Tag Archives: 1980s

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Now your English Mistakes are History – Smith Corona Word processor, 1988

As I sit here typing away on my computer that automatically corrects my spelling and transmits whatever I write to the four people who pay attention to this blog, I’m reminded that there was a day not so long ago when one was responsible for ones own mistakes. Thanks be that those days are gone.

From Classic Ads – Misc

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Filed under technology

March 1980 – Dungeons and Dragons

Nowadays, midst of such travesties as Twilight and Harry Potter we’re used to seeing hints of the mystic but there was a day, not so long ago when all we had was Dungeons and Dragons. Not even the advanced edition, just the vanilla offering from TSR complete with kobolds with only half a hit-die. If you’ve ever rolled a natural 2o then you remember these halcyon days.

From Classic Ads – Books

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Filed under Books

Starlog Magazine – February 1983 or a Nerdgasm of 30 years Past

My general rule for ads is to never bother with any ads younger than I am. As the years pass this becomes a sad and increasingly restrictive rule. Today, however, we revisit the year 1983 and Starlog magazine, a publication devoted to computers, video games and scifi. Let’s skip over the silliness of David Hassellhoff and the Knight 2000, Jon Pertwee’s return to Doctor Who and other random drivel so that we can focus on the best part: The Adverts!

I don’t know about you but I’d give… practically nothing for a Admiral Ackbar full-face latex mask. It’s surprising to me that the instructions specify that customers should send cash in the mail. Also, one wonders how many of these remain Mint-In-Box even today waiting for some lucky kid to crack them open and wear them around the yard… before getting beaten up by a few neighborhood bullies with poor appreciation for nerdy pursuits like “recreating your favorite character’s most adventurous moments” as the text says.

From Classic Ads – Misc

And, just in case the mask didn’t get your ass beat for you, you can order a “Warrior’s Battle Outfit.” These guys really have it in for their customers. The text suggests that “you can wear your Battle Warrior outfit to school, parties or anywhere! It’s fun to dress in space fashion. The whole family can dress in Warrior’s Battle outfits.” Again, anywhere that you want to get your ass thoroughly beaten with your own “Warrior’s Battlepac”

From Classic Ads – Misc

And no 80’s magazine ad would be complete without mention of the Atari game system.
Get ready for the space battle of your life with the award-winning Astro Chase!” Enjoy those “fast-fighting thrills and brilliant graphics!”

From Classic Ads – Misc

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Before there was Bud-Weis-er…. 1981 Budweiser

Before there were talking frogs, there were pull-tab cans. The current slogan of “this bud’s for you” appears in the newspaper on the right-hand side of the street.

1981 Budweiser

1981 Budweiser

Except for the obsolete can-opening mechanism the ad is fairly unremarkable except for the reaction of the gentleman in the foreground. His lady friend is leading him across the street but he’s become distracted by the giant beer in the sky. She clearly couldn’t care less but he is enthralled. Is the advertising trying to tell us that beer is more important than a relationship with a woman in a blue velour dress? Well, maybe. Well… velour? Very probably.

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Filed under alcoholic, Drinks

Sweet Georgia Boombox – 1980 JVC Boombox

Before they were officially dubbed boomboxes, they were “Portable Component Systems” and this one has an optional record player though it escapes me how you’d carry that down the street with you.

Sweet Georgia Boombox

Sweet Georgia Boombox

Not long after, the boombox would become king and the record player would die a slow death filled with needle-drop hiss. But don’t feel bad because albums are back with a force. Can eight-tracks and wax cylinders be far behind?

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Popeye the Movie – It yis what it yis. [1980]

Today’s ad from the dim and misty past comes with an embarrassing personal anecdote. People always talk about the first bit of recorded music they bought as a child. I’ve heard Bob Marley, REO Speedwagon, The Monkees, or even Bing Crosby (from the older set). The first music you actually bothered to spend money on as a child can say a lot about you. I, sadly, am always forced to admit that the fist music I bought on purpose was the sound-track to this movie. It was 99 cents at Woolworths and I bought it proudly home when I was apparently not old enough to know any better. Interestingly, I’m fairly certain that I hadn’t actually seen the movie.

Popeye - 1980

Popeye - 1980

I don’t think I need to point out that this movie was NOT the entertainment event of the season. I must admit though… pretty good music.

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Filed under Movies