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If you have any questions or concerns, let me know. Thanks for helping to keep the 80s alive and relevant. Peace and much love.
Quote of the day: "My whole philosophy is to broadcast the way a fan would broadcast" -Harry Caray, the late Cubs announcer summarizes well how I try to write Kickin' it for all those pop culture & 80s fans like me
Topping the list was an 80s band. In fact the top 4 spots were all held by 80s artists, though they all have turned out to be much more than just 80s acts. Bon Jovi's Lost Highway tour was top-grossing from November 2007 to November 2008. The tour grossed over $210 million and drew 2,157,675 fans during that time.
The next three spots were held respectively by Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band ($204.5 million), Madonna ($162 million and still underway) and The Police ($150 million on the second leg of their reunion tour). Those four tours combined to gross about ¾ of a billion dollars this year!
I have not done a top 10 list for Bruce Springsteen yet, but I have published my Top 10 Madonna Songs from the 80s and my Top 10 Police Songs from the 80s. You should check both of those out if you have not seen them before. Guess what I am going to give you this issue? Yep, I am going to give a top 10 for Bon Jovi during the 80s. As usual, the list will include links to the videos for most of the songs.
Bon Jovi started out as an 80s hair band, but ended up being a lot more than that. Over the past 25+ years, they have released 10 studio albums and have sold over 125 million albums worldwide. Bon Jovi gets its name from lead singer Jon Bon Jovi. They really broke on the scene in the mid-80s with the release of their third album, Slippery When Wet (1986) which went 12x Platinum. Then they followed that up with New Jersey (1988) which went 7x Platinum. Those two albums combined to sell 19 million copies in the US alone and charted eight top 10 hits (including four #1's)!
That makes Bon Jovi one of the most successful bands of the 80s and they are still going strong today. So here is OLD SCHOOL'S TOP 10 BON JOVI SONGS FROM THE 80's (1980-89):
9.(tie) "Let It Rock" and "Raise Your Hands" (1986) both from Slippery When Wet - Bon Jovi happened to be one of the first arena concerts that I ever attended and I remember both of these songs from that experience [link to video of live performance of "Raise Your Hands"]
8. "Never Say Goodbye" (1986) from Slippery When Wet [link to video]
7. "Lay Your Hands on Me" (1988) from New Jersey [link to video of an unplugged version of this song]
6. "Bad Medicine" (1988) from New Jersey [link to video which features Sam Kinison in it] - Hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in November of 1988
4. "I'll Be There For You" (1988) from New Jersey [link to video] - This power ballad stayed at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for two weeks in May of 1989
3. "You Give Love a Bad Name" (1986) from Slippery When Wet [link to video] - Although originally written for Loverboy, this was the first single released from this album and thus became their first #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in November 1986. I am a big fan of the Blake Lewis version from American Idol in 2007 which actually caused the original song to briefly re-enter the charts at #29 in May of that year. Here is a link to the video for the Blake Lewis version from AI, too.
2. "Wanted Dead or Alive" (1986) from Slippery When Wet - The original video for this song was listed as an honorable mention on my very popular Top 80s Music Videos list, so click on that link if you want to watch that. Here is a link to the acoustic performance of this song during the 1989 MTV Video Music Awards which I am a big fan of. The reaction to that performance actually lead to the creation of the MTV Unplugged series which became very popular.
1. "Livin' on a Prayer" (1986) from Slippery When Wet [link to video] - This song is considered the bands signature song and held the #1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 for almost an entire month in February-March 1987. It was rated #1 on VH1's list of "The 100 Greatest Songs of the 80s" and will likely be ranked highly on my Top 200 when I publish that list soon. Back in 2001, after the September 11th attacks, Bon Jovi performed an outstanding acoustic version of this song on the America: A Tribute to Heroes special which I like very much. Here is a link to the video of that performance as well.
There's my list. Remember, I was only including songs from the 80s. Feel free to leave your reactions in the comments section below. Bon Jovi must have had a little more substance because unlike Mötley Crüe or Poison or the countless other hair bands of the 80s which flamed out, Bon Jovi are destined to end up in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with the hugely successful body of work they have put together. They were snubbed this year (in their first year of eligibility), but they deserve to get there and I have no doubt they will in the coming years.
That will do it for this issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks as always for reading. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. If you are interested in reading more of my Top 10 lists, please click there for a summary of those. You can also click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, please pass the word and let others know to give it a try (and of course come back often!). Peace and much love.
Check this out: By now you must have seen the crazy events of the Bush press conference in Iraq where a journalist gets up and throws his shoes at the US president. Here is a link to the video of this surreal moment from back on December 14th. When asked about it right after it happened, Bush responded, "So what?" There is now a series of internet games related to this shoe throwing incident. The best of which is probably Sock and Awe which you can check out by clicking on that link and playing the game yourself. It is easy to play. No matter your political beliefs, the game is just some harmless fun.
Quote of the day: "Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does." -William James
There are a few 80s Christmas movies that I really love including Scrooged (1988, starring Bill Murray) and A Christmas Story (1983, though it is set in the 1940's), but I did not choose either of those. There are several 80s movies that are not necessarily Christmas themed, but definitely are Christmas-related like Die Hard (1988), Better Off Dead (1985), Gremlins (1984) or Trading Places (1983), but those might make a good issue for next year. My favorite 80s Christmas Movie (and possibly my favorite Christmas movie from any decade) is National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.
Here is the trailer for this outstanding holiday favorite:
Christmas Vacation was released in theaters on December 1, 1989. It debuted at #1 that week at the box office grossing over $11 million opening weekend. It went on to gross over $71 million in the theaters while adding another $35 million in video sales. This was quite successful and the film has gone to become a cult favorite for many (like me!).
The film was written by the great John Hughes. This is one of his few films not focusing specifically on teenagers (like Planes, Trains & Automobiles which I covered in a Thanksgiving issue). Christmas Vacation is the third installment of Vacation movies which follow the Griswold family on a hilarious adventure. It revolves around the Griswolds trying to have a "fun, old-fashioned family Christmas."
The star of these films is Chevy Chase who plays "Clark W. Griswold," but the other characters help make this film truly special. Beverly D'Angelo plays "Ellen Griswold" his wife and in this film his children "Audrey" and "Rusty" are played by Juliette Lewis and Johnny Galecki respectively. One of the best characters is "Cousin Eddie" played brilliantly by Randy Quaid. The film was rated PG-13 for "crude and sexual humor, and strong language" so it is not best for children, but that makes it even funnier for adults. And, oh yeah, it ends with a positive holiday message which is always nice as well.
The first time you watch Christmas Vacation you may chuckle a few times, but not think that it is as special as I claim it is. It really has subtle nuances that I find truly hilarious and many of those you do not pick up until the second, third, fourth, ...fortieth time you watch it. I still find myself appreciating new subtleties each time I watch it. At least for me, I can watch it any time of the year (and not just in December) and I cannot say that about most holiday classics.
If you have never seen National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, I highly recommend you watch it at least once, but twice if you can spare the time. If you have seen it, but did not appreciate it the first time, give it another try. And if you are already a fan, I don't need to tell you any of this (you probably have already watched it this month). Though I enjoy some of the others too, Christmas Vacation is definitely my favorite 80s Christmas Movie.
I thought in celebration of that fact, I would give you my top 10 lines from the movie. I also included links to the scenes in the movie where these lines came from. Most of the scenes are taken out of context, but still are funny regardless. Hope you enjoy it.
Here is OLD SCHOOL'S TOP 10 LINES FROM NATIONAL LAMPOON'S CHRISTMAS VACATION:
10. "If I woke up tomorrow with my head sewn to the carpet, I wouldn't be more surprised than I am now." [was included in the movie trailer]
8. "This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We're gonna press on, and we're gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny fucking Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse." [link to video]
6. "I don't know if I oughta go sailin' down no hill with nothin' between the ground and my brains but a piece of government plastic." "Do you really think it matters, Eddie?" [link to video of entire sledding scene]
5. "What are you looking at?" "Oh, the silent majesty of a winter's morn... the clean, cool chill of the holiday air... an asshole in his bathrobe, emptying a chemical toilet into my sewer." "Shitter was full." [link to video]
4. "Hey Griswold. Where do you think you're gonna put a tree that big?" "Bend over and I'll show you." "You've got a lot of nerve talking to me like that Griswold." "I wasn't talking to you." [link to video]
2. "Can I refill your eggnog for you? Get you something to eat? Drive you out to the middle of nowhere and leave you for dead?" [link to video]
1. "...and I want to look him straight in the eye and I want to tell him what a cheap, lying, no-good, rotten, fore-fleshing, low-life, snake-licking, dirt-eating, inbred, overstuffed, ignorant, blood-sucking, dog-kissing, brainless, dickless, hopeless, heartless, fat-ass, bug-eyed, stiff-legged, spotty-lipped, worm-headed sack of monkey shit he is. Hallelujah. Holy shit. Where's the Tylenol?" [link to video]
So that will wrap up this Christmas Eve issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks so much for reading. I want to take a moment to wish all of you the merriest Christmas ever and truly all the best in the coming new year! If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. If you are interested in reading more of my Top 10 lists, please click there for a summary of those. You can also click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, please pass the word and let others know to give it a try (and of course come back often!). Peace and much love.
Check this out: I thought this little cartoon was kind of funny, so I decided to share it. Disclaimer: this cartoon does not represent the opinions or views of Kickin' it Old School or its affiliates...
Quote of the day: "But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight, ‘Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!" -Clement C. Moore from The Night Before Christmas
The 80s did not produce a plethora of quality Christmas Specials, but I decided to highlight one anyways. Though growing up in the 80s, we always looked forward to watching the classic Christmas Specials like A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965) and the outstanding Rankin-Bass productions from the 60s and 70s. Can you believe that Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer first aired in 1964? Even though they were not originally released in the 80s, I still consider those an integral part of Christmas during that decade for me.
For this issue though, I wanted to feature a Christmas Special that was actually originated during the 80s. This year I chose to feature Pee-wee's Playhouse Christmas Special. This special episode of the Saturday morning favorite first aired on December 21, 1988. Even though Pee-wee's Playhouse usually aired on Saturday mornings, this special was debuted during prime-time on CBS.
This Christmas Special was as odd and eclectic as the regular Pee-wee's Playhouse show always was. In this episode, Pee-Wee Herman (Paul Reubens) and the Playhouse gang hold a Christmas party. Things threaten to get out of hand fairly early as the increasingly disappointed Pee-wee receives one fruitcake after another. When he complains that he didn't get anything he really wanted, our hero learns an important lesson about sharing from none other than Santa Claus. Pee-wee makes a list for Santa Claus 1 1/2 miles long, teaches Little Richard how to ice skate, goes for a sleigh ride with Magic Johnson, commands Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello to make Christmas cards, receives a long phone call from Dinah Shore, even has musical fun with k.d. lang, the Del Rubio Triplettes and Charo. Finally, Santa Claus arrives and to tell Pee-wee that his Christmas wish list is just too long, and no one else will get presents if he doesn't shorten it.
Other guests included Oprah Winfrey, Cher, Grace Jones, Joan Rivers, Whoopi Goldberg and Zsa Zsa Gabor. Here is the opening sequence to Pee-wee's Playhouse Christmas Special:
I think the synopsis on Rotten Tomatoes describes it best, "In this surreal pastiche of television-age nostalgia, sprung from the perpetually prepubescent mind of Paul Reubens, Pee-wee and his friends celebrate Christmas in all kinds of unique, fun, and creative ways in a holiday special unlike any other. This Christmas classic is fun for the whole family, with all the cleverness and charm of the TV series."
Pee-wee's Playhouse Christmas Special was nominated for three Emmy Awards including Outstanding Achievement in Graphic Design and Title Sequences (which you were able to watch in the video above), Outstanding Art Direction for a Variety or Music Program and Outstanding Costume Design for a Variety or Music Program.
Here is the last 6 minutes of the episode which includes the quality Christmas message that the show delivers. Despite all of the silliness and wackiness, Pee-wee's Playhouse Christmas Special still promotes the true meaning of the season.
In the end, Jambi asks Pee-wee what his other wish for the day is. "My wish is that there's peace on earth and that everybody has the very merriest of Christmases and a happy new year."
It obviously does not deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as Charlie Brown, Rudolph or Frosty, but it definitely holds it own and as far as 80s Christmas Specials go it might be the best. That will wrap up this issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks as always for reading. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. You can also always click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, PLEASE CLICK ON THE FACEBOOK LOGO in the upper right hand column. This will take you to the Fan Page where I ask you to then click on "Become a Fan". Even if you are not a Facebook member yet, please consider joining and registering as a fan at that page. You can also follow @OldSchool80s on Twitter by clicking on the FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER LOGO also in the upper right hand column. This will take you the page and you can just click on the box that says "Follow". I am sending daily 80s tweets, so sign up to get those. Let other 80s fans know about it as well! Peace and much love.
Check this out: Here is a cartoon that made me chuckle, so I thought I would share it. Reminded me of those pretentious hoity-toity wine sommeliers describing a fine wine...
Quote of the day: "Christmas is forever, not for just one day, for loving, sharing, giving, are not to put away like bells and lights and tinsel, in some box upon a shelf. The good you do for others is good you do yourself..." -Norman Wesley Brooks, "Let Every Day Be Christmas," 1976
I have not done one of these in a little while, so I thought it was about time here at Kickin' it Old School that I again point out a few stories that strike me as kind of sad , kind of happy and just kind of weird . If you go back through the archives you will find 4 previous times where I have done this, but it has been almost 6 months since I have employed this usually popular feature. Now on to this issue's picks...
SAD STORY Doug E. Fresh is one of my favorite rappers from the 80's and I came across this story in the NY Post regarding his recent financial troubles. Here are some of the highlights from the article, but you can click on the link to see the entire article. His real name is Douglas Davis and has been served with three foreclosure actions by banks looking to collect more than $3.5 million in unpaid mortgages on a trio of his Harlem homes. The rapper, 46, also is being chased by American Express for nearly $60,000 in credit-card debt, and the IRS just slapped him with a $367,000 tax lien on top of more than $40,000 owed to the state tax collector, records show. He fell behind in payments and, according to a foreclosure suit filed in Manhattan in late August, 2008, he now owes more than $1.73 million. This story came as a big surprise to me because I was under the impression he was still doing well. Hopefully he will find away to get his finances in order and come out of this okay. For my list of the Best Rap/Hip Hop Songs of the 80s (where Doug E. Fresh is highly ranked), just click on that link.
HAPPY STORY I saw this story recently and it brought a tear to my eye, so I thought I would share it. Kensley Penney is a 3 year old little girl in North Carolina who had just two wishes for Christmas, a toy truck and her daddy. Her daddy is Sgt. Scott Penney and he had been serving in Afghanistan since March. The moment when Sgt. Penney came home to surprise little Kensley and make her wish come true was caught on camera. The joy in her tiny voice when she says, "Daddy! I miss You! I love you!" is what the holiday season is all about. Here is a link to the video so you can watch a news report on this happy story and see that emotional moment for yourself. It is very touching.
WEIRD STORY Earlier this year, there was a weird story about NFL wide receiver Chad Johnson officially changing his last name to "Ocho Cinco" which is Spanish for the two numbers on the back of his jersey. I thought this was a weird story. But now I came across a story about another NFL player who changed his name, but this time the story has an 80's angle to it. Here is a link to the story, so you can check the accuracy for yourself. Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Greg White has officially changed his name to Stylez G. White. White said it wasn't that he didn't like his own name, but really liked the name of a character in the 1985 movie Teen Wolf, starring Michael J. Fox. In the movie, Fox's character's friend is named Rupert "Stiles" Stilinski. White changed the spelling and adopted the name as his own. Of all the great names from 80's movies, how do you choose a minor character from Teen Wolf? "Stylez" is a pretty cool name, but how about "Donger" White or "Duckie" White or "Boba Fett" White or "Lloyd Dobler" White? Feel free to leave your favorite character names from 80's movies in the comments section below.
That will do it for this issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks for reading and hope you enjoyed the return of this feature. You can always click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any past issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, please pass the word and let others know to give it a try (and of course come back often!). Peace and much love.
Check this out: You can never get too many valuable tips like this one below. I will try to find the other 36 before it, but hope you enjoy (and heed) this #37. If you can't read it, it says "Never catch snowflakes with your tongue until ALL the birds have gone south for the winter."
Quote of the day: "Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time." -Laura Ingalls Wilder
With the season upon us, I thought I would do a special issue of Kickin' it Old School devoted to a Christmas song from the 80's. For this issue, I chose the song "Do They Know It's Christmas" by Band Aid.
This song was written by Bob Geldof (Boomtown Rats) and Midge Ure (Ultravox) in 1984 specifically to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia. Geldof had a scheduled interview on a popular BBC radio station to promote his new album, but instead he selflessly used his airtime to publicize the idea for the charity single. By the time the musicians were recruited to record "Do They Know It's Christmas" there was already intense media interest in the subject.
Geldof put together a group which they called Band Aid, consisting of leading Irish and British musicians who were among the most popular and recognized of that era. What resulted was a literal who's who of UK 80's musicians. Highlighting this impressive list were Paul Young, Boy George (Culture Club), George Michael (Wham!), Duran Duran, Sting (The Police), Bono (U2), Phil Collins, Spandau Ballet, Bananarama and more. They recorded this iconic song on November 25, 1984.
The only UK stars of that time who were obviously absent recorded messages that were used on the b-side of the album. Those artists include David Bowie, Annie Lennox (Eurythmics), Paul McCartney, Big Country and Holly Johnson (Frankie Goes to Hollywood). Even without these musicians, Geldof had recruited enough star power to make his song special. One thing to keep in mind is that this song preceeded "We Are The World" which was a similar charity benefit song which was the American equivalent released in 1985.
Here is the video for "Do They Know It's Christmas" which was taped during the studio recording of the song:
Other than Bono's famous line "Well, tonight thank God it's them instead of you," I think my favorite part of this song is Phil Collins drum playing. He did not have any solo lines to sing, but his drumming along with the African rhythm that opens the song (taken from a sample of "The Hurting" by Tears for Fears) really gave this song its soul. Here are the lyrics to the entire song and also specifying who was responsible for singing the solo lines:
(Paul Young) It's Christmas time There's no need to be afraid At Christmas time We let in light and we banish shade (Boy George) And in our world of plenty We can spread a smile of joy Throw your arms around the world At Christmas time
(George Michael) But say a prayer Pray for the other ones At Christmas time it's hard (Simon LeBon) But when you're having fun There's a world outside your window (Sting) And it's a world of dread and fear Where the only water flowing is (Bono joins in) The bitter sting of tears And the Christmas bells that are ringing Are clanging chimes of doom (Bono only) Well, tonight thank God it's them instead of you.
(Everyone) And there won't be snow in Africa this Christmas time. The greatest gift they'll get this year is life Where nothing ever grows No rain or rivers flow Do they know it's Christmas time at all?
Feed the world Let them know it's Christmas time Feed the world Do they know it's Christmas time at all?
(Paul Young) Here's to you raise a glass for everyone Here's to them underneath that burning sun Do they know it's Christmas time at all?
Chorus (Everyone) Feed the world Feed the world Feed the world Let them know it's Christmas time again
Feed the world Let them know it's Christmas time again Feed the world Let them know it's Christmas time again
To me the lyrics are a bit pretentious, but I am willing to overlook that since the purpose of the song is well-meaning. The song would not have been nearly as powerful had these fantastic artists not lended their voices and talents to the cause. Still Geldof, Ure and all of Band Aid deserve a lot of credit for their selfless efforts and generosity.
The single was released on November 29, 1984, and went straight to #1 on the UK pop charts, outselling all the other records in the chart put together. It became the fastest selling single of all time in the UK, selling a million in the first week alone. It stayed at #1 for five weeks and ultimately sold more than three million copies. The single was released just before Christmas with the aim of raising money for the relief of the famine. Geldof's somewhat cautious hope was for £70,000. Ultimately, however, the song raised many millions of pounds and became the biggest-selling single in UK chart history. (It has since been passed by Elton John's tribute to Diana, Princess of Wales, "Candle in the Wind 1997.")
"Do They Know It's Christmas" still ranks as the second best selling single in the UK with 3.51 million copies sold. It ranks ahead of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" (2.13 million) and now behind "Candle in the Wind 1997" (4.8 million). That is quite impressive for an impromptu Christmas song.
"Do They Know It's Christmas" exemplifies the true meaning of Christmas as it promotes "peace on earth and goodwill to all." The song not only raised much needed money for those less fortunate and in need, but maybe just as important, raised awareness to the issue which is still continues to be an issue even today. It is not the lighthearted and whimsical Christmas classic that most of us love, but it is an important part of pop culture in the 80's and still receives airplay each and every holiday season.
That will wrap up this issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks as always for reading. Feel free to leave some of your favorite Christmas songs from the 80's in the comments section. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. You can always click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. While you are up there in the upper right hand column, please take a moment to rate/vote for Kickin' it (I appreciate it). Peace and much love.
Check this out: I came across a very cool bit of 80's nostalgia. It is called A BetaMaXMas and is definitely worth clicking on that link to check it out. It is a TV which plays 80s holiday programming and it allows you to change channels to find all sorts of fun stuff. Everything from the Grinch and other TV specials to music videos to commercials. The screen is a little fuzzy (on purpose) since this stuff is at least 20 years old, but still very entertaining. Being the 80's fiend that I am, I found this to be one of the coolest things I have come across in a while. Hope you agree.
Quote of the day: "Remember, if Christmas isn't found in your heart, you won't find it under a tree." -Charlotte Carpenter
Many of the women on this list are not surprises. Most were very cute as little girls and it was not difficult to predict they would grow up to be beautiful women. Some are a little surprising. There are a few Child Stars from the early 90's which would have qualified for this list, but since this was strictly an 80's topic they are not included.
There are two from the early 90's (just missing the criteria) that I want to at least mention since I doubt I will ever do an issue like this on that decade. The first is Tatyana Ali who played little "Ashley Banks" on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air from 1990-1996. She was just 11 years old when that series began and is now 29. Here is a picture then & now of Tatyana Ali:
The other from the 90's is Danielle Fishel who played "Topanga" on the TV show Boy Meets World from 1993-2000. She was just 12 years old when that series began and is now 27. Here is a picture then & now of Fishel:
It really is not shocking that cute kids grow up to be beautiful adults especially in Hollywood. Now I will move on to my favorite decade, the 80's. I decided to give you them in the form of a top 10 list, so here is OLD SCHOOL'S TOP 10 FEMALE CHILD STARS OF THE 80s THAT GREW UP TO BE HOT ADULTS:
10. Debbie Gibson - She was just 17 years old back in 1987 when her smash hit debut album Out of the Blue was released. The album featured four singles which reached the Top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100 including "Foolish Beat" which hit #1. Gibson was the youngest female (17) to write, produce and perform a Billboard Hot 100 #1 single. At the age of 38 she now goes by Deborah instead of Debbie and she is still performing. Here is a picture then & now of Gibson:
9. Keshia Knight Pulliam - She was only 5 years old back in 1984 when she became "Rudy Huxtable" on The Cosby Show. Even before that, at the age of 3, she played Keshia on Sesame Street. She became the youngest actress ever to be nominated for an Emmy (at age 6 for best supporting actress) and remained a character on The Cosby Show the entire run from 1984-92. Here is a link to a video from The Cosby Show which is one of my favorite "Rudy" moments on the show. Now at the age of 29, Pulliam is all grown up and still acting (Tyler Perry's House of Payne). Here is a picture then & now of Pulliam:
8. Staci Keanan - She was 12 years old back in 1987 when she starred as "Nicole Bradford" on the TV series My Two Dads (1987-90). She then went on to be on the series Step By Step from 1991-98. Keanan is 33 now and still acting in films, but not any titles that I recognized. Here is a picture of Keanan then & now:
7. Danica McKellar - She was "Winnie Cooper" on The Wonder Years (1988-93) when she was just 13 years old. The Wonder Years is one of my favorite shows of all time and also ranks on my Top TV Theme Songs list. After that show ended, she went on to become a math genius at UCLA. Now at the age of 33, McKellar is still acting, but also is an author of two New York Times bestsellers that encourage and empower middle-school girls with mathematics know-how. Here are pictures of McKellar then & now:
6. Soleil Moon Frye - She was just 8 years old when she became the unforgettable character "Punky Brewster" in the series of the same name (1984-86). During the 90's, she guest starred on many TV shows and then appeared on the show Sabrina, the Teenage Witch from 2000-03. Now 32 years old, she continues to act and do voice-over work and also has directed a few films. Here is a picture of Frey now & then:
5.(tie) Candace Cameron & Jodie Sweetin - Since both girls starred together as sisters on the TV series Full House (1987-95), I decided to put them together on this list, too. Cameron was 11 years old when she began the role as "D.J. Tanner" and Sweetin just 5 years old when she became "Stephanie Tanner." Both were cute girls on the show, but tended to be overshadowed by little "Michelle" who was played by the Olsen twins. Sweetin is 26 now and has publicly admitted battling years of drug (meth) addiction, though she is clean now. Cameron is 32 now and goes by Candace Cameron Bure after marrying former Russian hockey player Valeri Bure. Here is a picture of Cameron/Sweetin then & now:
4. Drew Barrymore - Most of the child stars on this list came from television, but Barrymore was a legitimate movie star beginning at the age of 7 when she was "Gertie" in the blockbuster E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial in 1982. Here is a link to a video of one of the best scenes from E.T. featuring "Gertie" screaming. She is one of two Child Stars to be mentioned in both part one (success stories) and part two (hot adults) of this issue. She battled drug and alcohol problems at a very young age, but was able to clean herself up. She is now a big-time producer (Flower Films) and actress with her films grossing over $2.3 billion worldwide. Here is a picture of Barrymore then & now:
3.(tie) Nicole Eggert & Josie Davis - Like the Full House girls at #5, I decided to put these two together since they starred together as sisters on Charles in Charge from 1987-90. Eggert was 15 years old when she began the role as "Jamie Powell" and Davis was 14 when she became her sister "Sarah Powell." Eggert, as no surprise, went on to become a lifeguard on the TV series Baywatch from 1992-94 and is now 36. It is a little more surprising to me that Davis would make this list. She is 35 now and still acting. Here is a picture of Eggert/Davis then & now:
2. Tiffani Amber Thiessen - She began her role as "Kelly Kapowski" on Saved By The Bell in 1989 when she was 15 years old, so she just sneaks in and qualifies for the 80's. She appeared on that series from 1989-92 along with two other girls who could have been considered for this list, Elizabeth Berkley and Lark Voorhies. Like Nicole Eggert at #3, it is no surprise that Thiessen grew up to be beautiful. After Saved By The Bell, she took on a role in Beverly Hills, 90210 from 1994-99 as well as appearing in several minor films. At 34 now, Thiessen is still acting and serves on the National Advisory Council for the Make-a-Wish Foundation. Here is a picture of Thiessen then & now:
1. Alyssa Milano - She was just 11 years old when she started as "Samantha Micelli" on the TV series Who's the Boss in 1984. She played Tony Danza's daughter on that show from 1984-92 and by the end you could already see her growing into a beautiful young woman. Since then, she has worked pretty steadily (mostly in TV) with her most prominent role being on the show Charmed from 1998-2006. She is the other Child Star to be mentioned in both part one (success stories) and part two (hot adults) of this issue. Now at 35 years old, she is still acting and also involved in a few charities. Some of this philanthropic work includes the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases, PETA and as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador for the U.S. She tops this list and here is a picture of Milano then & now:
There's my list. The order is up for plenty of debate, but are there any Child Stars you feel are missing all together? I am sure there are many others worthy of mentioning, but this is just my top 10. Remember, my list only includes kids from the 80's. Please leave any and all comments below. I realize this is a very shallow list (based almost solely on physical appearance), but on the other hand, many of these are the girls I grew up watching myself. I thought it would be fun and interesting to see how they look now.
So that will wrap up this two-part issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks so much for reading. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. If you are interested in reading more of my Top 10 lists, please click there for a summary of those. You can also click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, please pass the word and let others know to give it a try (and of course come back often!). Peace and much love.
Check this out: Here is something very fun. Watch this video below and see how the Disney celebration is customized just for me! At the end, it should allow you Click and personalize the video to watch it yourself and send it to your friends and family. I thought this was VERY slick and hope you all enjoy it too.
Quote of the day: "Do you love me because I'm beautiful, or am I am beautiful because you love me?" -Oscar Hammerstein II from Cinderella
For part one, (though not in the 80's) there is no better example of a Child Star who went on to have an incredible career as an adult than Ron Howard. He played little "Opie Taylor" on The Andy Griffith Show in the 60's when he was just 6 years old and then "Richie Cunningham" on Happy Days when he was 20 years old. He also starred in the film American Graffiti when he was 19. Then he retired from acting and became a successful Oscar-winning director and producer as well as the co-chairman of Imagine Entertainment which he began with Brian Grazer in 1986. Howard's films have achieved both critical and box office acclaim.
Totally tubular: '80s TV teen success stories By Victor Balta msnbc.com contributor
Neil Patrick Harris We always knew we loved Doogie, but we never knew we'd love him as much as we did when Neil Patrick Harris played a parody of himself in "Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle" in 2004. Even if we'll always see him as the cute, 16-year-old medical prodigy, he's parlayed his recent revival into a spot as one of TV's most awesome characters, Barney on CBS's "How I Met Your Mother." With a reprise on "Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay" and his recent turn on Joss Whedon's Internet sensation, "Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog," Harris, 35, is on the pulse of pop culture.
Mark-Paul Gosselaar Even with the luscious new locks, most people look at Gosselaar and see Zack Morris from "Saved By the Bell." But at 34, he's all grown up and has worked his way out of the typecast and into serious drama. TV drama guru Steven Bochco recently called Gosselaar "one of the small, handful of best actors that we have in television today." That might have something to do with the fact that Gosselaar stars in Bochco's latest venture, TNT's "Raising the Bar." But Bochco's admiration is genuine; as he's given Gosselaar a role in virtually everything he's created since "NYPD Blue."
Alyssa Milano It could have gone either way for the bubbly "Who's the Boss?" cutie after she starred in "Poison Ivy II" in 1996, but she made it through the darkness and found the light. A regular role on "Melrose Place" helped land her a starring gig on the it-lasted-longer-than-you -thought-it-did "Charmed." (Eight seasons. Who knew?). On the heels of her wild guest role on "My Name Is Earl" last season, ABC recently announced that it picked up the pilot for the 35-year-old Milano's new sitcom, "Single with Parents," which also stars Beau Bridges and Annie Potts.
Fred Savage Ahh, Kevin Arnold longing for that first kiss with Winnie Cooper on "The Wonder Years." Savage, who seems immune to aging, might forever carry that prepubescent role with him, but he's making his biggest moves behind the camera, these days. Savage, 32, is directing sitcoms, scoring nominations from the Directors Guild of America for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Children's Programs in each of the past two years for episodes of The Disney Channel's "Wizards of Waverly Place." He has also directed 11 episodes of cult favorite, FX's "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia." The pilot for his new sitcom, "Secret White Millionaire," was recently picked up by CBS.
Michael J. Fox The original, modern-day child-star-turned-success -story, Fox rode the "Family Ties" wave to some starring movie roles, including "Back to the Future" and "Teen Wolf." That rolled into a starring spot on ABC's "Spin City," for which he won an Emmy and three Golden Globe Awards, but Fox cut his time on the show in 2000, shortly after announcing that he'd had Parkinson's Disease since 1991. Fox, 47, is the voice of Stuart Little in the animated mouse movie franchise, and has made occasional guest appearances on shows such as "Scrubs" and "Boston Legal" in recent years.
I felt that was a solid article and it covered 5 of my very favorites, so that is why I wanted to share it with you. The only problem I had is that it was missing a couple more of the significant success stories. We have heard all of the sad stories of Child Stars who, for many different reasons, were never able to carry childhood success into a lifelong career. Actually, there are more Child Stars than you would expect who have managed to have respectable careers.
I am not going to try to cite all of them, but there were a couple from the 80s that were not covered in the article above that I felt definitely deserved mentioning.
Drew Barrymore She began acting when she was just 11 months old, but really gained attention at 7 years old when she played "Gertie" in the blockbuster E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982). She then appeared in the 1984 films Firestarter and Irreconcilable Differences. At a very young age, Barrymore spiraled out of control having to deal with drug and alcohol abuse which almost ended her career and possibly even her life. She reestablished herself in the mid-90's and it is hard to believe now that she was the same little girl who needed rehab to save her life. In 1995, she formed the production company Flower Films which has produced several films including 2000's box office smash Charlie's Angels. I am a big fan of 1998's The Wedding Singer which she co-starred with Adam Sandler in. Barrymore has appeared in about 37 feature films grossing over $2.3 billion worldwide.
Sarah Jessica Parker She was 17 years old when she starred in the television series Square Pegs (1982-83). She then appeared in several movies including Footloose (1984), Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (1985) and Flight of the Navigator (1986). Both Footloose and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun ranked on my Best Dancing Scenes from 80s Movies list. Since then, she has appeared in about 22 feature films not to mention becoming a fashion icon. Parker is probably best known, though, for her Emmy-winning role as "Carrie Bradshaw" in HBO's Sex in the City series (1998-2004) as well as the 2008 successful film version of the show.
Jason Bateman He began in 1981 when he was 12 years old on the television series Little House on the Prairie. Then Bateman was on Silver Spoons (1982-83) and The Hogan Family (1986-91) which helped him become a teen idol during most of the 80's. We did not hear much from him during the 90's however, but Bateman made a major comeback after appearing in the 2002 film The Sweetest Thing and then in 2003 when he landed the role of "Michael Bluth" on the outstanding Fox sitcom Arrested Development. I was a big fan of the 2007 film Juno and Bateman was a big part of that film's success. He has established himself as a star once again in both television and movies.
Johnny Depp Depp is borderline whether he should be considered as part of this topic. I was surprised to find out that he was already 24 years old when he starred on the Fox television series 21 Jump Street as "Officer Tom Hanson" (1987-90). Before that, he did have small movie roles in A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) and Platoon (1986). I am not sure if this qualifies him as a "Child" Star of the 80's, but since that point he has starred in about 32 feature films which have grossed over $4.7 billion worldwide. He has been nominated for three Academy Awards for his work in Pirates of the Caribbean (2004), Finding Neverland (2005) and Sweeney Todd (2008). There is no doubt that he has become one of the biggest movie stars and best actors of his generation.
On this topic of Child Stars of the 80s who have achieved success as adults, I really felt it was worth adding those four to the conversation. Part two of this issue will be much more subjective and, as I mentioned earlier, much more superficial as well. Part two will feature Female Child Stars of the 80s who grew up to be Hot Adults. You are going to want to check out that issue for sure (can click on that link to take you there).
That will wrap up part one of this issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks as always for reading. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. You can always click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. While you are up there in the upper right hand column, please take a moment to rate/vote for Kickin' it (I appreciate it). Peace and much love.
Check this out: Here is a link to a video I find very amusing. It is called "100 Movie Spoilers in 5 Minutes." It is exactly what you might think... two guys just spoiling the ending to movie after movie for 5 minutes straight. It is pretty impressive and very entertaining. WARNING: Does contain movie spoilers (100 to be exact) and also contains some explicit language (though not all that much). Hope you enjoy it.
Quote of the day: "The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a person's determination." -Tommy Lasorda
Download this: As announced in earlier issues, I have made the decision to temporarily suspend this feature. I have received less and less feedback regarding the song recommendations made here, so I am going to go without it for a while and see how that goes. Let me know if you miss it. You can find a link to the summary of all past recommendations in the LINKS section in the left hand column.
Along the lines of my recent issue on remakes of 80s movies, I saw a story last week regarding another sequel to Beverly Hills Cop in the works. It sounds like Eddie Murphy is not satisfied enough yet with the script to what would be Beverly Hills Cop 4.
I have always been a big Eddie Murphy fan. I published my Top 10 Eddie Murphy Movies list and sadly, if you do not count his supporting role in Dreamgirls (2006), the most recent film on the list was from 2003. (If you have not read that Top 10 list, click on the link and be sure to check that out.)
I loved the original Beverly Hills Cop and the first sequel was very good as well. I did not feel that Beverly Hills Cop 3 was horrible like many do, but I will admit it was nowhere near the quality of the first two. As curious as I am to see what "Axel Foley" is up to now, I am also a little hesitant that #4 could be closer to #3 than it would be to #1 or #2. When Indiana Jones came back for #4 after a long break, it was met with mixed reviews. Hopefully Murphy will keep that in mind before joining "Taggart" and "Rosewood" for another romp through Beverly Hills.
Exclusive: Beverly Hills Cop IV Story Details!! By Kellvin Chavez on December 1, 2008
With everything 1980's being either made, remade, or re-imagined, one of our favorite readers and insiders who we haven't heard from in a hot minute, EL CHAVO has the goods on Eddie Murphy's 80's update of Beverly Hills Cop 4. Written by Michael Brandt and Derek Haas, to be directed by Brett Ratner and produced by Lorenzo "Action Man" DiBonaventura (taking over for Jerry Bruckheimer), Beverly Hills Cop IV is slated to be released in 2010.
Here is the scoop: The studio loves the draft but Eddie Murphy is not too keen on it.
Released in 1984, the original "Beverly Hills Cop" grossed $316 million worldwide and spawned two sequels. All told, the three pics grossed $712.9 million worldwide. The last was released in 1994.
We are working on scoring details for other 1980's sequels and remakes. In the meantime, El Chavo chimes in with his thoughts below...
It's been 15 years since Axel Foley was last in Beverly Hills, and screenwriters Michael Brandt and Derek Haas needed a good reason to bring him back. That reason comes just a couple of pages into the latest script for Beverly Hills Cop IV (which calls itself Beverly Hills Cop 2009) - Judge Reinhold's Billy Rosewood takes a leap out the 20th story of the Los Angeles Police HQ. When Axel hears that his former partner and best buddy became sidewalk salad he knows it wasn't a suicide and he flies to Beverly Hills to get all the facts for himself.
I thought that Beverly Hills Cop 2009 would be a Bad Boys II style movie with all endless car chases and explosions. Brandt and Haas keep it all old school for the most part though, with a small shoot out and chase in the opening and then no more action for like 50 pages until Axel gets into a small fistfight with some East LA gangbangers. Unfortunately, a lot of the shit in the middle is way boring. The whole problem with another Beverly Hills Cop movie is that the basic idea that Axel Foley is this rough and tumble Detroit cop who is a fish out water in upscale Beverly Hills is played out. He's done a lot of time in Beverly Hills. In this movie they mention that they teach his cases at the police academy and that a restaurant had an Axel Foley sandwich on the menu! (It's been renamed the Timbaland) Axel Foley knows his way around LA better than his new partner on the case who was born there.
That new partner is Goodwin, a fat rookie with low self-esteem who has a crush on a lady cop in the facial recognition department. When he's not solving the mystery of who tossed Billy out the window, Axel is playing matchmaker with these two. He's also teaching Goodwin how to be a better cop. It's like the Axel Foley Finishing School.
Along with Goodwin, Axel teams up with a limo driver named Elliot, who is the wise cracking comic relief. You wouldn't think you would need comic relief in an Eddie Murphy movie, but Axel Foley has no funny lines. I don't know if Brandt and Haas wrote the character unfunny to give Eddie room to ad lib or if they just think having him drop f-bombs every third line is the height of laughs, but Axel Foley is pretty much a Terminator in this movie. He just keeps moving forward no matter what like a shark in the water trying to find out who killed Billy.
It turns out that Billy was learning about a group of corrupt LAPD officers who were involved with gun running with a Beverly Hills rich kid who has ties to the military. The mystery isn't that big a deal, and Axel mostly gets from place to place by half-assedly conning people. He makes up a fake story about who he is and then doesn't follow through on it. It's like Brandt and Haas saw the first BHC and just didn't have the energy to write anything that matched up to it.
The really weird thing is that Axel Foley just isn't a character in this movie. In the opening he's followed a suspect into Canada and is illegally extraditing him, and from there he never takes a breather to be anything but a supercop. It's almost like the writers took an Arnold Schwarzenneger script they had lying around and changed the details to make it a Beverly Hills Cop movie. There's no fun in it.
The basic story of Beverly Hills Cop 2009 isn't terrible. It's a pretty standard police corruption story that has a personal edge for Axel Foley, and Brandt and Haas make it feel like an 80s action film by keeping the action more grounded, even though the final fight does include RPGs. But there's no fun in the movie and it feels like it needs another draft to make the film an Axel Foley adventure and not a generic cop getting revenge picture. Overall C+
Sounds like the script will need some work before Murphy fully commits. I am glad to see he is being a little particular regarding this project (since many of his more recent choices have left a lot to be desired). Either way, we will chalk this one up to another attempt of remaking 80's successes. As an obsessive fan of the 80's, I have mixed emotions about this. One part of me enjoys getting to see my favorite characters again, but another part of me wants to remember them the way I adore them. I guess in the end, I will see the sequel no matter what.
There are many reasons why I love the original Beverly Hills Cop movie and one of those reasons are the great lines. I thought I would end this issue with a quick top 10 list of my favorites. So here is OLD SCHOOL'S TOP 10 LINES FROM THE ORIGINAL BEVERLY HILLS COP:
10. "Yeah, Jenny, don't worry about me. We got cocaine and coffee here. We're gonna get wired and have a big party."
9. "What's this man doing here?" "Bleeding, sir."
8. "Do you want it with a lemon twist?"
7. "Is this your car?" "Oh, no. In Beverly Hills, we just take whichever car is closest."
6. "You do that again, I'll shoot you myself!"
5. "Get the f**k outta here!" "No, I cannot. It's serious."
4. "The Chief ain't chew it all out. You still got a little ass there."
3. "Yeah, and we're not gonna fall for a banana in the tailpipe."
2. "and I think Victor should go check himself out with his physician to make sure everything is fine before things start falling off on the man."
1. "Disturbing the peace? I got thrown out of a window! What's the f****n' charge for getting pushed out of a moving car, huh? Jaywalking?"
That will wrap up another issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks as always for reading. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. You can always click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. While you are up there in the upper right hand column, please take a moment to rate/vote for Kickin' it (I appreciate it). Peace and much love.
Check this out: With the holiday shopping season upon us, I thought I would share an interesting article on The 12 Days of Christmas from my friends over at Pop Culture Madness. Based on calculations, to buy all of the gifts listed in the holiday classic song it would cost $86,609 this year which is a 10% increase over last year. Check out the short article for more details.
Quote of the day: "He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past." -George Orwell from 1984
Download this: I have made the decision to temporarily suspend this feature. I have received less and less feedback regarding the song recommendations made here, so I am going to go without it for a while and see how that goes. Let me know if you miss it. You can find a link to the summary of all past recommendations in the LINKS section in the left hand column.
Boy George Convicted in Escort Case By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Published: December 5, 2008
LONDON (AP) -- Boy George, the flamboyant former Culture Club front man, was convicted Friday of falsely imprisoning a male escort.
Norwegian escort Audun Carlsen had alleged he was handcuffed to a wall hook at the singer's east London apartment on April 28, 2007. Prosecutors said Carlsen was held by the singer, whose real name is George O'Dowd, for under an hour.
Carlsen, 29, said O'Dowd swung a metal chain at him when he got loose and fled the apartment following a naked photo shoot.
O'Dowd, who is 46, admitted he restrained Carlsen with handcuffs while trying to figure out if Carlsen had tampered with a computer. The singer said he believed Carlsen had previously removed photos of himself that were taken by the singer.
Jurors were shown photos of welts on Carlsen's head and injuries to his arm, which the escort said had been inflicted by O'Dowd. The singer denied he was responsible.
The iconic '80s singer was released on bail following the verdict. He is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 16. False imprisonment carries a maximum sentence of life in prison. Such a severe sentence is not expected in this case, though the judge warned O'Dowd that some jail time was probable.
This was not the singer's first brush with the law. Two years ago, he was ordered to do community service in New York -- sweeping streets -- after pleading guilty to falsely reporting a burglary at his lower Manhattan apartment. The officers who responded found cocaine instead.
Two of Culture Club's best known hits are ''Karma Chameleon'' and ''Do You Really Want to Hurt Me.'' During the peak of his career, Boy George was known for his crooning voice, carefully applied female-style makeup and signature hats.
He was always a pretty weird dude, but this is really out there. I have always liked some of the Culture Club songs from the 80s, but now it will be hard to listen to them without picturing Boy George with a male prostitute hand-cuffed to the wall. As I explained back in an early issue of Kickin' it Old School, I really try to separate the art from the artist whenever necessary.
Culture Club had a short, but very successful, run in the 80s (1982-86). Then they had a short, but unsuccessful reunion more recently (1998-2002). The band has sold over 26 million records worldwide and won the Grammy for Best New Artist back in 1984. The music was catchy, but many people were drawn in by Boy George who shocked people with his feminine appearance which included heavy make-up. The timing could not be better with MTV and music videos helping add to the band's attraction. The attraction did not last, but Culture Club had some huge hits while they were together.
As I did in the DeBarge issue, I thought it would be appropriate to include a Top 10 list of my favorite Culture Club songs. I could not come up with 10, but I came up with 7 that I feel very solid about and I included links to the video to each song.
2. "Church of the Poison Mind" (1983) from Colour By Numbers [link to video]
1. "Karma Chameleon" (1983) from Colour By Numbers [link to video]
There's my list and it includes some great 80s classics. Those songs epitomize 80s music in my opinion. Too bad Culture Club could not have created more of these types of songs or stayed together a little longer. Too bad Boy George had to spiral out of control and end up facing a prison sentence. It's sad to me to see an 80s icon reduced to a criminal. I can only hope, though I am sure this is not likely to be the last story of an 80s superstar falling on hard times. Hopefully others will learn from the mistakes of guys like Boy George and avoid a similar fate. At least we have some outstanding music to remember them by!
That will wrap up another issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks so much for reading. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. If you are interested in reading more of my Top 10 lists, please click there for a summary of those. You can also click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, please pass the word and let others know to give it a try (and of course come back often!). Peace and much love.
Check this out: You know all of the email forwards you get with warnings or requests??? Well, I was just sent an email which makes fun of all of those email forwards and I think it is pretty funny. At least it amused me, so I thought I would share it. Read it and see how many of these you can relate to. Enjoy... Just want to thank all of you for your educational e-mails over the past year.
Thanks to you, I no longer open a public bathroom door without using a paper towel.
I can't use the remote in a hotel room because I don't know what the last person was doing while flipping through the adult movie channels.
I can't sit down on the hotel bedspread because I can only imagine what has happened on it since it was last washed.
I can't enjoy lemon slices in my tea or on my seafood anymore because lemon peels have been found to contain all kinds of nasty germs, including feces.
I have trouble shaking hands with someone who has been driving because the number one pass-time while driving alone is picking your nose (Although cell phone usage may be taking the number one spot).
Eating a Little Debbie sends me on a guilt trip because I can only imagine how many gallons of trans-fats I have consumed over the years.
I can't touch any woman's purse for fear she has placed it on the floor of a public bathroom. Yuck!
I must send my special thanks to whoever sent me the one about poop in the glue on envelopes because I now have to use a wet sponge with every envelope that needs sealing.
Also, now I have to scrub the top of every can I open as it might have rat droppings on it.
I no longer have any savings because I gave it to a sick girl (Penny Brown) who is about to die in the hospital for the 1,387,258th time.
I no longer have any money at all, but that will change once I receive the $15,000 that Bill Gates/Microsoft and AOL are sending me for participating in their special e-mail program.
I no longer worry about my soul because I have 363,214 angels looking out for me, and St. Theresa's novena has granted my every wish.
I no longer eat KFC because their chickens are actually horrible mutant freaks with no eyes or feathers.
I no longer use cancer-causing deodorants even though I smell like a water buffalo on a hot day.
Thanks to you, I have learned that my prayers only get answered if I forward an email to seven of my friends and make a wish within five minutes.
Because of your concern I no longer drink Coca Cola because it can remove toilet stains.
I no longer can buy gasoline without taking someone along to watch the car so a serial killer won't crawl in my back seat when I'm pumping gas.
I no longer drink Pepsi or Dr Pepper since the people who make these products are atheists who refuse to put 'Under God' on their cans.
I no longer use Saran Wrap in the microwave because it causes cancer.
And thanks for letting me know I can't boil a cup of water in the microwave anymore because it will blow up in my face...disfiguring me for life.
I no longer check the coin return on pay phones because I could be pricked with a needle infected with AIDS.
I no longer go to shopping malls because someone will drug me with a perfume sample and rob me.
I no longer receive packages from UPS or FedEx since they are actually Al Qaeda in disguise..
I no longer shop at Target since they are French and don't support our American troops or the Salvation Army.
I no longer answer the phone because someone will ask me to dial a number for or which I will get a phone bill with calls to Jamaica, Uganda, Singapore and Uzbekistan.
I no longer buy expensive cookies from Neiman Marcus since I now have their recipe.
Thanks to you, I can't use anyone's toilet but mine because a big brown African spider is lurking under the seat to cause me instant death when it bites my butt.
And thanks to your great advice, I can't ever pick up $5.00 dropped in the parking lot because it probably was placed there by a sex molester waiting underneath my car to grab my leg.
I can no longer drive my car because I can't buy gas from certain gas companies!
If you don't send this e-mail to at least 144,000 people in the next 70 minutes, a large dove with diarrhea will land on your head at 5:00pm this afternoon and the fleas from 12 camels will infest your back, causing you to grow a hairy hump. I know this will occur because it actually happened to a friend of my next door neighbor's ex-mother-in-law's second husband's cousin's beautician...
Have a wonderful day...
Oh, by the way... A German scientist from Argentina, after a lengthy study, has discovered that people with insufficient brain activity read their e-mail with their hand on the mouse. Don't bother taking it off now, it's too late.
Quote of the day: "The reputation of a thousand years may be determined by the conduct of one hour." -Japanes Proverb
Download this: Have to go with "Karma Chameleon" by Culture Club.
If the Actors strike happens early next year as it seems it will, this will all be delayed and not quite as relevant. My question (which I already know the answer to) is ‘Has Hollywood really run out of original ideas?' The reason I ask this question is the recent announcements of unnecessary remakes of classic 80s films.
Jaden Smith set for 'Karate Kid' redo Columbia taps Chris Murphy to write script
By Michael Fleming November 10, 2008
Columbia Pictures is back in the dojo with a new version of the 1984 hit "The Karate Kid," which has been refashioned as a star vehicle for Jaden Smith.
The film will be produced by Jerry Weintraub (who launched the original franchise) and Overbrook Entertainment's James Lassiter, Will Smith and Ken Stovitz. Will Smith, who is the 10-year-old actor's father, co-starred alongside Jaden in his feature debut, "The Pursuit of Happyness," which Overbrook and Escape Artists produced for Columbia.
The script is being written by Chris Murphy, and the film will shoot next year in Beijing and other cities. While the new film will be set in that exotic locale, it will borrow elements of the original plot, wherein a bullied youth learns to stand up for himself with the help of an eccentric mentor.
China Film Group Corp. will co-produce in China.
The younger Smith, who next stars in "The Day the Earth Stood Still," is a martial arts practitioner.
Columbia presidents Doug Belgrad and Matt Tolmach said they had been trying to find a way to bring back the series, which began with three films that featured Ralph Macchio and Pat Morita. A subsequent film launched the career of Hilary Swank.
I had a special issue on The Karate Kid which happens to be another one of my guilty pleasure movies from the 80s. Why do they need to do a remake or another sequel to this classic? They don't. Maybe Jaden Smith will become a superstar actor like his Dad. Here is a link to my Top 10 Will Smith Movies list if you need reminding of his incredible work. They were great together in The Pursuit of Happyness and I think Jaden would find success even without doing a Karate Kid remake.
Five performers named to "Fame" faculty By Jay A. Fernandez - Mon Dec 1, 1:07 am ET
LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Actors Megan Mullally, Kelsey Grammer, Charles S. Dutton, Bebe Neuwirth and Debbie Allen have been tenured. The quintet has been chosen for administrative and teaching roles in the remake of "Fame."
Choreographer Kevin Tancharoen will direct the reinvention of the 1980 musical drama about a group of dancers, singers, actors and artists trying to survive four grueling years at New York City's prestigious High School of Performing Arts.
Allison Burnett and Aline Brosh McKenna wrote the updated screenplay for the MGM/Lakeshore Entertainment production, which is scheduled for release September 25 (2009).
"This picture is a celebration, a testament to people pursuing their dreams, so we set out to find talented actors who could both convincingly instruct onscreen and also inspire audiences," MGM Worldwide Motion Picture Group chairman Mary Parent said.
All five actors have noteworthy performing arts backgrounds. Mullally, who will play a voice instructor, graduated from the School of American Ballet; Grammer, who will play an orchestra conductor, attended Juilliard; Dutton, who will play an acting teacher, went to the Yale School of Drama; and Neuwirth, who will play a dance teacher, has won two Tonys.
Actress and choreographer Allen, who played dance teacher Lydia Grant in the original film and won a Golden Globe for her role in the spinoff television series, will appear in the updated version as Principal Simms.
The student cast includes Kristy Flores, Paul Iacono, Paul McGill, Naturi Naughton and Kay Panabaker.
Now is this necessary? I guess at least it is not coming back as a new reality series with kids auditioning to be in a real Performing Arts school or something like that. There are some intriguing casting choices specifically with Kelsey Grammar (Frasier), Megan Mullally (Will & Grace) and Charles S. Dutton (Roc). Who knows, with this cast of veteran TV actors, maybe the film will be followed up with a new television series like it did back in the 80's.
Russell Brand eyeing 'Arthur' redo Actor could star in remake of 1981 comedy By Borys Kit
Russell Brand might soon be caught between the moon and New York City.
The British comedian is developing a remake of "Arthur," the 1981 comedy that starred Dudley Moore, for Warner Bros. as a potential starring vehicle.
Brand is meeting with scribes to write the screenplay, which will be produced by MBST's Larry Brezner, whose credits range from "Good Morning, Vietnam" to HBO's recent "Little Britain USA."
The original movie followed a boozy playboy rascal who is set to inherit a fortune if he marries an heiress his family thinks will make something out of him. However, he falls in love with a working-class woman and turns to his valet for help when his family makes him choose between money and love.
Moore was nominated for an Oscar as was Steve Gordon, the film's writer-director. John Gielgud, who played the valet, won the best supporting actor Oscar, and the movie's theme song, "The Best That You Can Do," won for original song.
Sarah Schechter is overseeing for Warners.
Brand already has a rascally reputation, not only for his past sex-, drugs- and alcohol-infused lifestyle but also for on-air radio pranks that recently led him to being suspended by the BBC. He subsequently resigned.
American audiences got their first taste of Brand in "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," in which he played a rock star lothario. He next appears with Adam Sandler in "Bedtime Stories," which opens on Christmas Day. The Endeavor-repped actor is filming Julie Taymor's adaptation of Shakespeare's "The Tempest" and will reunite his "Marshall" co-horts for "Get Him to the Greek."
'Romancing the Stone' remake in works Fox taps Daniel McDermott to pen screenplay By Borys Kit
Fox is bringing "Romancing the Stone" to the big screen again, swinging into development a remake of the 1984 adventure movie and tapping Daniel McDermott to write it.
The original movie helped launch Robert Zemeckis as a director, turned Michael Douglas and Danny DeVito -- then best known for their TV work -- into film stars and established Kathleen Turner as a romantic lead.
Written by Diane Thomas, "Romancing" told the story of a repressed romance novelist who travels to Colombia to find her missing sister only to meet up with an American soldier of fortune. The two embark on a cross-country adventure involving a map, a jewel and a private police force. Thomas wrote the script while working as a waitress in Malibu. It turned out to be her only produced screenplay; she died in a car crash the year after the film's release.
No producers are attached to the remake.
McDermott, a former head of DreamWorks Television who segued to screenwriting, most recently co-wrote the DreamWorks thriller "Eagle Eye." He is developing a contemporary adventure movie for Tom Cruise at UA titled "Adventurer's Club" and working on a remake of "Soylent Green" for Warner Bros.
McDermott, repped by UTA and Media Talent Group, also created and executive produced the Lifetime drama "Angela's Eyes."
Disgusting in my opinion. A couple of these remakes would be understandable, but why the sudden rush? I fully expect to keep having more and more similar announcements made over the coming months. Since I came across these two so close to my last issue, I decided to add them in here as an update rather than do an entire separate issue on them.
Either way, this is getting out of control pretty quickly. Now back to you regular Kickin' it issue.
******** END OF UPDATE ********
These are just a few examples of how Hollywood is starting to get lazy and relying on remakes of past successes. Even many of the movies being released that are not remakes don't have all that much going for them. There far fewer outstanding movies nowadays than there was just 10 years ago, let alone in the 80's. Now they are pillaging those 80's movies to try to relive some of the success. It is sometimes said, "Everything old is new," but I don't think that applies to movies.
Here's hoping that Hollywood realizes this is not the road to take. Leave my classic 80's movies alone and come up with your own ideas. Please! For the sake of the audience, please!
That will wrap up another issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. You can always click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, please pass the word and let others know to give it a try (and of course come back often!). Peace and much love.
Check this out: With all of the constant media spotlight on the Cruise family, I would not blame little Suri (Tom Cruise's daughter) if this hand gesture was intentional. Here with her Mom, Katie Holmes, I am sure this was just a coincidence, but it still cracks me up. I think many celebrities would echo these sentiments in regards to the paparazzi...
Quote of the day: "But it is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation." -Herman Melville
Download this: Since it relates back to this issue, I will go with the 1980 hit "Fame" by Irene Cara which was on the film's soundtrack and later used as the theme song for the television series.
One of the more underrated shows of the late 70's/early 80's is WKRP in Cincinnati. The series was about a fictitious radio station and featured an outstanding ensemble cast which included Howard Hesseman, Tim Reid, Gary Shandy, Gordon Jump and the beautiful Loni Anderson among others. (Anderson ranks on my list of the Hottest Female TV Characters of the 80's)
WKRP premiered in 1978 on CBS and aired for four seasons and 90 episodes through 1982. The series won a Humanitas Prize (an award for film and television writing intended to promote human dignity, meaning, and freedom) and received 10 Emmy Award nominations, including three for Outstanding Comedy Series, though was not fully appreciated until it gained popularity in syndication.
Station takes call letters of TV show November 29, 2008 CINCINNATI (AP) -- WKRP is back on the air in Cincinnati - but this time it's for real. A low-power TV station has changed its call letters to WKRP, the same as the fictional radio station in the 1970s hit series "WKRP in Cincinnati."
The station changed its call letters to promote its new digital TV signal. It formerly went by WBQC-TV.
General Manager Elliott Block says the new call letters give the station recognition because so many people remember the television sit-com.
I wonder if they will be hiring Dr. Johnny Fever or Venus Flytrap to spin records, Les Nessman to report the news or Herb Tarlek to sell advertising for the station. Doubt it.
The second reason I bring it up today is that I just watched one of my favorite television episodes of any series from anytime. It is the Thanksgiving episode from the first season in 1978 called "Turkeys Away." I watched it with my Dad on Thanksgiving Day and we laughed just as hard as if we had never seen it before (even though we have both seen it dozens of times over the years). We might have to make a tradition out of doing that.
"Turkeys Away" is about a publicity stunt conceived by general manger Arthur Carlson (played by Gordon Jump). The station drops live turkeys out of a helicopter over a shopping center as a Thanksgiving Day giveaway. The turkeys, who cannot fly, plunge to their deaths as shoppers run for their lives. The entire event, however, occurs entirely off-screen, as the viewer only sees and hears Les Nessman describe the scene in words reminiscent of Herbert Morrison's reporting of the Hindenburg disaster. A shaken Arthur Carlson later remarks, "As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly." I laugh just thinking about it. I was not aware of this before, but it was actually named by TV Guide as one of the greatest episodes in television history.
They just don't make TV Shows like that anymore. Even though this episode was from 1978, WKRP in Cincinnati always reminds me of the 80's.
That will wrap up this issue of Kickin' it Old School. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it. If you are interested in reading more of my 80's related issues, please click there for a summary. You can always click on the Archives in the upper left hand column or use the Google Search Box at the top of the right hand column to find any other issues you may have missed. If you are a fan of Kickin' it, please pass the word and let others know to give it a try (and of course come back often!). Peace and much love.
Check this out: We just were hit with our first snow storm of the season. With that, I thought I would share a couple of my favorite Calvin & Hobbes cartoons featuring Calvin's famous snow sculptures...
Quote of the day: "It is better to understand little than to misunderstand a lot." -Anatole France
Download this: I will go with one of my favorite songs of all time which just happens to be a hit from 1978 (same year as the WKRP episode above). I will go with "How Deep Is Your Love" by The Bee Gees.
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