So far in my blog series on the early 80s, I've written a post introducing the period and covered my favourite movies and television shows. But the 80s wouldn't have been without the 80s without the popular technology and toys of the time. With that in my mind here's a list of my favourite tech and toys from 1980-1985:
Before there was Netflix, before DVDs and even before Blockbuster Video was born (the first store opened in Dallax, Texas in late 1985) VCRs were making their way into homes and changing the way people watched movies and television. The two big formats at the time were Betamax (considered the superior technology) and VHS (the format that won the war despite Betamax's better quality). My family were late-ish in acquiring our first VCR in 1986, but even beforehand we rented machines or occasionally borrowed them from my dad's school over the weekends. The summer I was fourteen we rented a top loading VHS VCR along with the Duran Duran video album and a couple of movies while away at the cottage for a couple of weeks. I was so excited at the thrill of being able to repeatedly watch even the most obscure Duran Duran videos, that it's a wonder my head didn't explode and burn down the cottage. Watching what you wanted exactly when you wanted to watch it was revolutionary and when our own VCR arrived a couple of years later it was pretty awesome to be able to tape General Hospital, Late Night with David Letterman
In 1980 and 81 (possibly even 1982!) I was pretty much inseparable from my Merlin, a handheld device the size of a mutant phone that contained 6 different games. I can't imagine how many batteries I must've gone through or remember whatever happened to my Merlin, but I'd love to stumble across one of these again and see if I still remember how to play the tune Molly Malone on it in electronic chirps.
Pac-Man (arcade game)
The 80s was a hot time for arcades and before Atari really took off the best way to get your Pacman fix was to throw a quarter in the machine. This and Burgertime were my favourite arcade games of the time.
Burgertime (arcade game)
MuchMusic (1984 and onwards)
Just one more eighties post left. Drop back in next week and read my fav music from 1980-85 entry.
Read the Rest of the series:
* The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there
* The past is a foreign country: 80s TV
* The past is a foreign country: 80s Movies
* The past is a foreign country: 80s Music