Flash Gordon's football fight (1980)

Discussion with Mrs. Beschizza about Ted conjured up fond memories of Sam J. Jones's post-10 epic role as Flash Gordon in the 1980 British-American film adaptation of the classic comic strip. Yes, the one with the brilliantly bombastic Queen soundtrack. Adds Mr. Beschizza, "Flash Gordon is why America should get to make a Doctor Who movie."


  1. We did make a Doctor Who movie. See the one with Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor. It’s why the Brits will never let us make another one.

  2. And the Doctor Who film is the reason America should be allowed nowhere near it, not to discredit Flash Gordon, an epic film, but American studios can never be trusted with Who, never again!

    Apologies, saw the last message appear while I was logging in, will leave this here anyway.

  3. Saw Flash Gordon in the theateras a child.  Loved it then, and I love it now for completely different reasons.  “Hawkmen, DIVE!”

  4. I was barely half way through glancing at the headline when the Queen theme was thundering through my consciousness.



  5. Interested parties may want to know that Sam J. Jones (Flash) did a fully nude spread for Playgirl, easily found online.  And now he runs “a firm that specialises in corporate security and hostage extraction.”

  6. You see, this is exactly what’s wrong with Breaking Bad.  It needs more exotic costumes, and football-themed fight choreography.

  7. What Tarliman & Theo said above. 
    Also, I thought Brian Blessed had passed away, but it turns out…
    “Brian’s… alive?”

  8. Saw it in 1980.  It was dumb then.  Queen’s song?  We used to walk around singing “Flash – caaards.”  “Flash – buuulb.”  “Macromedia Shockwave renamed…. Adobe Flash – ah ahhh.” Well, the last one is not accurate, but still fun.

  9. I have a fun story about this movie.  About 8 years ago we ordered it from Amazon as a gift from my brother-in-law.  They stated it would take about a week to fulfill the order.   The next day we cancelled the order because it was going to take too long to arrive for my brother-in-law’s birthday.  

    With our renewed interest in the movie we decided to order it for ourselves instead several days later.   The movie was apparently now in the neighborhood of 20 to 25 % off of list price this time.     We speculated that when we placed our original order they placed an order at their back end for the movie that they were committed to.   Since we cancelled they would then have be stuck with a unit in inventory and listed the movie at a discount to get rid of it.   Either that or it was just a coincidence.

    We’ve still got it and have watched it several times.  It was cheese, but good cheese with a great soundtrack.

  10. Sam J Jones also played “The Spirit” in the 1987 TV movie adaptation of Eisner’s great comic, with Nana Visitor as Ellen Dolan. Flash and Denny Colt – how can ya beat that? It wasn’t a great film, but lottsa fun, much like this one, although when I asked Will Eisner about it at a Comic-Con, he wasn’t too happy about it. Both of these films had great babes, in ’em, tho, the hallmark of the comics themselves.

  11. On topic but in Spanish, hope Xeni takes a look at this and has a good laugh.  Get well soon, Xeni.
    Mexican comic-strip legend Trino dubbed some old b/w matinee serials in his own inimitable style, as a weekly comic vignette for a Sunday news show.  Batman and Superman got the treatment, and so did Flash Gordon, here’s one installment.

    Trino also did a filthy, politically incorrect, cult-favorite dub of Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea, the werewolf episode, easily found on YouTube as Trino + Viaje Al Fondo Del Mar.

  12. The movie was released by a American studio and had two Americans in the lead roles.

    It was directed by a Brit, had Europeans in almost all the supporting roles, the shooting drafts were written by a Frenchman, and it was filmed in England and Scotland by a mostly British production crew for a UK production company.

    No, I don’t think the U.S. gets most of the credit for this one.

  13. When this came out, I had no idea who Sam J. Jones was, and consequently the wierd running-and-catching game in the middle made no sense at all.
    But then in Britain, we only have proper football.

      1. I’ll admit I haven’t watched much football, but if rolling on the ground to trip the other players isn’t a part of the real game, it should be.

  14. Has anyone come across the expression, ‘in more trouble than Flash Gordon’ or is that just an Aussie thing?

    Sure seemed to outlast its relevance… reckon I’ve heard it at least once in the last ten years.

  15. Oh, dear lord. 

    When I was a kid I saw that movie and it was made of awesome with a side of awesomeballs slathered in awesomesauce.
    The scene with the . . . well, as I remembered it as a 20-something, there were wriggling worms where those technicians’ eyes had been. When I saw it as an adult (god save me) they were just … wires.

    I’m afraid that happened over and over with this movie as it went on.

    On the other hand, watching it as part of Bad Movie Night later on, that was good fun.

    But it was SUCH a disappointment when I watched it for the first time, expecting the original awesome…

  16. Going by the quality of this season of Doctor Who, thus far, Americans should even be allowed to watch Doctor Who. Somehow, I blame BBC America’s cheese-tastic annoyingly pointless nerdist specials. 

  17. I saw this movie 13 times in the theaters as a kid.  I am glad to see others realize how Airwolf this movie was before Airwolf. It was hard continuing to talk people into taking me.  I even talked my grandfather into taking me to a 10 pm show where I think we were the only two in the audience.

    I sat there and did the whole intro.  
    – Klytus, I’m bored.  What plaything can you offer me today?  
    – An obscure body in the SK system, your Majesty.  The inhabitants refer to it as the planet “Earth.”  
    – How peaceful it looks.  [glowing ring sound]  [Ming cackles]  
    – Most effective, your Majesty!  Will you destroy this “Earth?”
    – Later.  I like to play with things awhile….before annihilation. [more Ming cackling]
    [cue Queen]

    I still remember what a thrill it was to see a jukebox that had Flash’s Theme on it, because the b-side was, in fact, Football Fight.
    People never understood what the heck it was if you played it. It had movie samples and everything, down to Sam J. Jones’ football calls and Melody Anderson’s cheeseball cheerleading. “Are your men on the right pills? Maybe you should execute their trainer.”

  18. In college during finals-cram-sessions, we’d eventually just give up and go over to the library to watch this (they had a weird video collection for a college. No idea how this one snuck in.).

    Ah, VHS….

  19. “Everybody rejoice and be merry … On pain of death”

    Max von Sydow is sublimely arrogant as Ming the Merciless!

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