The Enchanted World – Time Life Books (1985)

Back in the ’80s you could have probably convinced me that Time-Life was a branch of the Department of Education; their authoritative ads for book series on everything from UFOs to the Civil War to The Old West to pasta recipes came across to a young me as more of a public service than a…

Stephen King’s “IT” Ads (1990)

IT is most likely my favorite book. I’ve read better books, I’ve read more meaningful and profound books, and I’ve read (one or two) longer books, but IT edges them all out as the book that meant most to me at the time I read it (I was eleven) and as the book that grew with me…

Five Things – 09.19.16 – We’re Jiggling Too Much

The Bloodhound Gang The Bloodhound Gang is to the 1980s PBS show 3-2-1 Contact what Mathnet was to Square One. That reads like a standardized test question, but it holds up. The Bloodhound Gang was the breakout segment of the larger educational program, featuring Vikki, Ricardo (Rembrandt from The Warriors!), and a rotating cast of junior detectives who solved…

Five Things – 05.23.16 – Dare You Let It In Your Library?

The Stephen King Library Stephen King’s pretty well-regarded nowadays, but in the 1980s and 1990s he had a polarizing level of fame. While he had a dedicated fanbase, he tended to be regarded in the mainstream as a shlocky horror writer who put out a new book every week and opinion of him was formed on whether…

Five Things – 05.11.15 – Hey Birds! Here Are Cookies!

1.  Benji, Zax, and the Alien Prince – Really not sure how this idea came to be.  In 1983, the Benji franchise was in the sweet spot of its popularity – that movie star dog could do no wrong.  He’s like Lassie, but interesting! Sort of.  Hanna-Barbera took on the task of pulling Benji from the big screen and putting…

Five Things – 4.20.15 – To Be Drained From The Sea And Made Fresh As Rain

1. Out of This World – GM’s Futurama pavilion’s been covered here before;  the film accompanying the exhibit does a great job conveying the excitement and hopefulness of the future, a wonderful when instead of an if.  Frigidaire tried the same thing around the same time with their video titled Out of This World.  It uses alot of the same footage and…

Five Things – 3.9.15 – The Energy That Makes Junior Run

1.  Is This Tomorrow? – This comic book from 1947 seems almost like a parody of the anti-Communist paranoia of the day.  But it’s not. As the sticker indicates (why would you use a red sticker for an anti-Communist pamphlet?), this is the doing of the Catechetical Guild Educational Society,  You can see from the…

Five Things – 12.02.13

1.  Pan Am Moon Reservations – Back when enthusiasm for our future in space was at its peak, Pan Am Airlines offered reservations for Moon flights.  Well, not specific reservations, but you could get on a waiting list. You basically called or wrote to Pan Am, gave them your information, and you were all set…

Five Things – 7.22.13

1.  Living Classics Comics – This is big. I’ve been looking for this for awhile. When I was a kid in the ’80s, this commercial would come up in seemingly every break – it started with a line from Moby Dick read by some guy who was really into the part.   “There she blows! A…