Mark#33 – Daniel Larusso…You’re the Best Around!

January 11, 2007

Dipping back into the whole 80’s nostalgia thing today, I came across one of my favourite sequences from one of my favourite movies (well, it was one of my favourites growing up anyway).

The Karate Kid was right up there with Back to the Future and The Goonies for me, in fact they’re probably the three films that best define the 80’s for me.

In fact, I was shocked and a bit sad to hear that the actors who played ‘Sloth’ and ‘Mama Fratelli’ in The Goonies both died only 3 or 4 years after the film was made.

On a brighter note, April and I are off to Wales this weekend for a bit of R&R. With any luck we’ll find One Eye Willy’s hidden treasure.


Mark#25 – A Couple of Aussie Beauties

November 29, 2006

I was driving home from Leeds just a couple of hours ago, listening to Edith Bowman on Radio 1, and thinking to myself that Edith’s is my least favourite of the Radio 1 shows.

It seems I spoke, or at least thought, too soon. Because barely two minutes later she launched into her topic for the day, which just so happened to be my favourite topic…80s TV theme tunes!

Kudos to whichever listener texted in to request the theme from a show that I had COMPLETELY forgotten about….Round the Twist:

Obviously this set me off thinking about all the Australian shows I used to watch – Neighbours, Home and Away, Heartbreak High – all which were good, but none of which have a theme tune like this cracker: 

Not many people I chat to have ever heard of Pugwall, but in a nutshell it was about a guy (Peter Unwin George Wall) and his pals who were trying to turn their garage band into something bigger and better, but were constantly foiled by their own ineptitude and the interference of Pugwall’s little sister, Marmaloid.

My bro and I used to watch it religiously, and can still recite all the lyrics to this day.  


Mark#25 – Kate & Rich

November 24, 2006

A big shout out to our friends back in Toronto, Kate & Rich! Or, as April refers to them, ‘bizarro April & Mark’, on account of the many eerie similarities in our lives and relationships.

April and Kate both moved to Toronto from different parts of Canada. Standing at a similar height and with the same dark hair and fair skin, both found work in the B2B practice group at Fleishman-Hillard Canada (which is where they met). They bonded over their mutual interests of shopping, designer goods, more shopping and, last but not least, their love of tall, handsome, English men who had emigrated to Canada. So, inevitably, the men in their lives eventually met and, lo and behold, the similarities continued.

There was none of that “our girlfriends are mates so we have to be mates” type-awkwardness, Rich and myself hit it off immediately in our own right. Sharing a healthy obsession with football (although as Rich follows Nottingham Forest, it’s debatable if he can really call himself a football fan) and a broader interest in sports, beer, more sports and hot, dark-haired Canadian women.

Happily, and perhaps appropriately, April and I weren’t the only ones to tie the knot this year – as Kate and Rich did the deed just a few weeks before us. And today, courtesy of Kate’s talented siblings, we were introduced to a compilation video of Kate & Rich’s history, and it’s a hoot….

Oh, and by the way Kate, I can confirm that April did NOT go through the Laura Ashley phase…so maybe you’re not so bizarro after all.

Mark#21 – Charley Says…

September 12, 2006

For anyone born in the 80’s, this is nostalgia at its most nostalgic.

And for anyone born in the 90’s, think ‘The Prodigy’.

You can see all six of the ‘Charley Says…’ public information films by clicking here. They are way better quality than the Youtube versions too. The one called ‘Strangers‘ is both alarming and hilarious.

In fact, the site that hosts all these clips is the archive for loads of British public information films through the years. It’s quite cool just to scan through there, there’s tons you’ll recognise.

I was looking for the one where the kid burns his hand on a sparkler. You know the one, they used to peddle it out every time bonfire night came around. I couldn’t find it, but what I could find was the insanely lame Hale and Pace doing their ‘The Management’ skit for fireworks safety.

Mark#20 – Henry’s Cat

September 10, 2006

Our cats, Jer-Bear and Jo-Bot, are scheduled to arrive in England on Friday. Poor little things, being separated from us for 3 months must have been pretty stressful for them, but our friends Eric and Brian have done an admirable job as surrogate parents.

In honour of their arrival, here’s another fantastic feline, Henry’s Cat. My favourite thing about this show was the brilliantly named villain – a pathological sheep called Rum Baa Baa.


Mark#18 – Trumpton

September 7, 2006

I used to watch Trumpton (and Chigley, and Camberwick Green) religiously when I was about 5 years old. My Grandad would pick me up from school, we’d get the bus down to his house together, and then I’d watch Trumpton before having a game of scrabble against my Grandma. 

Although it’s not nearly as memorable or catchy as the opening to Bertha, I decided to post the opening to Trumpton because it’s the earliest TV show I can remember watching.

I remember that I used to love the noise of Windy Millers windmill as it turned. And the legendary roll call taken at the firestation “Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble, Grub“.

There was something about the show, however, that I always found kind of haunting and a bit spooky. Even watching the opening sequence again today just freaked me out a bit, but I really can’t put my finger on why.

Mark#17 – Bertha

September 6, 2006

I love to reminisce about 80’s TV shows with my pals, especially when the conversation ends with a rousing group chorus of the theme tune of one of the programmes under discussion.

So I figure that, every once in a while when I have nothing better to blog about, I’m going to let YouTube do the work for me, and simply post videos of my favourite theme tunes.

I decided to open the series with the title credits from ‘Bertha’ Partly because it’s just so catchy that anyone who lived in the 80’s can likely still recite it, but mainly because I find the name of the series creator / director utterly hilarious. If you don’t have a clue what I’m talking about, just watch for his name in the credits.