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17.1.18

Some 1980s Highs... Shoulder Pads In The Broom Cupboard...

Yuppies, new technology, shell suits, power dressing, riots, hamster scoffing... it was all happening in the 1980s...

Great response to our recent post regarding your "1980s bests". Got a few "worsts" as well, but up here at '80s Actual Towers, in our turquoise and pink Great Hall, we're well chuffed, mateyboots!

So, we start with Cliff on those monstrous Power Dressing shoulder pads, complete with Velcro so you didn't "over-pad" - as if that was possible back then...

I hated shoulder pads and used to take them out of any jackets I bought that had them in. The 1950s teddy boy look that became so popular again in the 1970s was more my thing. I thought Joan Collins looked ridiculous and I never chose a girlfriend with a 1980s “power dressing” fetish. You have to admit that the shoulder pads became too big and looked hideous in the 80’s. And the idea of blokes wearing them to hide their beer guts was pathetic. The best thing was the Credit Boom. Enough said.

We quite liked 'em, Cliff - we favoured Miami Vice chic, with a few twists, but each to their own... and as for the Credit Boom... well, after spending the '70s and early '80s living so frugally it hurt, it was like Wonderland...


Gorgeous 1980s colour scheme, but are those shoulders lovely or loathsome?

And here's Karen on Miss Ethel Davis and her lodgers, and Edd the Duck...

I used to like “Number 73” on Saturdays and I thought Ethel, Dawn, Harry and Kim really lived in that house! And I loved Children’s BBC with the puppets and the presenters. It was very lively and I really believed Edd the Duck went to Cubs on Tuesdays. I preferred Edd to Gordon The Gopher actually.

Edd was quite simply a mallard god. And he DID go to Cubs on Tuesdays.


Edd with Andy Crane and Wilson the butler. Children's BBC, which began in 1985, was a must-watch for all kids aged five to fifty.


Phillip Schofield brought shoulder pads out of the board room and into the Broom Cupboard.


Sandi Toksvig? Rubbish! That's Ethel!

And here's the Naughty One:

I remember things like Pot Noodles becoming a big thing. There was a cheesy flavour that smelled revolting but tasted like heaven with a satchet of tomato sauce. And Howard Jones. What Is Love? Does Anybody Love Anybody Anyway? And bulldog clips in my hair – bright yellow ones. And break dancing outside Boots on a Saturday morning with a big red ghetto blaster. I body-popped and my boyfriend thrashed about and he and his mates tried to stand on their heads. People sometimes threw money into our pot but mostly seemed kind of bemused and this woman told my boyfriend, “stop it, you’ll hurt yourself!”

Lurved a Pot Noodle and I remember the flavour you mention. Bliss if you could stand the stink. Howard Jones was excellent, but I never got into breakdancing. Mainly because I couldn't do it.


Gis a Noodle.

And Maria remembers that a saucy title didn't always add up to a saucy film...

When I turned 18 in 1989 I went to see a movie called SEX, LIES AND VIDEO TAPE with my best friend. We both thought it would be very rude with lots of bums and panting and groaning, but it wasn’t really. We thought of asking for our money back, but didn’t dare!

Steven Soderbergh... great, great film. I went to see it too, hoping for a bit of vacuous titillation, but it was so much better than that. Although I was grossly disappointed and swore a lot at the time.

Sonia thought Boy George was so cuddly - and then along came Ecstasy...

I had a Boy George Doll in the mid-80s and I loved him very much. I was surprised to read later that he was one of the people behind ‘Everything Starts With An E’ in 1989. Totally different image!

The 1984 Boy George doll! The Boy went from Karma Chameleon to Planet Ecstasy all in one decade!

And finally for this round-up, Claire says:

My low of the 80’s pop culture was Cabbage Patch Dolls because I found them really creepy and thought they were trying to take over the world. My high was Live Aid. Truly inspiring. I was glued to the TV.

Yes, Live Aid was a WOW! and the Cabbage Patch Kids were hugely popular, but not to everybody's taste. I was afraid I might catch mumps off one.

Sunday People, December 1983: Eek!!! Invasion of the Cabbage Patch People...

Please keep the comments coming. We're having a WICKED time here. Till the next time, xxxx

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