The biggest, brightest marquee names in TV / movie pop culture, according to Alvin and the Chipmunks circa: 1982 are as follows: 9 to 5, Grease, The Greatest American Hero, Fame, Annie, The Dukes of Hazzard, Chariots of Fire, ET, Arthur, and Rocky.
It’s comforting to acknowledge how prolific and timeless The Chipmunks Go Hollywood still remains, given the immortal impact of these groundbreaking examples of visual brilliance. Why, just the other day while shopping for Boston Baked Beans at the corner 7-Eleven (the ‘Sev), I overheard a youth (a shaggy-haired runt in knee-high tube socks) exclaim to his dopey-eyed, sugar-pack-hoarding cohort, “You know Sly, I’ve been thinking, The Greatest American Hero is, in my humble opinion, the greatest American television show of all time. Wouldn’t you agree, good chap?” To which the sweaty wingman replied something inaudible, just before knocking over a wicker basket full of week old fruit.
The youth, like the Chipped Munks of 1982, got it, and The Chipmunks Go Hollywood still remains one of the most important works of modern day artistic expression, but that, of course, goes without saying.
The slight discoloration in the top right is Goo Gone, not lasagna grease.
Q: What do lasagna-eating cats, the annual, festive day in which children of all ages celebrate and remember the dead, and soul legend Lou Rawls have in common? A: The 1985 animated television special, and Primetime Emmy winner, Garfield’s Halloween Adventure. I grew up on this 30-minute opus, and watching it on, or around Halloween has become a yearly tradition. It’s hard to believe this special is almost 30 years old, but anyway, the connection lives within the iconic voice of Mr. Rawls.
During the special’s opener, This is the Night (Trick or Treat), and again on the sing-along classic, Scaredy Cat, Garfield’s cool, sleek voice is provided by Lou Rawls, and therefore solidifies the unexpected pairings of great soul music, and mischievous, lazy, cartoon cats. On Halloween, Garfield = Lou Rawls, aka Lou-Halloween-Field.
Saturday mornings will forever be synonymous with cartoons. Not having grown up in any other decade than the 1980’s, I can’t confidently suggest that you agree, but you should.
Even though I have no recollection of the Joes battling Cobra on Saturday mornings (I do however remember rushing home from school to catch back-to-back episodes every weekday during my early elementary years), whenever I think of cartoons my mind ALWAYS turns to G.I. Joe. So, you can imagine how elated I was upon finding these action-packed LP’s.
Nothing kicks off the weekend better than listening to “FOUR EXCITING ACTION ADVENTURES featuring G.I. Joe and the entire Special Missions Force!” Its purpose: To defend human freedom against Cobra, a ruthless terrorist organization determined to rule the world (He never gives, he’ll stay til’ the fight’s won…). That theme song is as fresh in my mind as the smell from opening a new G.I. Joe action figure. Ahhh, the aroma of 1980’s chemical soaked kid toys.
Well, even if you’re not a fan of Joe (you were probably way more into Transformers) I suggest revisiting your favorite childhood cartoons and/or record related tie-ins.