Five Things – 10.17.16 – Never Known To Fail

  Robot Odyssey I’ve never been as simultaneously captivated and out of my league as I was when I played Robot Odyssey as a child in the 1980s. Robot Odyssey, created in 1984 by educational game company The Learning Company, had a unique sort of difficulty to it.  Other games by The Learning Company of the…

Five Things – 06.27.16 – All Seven Functions

The Diamond Head Game Despite being shot on location in beautiful 1975 Hawaii, this very short lived game show didn’t accomplish much beyond giving host Bob Eubanks a chance to get a tan. The Diamond Head Game featured four mini-rounds consisting of basic trivia with contestants pulled from what can only be referred to in this post-Arsenio…

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 – 05.16.16 – Less Than You Think, Jack

Prodigy Commercials The internet was introduced to my house in 1990 through Prodigy, an early online service that touted all of the features of online living we take for granted today in a crude, difficult-to-use format that was still the best experience of the era. Prodigy came to us bundled with a 2600k modem and…

Five Things – 09.07.15 – Of Course You Want To Memorize Some Commands

1. The Martinettis Bring A Computer Home – It’s strange to see Apple playing this sort of game, but the ’90s were a different era for the company.  This 1995 infomercial presents the Martinetti family and their experience with their first family computer, the Macintosh Performa. This half-hour “program” plays like a sitcom without jokes,…

Five Things – 11.3.14

1. That Refreshing Look – The appropriately-1950s-named Vendo corporation produced this promotional film touting the benefits of Coca-Cola’s new vending machines.  The part that’s actually about the machines themselves is a little dry, but the crisp color imagery of 1950s American life at the beginning and the ‘roleplay’ selling scenarios at the end are fantastic.

Five Things – 6.16.14

1.  Apple Prototypes – Business Insider’s got some photos of early ’80s Apple product ideas that never came to be…or at least, not in their prototype form.  This is a pretty great look at the cutting edge design aesthetic that Apple’s known for, and a snapshot of what that cutting edge looked like back then….

Five Things – 4.14.14

1.  Nick Arcade – In the same sweet spot as Legends of the Hidden Temple but just a shade down in quality, Nick Arcade was Nickelodeon’s 1992 attempt to integrate game shows and video games in a realtime, live action setting. Think Starcade with easier questions and less licensing and a green screen.  The show kind of played like Mario…