The best and worst of 1980s entertainment
The 1980s was a turbulent decade all over the world, but especially here in the UK, from riots and football hooliganism, to a royal wedding celebrated by the entire nation, and big hair with shoulder pads. It was also a period of massive change in the TV world. Although it was the decade of the VCR, many people didn’t make plans if there was a big TV show listed in their magazine that night. And Channel 5 is dedicating some of this weekend to the 1980s. The 80s: The Best of BadTV (Saturday, Channel 5, 10pm) It all kicks-off at 9.00pm tonight with a visit to the Big Brother house, where the housemates will be taking part in all manner of 80s-themed challenges, which will probably involve a bit of fancy dress, role-playing and 80s-themed rewards. Then nostalgic retrospective The 80s: The Best of Bad TV takes a look back at some of the so-bad-they-were good programmes we were watching during a decade that was marked by excess. It was a golden age for sitcoms both in the UK and across the Pond. Over here, Peckham comedy Only Fools and Horses, student digs sitcom The Young Ones, and historical romp Black Adder were pulling in the viewers, while in the States Robin Williams vehicle Mork & Mindy, Boston bar ratings winner Cheers, and the most watched television show in the United States in 1989, Roseanne, were all hits. There were also a number a big, silly action adventures where the good guys always won, none more so than David Hasselhoff show Knight Rider, those Good Ol' Boys The Dukes of Hazzard and, of course, Hannibal, Face, Murdoch and BA, aka The A-Team. Sci-fi and mystery also had a resurgence in the decade with lizard people soap opera V, influential drama The Twilight Zone and Starship Enterprise reboot Star Trek: The Next Generation all boldly going where no shows had gone before. However, the detective/police procedural drama was arguably the genre which has the largest resurgence boom, especially over the Atlantic. Finally who can forget the undisputed king of all prime-time soaps, Dallas? It is even said that the Queen Mother was among the 83 million people worldwide who tuned in to watch the episode, titled A House Divided, which become better known as Who Shot JR?