the preservation of television and radio history. Inside their vast archives of more than 120,000 television shows, commercials, and radio programs, there are thousands of important and funny programs waiting to be rediscovered by comedy nerds like you and me. Each week, this column will highlight a new gem waiting for you at the Paley Library to quietly laugh at. (Seriously, it’s a library, so keep it down.)

Before finding success on The Hogan Family and long before his career resurgence that began with Arrested Development, Jason Bateman was appearing on a [...]

Looking Back at the Terrible Syndicated Sitcoms of the Late 1980s

At the beginning of the 2011 fall TV season, there were 22 live-action sitcoms on the broadcast networks. Twenty-five years ago: there were 37. Among them were progressive, inventive classics of the form, like Cheers, Newhart, and The Cosby Show. But for the most part, those three dozen sitcoms were horrible, cynically churned out dreck, meant to provide escape from the rapidly declining American family, rising cocaine costs, and 15 percent housing interest rates. The Night Courts were far outnumbered by formulaic, rube-baiting junk like Mr. Belvedere, Who’s the Boss?, My Two Dads, and Easy Street. That one was about Loni Anderson moving in with her uncle at an [...]

Watch a 24-Year-Old Marc Maron Do Stand-Up in 1988

The YouTube channel Official Comedy just unearthed this 25-year-old video of Marc Maron performing stand-up in 1988. Still only three or four years into his stand-up career at the time, Maron is still honing his style but it's fun to see him perform so young. This is from an 80s/90s TV show called Rascal's Comedy Hour, which Maron taped during the time in his life when he looked the most like Mitch Hedberg.

Hit the jump for video of a young Louis C.K. doing stand-up in 1987 to compare these two guys early in their careers in the late '80s:

The Lost Projects of John Hughes

One of the most prolific comedy filmmakers of all-time, you can’t really compare John Hughes’s dominance of big screen comedy in the 1980s to the work of anyone modern. Even Judd Apatow, who’s pumped out hit films at a consistent rate for the better part of the last decade, doesn’t work as fast as Hughes, who was cranking out two or even three popular comedies a year throughout his 80s heyday, with many of these films going on to become iconic classics.

Part of the reason John Hughes was able to rapidly pile up projects is that he was an incredibly fast writer who didn’t care much for rewriting. [...]

Bill Murray, Steve Martin, and Bugs Bunny: The Looney Tunes 50th Anniversary Special

In the 1970s and 1980s, Warner Bros. did not take great care with its animation legacy. The studio spit out a new, clumsily assembled “special” for every remotely notable occasion, with a lack of care and inventiveness that would have shamed Bob Hope. The programs were comprised of 75 percent recycled old cartoons, strung together with unfunny, ugly looking new animation that contained none of the craft and anarchic humor of the source material.

Not so with the The Looney Tunes 50th Anniversary Special. Produced in 1986 to mark the titular occasion (and loosely tied to a Museum of Modern Art retrospective), it too made heavy use of classic [...]

The Finally Screenings: I Just Watched Ghostbusters For the First Time

I have a terrible secret, one that draws fire from my comedian and non-comedian friends and renders well-delivered quotes and references moot. It was both a symptom and a cause of my cultural cluelessness as a kid and many comedic deficiencies I have now. My secret is this:

I have never seen Wayne’s World.

Or Beetlejuice. Or National Lampoon’s Vacation, or Caddyshack, or Animal House. In fact, there is an embarrassingly long list of classic comedy movies of which I’ve never seen a frame, and it seems like every time I cross one off the list, another two appear.