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8/3/15

Opinion: What To Do About 'Hulkamania', 'The Cosby Show', And 'The Dukes Of Hazzard'

It's been an interesting year for "nostalgiaholics" like myself with three '80s TV icons coming under fire. Several times I've found myself asking a question that begin with "what should I do with..." over the last several months. I see opinions about everyday through my social media feeds so I know that my fellow 30+ year old friends are mulling over the same thoughts that I have.

I felt the urge to post my take on each situation, although I normally stay away from sensitive issues on this website. My purpose for doing so isn't because I have some universal answer or feel the need to persuade people with my opinions. In fact, I believe each situation is somewhat different and with each of us come from different backgrounds, nothing I say will probably change any opinions already formed. Rather what I hope to do is just simply voice my thoughts as they specifically pertain to my experiences as a child of the '80s. At one time, I held these TV icons in high accordance and now struggle with what to do with those good memories. It's easy for someone with no affiliation to simply dismiss these TV shows now, but I wanted to show my point of view to maybe shed some light on why people my age might be struggling.

Bill Cosby, a man who has won countless awards for his family-oriented comedy and TV sitcom, has been plastered all over the media for months. 35 women now accuse him of sexual assault over the course of many years including the time he starred on The Cosby Show. To me, this situation is almost unfathomable. The ultimate family man on TV, a monster behind closed doors. While he is innocent until proven guilty, the court of public opinion has definitely declared him guilty as charged. Plus, the likelihood of all these women forming some type of conspiracy theory is pretty minuscule to me.

It really hurts me to think of throwing away many good memories of watching the quality, family-friendly programming provided by The Cosby Show from 1984-92. The show's producer Tom Werner stated just a few days ago that he's worried about the show's legacy. I remember watching the show mainly with my Grandmother who loved sitcoms. There are so many great episodes that stick out in my mind like Theo's first shave and the family lip-syncing to Ray Charles. But let's face it, those fond memories and laughs are now tainted. The show's reruns have been pulled from all networks and the media reports even seem to imply that Cosby's lawyers are the only ones still on his side. I can't imagine watching the show right now and if he's found guilty of these horrible crimes, how could you possibly watch it ever again?

The "Rebel Flag", the second flag of the Confederate States of America and an icon of Southern heritage for years, is being viewed by many now as a symbol of racism. An image of the accused shooter in the horrible South Carolina murders with the flag urged many people to protest state governments and organizations to remove it from their grounds. The flag has been controversial for several years but after the tragedy, pressure mounted to finally remove the flag that some see as a symbol of slavery and white supremacy.

The Dukes of Hazzard TV show also came under fire in the aftermath as TV Land announced they would no longer air reruns of the show on their network. A few days later, Warner Brothers announced that they would cease manufacturing any of the show's memorabilia featuring the flag which is mainly the show's famous "General Lee" car.

If you watched the show as I did, you knew the flag was on top of the car, but it meant nothing but a decoration. With the backdrop of Georgia and the rebellious nature of the "good ol' boys" trying to escape the local oppressive authorities, there is no way anyone would've acquainted the show's premise as racist simply because of the flag's presence on a car. Maybe I'm naive to think that equal rights has progressed more among both black and white cultures over the last several decades to care about a flag on a 35-year old car. But in our modern world though, controversy hits the media and companies are pretty much forced to distance themselves from it. I understand that, but for someone who remembers the orange car being in his matchbox collection as a kid, it's difficult to reason why it would have anything to do with this inconceivable tragedy in South Carolina.

Just this past week, the WWE abruptly fired Hulk Hogan from his current contract and retracted all historical ties following the emergence of audio which contained a racist rant by the wrestling legend. While Hogan apologized for his remarks, the tape was apparently enough to end his career with the company in which he earned his name in the '80s. And if that wasn't enough, more details are now emerging of homophobic slurs Hogan uttered on a leaked sex tape.

I remember when Hulkamania ruled the airwaves, teaching kids to say their prayers and eat their vitamins. However, I also remember when Hulkamania became Hollywood in the mid-'90s and Hogan became one of the "bad guys". I quit watching wrestling in the late '90s, so hearing Hulk Hogan's name takes me back mainly to early Wrestlemania events, guest appearances on the A-Team, and his Saturday morning cartoon.

There is something to be said about knowing when to "hang them up." To me, Hulkmania was already a thing of the past so the timing of Hogan's words would have been more damaging to my memories had they happened 20 years ago. I haven't been a fan for years so I could really care less about the self-afflicted wounds of this iconic wrestler. At the same time, I know he means a great deal to the legacy of the sport and his words really have nothing to do with his performance in the ring. But there is something to be said for accountablility and holding yourself to a higher standard in the public eye. It seems Hogan hasn't lived up to those standards over the course of the last several years when you sift through the media stories. I wouldn't doubt Hulk still craves the spotlight and I might go even farther to speculate that some of these "leaks" might even be intentional. Maybe he thinks he can't do any wrong in the sight of his most diehard fans, but for those of us who primarily remember him as "the real American" in the '80s, his legacy tarnishes even more when we see these stories in the media.

If you're a child of the '80s, I'd love to hear your opinion on these situations in the comments below.

7/31/15

The Weekly Links: New Super Mario Maker Trailer, Prince's 'Purple Rain' House For Sale, Ice-T As Papa Smurf

Welcome to another edition of The Weekly Links, your weekly source for the best '80s content on the web! My nostalgia went through the roof last night while watching Pixels. I hope you'll read my review which explains how I managed to have a great time after reading all the terrible reviews online.

A good bit of sequel and reboot buzz this week in the Movies section. Plus, I also posted a couple more stories on the site this week too:

My favorite video this week (via Mashable) is another "musicless music video" this time featuring Lionel Richie's ballad "Hello." Removing the music makes the premise of the video even creepier and at the same time more hilarious! Check it out...

TWL Video of the Week
"Musicless Musicvideo / LIONEL RICHIE - Helloby Mario Wienerroither

Enjoy the rest of this week's links!

MOVIES
The house formerly known as Prince’s in Purple Rain is for sale - A.V. Club
The first Unauthorized Full House Story clip is short on scandalous surprises - A.V. Club
25 Raucous, Road-Trippy Facts About the Original 'Vacation' - Yahoo! Movies
National Lampoon Plans Its Own Reboot: "We Want to Do Business" - Hollywood Reporter
Underrated 1980s Horror Gems - Cinema Retro
Raiders! The Making Of The Greatest Fan Film Ever Made review - Den of Geek
Can You Defeat David Bowie From "Labyrinth"? - BuzzFeed Rewind
Russo Brothers GHOSTBUSTERS Movie Confirmed - Nerdist
9 Classic 80s Movies That Hollywood Actually Should Revist - Cinema Blend
Vacation: Two Enthusiastic Thumbs Up - Like Totally 80s
15 Changes to the Original 'Star Wars' Trilogy That Still Make Us Crazy - Yahoo! Movies
How Well Do You Remember The Original Ghostbusters? - PlayBuzz
Finally, Goonies returns to the screen- maybe - Yello80s
The house formerly known as Prince’s in Purple Rain is for sale - A.V. Club
Tom Cruise Is Up for 'Top Gun 2' — but Only If He Can Do It Without CGI - Yahoo! Movies
'Back To The Future' Star Michael J. Fox Hated the DeLorean - Nerdist
14 Things You Might Not Know About ‘Aliens’ - Mental Floss
'Problem Child' Turns 25: Director on John Ritter Ad-Libs, Test Audience Walkouts - Hollywood Reporter


TV

Ice-T Redubs Care Bears, The Smurfs and Dora the Explorer - Kotaku
Can You guess These 80s Action Cartoons In Just 3 Clues? - PlayBuzz
The top 50 80s kids' TV themes - Den Of Geek
'Fuller House': D.J. Is No Longer a Pregnant Widow in Netflix Series - Hollywood Reporter
Cindy Crawford Developing 1980’s Period Drama ‘Icon’ for NBC About Modeling Wars - Variety
The Bundy-Griswold Connection And More ‘Married… With Children’ Surprising Facts - UPROXX
Latest ‘Married … With Children’ Spinoff Talk Still Just A Whisper - Hollywood Reporter
These Weird Robot And Puppet-Filled PSAs Probably Messed You Up As A Kid - UPROXX
17 Fun Facts About ‘Fraggle Rock’ - Mental Floss
The Best Life Advice from ‘Golden Girls’ Matriarch Sophia Petrillo - Flavorwire


MUSIC
This Atari-Themed Music Video Is An 8-Bit Adventure We Can Get Behind - UPROXX
Back to the 80s: Top Albums Released in 1985Kickin’ it Old School
Can You Guess The '80s Song From These Emojis? - BuzzFeed Rewind
Musical “What-Ifs,” Back to the Future Style - Like Totally 80s
Bon Jovi's Best '80s Songs Of All Time - Fashion & Style
10 Essential September New Releases for Kids of the Eighties - PopDose


VIDEO GAMES

Super Mario Maker: new trailer - Den of Geek
10 Facts About Nintendo That Will Blow Your Mind - PlayBuzz
Defending the Galaxy: Reviewing the video game bible of 1981 Part II - Cavalcade of Awesome
Watch A Man Provide A Great Live Soundtrack To Super Mario Bros. 3 - UPROXX

POP CULTURE
6 Delightful Marshmallow Cereals - Pop Rewind
MASK, Micronauts, ROM, Stretch Armstrong, Atari Force and More Returning in 2016 - Strange Kids Club
Can Adam Keep The Peace In This Week’s Exclusive Preview Of ‘He-Man: The Eternity War?’ - UPROXX
9 Sweet Facts for Sour Patch Kids Day - Mental Floss

Review: Ignore The Critics And Watch 'Pixels' For The Love Of The Games

I watched Pixels in the movie theater last night and I enjoyed myself. That's a line you won't hear from any seasoned movie critic online. In fact, I've only found one positive "movie site" review from Cinemablend so far and the author got a tongue lashing in the comments. Despite the Sandler bashing and countless poor reviews, I truly did enjoy seeing some of my favorite video game characters come to life.

Let me just break down the situation before you think I'm playing a game of "Defender" here. Pixels is made for us, the 30 and 40-something year olds who remember actually playing at arcades. I wouldn't come close to recommending this movie to anyone under 30 or even kids, even though the Q*Bert character is definitely targeted toward them. This movie was made for nerdy retrogamers with fond memories of '80s culture. If this isn't you, then I can EASILY see why you would view it just as another Sandler gimmick movie.

And let's address that for a minute. Out of the last 20 movies that Adam Sandler has starred, I've seen a total of 3. I've read reviews but my affinity for Sandler's comedy films pretty much died with the '90s. I don't have the experience of watching most of his recent films so I have no reason to expect nothing more than his acting performances which earned him his stardom like in The Wedding Singer and Big Daddy. He's obviously not shooting for Oscars here so I wish people would back off the "poor acting" critique. I've read reviews about Sandler's "mailed-in performance" in this movie and his lack of enthusiasm. He plays a 40-year old divorcee who installs A/V systems in people's houses for a living and whose claim to fame is being the runner-up of the 1982 arcade championship. What exactly are you looking for in that role?

Back to my situation, I gathered 4 of my friends last night (all 30-something dads like myself) to watch the movie together. I paid $6.59 for my ticket and we were the only people in the entire theater at the 8:45pm show. Based on the critical reviews, I wasn't surprised but it meant that the five of us could laugh and comment to each other throughout the entire 105 minutes. I'm sure that added much more to the experience, but I'd like to think I still would've enjoyed myself had I been there alone.

Pixels is totally ridiculous and if you don't expect that going in, you'll leave during the first video game attack. This movie has a ridiculous plot (aliens attacking Earth with video games) with ridiculous situations (using "Arcaders" as our front line military force) and ridiculous characters (an arcade champion stuck in the '80s, a conspiracy-theorist nerd that lives in his Grandma's basement, a president like Kevin James.) If you think the creators should have made it more believable then you've just missed the whole point of the movie. I see the movie's flaws, but I'm also not one to critque stuff like film editing or anything technical unless it's been filmed on an iPhone. The $88 million budget is obviously for all the licensing, permissions, and special effects shots and not for serious performances by A-list actors.

Having said that, I was surprised at how many genuine LOL moments are in this movie (mainly from Gad and Dinkler) which was way more than what's in the trailers. There were also several corny video game puns and jokes that I didn't laugh at, but I unexpectedly found myself wiping tears from my eyes from laughing so hard on a couple occasions. I was also entertained by the rampant '80s references throughout which included alien messages delivered by celebrities like a young Madonna and the cast of Fantasy Island.

The opening scene is a fun journey back inside an '80s arcade. The movie has a killer soundtrack with artists like Queen, Cheap Trick, and Loverboy with goofs on Spandau Ballet, Tears For Fears, and Hall & Oates. And try not to over-analizing the timeline of the games. Go into the movie expecting more of "The Goldbergs" universe since most retrogamers would know that Paperboy came out later than '82 games like Donkey Kong and Pac-man. 

I challenge my peers to enjoy this movie as I did, with no expectations but seeing our childhood video games on the big screen. Grab a few friends, enjoy a non-crowded theater, and soak in '80s nostalgia taken from a fun 2-minute short film and not from another reboot or remake.

Images courtesy Sony Pictures

7/30/15

Nintendo Teaming Up With Hot Wheels For Mario-Themed Cars

IGN and HotWheelsCollectors.com are reporting that Nintendo will be teaming up with Hot Wheels for Mario- themed cars as a part of the 30th anniversary of Super Mario Brothers. The 6-car collection will be part of Hot Wheels' Pop Culture series and are slated to be released October 2015.

Themes features will be the first three installments of the Super Mario Bros. franchise, Dr Mario, Super Mario World, and Super Mario Kart. Each blister card will feature classic video game box art and logos to go with the custom vehicles. Here are the details:
  • 8 Crate Delivery (Dr. Mario™)
  • A-OK (Super Mario Kart™)
  • Cool-One (Super Mario Bros. 2™)
  • Dairy Delivery (Super Mario Bros.™)
  • School Busted (Super Mario Bros. 3™)
  • Volkswagen T1 Panel Bus (Super Mario World™)

7/28/15

Real-Life Family Truckster Built By Real-Life Griswolds For Road Trips To Disney World

The new 'Vacation' reboot hits theaters this week which includes a cameo of Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo along with the famous Wagon Queen Family Truckster car. The new Griswolds use a different car in the movie, but the legend and style of the original station wagon still brings road trip memories for many people. For one family, those memories were brought to life again.

Core 77 recently featured a real-life Griswold family (and by Griswold, I mean their last name is actually "Griswold") and their project to build a custom Family Truckster similar to the one in the original National Lampoon's Vacation. Now completed, you can check out the transformation at GriswoldFamilyVacations.com and get the full story behind the Griswolds' road trips to Wally Disney World.


7/24/15

The Weekly Links: Paula Abdul Recreates 'Opposites Attract' With James Corden, Mario 30th Amiibo Figures, DIY Hoverboard

Welcome to another edition of The Weekly Links, your weekly source for the best '80s content on the web! I managed to keep myself busy over at my other site this week with the news that Hasbro might bring back M.A.S.K. in the near future. I did manage to post a few new articles to RD80s this week:
Everyone is already crapping all over Pixels which premiere's this weekend. I guess it's the politically correct thing to do if you're a pop culture website. My opinion is still reserved in that I'm watching it mainly for the games and not for Sandler's performance. But if you are still one of those who'd rather play Pac-man than see the movie, check out WebPacman.com to play a flash version of the game in your browser.

I have a couple giveaways planned in the near future (Christmas Vacation in July!) but until then, enter the Visionairies Collector's Guide Contest over at Branded In The 80s! You'll need to play a fun little differences game and email admin Shawn before Aug 2 to enter. But if your a fan of the short-live '80s cartoon and toyline, it will be worth it to have a chance at this totally rad book!

Last week on the site, I showed you how to make a DeLorean Time Machine out of Pepsi cans. My favorite video this week is another #BTTFDIY courtesy Awe Me's DIY Prop Shop and brought to my attention via Gizmodo. Watch how you can use about $30 worth of material, some color sticker templates, and some power tools to make your very own hoverboard!

TWL Video of the Week
"Build the Back To The Future Hoverboard" by AWE Me


Enjoy the rest of this week's links!


MOVIES
Celebrate The 30th Anniversary Of Explorers With This Nifty Poster - io9
14 Not-So-Dirty Facts About ‘Dirty Dancing’ - Mental Floss
Ghostbusters Franchise to Include a Multiverse Now? - Topless Robot
'Adventures in Babysitting' Almost Featured He-Man, and Other Things We Learned from Chris Columbus - Yahoo! Movies
The best to worst '80s-themed video game movies | Entertain This! - USA TODAY
Pee-wee's Big Adventure Turns 30: An '80s Action Flick for the Rest of Us - Consequence of Sound
Here's What The Cast Of "Heathers" Look Like Now - BuzzFeed
Orko will be in a new He-Man film! - He-Man.Org
'Pixels' review: A terrible, tone-deaf attempt at 'Ghostbusters' with video games - Mashable
'Pixels' stars pick the one thing they'd revive from the 1980s - Mashable
'Pixels' Director Chris Columbus Tells Us How He Got Pac-Man to Eat New York - Yahoo! Movies
Wild Thing (1987) Review - Horror Movie BBQ
'Back to the Future' cast reunites; film returns to theaters Oct. 21 - Stuck in the 80s
Which 80's Movie Girl Are You? - PlayBuzz
10 Creepy Facts About ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street’ - Mental Floss
'Ghostbusters' Director Reveals Character Names From New Film - Hollywood Reporter


TV

Watch THE GOLDEN GIRLS Reenact CLUELESS Back in 1996 - Nerdist
WWE Cuts Hulk Hogan Ties Following Report Of Racially Charged Comments - Deadline
Throwback Thursday: '80s Credit Card Commercials - PYMNTS
7 Traumatic Commercials Burned Into Our Brains As Kids - Pajiba
13 Quick-Fix Facts About 'MacGyver' - Mental Floss
Can You Name These "He-Man" Characters? - BuzzFeed
Lost Signals: USA Up All Night (1989) - Strange Kids Club
80s TV Series AIRWOLF Takes Flight Again In Comic Books - Newsarama
The Official Unofficial Visionaries Collectors Guide & Contest! - Branded in the 80s


MUSIC


After '80s-guy Corey Feldman's band played, State College ball team apologized - PennLive.com
Foreigner’s best song was about music, not sex - A.V. Club
Which Guns And Roses Song Is Your Personal Anthem? - PlayBuzz
7 Facts About 'Tom's Diner' While You're Waiting for Your Coffee - Mental Floss
Back to the 80s: Interview with Stan Bush, singer of “The Touch” - Kickin’ it Old School


VIDEO GAMES
Mortal Kombat. For the Atari 2600 - Kotaku
You Can Still Buy Classic NES Sports Games, Now With 2015 Rosters - Gizmodo
The Amiga Is 30 Today! - Retro Gamer
Koji Kondo on the philosophy of Super Mario Bros.’ iconic soundtrack - A.V. Club
Walking through The Fun Hub arcade from Ping Pong Summer - Calvalcade of Awesome
Q*bert Fever! - Like Totally 80s
Do You Actually Remember How To Use A Nintendo Power Pad? - BuzzFeed


POP CULTURE
Mario's 8-bit amiibo hits Europe Sept. 11, and we'd like 10 of each variation - Polygon
21 Awesome Cereals From The 80s and 90s That Our Kids Will Never Enjoy - Geek Tyrant
Funko: Garbage Pail Kids Vinyl Figures - The Fwoosh
The Missing Links: 'Star Wars' Little Books - Mental Floss
7 More Things You No Longer Have in Your Bedroom - Pop Rewind
Are you ready for MOTU Mega Bloks? - He-Man.Org
Hasbro Lists M.A.S.K. As "New Brand" In June 2015 Overview Presentation - Agents of M.A.S.K.
The Smartphone Nintendo Should Make - io9
We want to play this Donald Trump board game from the 1980s so, so badly - Fusion

7/22/15

Lion Forge Strikes Deal With Comixology, Includes New Madballs And Care Bears Series

Great news for comic books fans, Lion Forge Comics has struck a deal to be featured on the comiXology digital platform. Established titles like Miami Vice, Miami Vice: Remix, Knight Rider, Airwolf, Punky Brewster, Saved By the Bell, and Saved By The Bell: Bayside Warriors are now available in the Comixology Lion Forge section online and the Comixology app. 

The deal adds more than 20 new series including at least one new release each month for the rest of 2015. The deal also includes titles published under the Roar Comics imprint like the new Care Bears series and the upcoming Madballs series announced at this year's San Diego Comic-Con.
“Lion Forge is absolutely committed to digital publishing and making comics available to everyone, everywhere, no matter what platform or device they prefer, as our motto states: Comics For Everyone,” Lion Forge CEODavid Steward II said. “It’s so important to have comiXology as a partner in this, not just because of their reach but because they share our passion for making comics fans out of everyone on the planet.”

“I’ve been very impressed with Lion Forge’s output since their debut and am overjoyed that comiXology fans everywhere will be able to share their great titles now that Lion Forge’s entire catalog is available on our platform,” said Chip Mosher, comiXology’s VP of Communications and Marketing.
I'm excited for Lion Forge and hope that comiXology users will be encouraged check out their retro titles. If you need a starting point, I'd recommend the Knight Rider series that we recently reviewed and talked about on the RD80s podcast. We hope to review more Lion Forge/Roar comics in the near future!

Get the comiXology app for iPhone/iPad or Android to access Lion Forge titles and also more from the likes of Marvel and DC Comics. You can also visit LionForge.com or Amazon to download titles and begin a new comic book journey today!

Headline image courtesy @LionForge

'80s Music Remade: "Party All The Time"

"Party All The Time"
by Eddie Murphy

Time once again to explore '80s music and how it's been remade over the years. July 20 marked the 30th anniversary of Eddie Murphy's music debut How Could It Be featuring the hit single "Party All The Time." Despite the song's commercial success (RIAA Platinum), the album has been widely criticized for years as one of the worst from the '80s.


I've got no personal experience other than the single, but I would assume the critique is based on Murphy's vocals despite collaboratoring with the likes of Rick James and Stevie Wonder. Good or bad, his album also opened the door for the musical careers of other actors like Don Johnson and Bruce Willis.

But whether you view his music career as a legit part of his recording career or a just novelty, the fact remains that "Party All The Time" still holds a place in '80s pop culture. The track has been featured in TV shows like Glee, Scrubs, and Regular Show. It's also included in the video game Grand Theft Auto V. Plus, several tracks over the last 30 years have used portions of Murphy's single or flat out covered the song...


Weird Al Yankovic "Polka Party" - Weird Al's polka montage from 1986 featured a cover of "Party All The Time." Of course, Weird Al covers everyone so not really a surprise he included it.


Sharam "PATT (Party All The Time)" - In 2006, Sharam remixed the track to a techno beat and even went as far as recreating portions of the music video. It reached #8 on the UK Singles Chart.


Shanell & Aubrey O'Day "Party All The Time" - These two ladies along with Grammy Award winning producer Maestro produced a new pop version of the track in 2009, but never charted.


Children of Bodom "Party All The Time" - In 2011, the death metal group Children of Bodom released a cover as a bonus track on their Relentless Reckless Forever album.


Asher Roth feat. Meek Mill "Party Girl" - Hip hop artist Asher Roth released this single in 2012 which features elements of the original throughout. It failed to chart.


Playmen feat. Helena Paparizou, Courtney and Riskykidd "All The Time" - This pop electronic collaboration was released in Greece in 2012 and contains elements of Murphy's original track. It climbed to #2 on the Greece Airplay chart.

7/21/15

8 Ridiculous Video Game TV Commercials Of 1983

The video game market was completely saturated with games and consoles just before the industry imploded in 1983. What that meant was video game companies were willing to do just about anything in their advertising to differentiate their products from their competitors.

The result was some wacky and ridiculous TV commercials that aired in 1983. Exploding heads, beach babes, John Madden, and Mad Max-type races through suburbia were just some of the tactics used to make us visit our local department store. In that competitive environment, it's hard to blame them for some of these concepts although I've watched documentaries with game developers using drugs so that might be part of the reason too.

Here are 8 ridiculous(ly awesome) video game commercials from 1983:

Pole Position
So here's the conversation I imagine started the concept of this commercial. Person 1: "Those corporate executives are always trying to keep us down." Person 2: "Hey, how about we take out our frustrations from "the man" in the new Pole Position commercial? We could verbally abuse him and drag his entire family through a Mad Max gauntlet of racing and heavy metal music!" Person 1: "Right, and then we could have these acid trip sequences."


Dig Dug
Here's your slogan for the ad..."Dig Dug, tapping into the fears of California residents since 1982."


Star Wars
Somebody needs to force choke a chill pill down this guy's throat. The only way I'd get that excited over a Star Wars video game is if it was for the Wii and came with a light saber controller. (Hey wait, that's actually a good idea! Why did that never happen?)


Atari 5200
Sand powered video games...I don't think Mr. Wizard could even pull that off. However, it appears Atari did get the target market about right for such a concept: 1) Guys who wear skin-tight striped shirts. 2) Girls who can't pour water worth a damn.


Wizard of Wor
We all know that John Madden can sell some football video games, but what basis did marketers have for putting him in a video game ad in '83? "Hey, that John Madden can peddle some beer and he's in our price range. Let's setup a fake video game league and see how he does!" 


Valley Girl Atari 2600 Game Offer
Like, let's put the most annoying sounding person in the world in our commercial! It will be a hit, for sure! This ad might have worked if you were totally selling a shopping video game at $500 each, but what valley girl ever cared about saving money?


G.I. Joe: Cobra Air Strike
Here's how this meeting went: Person 1: "Quiet down people. We have a shoestring budget for this new G.I. Joe game. Anyone have a suggestion?" Person 2: "One of us could do it. How about Herb, he's between projects right now." Person 1: "Wait, doesn't he suffer from bipolar disease?"


Smurf
When you don't understand what words to Smurf, just "Smurf it all!" That's probably how my dad felt when he tried to get into my world back then, but I think it was more frustration than the dad's "excitement" depicted in this ad.
 
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