Joannie Loves Chachi

Joanie Loves Chachi

As has been proven time and time again, there are no sure things in the television industry when it comes to the next big hit. Even the best-laid plans can fizzle in the blink of an eye. Take the popular series, Happy Days, for example – plenty of longevity, beloved by millions of television viewers, and boasting a track record of two reasonably successful spin-off series (Laverne and Shirley and Mork and Mindy). Three times is a charm, right? Well, in the case of Joanie Loves Chachi, not necessarily. Continue reading...

Lucky Charms

Lucky Charms

If you go by 1960s cereal standards, Lucky Charms was an overnight success. Back in the day, it could take upwards of three years to develop a new cereal from creation to fruition but executives at General Mills had given their researchers a formidable challenge - create a new product within six months. The result was a beloved breakfast cereal that has charmed kids ever since. Continue reading...

Water Wiggle

Water Wiggle

Kids love to abuse their toys, but every once in a while a toy turns the tables and inflicts a little abuse of its own. With its goofy smiling face, the Water Wiggle seemed innocent enough. Simply throw on your bathing suit, attach the toy to the outdoor faucet, turn the water on … and watch all hell break loose. Continue reading...

Uno

Uno

Nothing brings a family together like a nice game of cards. But many games are either too complex for the little ones to get a handle on, or too simplistic for the older crowd to enjoy. Then, along came Uno - a card game that could be learned in a few minutes but proved addictive enough to keep families playing until the wee hours of morning. This balance of simplicity and challenge has made Uno one of the most beloved card games of all time. Continue reading...

Family Ties

Family Ties

In a reverse of the traditional family dynamic, liberal, hippie parents Elyse and Steven gave birth to right-wing Republican Alex P. Keaton. Played by Michael J. Fox in the role that would launch his career, Alex Keaton wore a suit and tie every day, slept under a portrait of William F. Buckley, Jr. and was a die-hard fan of Reaganomics. He regularly tested his parents patience on Family Ties, one of the 80s most enduring and endearing sitcoms. Continue reading...

Chuck Taylor All Stars

Chuck Taylor All Stars

Before there was the Pump or the Air, there was Converse. Before Michael Jordan put his name on Nike's Air Jordans, there was Chuck Taylor's name scrawled across a circular ankle patch on Converse's All-Star high-top. Before high-tech performance wizardry, there was the no-bells-or-whistles canvas topper that guaranteed comfort, the Converse All-Star. Continue reading...

Pee-wee's Big Adventure

Pee-wee’s Big Adventure

After years of working in animation, director Tim Burton took a healthy plunge into the world of live-action film and created a beloved cult classic in the 1985 release, Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure. The film starred the inimitable Paul Reubens as everyone’s favorite man-child, Pee-Wee Herman, in an adventure unlike any ever witnessed before. Continue reading...

The Facts of Life

The Facts of Life

It all started with the 70s sitcom Diff'rent Strokes. When daughter Kimberly Drummond’s school’s housemother quit her job at Eastlake Academy the day before the campus play, disaster was imminent. Who would make the costumes? Edna Garrett, the Drummond’s maid, rises nobly to the occasion. In fact, she so impresses the school that Steven Bradley, the headmaster, asks her to be the new housemother permanently. With a fond farewell to Arnold, Willis, and Kimberly (who continued to go to Eastlake, even though she was seldom seen in this new spinoff), Mrs. G took her place in The Facts of Life, one of the most popular sitcoms of the 1980s. Continue reading...