Tag Archives: Happy Days

Episode 15: Thirtysomething at thirty: an oral history


Welcome to a new episode of the Return to the ’80s podcast! Paul’s partner-in-crime, Robert, is missing in action this episode as the soccer team he coaches is in a state tournament kicking ass and taking names. But, this is still a great episode. We welcome Scott Ryan to the show. He wrote thirtysomething at thirty: an oral history, which will be out on June 7. You can purchase the book at www.scottryanproductions.com. Even if you never watched the show, this is a great episode. [Note: I have never watched the show myself] We talk a little about the show, and Scott’s experience in writing the book. We also cover an arrangement of other ’80s topics. Play This, Not That features Billy Joel, and morphs into a great conversation about Billy Joel. We also have a new Remember That Song and ’80s Trivia. So, please check out this episode and let us know what you think. In addition to listening right here on the site, you can also listen on iTunes, or anywhere you get your podcasts from


Opening

– Paul, flying solo this episode, introduces author and podcaster, Scott Ryan

thirtysomething at thirty: an oral history

– Scott talks about how thirtysomething changed drama on television
– thirtysomething and the ’80s
– MAD Magazine editor Nick Meglin’s involvement
– Writers Scott interviewed
– 2 degrees of separation from Tom Cruise – Scott and Tom Cruise compete for Ed Zwick’s time
– thirtysomething and the Emmys
– Scott’s podcasts

  • Red Room podcast
  • how the thirtysomething podcast led to the book
  • Paul turns Return to the ’80s into The Chris Farley Show talking about Scott’s latest podcast episode with Ken Olin
  • Scott Luck Stories

R.I.P

– Paul’s mother-in-law
– Erin Moran (October 18, 1960 – April 22, 2017)

 

 

 

 

– Don Rickles (May 8, 1926 – April 6, 2017)

Photo by Paul Buck/EPA/REX/Shutterstock (7840912bo)

Play This, Not That

Instead of “Uptown Girl”

Play “Easy Money”

-More Billy Joel talk

Shall We Play a Game?

Remember That Song

Last Song: “Africa” by Toto
Winner: Jim Vilk

The wild dogs cry out in the night
As they grow restless, longing for some solitary company

New Song:
We’ve always had time on our sides
But now it’s fading fast
Every second
Every moment
We’ve got to, we’ve gotta make it last

’80s Trivia

Last Question: What nickname did Warren Weber answer to on Happy Days?
Answer: Potsie
Winner: Jim Vilk

New Question: What was the name of the company Michael and Elliot owned in the first season?

’80s Potpourri

– TV shows
– Family Ties
– Reboots

Closing

You can contact Scott at the following places:

@30somethingpod
Facebook
www.scottryanproductions.com

@bluerosemag1
bluerosemag.com

In addition to purchasing the book from www.scottryanproductions.com
you can also click on the link below to purchase the book from Amazon:

And you can find Return to the ’80s on iTunes
Also,
returntothe80s.wordpress.com
Find Return to the ’80s on Facebook
Twitter: @returntothe80s
Email: returnto80s@gmail.com

R.I.P. Robin Williams (July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014)

The entertainment world was rocked last night with the death of Robin Williams. Not surprisingly, social media has blown up with the news. My Facebook feed which had been flooded with videos of friends taking the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is now being flooded with videos of friends taking the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge AND comments and news about Robin Williams. So, I will join in on this trend, and give my thoughts on one of my favorite comedians/actors of the ’80s.

Like most people who were around at the time, my introduction of Robin Williams was his appearance as Mork on Happy Days in February 1978. I already liked Happy Days. But, when Mork appeared on the show, he blew my 7 year old mind away with his crazy energy. I loved him so much. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one, as he got his own spin-off show – Mork & Mindy.

Here is the battle between Fonzi and Mork in that Happy Days episode:

Mork & Mindy quickly became appointment TV for me. I don’t think I ever missed an episode. I thought Robin Williams was so great. And at such a young age, I had never heard of improv before. If I knew that Williams improvised many of his lines, I would have been even more impressed.

Here is the theme song from Mork & Mindy:

In the middle of Mork & Mindy‘s run, Robin Williams made his first appearance on the big screen, starring in Popeye (1980). I loved the Popeye cartoon, so my anticipation for this movie was at a fever pitch. I still remember a blue tee shirt I had with Williams as Popeye on the front of it along with the words “I Yam What I Yam.” From what I remember, I enjoyed most of the movie – except for the singing parts, which was half of the movie. Williams really nailed the character though, and I don’t think anybody else could have done it. He had all of the characteristics, even the little mumbling under his breath like they did in the cartoon. Here is the awesome ending of the movie:

The next highlight of Robin Williams’ career that I loved was the Comic Relief fund raiser that aired on HBO in the ’80s and beyond. Williams hosted the event along with fellow ’80s stand-up legends Billy Crystal and Whoopi Goldberg. It was the first time I had seen Robin Williams’ stand up. He was all over the place just like in Mork & Mindy and in the movies. His energy and great impressions made me laugh so hard that my stomach hurt.

Here is some stand-up from Comic Relief. This may have been from the second one in 1987:

Speaking of laughing ’til my stomach hurt, one of my favorite movies of the ’80s was Good Morning, Vietnam. I saw the movie in the theater with a group of friends I very rarely laughed that hard in the theater. Not only was it funny, but the movie had its serious side too. I thought the movie balanced the comedy, drama, and suspense very well. My parents bought the soundtrack on cd, probably because it featured all the music they love. I liked the cd a lot because it also played Robin Williams’ bits as Adrian Cronauer throughout the cd. Here is Williams in action from the movie:

In recent years, Jim Carrey, Adam Sandler, and Will Ferrell have tried their hand in transitioning between comedy and drama. But, none of them could even come close to display the ability that Robin Williams had to do this.
My favorite Robin Williams drama is Dead Poets Society. Only Williams could make poetry interesting. I already love coming-of-age stories as it is. But, Williams made it that much better. Here is a scene from the movie:

I know and am very well aware of Robin Williams’ work throughout the ’90s and beyond (especially his Disney work in the movies and the parks), but I am going to wrap this up here.

I am very sad that we once again have lost a great icon. But, Robin Williams left us with a great body of work. It just makes you realize how short life can be. So, in the words of Williams’ John Keating, Carpe diem, seize the day boys, make your lives extraordinary.

Please leave your thoughts and favorite memories of Robin Williams. What is your favorite Robin Williams movie?