The Best of Retrospace (Part 1)
Here's a selection of some of my favorite posts from the past at retrospace



NOTICE: I have stopped updating these "Best of" pages, so none contain posts beyond July 2009.  This is due primarily to the fact that it is time consuming, but also because Retrospace is fairly easily navigated without the need for a "Best of" page to assist readers.  I decided to leave these pages up because I figured they aren't hurting anything or costing me anything - so why not?


So, by all means, scan around the "Best of" pages, but please be sure to check in at retrospace. We're sure to have some new stuff you'd like! 

The Best of Retrospace (Part 2)


The Best of Retrospace (Part 3)


Retrospace Christmas Posts


About Retrospace


Retrospace Blog




Ugliest Bands Ever

Quiet Riot, Queen and Twisted Sister were some ugly SOB's, but they had at least one decent looking dude in the band, so that rules them out. I've looked at some other "ugliest band" lists on the Internet, and left a bit dissatisfied - most use current photos of the musicians and that's simply not fair. I get it, Alice Cooper is insanely ugly, but he's also pushing seventy years old. So, who tops my personal list as the ugliest band in history? Read the post and find out.


The Secret of Isis' Awfulness


Time has not been kind to Isis. I recently rented the DVD and had a multitude of problems with the series. I'm not expecting it to be high quality entertainment. I fully realize it was meant for 1970's kids, and not meant for the eyes of a cynical adult in 2008. However, certain things on the show bothered me to no end. Let me walk you through some of my problems.



The Sweathog from Ipanema


I'm not sure why, but I find it fascinating to link people and events together. In this installment, I find that Mrs. Kotter is linked to The Girl from Ipanema.


Whatever Happened to Dungeons and Dragons?


Although many may choose to forget or deny, Dungeons & Dragons was once an immensely popular pastime with over 20 million players and over $1 billion dollars in sales. The role playing game inspired video games, a Saturday morning cartoon and countless other media such as comic books, paperbacks and magazines.  

Morticia and Company


Here's a list of some of my favorite goth queens and ghoulish gals who take a page from the Morticia Addams playbook.




Casualties and Survivors of the Darrin Syndrome

Does anyone remember that fateful day when you turned on "The Dukes of Hazzard", and instead of Bo and Luke, you got Coy and Vance? Kids around the country stared at their TV set in utter disbelief. Let's have a look back at some other shameless replacements and poor substitutes from pop culture history.


Avocado Green and Harvest Gold - the defining home décor colors of the decade. Anyone who lived in the '70s will remember these colors well.

Ode to Emmy Jo


In the previous post on the New Zoo Revue, I mentioned that the intensely nerdy Doug was married to the smoking hot Emily Peden, who played Emmy Jo. Here's more on her.



Naughty and Nice


Ever noticed that when there are two female characters in a movie or TV show, they often fall into the naughty and nice formula : the beauty queen and plain Jane, the vixen and girl-next-door, or simply the bad and good. Right now, think of any TV show or movie that featured two lead characters who are women. I can pretty much guarantee that they follow this formula. Here's some examples I thought of.


The Mysterious Mrs. Drake

 More elusive than Bigfoot, more perplexing than the identity of Jack the Ripper, I give you..... Joyce!
The hunt for the woman behind this infamous record has been ongoing for years. A favorite among aficionados of bad album covers, the true identity of "Joyce" remains a mystery.



Horrible Halloween Treats


After the trick-or-treating is done, it's time to dump out the sack and check your loot. Amid the piles of mini Mr. Goodbars and Tootsie Rolls, there was always a few stinkers. Here's a retrospace list of crappy Halloween candy.



 The Captain & Tennille Show


 For those of you with a love for the 1970's, it is imperative that you find some way to watch this show immediately after reading this post. There is no greater time capsule of all that is holy about the 70's. The show is literally brimming with cheesy guest stars, audacious musical interludes, and an all-encompassing omnipresent groovyness.


Cartoon Adaptations of TV Shows


There's been a lot of bad animated adaptations of TV shows over the years, most of them from the 70's and early 80's. Here's a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly.





What was the deal in the 1970's (and late 60's) with the occult fascination? If you take a stroll back in time you'll see that there was a plethora of books, movies and other media dealing with satanism and the supernatural. Don't remember? Let's take a brief look.
Whenever you see a "worst TV shows of all time" list, you can bet "Pink Lady and Jeff" made the cut. The show was absolutely insane in that it centered around two women (Pink Lady) who couldn't speak a word of English! The one host who could speak English, comedian Jeff Altman, didn't help matters with some of the worst jokes ever recorded on film. Together their banter can only be called "historically bad".
 I just read through a Brady Bunch novel from 1972 and, just for kicks, thought I'd look up the author, Jack Matcha, and see what other kind of work he'd done. I was surprised to learn that Matcha had quite an interesting (and often sleazy) career - not something I expected from an author of a Tiger Beat Publication!
The unprecedented success of Star Wars resulted in a sci-fi boom in the late seventies. Not the gigantic insects invading earth variety (like in the fifties); this time it was the "space opera" that captured our attention. And so, Hollywood gave us things like Battlestar Galactica, Buck Rogers, The Black Hole, Logan's Run (TV series) and Flash Gordon.... but where were the science fiction sitcoms? Sitcoms were in their prime in the late seventies, so it seemed the logical thing to do: capitalize on the sci-fi craze with a situation comedy! Surprisingly, I can't think of any attempts in the U.S. to do this (Mork & Mindy doesn't count)... that is except for the short lived series Quark.

I just watched the first season of The Mod Squad (1968) and enjoyed it enough to do a little research on the show and the people in it. Here's nine facts I found interesting.
I consider myself quite the musicologist - I troll the web for hidden gems and bizarre obscurities on a daily basis. So, I come with some credentials and expertise when I say I have found the nerdiest band of all time. That band is the Stellar Unit.
I recently watched the 1970-1971 series UFO and found myself captivated not by the complex storyline, interesting dialogue or even the action and adventure. No, I was fixated on one thing - Commander Straker's killer office.
I recently dug up all my old MAD, Cracked, and Crazy magazines from my childhood and spent a few wonderful hours in nostalgic 1970s bliss. The artwork was better than I remembered, and the gags weren't too shabby either. But what really struck me was that my innocent childhood magazines WERE NOT FOR KIDS!

Count Yorga came on TV when I was little and it literally scared the bejesus out of me (I'm not quite sure where my parental guidance was during this period - perhaps I had a babysitter). Upon rewatching the film some thirty odd years later, I was actually pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable the movie is. It serves as a great postcard of the very end of the 1960s. So, here's the play-by-play on the 1970 horror classic, Count Yorga, Vampire. (Beware of spoilers!)
In the 70s, kids had it beaten into their heads night and day that dropping a soda can on the sidewalk = the total and complete destruction of the planet earth. It was a good message I guess, but if you were a kid in the 1970s, you know what I mean - the anti pollution message got to be a bit overbearing. If you dropped so much as a Dentyne wrapper in the grass, you would not only make a Native American cry, but Smokey the Bear would come find you.
I am now unveiling the official Retrospace diet. This will save you countless dollars in worthless diet books, and silly diet plan fees. All I ask in return for saving you big bucks, making you trim, and adding years to your life is that you never doubt a single word I say again.
In the 1970's the Afro hairstyle emerged into mainstream culture, as an affirmation of Black African heritage, that "black is beautiful," and a rejection of Eurocentric standards of beauty.

Okay, the question of the day is not "How do we solve the crisis in the Middle East?" or "How do we fix the global economy?", but rather "When did popular culture jump the shark for Gilligan?". It's actually a pretty interesting thought - let me map it out for you.
What scares the hell out of me more than anything? I think it's strange things on deserted roads at night. Allow me to explain...
The 1970's were real good at producing songs of depression. Here's a list in no particular order of some  gut wrenching tunes that will have you reaching for your Prozac.