Pete Burns, singer of Dead or Alive, RIP

Pete Burns, fabulous freak singer of 1980s dance-pop group Dead or Alive, died yesterday of cardiac arrest. He was 57. From The Guardian:

Burns rose to fame in the 1980s with the band’s hit so ng You Spin Me Round (Like a Record). He also appeared on Celebrity Big Brother in 2006, coming fifth in the final.

A statement released by his partner, Michael Simpson, his ex-wife, Lynne Corlett, and his manager and former band member, Steve Coy, read: “All of his family and friends are devastated by the loss of our special star. He was a true visionary, a beautiful talented soul and will be missed by all those who loved and appreciated everything he was and all of the wonderful memories he has left us with.”

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100% CGI versions of 80s tech and toys

Mike Campau recreated Generation Gap, a CGI series of some of the most iconic items from 1980s childhoods, each one lit with gorgeous multi-hued gradients. Read the rest

Fantastic 1980s motion graphics of movie and TV production logos

And you thought Stranger Things had a cool opening. (via /r/obscuremedia)

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Watch all of the classic 1980s episodes of Ray Bradbury Theater free on YouTube


The Ray Bradbury Theater was a far out 1980s television series with each episode written by Bradbury himself. With 65 suspenseful (and sometimes terrifying) episodes of dark science fiction/fantasy, The Ray Bradbury Theater shined the freaky flame of The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits down the shadowy path of The X-Files and Stranger Things. And now you can watch all the episodes free on YouTube! Below are two to get you started: Marionettes, Inc. and The Playground:

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Watch Mr. Wizard explain how to draw on a computer (1985)

In 1983, I wanted a light pen for my Apple IIe so badly that I built one from plans in this issue of Byte magazine. Mr. Wizard's light pen works better than mine ever did though. (Thanks UPSO!)

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Interview with creator of Stranger Things title sequence


Carla and I just started watching the Netflix science fiction show, Stranger Things, which stars Winona Ryder and is set in 1983. We like it! We also like the title sequence at the beginning, which has a 1980s vibe. Art of the Title is a website about the art of TV show and movie titles, and they recently interviewed Michelle Dougherty, the Creative Director of Imaginary Forces, which produced the title sequence for Stranger Things.

The first meeting was set up by Shawn Levy, one of the executive producers and a director on the show. He told us we’d be working with these amazing creators, the Duffer Brothers, and got us on the phone. After talking with them I could see what he was talking about. They had this incredible vision!

The initial call was them talking to us about some of the film titles that they liked. They referenced Richard Greenberg and all the greats that he’d created — The Goonies, Altered States, Alien, The Untouchables, The Dead Zone, just to name a few. That was great to hear because we understood where they were coming from. That was really refreshing — and pretty surprising — that these creators knew so much about title design.

After that call they sent over some book covers that they liked, from books that they’d either read or seen as children. Most of them were by Stephen King, so we knew they were looking for something that felt ’80s and tapped into this nostalgia by using that typography.

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Supercut of 1980s film references in Stranger Things


Stranger Things, the supernatural thriller on Netflix, quotes wildly from the great horror/thriller/science fiction films of the 1980s. In fact, spotting those references may be the series' primary appeal. (Ulysses Thevenon)

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Lavish new New Order singles vinyl box on its way

On September 9, New Order will reissue their career-spanning Singles compilation as a remastered four-LP 180 gram vinyl box set or double CD set priced at $70 for the former and $20 for the latter. Tell me now how should I feel. From Rhino:

A decade after its initial release, SINGLES has been refined to become a greatly improved representation of the band's history. The renowned Frank Arkwright (The Smiths' Complete) at Abbey Road has remastered the collection with all audio sourced from high quality transfers.

In addition, SINGLES adds "I'll Stay With You" from 2013's Lost Sirens album and replaces the correct single edits or mixes for the tracks "Nineteen63," "Run 2," "Bizarre Love Triangle," "True Faith," "Spooky," "Confusion" and "The Perfect Kiss." The result is a considerable upgrade on the previous version of the album.

Video above, "True Faith" (1987). Below, "Ceremony" (1981), the song that bridged the end of Joy Division after Ian Curtis's death and the birth of New Order.

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Is this 80-minute eighties supercut the most 80s thing ever?


Smash TV's Megaplex feels like your entire 1980s life flashing before your eyes. Note: some of the 80+ films include 80s nudity. Read the rest

Super 8 video of Dungeons & Dragons session in 1981

Boing Boing contributor Ethan Gilsdorf -- author of Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks: An Epic Quest For Reality Among Role Players, Online Gamers, And Other Dwellers Of Imaginary Realms -- posted this geekily nostalgic Super 8 film he shot in 1981, at age 15, of his buddies playing Dungeons & Dragons. "Look for the classic Mountain Dew can at 1:53," Ethan writes.

(via r/ObscureMedia, thanks UPSO!)

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MacBook customized to resemble 1980s Apple IIe

The hardware customizers ColorWare are now offering new MacBooks reskinned with an Apple IIe vibe. They're $3,000 and limited to an edition of ten.

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Remember Winnie Cooper from The Wonder Years?

Meet Danica McKellar who as an undergraduate in college co-published a paper titled "Percolation and Gibbs states multiplicity for ferromagnetic Ashkin-Teller models on Z2," research that resulted in the Chayes–McKellar–Winn theorem. Oh yeah, before that, McKellar was Winnie on The Wonder Years.

(And just to confirm, Josh Saviano who played Paul Pfeiffer did not grow up to become Marilyn Manson.)

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Hey man, is that Freedom Rock?

Well turn it up, man!

While Freedom Rock (1987) is best enjoyed on cassette, the CD is now a collector's item going for $50 on Amazon.

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Learn all about your new Commodore 64 computer


A two hour celebration of the C64, from its birth year of 1982. (Thanks, UPSO!)

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Play this video at your next party. Don't ask questions.


I want the playlist for this weird video.

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1980s Dungeons & Dragons panic revisited

debbie dark dungeons

"Satanic Panic over Dungeons & Dragons" is one of my favorite genres of journalism, and Eric Grundhauser's article about it is a goodun, with all the right YouTube clips.

By 1984, fantasy roleplaying had evolved from thretening the innocent minds of America’s youth to threatening their eternal salvation. Religious mini-comic author Jack Chick published one of his “Chick Tracts”—those extreme religious comic book pamphlets you find on the bus—about the issue, tying fantasy roleplaying directly to the occult. Called Dark Dungeons, the thin pamphlet tells the story of Debbie, a young woman who gets seduced by a witchy dungeon master who teaches her to embrace evil through the game. Through the course of the story, Debbie uses a “mind bondage” spell on her father to get spending money and finds the body of a friend who committed suicide after losing her game character.

They're still going on about it, too. Read the rest

The Simpsons vs. Miami Vice and 1980s glitzy TV

From Sunday night's upcoming episode "Teenage Mutant Milk-Caused Hurdles." Last week, our sister site "Doing Doing" was mentioned on the show, so you just know The Simpsons are still relevant!

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