Smart Guy - Disney

I still remember tuning into the Disney Channel, just so I could watch the show "Smart Guy".

Smart Guy cast

Smart Guy was about a gifted youngster called TJ Henderson, who was transferred into High School at the age of 10 because of how intelligent he was. TJ was played by actor Tahj Mowry, who is now 26 years old!

TJ

Here's a picture of what TJ (Tahj Mowry) looks like now:



Remember Mo, who was Marcus Henderson's best friend?



Remember Yvette, TJ's older sister, who Mo was always hitting on? (Played by Essence Atkins).



Remember the intro song, which basically repeated the sentence "He's a smart guy!"



Here's an episode:



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RoboCop Versus The Terminator - Sega

"RoboCop Versus The Terminator" was released back in 1993 for the Sega Mega Drive and Sega Genesis. This was the same year that saw WWF Monday Night Raw premier for the first time. It was the year that Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You" made it to the top of the singles charts. 1993 was also the year that Dr Dre released his classic rap album "The Chronic".

Micky Mania - Sega

This is another game that I have fond memories of. "Mickey Mania: The Timeless Adventures of Mickey Mouse" is a platformer gamer that was released back in 1994 for the Sega Megadrive and Genesis. The game followed Mickey Mouse as he hopped his way through several levels, all of which were based on certain eras of Disney cartoons.

Mickey Mania Sega

The levels included:

  • Steamboat Willie - 1928: This level was in black and white.
  • The Mad Doctor - 1933.
  • The Band Concert - 1935.
  • Moose Hunters - 1937.
  • Lonesome Ghosts - 1937.
  • Mickey and the Beanstalk - 1947.
  • The Prince and the Pauper - 1990.

Here's the first level play through of the game:



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Streets of Rage

Streets of Rage was released on the Sega Megadrive back in 1991. The game was a beat-em-up classic that had enemy fighters walk onto the screen from both sides of the screen. Along the way, you'd pick up items such as pieces of chicken, which helped replenishe your health. The three characters that you could choose from were called Adam Hunter, Axel Stone and Blaze Fielding; three police officers whose goal it was to retake the city from a powerful criminal organization.

streets of rage

I think that one of the things that made this game so great and popular was the fact that it had a 2-player co-op mode, which allowed you and your friends to play together. Personally, I spent many an afternoon kicking the crap out of bad guys with my friends, who would pop over to my house just so that we could play it.

Here is some gameplay footage of Streets of Rage on the Sega Megadrive:



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The Land Before Time

The Land Before Time is an animated movie about dinosaurs that was released back in November, 1988 (that's 24 years ago!). This was the same year that George Bush (senior) defeated Democratic Party nominee Michael Dukakis for the US Presidency. It was also the year that the Soviet Union withdrew its armed forces from Afghanistan.

Land Before Time movie

The movie follows Littlefoot and his friends as they search for the "Great Valley", an almost-mythical place that is rich in food, water and shelter. The group (seen above) was made up of Littlefoot, Cera, Ducky, Spike and Petrie. The movie is actually available on Youtube:





(You can find the rest by clicking on the second video).

It's also worth noting that the movie spawned a series of movies that were continuously released throughout the 1990s and the 2000s.

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Round The Twist Intro

Here's the theme song / intro for Round The Twist:



Round The Twist was an Australian children's TV show that started airing back in 1989. The show was about a widowed father and his three children living in a light house. Characters included the "Twist" family: Tony (dad), Pete and Linda (the twins) and Bronson (the youngest). Others included Helen "Nell" Rickards, who lived next to the Twist family in an old cottage house. The greedy real-estate agent Harold Gribble, who spends a lot of his time trying to get the Twist family to move out of the lighthouse. "Matron" Cecilia Gribble; Harold's wife. Harold's bully son James Gribble. Faye James, Bronson Twist's teacher.

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The All-New Super Friends Hour

"The All-New Super Friends Hour" was an American cartoon that ran between September 1977 and September 1978.



The show followed an elite group of super heroes:


  • Batman and Robin
  • Superman
  • Wonder Woman
  • Aquaman and
  • The Wonder Twins

The show stopped in 1978 when ABC decided that the show's success was enough to warrant the launch of a new show called "Super Friends" (pictured above). Here's an intro for nostalgia purposes:




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The Talkboy

The Talkboy was released back in 1993, the same year that Ace of Base's "All That She Wants" was released as a single and the movie Jurassic Park hit movie theaters across the globe. You may also remember 1993 as the year that "Mrs. Doubtfire" was released. the Talkboy basically allowed you to record voice onto a cassette tape and play it back at a faster/slower rate.

Talkboy

Anyway, The Talkboy first appeared in movie "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York" back in 1992 as a "non-working prop". i.e. The Talkboy that was shown in the movie didn't actually work. A year later, Tiger Electronics turned the prop into a working retail product that was marketed at kids and teenagers:



"HEY, STOP DROOLING ON ME!" I also love the creepy "Hi kids, we're home early!" recording, simply because it doesn't sound like a person's voice at all.

They also came out with a version for girls:

talkgirl

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All of these things now fit in your pocket!



20 years later, all of these things now fit in your pocket. Nowadays, we have smart phones that can play music, tune into radio stations, record video footage, play games, calculate math, play videos and take photographs.


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Mr Frosty - 1980s Slush maker

Mr Frosty was a toy released by PlaySkool in the 1980s (PlaySkool was a division of toy company Hasbro). The sole purpose of Mr Frosty the snowman was to turn / crunch ice cubes up into flavored slush ice. You would put the ice into Mr Frosty's head, smash it up with his hat and the resulting slush ice was made available via a hole in his stomach. It's fair to say that this was a hugely popular toy throughout the 80s and the 90s:



Here's a commercial that you'll definitely remember:



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WWF Attitude - PS1 Game

I was browsing through random Youtube videos this morning when I came across a related video for "WWF Attitude", the PS1/N64 game that was released back in 1999 (13 years ago already? Oh man!).

Back in 1999, I was 12 years old and I was a huge wrestling fan! Every single time a WWF-related TV show was on, I'd tune in to watch the likes of Stone Cold, Mankind, The Rock and Triple H. At the time, I was rocking the PlayStation 1 (aka PSX), so this game; "WWF Attitude", was obviously one of my favorite games!

Cover Image

I loved this game and I even remember "faking a sickie" so that I could stay at home and play it! Some of things I loved about it:

  • When you hit somebody with a steel chair, it looked as if they actually felt it. Sometimes, after a severe beating, your opposition would just lie there for about 3 or 4 minutes. I missed that when the newer WWF games came out. In those games, the matches felt "toyish" and wrestler would get up 3 seconds after you planted a chair on the back of their head.
  • Blood. Yep. If you beat somebody bad enough, they would bleed! In some of the games that followed it, blood became far less common.

Anyway, here's a play-through / "lets play" video from Youtube:



Here's a video of the Royal Rumble game mode, which allowed 4 players at a time:



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The Adventures of Pete & Pete

Pete & Pete began their journey back in 1989; the same year that Madonna's "Like a Prayer" sat on top of the US singles charts and "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" was in movie theaters.

Pete and Pete

The show centered around the two Wrigley brothers, who were both named Pete. Big Pete was the show's main narrator. He often came across as the only sane person in the show.

Little Pete, on the other hand, was often engaged in battles with adults and authority figures. You might also remember the fact that he had a tattoo of a woman, which he called Petunia:

petunia

Here's the intro for the show:



Here's an episode called "Hard Day's Pete", in which Little Pete owns and operates a radio station called WART Radio Station:



Here's what they look like now:

Little Pete (Danny Tamberelli):

Danny Tamberelli now

Big Pete (Mike Maronna):

Mike Maronna now


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Top 5 Songs of the 1980s

Here is a list of the top 5 songs from the 80s!

1. Bon Jovi - Livin' on a Prayer
Bon Jovi are an American rock band from Sayreville, New Jersey, that formed in 1983. In late 1986, they released their hit single "Livin' on a Prayer". This was in and around the same time as that the Iran–Contra affair became public.



2. Def Leppard - Pour Some Sugar On Me
Def Leppard are a rock band from Sheffield, England. Formed in 1977, the group released their single "Pour Some Sugar On Me" in 1987 (UK) and 1988 (US).



3. Duran Duran - Hungry Like the Wolf
Duran Duran are an English band that formed back in 1978. In 1982, they released their single "Hungry Like the Wolf":



4. Michael Jackson - Billie Jean
Pop legend Michael Jackson, who died in June, 2009, released one of the most memorable singles of the 80s in the form of "Billie Jean". The song instantly achieved worldwide commercial and critical success:



5. Prince - When Doves Cry
Prince began his music career back in 1976. On May the 16th, 1984, he released his single "When Doves Cry", which was the first single from his album "Purple Rain". According to a number of source, it was the top selling single of the year. Note that Prince doesn't want his songs on Youtube, so the video below might be taken down after this is posted. Apparently, Prince thinks that the Internet is just a fad that will blow over:



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Ernest P. Worrell

It's fair to say that anyone who lived through the 80s or 90s will remember the character "Ernest P. Worrell", who was played by actor Jim Varney.

Ernest

Varney began acting as Ernest back in 1980, when he did a TV commercial for an upcoming appearance of the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders at an amusement park in Kentucky. From there on in, he stuck with the character, starring in several TV commercials throughout the 80s and early 90s. Here he is in an 1983 commercial for Country Fresh Milk:



The character was so popular that Varney was eventually given his own children's TV show called "Hey Vern, It's Ernest!", which first aired back in 1988. Unfortunately, the show was short-lived and only lasted for one season:



In 1987, "Ernest Goes To Camp" was released. In this, Ernest faced juvenile delinquents and an evil mining corporation that wanted to destroy the camp.

Ernest Goes To Camp

Several other Ernest movies were also released throughout the 1980s and 1990s:

  • Ernest Saves Christmas - 1988
  • Ernest Goes to Jail - 1990
  • Ernest Scared Stupid - 1991
  • Ernest Rides Again - 1993
  • Ernest Goes to School - 1994
  • Ernest Goes to Africa - 1997
  • Ernest in the Army - 1998

Tragically, Jim Varney passed away in February, 2000, after battling lung cancer for two years. Here's some footage from Ernest Saves Christmas:



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Terminator 2: Judgment Day - Sega / SNES

"Terminator 2: Judgment Day" was released for the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive and the SNES back in 1993. This was the same year that saw the release of Jurassic Park and Mrs. Doubtfire.

Terminator 2 Sega

Based on a 1991 film of the same name, Terminator 2: Judgement Day allowed you to take control of a T-800 that is sent back in time in order to protect John and Sarah Connor from the liquid-metal T-1000 that is trying to hunt them down.

When the game starts off, you land in the parking lot of a diner. From there on in, you're forced to blast your way through bikers, cops and the T-1000, which appears at random intervals throughout the game. You also get to drive a motorbike from one place to the next; something that I thought was pretty cool at the time.

From Level 3 onward, you're tasked with the protection of John and Sarah Connor. If either of their health levels drop, you must kneel down beside them and sacrifice some of your own. Sarah helps you throughout the game by shooting at enemies.

Here's a play-through of the game, complete with the memorable background music:



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Action Man - 1990s

In 1993, toy company Hasbro relaunched the "Action Man" toy series. The original Action Man figures had been produced between 1966 and 1984 (and will be covered in a later post).

1990s Action Man

I remember that one of the figures had body camouflage that would appear whenever it was exposed to strong sunlight. I also remember the evil arch nemesis DR X, who looked ridiculous with his colorful purple pants:

DR X

DR X was an evil scientist (and leader of "The Council of Doom") that sought world domination. He was one of the first villains to be introduced in the 1990s series.

If you remember: Some of the Action Man figures had rubber legs (with no bending knees), whereas others were made out of solid plastic, allowing for knees and elbows.

cop

I remember having the Action Man above. He had a plastic blue armoured vest that could be taken off and two guns that fired rockets from his hips.

In 2009, Hasbro reintroduced the series by selling a new wave of figures in Tesco stores around the UK. Eventually, production was halted again, presumably because there isn't as much interest in the series anymore.

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Troll dolls

The popularity of the Troll doll has lasted for decades. After being first created in 1959 by a Danish woodcutter called Thomas Dam, Troll dolls went on to become a huge fad throughout the early 1960s. During the 70s, 80s and 90s, Troll dolls rose and fell from popularity for brief periods of time, with several different toy companies producing their own versions.

Troll Dolls

The Troll doll began back in 1959 when Danish fisherman and woodcutter Thomas Dam couldn't afford to buy his daughter Lila a Christmas present. To make up for this, he decided to carve her a creature from his own imagination. Afterwards, when other kids saw Lila's doll, they made it abundantly clear that they wanted one as well. Soon afterwards, Dam's company were producing plastic versions of the doll and selling them on.

Dam Dolls

The popularity of Troll dolls quickly spread into several other European countries, before becoming a huge fad in America between 1963 and 1965. Originally called "Dam dolls", they were made from high quality materials, with glass being used for eyes and sheep wool being used for hair.

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The Real Ghostbusters - Cartoon

"The Real Ghostbusters" was a cartoon series that started back in 1986, the same year that saw the release of Top Gun and "Crocodile" Dundee. It was also the year that Madonna released her hit single "Papa Don't Preach".

Real Ghostbusters

The cartoon series was based on the original 1984 film "Ghostbusters". The word "Real" was added because a similarly-named cartoon based on an entirely different show from the 70s was also airing on TV at the time.

Throughout the show, The Ghostbusters, their secretary Janine, their accountant Louis and their green ghost Slimer, chased ghosts around New York city.

Janine

The cartoon quickly became a success after its release, being named by IGN as the 22nd best show in the Top 100 Best Animated TV Shows. After running for 7 seasons, which comprised of 147 episodes in total, the original airing of the show came to an end in 1991.

Here's an episode called "The Devil to Pay", complete with the intro:



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Pogs

Pogs became a fad back in the early 1990s when a elementary school teacher in Hawaii introduced the game to her students as a means of teaching them Math. By 1993, the game had grown and spread into mainland USA. By the mid 90s, Pogs had soared in popularity, reaching school playgrounds in Europe.

Pogs

Pogs
Pogs were made out of stiff cardboard. As the picture shows, they were often covered by illustrations and other colorful graphics.

World Tour

Slammers
Slammers were heavier and usually made out of heavy plastic or metal. These were used to hit the pogs.

Slammers

If you remember correctly, Pogman was a major star of the World Tour pogs, which showed him doing various activities throughout the world (and even the moon):



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Are You Afraid of the Dark?

"Are You Afraid of the Dark" was a TV show that aired in 1990 in Canada and 1991 in America. The first pilot episode was called "The Tale of the Twisted Claw".

Are you afraid of the dark

If you remember correctly, each episode started off with a group of kids (who referred to themselves as "The Midnight Society") sitting around a camp fire in the middle of woods. One person from the group would then be selected to tell a scary ghost story, with that story being acted out throughout the episode.

Midnight Society

At the end of a story, members of the Midnight Society would often be so afraid that they'd run off home.

Here's the episode "The Tale of the Dream Girl", complete with the iconic intro:



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Fashion styles from the 1990s

Here are some fashion trends / styles from the 1990s!

Here's Jesse Spano from Saved by the Bell wearing a "scrunchie" in her hair:

Scrunchie

Overalls were a big hit in the 90s! Here's a picture of boy band 'N Sync, who formed back in 1995:

Overalls

Overalls were also popular among women, as is evident by this photograph of R&B group TLC:



The grunge fashion style rose to prominence in 1992. It was aided and inspired by bands such as Nirvana. Note the ripped jeans and flannel shirts!






Grunge

Here's famous child actor Jonathan Brandis wearing a baggy flannel shirt:

Jonathan Brandis

I don't even know where to begin with this one:

1990s fashion

By now, you're probably starting to remember just how colorful and baggy everything was. Here's Will Smith sporting an early 90s hip hop look:

Hip Hop

Denim was also pretty big:

Denim in the 1990s

Here's Zack Morris from Saved by the Bell wearing a full denim outfit:

Denim outfit

Khacki slacks also became popular in America as the Preppy look came into fashion:

Preppy

A 90s wool sweater from The Gap:

Wool Sweater 1990s

Now that's vintage stuff right there!

Wooly jumper

As you can see, people weren't afraid of bright colors in the 90s:

Colorful 90s clothes

In fact, some people weren't afraid of anything:

TLC

Demin overalls. Cap turned backwards. Need I say more?

Denim hat and overalls

Khacki cargo shorts became popular in mens fashion the late 90s:

cargo shorts

Air Jordan XI's from 1995:

Air Jordan

Who could forget the colorful bomber jackets?

Bomber Jacket

This is from the 1991 Spring Neiman Marcus catalog. The text beside it reads: "In lagoon-blue fugi silk: The unconstructed two-button blazer, and trousers with double-reverse front pleats. Pivotal short-sleeved T-shirt is black silk knit."

Blazer

Adidas tracksuit pants that had buttons along the side of the legs. You could open these up on a warm day and the end of your pants would swing around awkwardly. These things were extremely sore if your leg happened to press up against a hard surface while you were sitting down. Wearing these also left you open to the possibility that somebody would tug at them and open all of the buttons:

90s tracksuit

Remember having these trainers / runners / sneakers as a kid? It didn't matter if they weren't stylish or whatever. They had lights!

sneakers with lights

Tinted sunglasses were also pretty big in the 90s:

tinted sunglasses 90s

Blossom and her hats:

Blossom

A pair of Nike Air Minot from 1997:

Nike Air 1997

A typical cropped cardigan:



More denim!

denim

A pair of Nike Air Unlimited from 1994:

Nike Air Unlimited

A pantsuit from the 1991 Neiman Marcus spring catalog:

Pantsuit

Hanson, who formed back in 1992:

Hanson

Here's Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen wearing early fashion from the early 90s:

Boys fashion

From the movie Clueless, which was aired back in 1995:

Clueless

A 90s polo shirt:

90s polo shirt

Some colorful leggings from the 1990s:

Leggings

Oh God:

SOCAL

More colorful outfits:

women

A snapshot of a Melrose Place episode. Melrose place ran from 1992 until 1999. Notice the cropped black top and jeans:

Melrose Place

More early 90s fashion from Married with Children, a show that ran from 1987 until 1999.

Married with children

I think we'll leave it at that:

Clarissa explains it all

If you liked this, you might also like my other popular post called hair styles from the nineties! If you have any recommendations, be sure to post them in the comments section below!






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