Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Retro Movies - 1987 - Police Academy 4 (Yama Yama Scene)

Oh Wow! I was browsing youtube and came across this clip. This is one of my favourite scenes from all of the Police Academy movies. Police Academy 4 - Citizens On Patrol

Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol is the fourth comedy film in the Police Academy series. It was released in 1987. The film was given a PG rating for mild profanity.

A group of Police Academy graduates are sent to train a group of newly recruited civilian officers. The original Police Academy cast reprise their roles in the film. Capt. Harris, not seen since the first installment, returns as the film's nemesis. In Police Academy 2 and 3, Capt. Mauser (played by Art Metrano) filled that role, but Metrano was severely injured in a fall after filming number 3, and asked to be replaced for the remainder of the series.
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Monday, 29 June 2009

Jackson family file for custody

Source - BBC

Michael Jackson's father, Joe: 'We are going to take care of those kids'

The mother of Michael Jackson has been granted temporary guardianship of his three children by a court.

A further court hearing will be held in August to determine if Katherine Jackson will be granted permanent guardianship of her grandchildren.

Her lawyer said the family had not heard from Deborah Rowe, the biological mother of Jackson's eldest children.

The singer's youngest son was born to a surrogate mother whose identity has never been revealed.

Jackson, who died suddenly last week, left three children - Michael Joseph Jackson Jr, known as Prince Michael, 12, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, 11, and seven-year-old Prince Michael II.

Family lawyer Londell McMillan told broadcaster NBC: "I don't think there will be anybody who thinks there is someone better" than Mrs Jackson to be given custody.

A hearing has been set to take place at Los Angeles Superior Court on 3 August, according to official papers.

Documents also show that Mrs Jackson has also petitioned to take over the children's estate, the value of which is unknown.

Katherine Jackson
Katherine Jackson is currently looking after the children

It confirms that they are currently staying under her care at the Jackson family compound.

The court documents state that Ms Rowe's whereabouts is unknown, while "none" is stated next to the entry for the mother of Prince Michael II.

It also says that "they have a long-established relationship with paternal grandmother and are comfortable in her care".

Ms Rowe's lawyer, Marta Almli, said in a statement on Saturday: "Ms Rowe's only thoughts at this time have been regarding the devastating loss Michael's family has suffered.

"Ms Rowe requests that Michael's family, and particularly the children, be spared such harmful, sensationalist speculation and that they be able to say goodbye to their loved one in peace," she added.

Rowe married Jackson in 1996 but filed for divorce in 1999. She gave up custody rights to the children but sought them again in 2003.

They agreed a settlement in 2006 but the terms were never disclosed.

Memorial plans

There has been no announcement regarding funeral arrangements, although family friend, the Reverend Al Sharpton, said he would be talking to the family about how to honour the late pop star's memory.

He said the family wanted to hold memorials in key cities around the globe and also planned a memorial service for Tuesday at the Apollo Theatre in New York, where the Jackson 5 played.

Stars have already begun celebrating the life of Michael Jackson in Los Angeles.

Jackson's father Joe joined celebrities at the annual Black Entertainment Television (BET) Awards show, which was hastily changed to honour the singer.

A Jackson 5 medley was performed and host Jamie Foxx attempted the Moonwalk.

Dr Conrad Murray
Dr Murray was Michael Jackson's personal physician

Jackson's sister Janet took to the stage to thank fans for their support.

"My entire family wanted to be here tonight, but it was just too painful, so they elected me to be here," she said.

Meanwhile, a lawyer for Michael Jackson's doctor has denied that his client administered painkilling drugs that could have contributed to the singer's death.

Edward Chernoff told the Associated Press that Dr Conrad Murray "had never prescribed Demerol or Oxycontin".

He said any drugs that the physician may have given Jackson were in response to a specific health complaint.

He said the star still had a faint pulse and was warm when Dr Murray found him in bed on Thursday afternoon.

Michael Jackson's family are said to be seeking a second autopsy because they still have questions about his death.

Joe Jackson said at the BET Awards show that he had "a lot of concerns" over events surrounding his son's death. He also told a US radio station that the family "suspected foul play somewhere".

The Los Angeles County Coroner's office said there was no evidence of foul play after an autopsy on Friday, but gave no cause of death.

It said the results of toxicology tests could take weeks to come back.

A spokesman for the coroner's office said Jackson had taken "some prescription medication".

Giving up my iPod for a Walkman

Scott Campbell with Walkman

When the Sony Walkman was launched, 30 years ago this week, it started a revolution in portable music. But how does it compare with its digital successors? The Magazine invited 13-year-old Scott Campbell to swap his iPod for a Walkman for a week.

My dad had told me it was the iPod of its day.

He had told me it was big, but I hadn't realised he meant THAT big. It was the size of a small book.

When I saw it for the first time, its colour also struck me. Nowadays gadgets come in a rainbow of colours but this was only one shade - a bland grey.

Sony Walkman
1: Clunky buttons
2: Switch to metal (that's a type of cassette, not heavy rock music)
3: Battery light - usually found flickering in its death throes
4: Double headphone jack (not to be found on an iPod)
5: Door ejects - watch out for flying tapes and eye injuries

So it's not exactly the most aesthetically pleasing choice of music player. If I was browsing in a shop maybe I would have chosen something else.

From a practical point of view, the Walkman is rather cumbersome, and it is certainly not pocket-sized, unless you have large pockets. It comes with a handy belt clip screwed on to the back, yet the weight of the unit is enough to haul down a low-slung pair of combats.

When I wore it walking down the street or going into shops, I got strange looks, a mixture of surprise and curiosity, that made me a little embarrassed.

As I boarded the school bus, where I live in Aberdeenshire, I was greeted with laughter. One boy said: "No-one uses them any more." Another said: "Groovy." Yet another one quipped: "That would be hard to lose."

My friends couldn't imagine their parents using this monstrous box, but there was interest in what the thing was and how it worked.

In some classes in school they let me listen to music and one teacher recognised it and got nostalgic.

It took me three days to figure out that there was another side to the tape. That was not the only naive mistake that I made; I mistook the metal/normal switch on the Walkman for a genre-specific equaliser, but later I discovered that it was in fact used to switch between two different types of cassette.

I managed to create an impromptu shuffle feature simply by holding down 'rewind' and releasing it randomly

Another notable feature that the iPod has and the Walkman doesn't is "shuffle", where the player selects random tracks to play. Its a function that, on the face of it, the Walkman lacks. But I managed to create an impromptu shuffle feature simply by holding down "rewind" and releasing it randomly - effective, if a little laboured.

I told my dad about my clever idea. His words of warning brought home the difference between the portable music players of today, which don't have moving parts, and the mechanical playback of old. In his words, "Walkmans eat tapes". So my clumsy clicking could have ended up ruining my favourite tape, leaving me music-less for the rest of the day.

Digital relief

Throughout my week using the Walkman, I came to realise that I have very little knowledge of technology from the past. I made a number of naive mistakes, but I also learned a lot about the grandfather of the MP3 Player.

You can almost imagine the excitement about the Walkman coming out 30 years ago, as it was the newest piece of technology at the time.

Scott Campbell and mum Susan
The Walkman was a nostalgic sight for Scott's parents

Perhaps that kind of anticipation and excitement has been somewhat lost in the flood of new products which now hit our shelves on a regular basis.

Personally, I'm relieved I live in the digital age, with bigger choice, more functions and smaller devices. I'm relieved that the majority of technological advancement happened before I was born, as I can't imagine having to use such basic equipment every day.

Having said all that, portable music is better than no music.

Now, for technically curious readers, I've directly compared the portable cassette player with its latter-day successor. Here are the main cons, and even a pro, I found with this piece of antique technology.


This is the function that matters most. To make the music play, you push the large play button. It engages with a satisfying clunk, unlike the finger tip tap for the iPod.

When playing, it is clearly evident that the music sounds significantly different than when played on an MP3 player, mainly because of the hissy backtrack and odd warbly noises on the Walkman.

The warbling is probably because of the horrifically short battery life; it is nearly completely dead within three hours of firing it up. Not long after the music warbled into life, it abruptly ended.


With the plethora of MP3 players available on the market nowadays, each boasting bigger and better features than its predecessor, it is hard to imagine the prospect of purchasing and using a bulky cassette player instead of a digital device.

Sony Walkman
Music on the move

Furthermore, there were a number of buttons protruding from the top and sides of this device to provide functions such as "rewinding" and "fast-forwarding" (remember those?), which added even more bulk.

As well as this, the need for changing tapes is bothersome in itself. The tapes which I had could only hold around 12 tracks each, a fraction of the capacity of the smallest iPod.

Did my dad, Alan, really ever think this was a credible piece of technology?

"I remembered it fondly as a way to enjoy what music I liked, where I liked," he said. "But when I see it now, I wonder how I carried it!"


But it's not all a one-way street when you line up a Walkman against an iPod. The Walkman actually has two headphone sockets, labelled A and B, meaning the little music that I have, I can share with friends. To plug two pairs of headphones in to an iPod, you have to buy a special adapter.

Another useful feature is the power socket on the side, so that you can plug the Walkman into the wall when you're not on the move. But given the dreadful battery life, I guess this was an outright necessity rather than an extra function.

Scott Campbell co-edits his own news website, Net News Daily.

Add your comments on this story, using the form below.

Ahhh - the good ol' days, before MP3 players... This was state of the art when I was growing up (in the mid 80s), and my original Walkman is still going strong. It was the one with the metal case, and survived more than one drop off the desk. The only drawback was the fact that I had to have the "rubber bands" replaced on a regular basis - but at least you could repair it, unlike the successors. Ok - the battery life wasn't great, but you could overcome that by using the mains adaptor when you were hiding in your room.
Karen, Leamington Spa

I've got really fond memories of my Walkman from 1999 - my boyfriend had a CD player (bulky) and minted mates had MiniDiscs (too expensive) but I loved making mixtapes for friends and personalising the labels. It wasn't anywhere near as big as the one in this story - then again, thank God flares were in fashion and we all had such massive pockets!
Maggie Stuart, London, UK

Oh - how I laughed when I read Scott's account: it's all true! It's so hard now to see how excited we were to have these - but looking back, not only were they bulky, but if you wanted to listen to more than one album you had to carry pockets-full of tapes. If you waved them back and forward the sound also went warbly and I can vividly remember the great advancement for the '2nd generation': auto change direction which meant you didn't have to turn the tape over when you got to the end!!
Rob, Dalkeith

I've had several mp3 players, the batteries last for random times as I can never find a USB cable with a silly connector, mp3 players also do not switch off they just go until they're flat. They work randomly as the software which thrown together in a sweat shop is utter rubbish. The headphones invariably last a period measured in days if you don't lose them in the first place, I also had to put a carabiner on my player that makes a nonsense of its minute size, otherwise I just lose it for weeks on end. Being a control freak, I can't stand the "shuffle" function and I lose patience about having to fire up a PC and faff with deleting and copying files. I had a walkman, for years and years, with one set of headphones, it worked
Jeff, Glos

I remember some young people going out wearing these as a sort of status symbol, even if they had no batteries!

However they still have a role; I got one from eBay for my partially sighted dad so he can play his audio books.
Troy, Basildon, Essex

I remember my first few Walkmen - I say few, as I must have had at least three or four of them during my adolescence due to death by seaside, breakfast food, motor exhaustion, melting, etc. They were a source of both great joy and incredible frustration, as you either had to deliberately break up any journey to buy batteries, or carry a pack with you, everywhere you went. They also chewed up and spat out tapes, especially mix tapes of great sentimental value with alarming regularity, and as battery juice ran out, the motor would slow, risking stretching the tape to a sound that DJs would love, but that drove everyone else crazy!
Katherine, London

Ahhhhh, I was never rich enough to own a Walkman. I had two or three "other" manufacturer versions in latter years. I do remember I had a rich friend who got one the week they came out. I was absolutely astounded with the sound quality. It was a brilliant piece of technology for its day and I recall that its launch was as hyped as that for the iPod.
Andy, MIlton Keynes, UK

Interesting that Scott thinks that "the majority of technological advancement happened before I was born". Don't you think that's what we all thought, all those years ago? I've every expectation that in 25 years time Scott's children will be looking with horror at the iPods of old and Scott will be scratching his head and trying to keep up with the latest developments.
Anne-Marie, London

I remember listening to the Walkman for the first time on a school picnic in 1985. I was 11 years old then. We were in the school bus and this classmate of mine proudly started flaunting his Walkman that one of his uncles' had got him from the US. I had absolutely no idea what it was until he asked me to put on the headphones. With me in anticipation he then pressed "Play". I swear I can never forget what my first song on the Walkman sounded like. The song was Michael Jackson's "Wanna be starting something" and the way I could appreciate different sounds in spatial, 3D clarity was amazing. I begged my classmate to let me listen to one more song but he was a shrewd businessman. Before he hit the play button again I had to pay a fee for the liberty of listening to his prized possession!
Dr Maajed J. Wani, Srinagar, Kashmir, India

I use both, however my Walkman is a (what was state of the art) Sony WM-DD3 direct drive (no warbling) Dolby Noise reduction (no hiss). Although the latter obviously is physically larger and far inferior in terms of track capacity to an iPod or equivalent, what it does do is beat my digital device hands down when it comes to dynamic range, sound quality and richness. Secondly, since a cassette is typically no longer than 45 minutes in length, I am thankfully limited to my oblivion of the world around me and the annoyance to others especially on public transport. Quality not quantity
Paul, Beeston Notts

The Sony Walkman was fairly pricey and a lot of us had to make do with cheaper versions. Many of these personal stereos (as they were called in the UK) lacked a 'rewind' function which meant the listener had to repeatedly flip the cassette over, 'fast-forward' a while, then flip the tape back! The double headphone socket was another feature lacking in the cheaper makes but a further social-friendly feature on later models of the Walkman was the big orange 'hotline' button. If someone wanted to say something to the listener, they could hold this down and it would mute the music so they could be heard. Rechargeable batteries and an 'anti-roll' mechanism were essential if you truly wanted to enjoy music on the move in those days.
Lee Morgan, Isle of Wight

Retro Movies - 1986 Flight Of The Navigator


Great fan made video from You tube featuring Flight Of The Navigator, with music from Alan Silvestri - Main Theme and Robot Romp. Great music!

Flight of The Navigator
is a 1986 Disney science fiction film directed by Randal Kleiser and was written by Mark H. Baker and Michael Burton. A 12-year old boy, David, who is abducted by an alien space craft in 1978. Due to time dilation, David is gone for only a few hours, but due to faster-than-light travel, when he is returned to Earth, it is eight years later in 1986. Everyone else on Earth has aged eight years, but David is still physically twelve years old.

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Retro Movies - 1988 Cocoon The Return


Five years after they left, the Antereans return to Earth to rescue the cocoons that were left behind. Before they can be retrieved, one of the cocoons is discovered by a science research team and taken to a secure laboratory for testing. The aliens and their human allies must find a way to retrieve the cocoon in time for their rendezvous with the rescue ship.

Having returned with the aliens, the elderly couples from the original film face indecision about whether to return to Anterea or stay on Earth and become mortal again. Joe learns that his leukemia has returned, but he knows it will be cured again as soon as he and Alma leave Earth. However, when Alma is hit by a car, Joe gives up the last of his lifeforce to save her. Arthur and Bess learn that Bess is pregnant, and decide to raise the child on Anterea so they will live long enough to see him grow up. Ben and Marilyn decide that being with their families is more important than living forever, so they decide to stay.

The group manages to infiltrate the lab and rescue the captured Anterean. Jack sails them out into the ocean, where the space travellers and the cocoons are picked up by an alien craft. Jack then sees Sara and they walk away from the docks.

Saturday, 27 June 2009

John Williams greats - Jaws 2

Main Title - Finding the Orca / The Menu / Ballet for Divers from Jaws 2 by John Williams

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Friday, 26 June 2009

Michael Jackson remembered

This was our "first dance" song. Rest in peace Michael...never forgotten.

Screen star Fawcett dies aged 62

Actress Farrah Fawcett has died after a three-year battle with cancer

Actress Farrah Fawcett, who became an icon of 1970s US television, has died of cancer in Los Angeles aged 62, her spokesman has confirmed.

Fawcett is best known for starring in Charlie's Angels, and in later years for hard-hitting TV and stage roles.

Her battle with illness was chronicled in the television documentary Farrah's Story earlier this year.

Her partner Ryan O'Neal said: "After a long and brave battle with cancer, our beloved Farrah has passed away."

'Courage and strength'

He was said to be by her beside when she passed away in a Los Angeles hospital.

"Although this is an extremely difficult time for her family and friends, we take comfort in the beautiful times that we shared with Farrah over the years and the knowledge that her life brought joy to so many people around the world," he said.

The star's former Charlie's Angels co-star Jaclyn Smith said: "Farrah had courage, she had strength, and she had faith."

The actress, who played Kelly Garrett in the hit TV series, added: "And now she has peace as she rests with the real angels."

Cheryl Ladd, who played Kris Munroe in the show, said: "I'm terribly sad about Farrah's passing. She was incredibly brave, and God will be welcoming her with open arms."

Her death has come just weeks her TV documentary was broadcast.

The video diary chronicled her battle with anal cancer in her final months.

O'Neal said she had wanted to tell her story on her own terms.

O'Neal, who has been with Fawcett on and off since 1982, recently disclosed they would finally get married, but never got the chance to exchange vows.

The screen star was previously married to Lee Majors, star of The Six Million Dollar Man, from 1973 to 1982.

She and O'Neal have one son, Redmond, who is serving a prison sentence for drug offences.

As Fawcett's career was taking off, she posed in a red bathing suit for a poster which went on to sell several million copies.

Her tousled blonde locks, made famous by her role in Charlie's Angels, were emulated by fans across the globe.

The actress earned a string of Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for her small screen roles, but never won one of the major awards.

In 1995, she was honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Breaking News - Singer Michael Jackson 'is dead'

Breaking News

Pop star Michael Jackson has died in Los Angeles, aged 50, reports say.

Paramedics were called to the singer's home around midday local time on Thursday after he stopped breathing and suffered a suspected cardiac arrest.

He was rushed by ambulance to a local medical centre, but his death was announced shortly afterwards.

The star, who had a history of health problems, had been due to begin a series of comeback concerts in the UK on 13 July.

Pop star Michael Jackson has been rushed to hospital in Los Angeles, with several US reports saying he has died.

Paramedics were called to the singer's home around midday local time after he suffered a suspected cardiac arrest.

He was rushed by ambulance to a medical centre, with reports from several US media outlets saying the 50-year-old star has died.

Michael Jackson had been due to begin a series of comeback concerts in the UK on 13 July.

He has a history of health problems and has not completed a concert tour in 12 years.

US media reports say paramedics were called to the singer's house in Bel Air at midday.

They performed CPR on Jackson and rushed him to the UCLA medical centre.

Crowds have begun to gather outside the facility, whose emergency centre has been roped off by police.

Jackson began his career as a child in family group The Jackson 5.

He then went on to achieve global fame as a solo artist with smash hits such as "Thriller" and "Bad".

But the singer has been dogged by controversy and money trouble in recent years, becoming a virtual recluse.

Michael Jackson: Highs and lows

Michael Jackson performs in Los Angeles, California (1 December 1984)
Jackson is one of the most successful recording artists of all time

Michael Jackson has died at the age of 50, US media say. The pop star was due to begin a comeback tour with a series of concerts in London in July.

Here are the ups and downs of the singer's lifetime in pop.


Michael, the seventh of nine children, joins his brothers' pop group in 1964 - initially playing tambourine and bongos.

Full name: Michael Joseph Jackson
Born: August 29, 1958, Gary, Indiana, US
Also known as: The King of Pop, Wacko Jacko
Biggest hits: I Want You Back, Don't Stop Til You Get Enough, Billie Jean, Bad, Black or White, Earth Song

He quickly becomes the centre of attention and takes on lead vocal duties as the band build up a reputation on the live circuit.

Motown acts Gladys Knight and Bobby Taylor recommend the Jackson Five to their boss Berry Gordy. The groups' first release on the legendary Detroit label, I Want You Back, goes straight to number one in 1969 - when Michael is just 11 years old.

Over the next six years, the band churns out a string of hits including ABC, The Love You Save and I’ll Be There.


The Jacksons decide to leave Motown for a more lucrative deal at CBS Records. Motown sues the band for $20 million (£10 million).

Off The Wall
Off The Wall only won one Grammy, spurring Jackson on to greater things

Jackson meets music producer Quincy Jones on the set of The Wiz - an urban retelling of The Wizard of Oz in which the singer plays the scarecrow.

He asks Jones to produce his new solo record - and the result is disco classic Off The Wall.

It sells 10 million copies, and contains hit singles Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough and Rock With You.

Michael Jackson in 'Thriller' video (1983)
The video for Thriller was inspired by American Werewolf in London

Jackson unleashes his pop masterpiece, Thriller, which re-writes the rule book on how pop is marketed, not least because of its ground-breaking video clips.

The record is frequently named the biggest-selling album of all time , shifting 65 million copies, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

As the album spawns hit after hit - seven of its nine tracks make the charts - Jackson appears unstoppable. He causes jaws to drop around the world when he debuts the Moonwalk at a Motown television special in 1983.

Then, against the advice of his managers and record label, he convinces director John Landis to transform him into a zombie and a werecat in the 14-minute video for Thriller - at a cost of $500,000 (£250,000). The scale and ambition of the clip have often been copied, but never bettered.

Michael Jackson and Bubbles the chimp
Bubbles the chimpanzee was one of Jackson's more famous playmates

As he films a Pepsi commercial in front of an audience in Los Angeles, Michael’s hair is set on fire by a pyrotechnic explosion. He is carried out of the building on a stretcher, and sales of Thriller jump by 150,000 week on week.

As Jacko-mania reaches fever pitch, tabloid stories about the secretive star begin to circulate. It is claimed that he sleeps in an oxygen tent and wants to buy the remains of Elephant Man Joseph Merrick.

The "Wacko Jacko" name is coined soon after, and the star retreats into his newly-purchased Neverland ranch, complete with zoo and fun fair.

Meanwhile, Jackson continues to prove his business acumen, securing the publishing rights to the Beatles' back catalogue for $47.5 million and beating a bid from his old friend Paul McCartney.

1987 – BAD
Michael Jackson in concert
The Bad tour gave Sheryl Crow her big break - as Jackson's backing singer

Martin Scorcese’s video for Bad sees Michael with distinctly lighter skin, leading to rumours of plastic surgery and skin bleaching. But the press coverage does nothing to hurt the megastar's popularity and the Bad album sells more than 30 million copies.

The success of the album kick-starts Jackson's first solo tour. The critically-acclaimed Bad concerts feature magic tricks, lasers, and a section where the star "flies" above the audience on a crane. Prince Charles and Princess Diana attend one of the seven sell-out shows in Wembley.

As the tour draws to a close, Jackson pens his autobiography, revealing: "I'm one of the loneliest people in the world'' and releases the Moonwalker film – a mixed bag of music videos and child-like fantasy sequences.

Dangerous went straight to number one on its release

With hip-hop in the ascendancy, Jackson employs urban producer Teddy Riley to give a rougher edge to his new album, Dangerous. Fans and critics alike are put off by the harsh rhythms and sparse arrangements, but it contains several hits - including Black and White, Remember The Time and the tabloid-baiting In The Closet.

While promoting the album, Jackson invites Oprah Winfrey to his Neverland Ranch for a special edition of her TV show. Beamed live around the world, the star addresses several of the stories about his private life.

He reveals that he was bullied by his father, had plastic surgery twice, and that his changing skin tones were the result of a "disorder that destroys the pigmentation of my skin".


The family of 11-year-old Jordy Chandler accuse Jackson of molesting their son. The star categorically denies the charges, but Los Angeles police raid his home while he is on tour in the Far East.

He later comes to an out-of-court settlement with the family for an estimated $20m.

The following year, Michael marries Lisa Marie Presley in what many assume is an attempt to repair his tarnished public image. The couple divorce 19 months later.

Michael Jackson performs at the Brits Awards in 1996
Jackson's performance at the Brit awards was magnificently over-the-top

His crown having slipped somewhat, the King of Pop positions several giant statues of himself around Europe to promote a new album, HIStory, which combines a CD of greatest hits with a disc of new material, much of which is a vitriolic response to the star's recent woes.

The following year, he appears at the Brit Awards to perform number one single Earth Song. The show sees Jackson surrounded by children, adopting a messianic pose which prompts Pulp frontman Jarvis Cocker to storm the stage.

Jackson declares himself "sickened, saddened, shocked, upset, cheated and angry" by the incident.


In 1997, Jackson is inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and, in a surprise move, marries nurse Debbie Rowe, who is pregnant with his child, Prince Michael.

The couple have a daughter, Paris Michael Katherine, the following year before divorcing in 1999. The singer retains custody of the children.

Invincible album cover
Rolling Stone said the Invincible was "full of grandiose desperation"

Six years in the making, Jackson’s next album, Invincible, barely lasts six weeks on the charts.

Only one single, Rock My World, gets a full global release. Jackson blames the lack of promotion on the fact he had decided not to renew his contract with Sony – and launches an attack on label boss Tommy Mottola, calling him "devilish" and accusing him of racism.

Meanwhile, the singer's personal life continues to cause controversy. He draws scathing criticism when he dangles the 11-month-old Prince Michael II (or Blanket) from the window of a German hotel.

On a TV documentary he admits sharing his bed with children. "Why can't you share your bed?” he protests. "That's the most loving thing to do, to share your bed with someone."

Police photograph of Michael Jackson taken in  Santa Barbara, California (20 November 2003)
Police denied claims that Jackson was "roughly manhandled" on his arrest

Police raid Jackson's Neverland ranch and, shortly afterwards, a warrant is issued for his arrest on charges of molesting a 14-year-old boy, Gavin Arvizo.

The star surrenders himself to police and is arrested and handcuffed. A five-month trial in 2005 ends with Jackson found not guilty on all charges.

Following the trial and amid rumours of bankruptcy, the elusive pop star moves to Dubai.


At a dramatic news conference in March, Jackson announced a series of 50 comeback - and farewell - concerts in London.

He told a dramatic news conference: "This is it. I just want to say that these will be my final show performances in London."

His visit to the UK followed an "amicable settlement" reached at London's High Court in November 2008 with the King of Bahrain's son, who was suing him for £4.7m, claiming he reneged on a music contract.

The 750,000 tickets for the shows sold out within days but in May, promoters said the first few dates would be postponed to allow more time for rehearsals.

Compiled by BBC Entertainment reporter Mark Savage

Childrens ITV - ad break from 1984 and introducing She-Ra. Great Clip

Great four minute clip showing Emu and Rod Hull introducing She-ra and great toy adverts including game of life, legoland space, scalextric, kong man from Tomy, play mobil play sets, rainbow brite, connect 4, watsits crisps advert. Also advertising whats on tomorrow afternoon including Alias the Jester and Stu Francis

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Retro Ads Week - Rolo Chocolate Sweets

This one is actually from the 1990's but its such a good ad its worth posting

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Retro Adverts Week - Burger King Star Wars Glasses

American advert for Burger King advertising Star Wars glasses. If you collect Star Wars memorabilia then like me you probably have these in your collection

Monday, 22 June 2009

Retro Adverts Week - The Hits Album

Enya, Whitney Houston, Aha, Yaz, Prince, Deacon Blue, Bros they are all here!

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Retro Adverts Week - JVC Camcoder

A rather creepy advert for JVC's camcorder. Is that the one used in Back To The Future? Also High definition play back on a VCR?

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Retro Ads Week - BBC2 advertising Red Dwarf

BBC2 advertising Red Dwarf series 4

Retro Adverts Week - Topps Creamy Fingers

Remember getting these - They would last for ages!

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Retro Adverts Week - David Prowse (Darth Vader) in Green Cross Code Advert

David Prowse also known as Darth Vader appears as Green Cross Man in this fantastic retro advert. While watching it I couldn't help think how strange it would have been to here Darth Vader with a west country accent.

I have to feel sorry for David really because in this second advert they have once again dubbed his voice

Heres a third advert with Green Cross Code Man watching kids from his base of operations. Innocent days!

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Retro Ads Week - Trio Chocolate Biscuit

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Monday, 15 June 2009

Location of R2-D2 Easter Egg Revealed + More Star Trek Easter Eggs

June 11, 2009

by TrekMovie.com Staff , Filed under: Star Trek (2009 film) , trackback

Last month we reported that Paramount launched an Easter egg contest to find the hidden R2D2 in the new Star Trek movie. Now they have revealed where to find the Star Wars droid, details below plus we list many of the other easter eggs in the Star Trek movie.

Read the rest here - http://trekmovie.com/2009/06/11/location-of-r2-d2-easter-egg-revealed-more-star-trek-easter-eggs/

Retro Ads Week - BBC Micro Computer

A rather dull advert for a rather dull computer

Retro Ads Week Bisto - Never In A Month Of Sundays

Sunday, 14 June 2009


SOURCE - http://videogamesrepublic.com/?p=3919

Star Wars: The Old Republic gets jaw dropping cinematicHere’s an E3 trailer for LucasArt’s Star Wars: The Old Republic MMO game. It doesn’t feature any in-game but it’s an absolute must-see times a million.

Star Wars: The Old Republic is a story-driven massively multiplayer online PC game set in the timeframe of the Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic franchise thousands of years before the rise of Darth Vader.

Players can choose to play as Jedi, Sith and more, with the story changing depending on which role you take up to determine whether you’ll venture to the dark side or not.

As typical of massively mulitiplayer online games games players can friend other players to fight with them. If you get bored there’s always the betray option.

Players can also choose to team up with their buddies to battle their galactic foes and overcome various challenges.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Retrofinds remembers classic album - Brothers In Arms Dire Straights

First time I heard this album was when I was on holiday in Dartmouth with a group of friends. We blasted the album on (for the time) a top of the range hi-fi and it sounded amazing. The guitar in Money For Nothing sounded fantastic.The walk of life and money for nothing are still popular today. Who can forget the amazing video for Money For Nothing?

All songs written by Mark Knopfler, except where indicated. The track lengths on the LP version differ from the lengths on the CD and cassette versions, due to the limitations of the medium. The full tracks would not all fit on one side of vinyl. (This was one of the first rock albums where the CD was longer than the LP.)

1. "So Far Away" – 5:12
2. "Money for Nothing" (Knopfler, Sting) – 8:26

3. "Walk of Life" – 4:12

4. "Your Latest Trick" – 6:33
5. "Why Worry" – 8:31
6. "Ride Across the River" – 6:58
7. "The Man's Too Strong" – 4:40
8. "One World" – 3:40
9. "Brothers in Arms" – 6:55

Friday, 12 June 2009

Computer game Tetris celebrates 25 years

Tetris, the computer game in which players rotate a series of falling block shapes to fit them together, is celebrating its 25th anniversary.

Tetris, the computer game in which players rotate a series of falling block shapes to fit them together, is celebrating its 25th anniversary.
Tetris has sold more than 70 million copies

The game was created by Alexey Pajitnov, a computer engineer who was working for the Computing Centre of the Soviet Academy of Sciences.

It has sold more than 70 million copies, been released for nearly every video-game platform of the past two decades and even been played on the side of a skyscraper.

The game was first made available on the IBM computer, but it didn't become a major hit until it was launched on Nintendo's Game Boy handheld console in 1989. According to The Tetris Co., the Game Boy version of Tetris sold more than 35 million copies.

Despite the record-breaking popularity of Mr Pajitnov's creation, the royalties from the game were claimed by the Kremlin rather than the Russian programmer.

He finally began earning money from the game after he moved to the US and the rights reverted back to him in 1996.

Mr Pajitnov, speaking in an interview with the Guardian newspaper, described how he came up with the idea to distract him from his work on a large Soviet-built Elektronika 60 computer.

He said: "I started to put together all kinds of mathematical puzzles and diversions that I had loved all my life.

"The program wasn't complicated. There was no scoring, no levels. But I started playing and I couldn't stop.

"I think that most of the classic games written in the 80s or early 90s are dead just because their authors or owners didn't care about them."

He chose the name Tetris by combining the words "tennis", his favourite sport, and "tetra", a Greek prefix. The variously shaped groups of blocks that fall down the screen are called tetrominoes.

Source - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/scienceandtechnology/technology/technologynews/5460283/Computer-game-Tetris-celebrates-25-years.html

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Star Wars Arcade record set - 54 hours solid on one credit!

Brandon Erickson '02 is one of the world's top players of the 1983 Atari Star Wars video game. Between 8 a.m. last May 16 and 2:10 p.m. on May 18, he played Star Wars for 54 hours and 10 minutes without a break at Ground Kontrol, a classic-video arcade in Portland, Oregon. During that time, he scored 283 million points, ingested no stimulant stronger than ginseng, took no break longer than the seven seconds between levels, played one level naked from the waist down (after an aborted attempt to change clothes between levels), and spent a total of 25 cents. Although Erickson set a record for the longest continuous play on any arcade game, he gave in to exhaustion still short of Robert Mruczek's 21-year-old record of 300 million points in 49 hours.

Erickson (who is acquainted with the author from college) took up Atari's Star Wars in May 2004 and quickly won plaudits from the gaming world for his speedy mastery. "He progressed the fastest on this game from inception to mastery of any champion I've seen," says Mruczek. After a game in which Erickson played for more than two hours on the hardest settings without taking a single hit, Mark Alpiger, a master of the Classic Arcade Gaming web site, was moved to declare it "one of the best gaming performance segments in history" -- surpassing even the legendary "Perfect Pac-Man" game that earned Billy Mitchell "Player of the Century" honors at the 1999 Tokyo Game Show.

"It is a skill, I guess," Erickson says. "It combines a fast-reacting, highly integrated nervous system with a drive to do things that aren't necessarily that important."

Erickson is one of a small subculture of players in the gaming world who specialize in the old coin-operated games of the so-called "Golden Age," before Nintendo crippled the arcade market. Under the supervision of Twin Galaxies, official scorekeeper in the video gaming world, the players pursue records on arcade machines such as Pac-Man and Asteroids.

Erickson's quest is part of a family tradition. His grandfather, the late Willard Centerwall '45W, '52MD, earned a spot in a local newspaper at age 10 by flying a kite for two consecutive days and nights, sleeping with the kite tied around his finger and floating out the window. Later, in the Army, Centerwall set an armed services record for sit-ups, wearing the skin off his back in the process.

Since the marathon, Erickson has begun studying for a master's in counseling psychology at Lewis & Clark College and has taken a part-time job. Despite these distractions, he insists that he will return to break the records that remain before him. "On some level, I feel like I'm the best Star Wars player, and I'll do what I have to do to prove it."


Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Retrofinds remembers Star Wars the Arcade Game

I have to admit something right now. It was very rare that I would find an arcade game I was actually any good at. Driving games were my thing but when it came to side scrolling shooters such as Ghost and Goblins or Defender it was fare to say I was useless. I always tried to find arcade games that I would get good value out of. Fortunately for me, one arcade game I would always spend a good amount of time on was STAR WARS.

I would always try to find the sit-down version of the game for that added atmosphere. Depending on how much money I had on me would determine the level I started at. If I didn’t have much money then I would start at the easy level to make the game last longer.

The player assumes the role of Luke Skywalker ("Red Five"), as he pilots an X-wing fighter from a first-person perspective. “Red Five standing by” would blare out as I chose my Death Star level to start. The player's ultimate goal is to destroy the Death Star through three attack phases.

* In the first phase of the game, the player begins in outer space above the Death Star. He must engage in a dog fight with Darth Vader and enemy TIE fighters.

* In the second phase (occurring beginning with the second wave), the player reaches the Death Star's surface as laser turrets on towers rise to confront the player. If the player manages to destroy all of the towers, he will receive a sizeable point bonus.

* In the final scenario, the player finds himself speeding through the trench of the Death Star, avoiding obstacles (of which there would always be a double barrier on the bottom followed by one on the top) and blasting gun turrets until, finally firing a proton torpedo at the correct time for a direct hit on the exhaust port target. What follows, if the player is successful, is the Death Star exploding in a multitude of different colours. If the player manages to do this without firing at anything but the exhaust port, he will receive a sizeable point bonus for "using the force." Then you start all over again.

Each successive Death Star run greatly increases the difficulty; TIE Fighters shoot more often, there are more Laser towers and batteries in the second round, and there are many more obstacles and laser fire during the trench run. Unlike the movie, where the units shoot beams similar to lasers, the enemy units in this game shoot projectiles resembling fireballs, in order to give the player a chance to destroy the fired shots.

Loved this arcade game. I would spend loads of money making sure my name or my three initials were on the top of the leaderboard. Great game with loads of atmosphere.

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

retrofinds - retro advert - Bad C64 advert

A really REALLY bad Commodore 64 advert from Australia

Monday, 8 June 2009


Source - http://www.denofgeek.com/misc/238530/geek_joy_ice_invaders.html

Alcohol is nice, very nice, but as a hardened gamer, I just can't get rid of the feeling that there's something missing from a glass of fine whisky. Is it some kind of mixer? No, that's not it. Is it a fine cigar? No, thanks. Is it an army of intergalactic invaders intent on destroying our very way of life? Yes! Yes, it is.

Perhaps one of the greatest freezer-based inventions of all time, I first noticed these rather nifty, and oh-so-wantable Ice Invaders Space Invader-style ice cube trays - while mooching around for geek-chic presents, and stumbled upon the website of Fred & Friends (www.worldwidefred.com).

As well as the amazing ice cubes, the company also makes a range of other off-the-wall items, including a souper-hero spoon, Pac-Man oven glove and another ice-cube-themed product, Gin & Titonic (yes, it's an irony-fuelled Titanic-shaped ice cube). There's a host of other items, many with a geek theme. Great stuff.

There's no UK outlet, but we did find the Ice Invaders on our side of the Atlantic. Hopefully, some of the other too clever products will make the trip across too. Till then, have a cool-cooled drink to console yourself.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Retrofinds - The Adventure Game

The Adventure Game was a game show, aimed at children but with an adult following, which was originally broadcast on UK television channels BBC1 and BBC2 between 24 May 1980 and 18 February 1986. The story in each show was that the two celebrity contestants and a member of the public had travelled by space ship to the planet Arg. Their overall task varied with each series. For example, the team might be charged with finding a crystal needed to power their ship to return to Earth. The programme is often considered to have been a forerunner of The Crystal Maze.

Here is the end game - The Vortex. Always seemed a bit unfair in my eyes!

Saturday, 6 June 2009

retrofinds - 1987 promo video for Commodore Amiga

Ten minute promo video for the Commodore Amiga from 1987

Friday, 5 June 2009


This is amazing! Monkey Island is to return in Five episodes from Telltale Games. YAYYYY!!! Out on July the 7th from the same people who brought us the Sam and Max episodes. Not to get confused with the remake of the original Secret Of Monkey Island which Lucasarts will be releasing this summer with updated graphics. This something completely original with five new episodes but unlike Sam and Max's episodes this will have a running plot throughout. I personally cannot wait. Although Ron Gilbert is not involved he is pretty good friends with Telltale Games and even visited them and gave some input and was pleased with the project.

So don't forget JULY 7th - If you preorder you get exclusive content and also can choose a free game from their catalogue. Brilliant!
The whole lot is $34.95 from https://www.telltalegames.com/monkeyisland

Thursday, 4 June 2009

The Secret Of Monkey Island Returns

Thanks to Lucasarts this summer The Secret Of Monkey Island is to return in HD and up to date graphics. Not to get confused with the new Monkey Island episodes from Telltale Games out on July 7th. Mentioned elsewhere on this blog!

100 Spectrum games in 10 minutes

We couldn't do 100 C64 and 100 Snes games without doing 100 Spectrum games in 10 minutes.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Retrofinds - retro ad - Coca Cola I'd like to teach the world to sing

"I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony)" is a pop song which originated as a jingle in the groundbreaking 1971 "Hilltop" television commercial for Coca-Cola. The song, produced by Billy Davis and performed by The New Seekers, portrayed a positive message of hope and love sung by a multicultural collection of teenagers on the top of a hill. It originally included line "I'd like to buy the world a Coke" and repeated "It's the real thing" as Coca-Cola's marketing theme at the time. It was so popular it was re-recorded by The New Seekers and The Hillside Singers as a full-length song, dropping references to Coca-Cola, and became a hit record. The version by The New Seekers reached #7 in the United States. The Hillside Singers' version was released as a successful single the same year; it reached #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #5 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart.

Retrofinds remembers Chipmunk Oxo Crisps

I wish they would bring chipmunk Oxo flavour crisps back. They tasted superb. Nice and salty. I remember my Mum buying these crisps and I would end up eating most of them. Loads of flavour and not matched since. They were taken over by Golden Wonder crisps. Maybe they could bring them back like Walkers did with the old style Monster Munch.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

William Shatner spotted at the new "Star Trek" movie dressed as Capt. James T. Kirk

Source - http://www.thespoof.com/news/spoof.cfm?headline=s4i53509

Hollywood, California - Taking over the movie projector room, William Shatner pulled the film reel of the new "Star Trek" movie out from the projector and onto the floor, leaving the silver screen blank with only the blaring white light on it as moviegoers turned to look up back at the projectionist trying to see what was going on.

"At first, he [William Shatner] put on an entertaining shadow puppet show using his hands to calm us down, even making the Vulcan live long and prosper hand sign," said Wynona Thompson, 'Star Trek' moviegoer turn hostage. "Everybody in the theater sighed and clapped in delight. Until he gave us the bird, saying over the THX sound system: 'You want your live long and prosper? I got your live long and prosper right here!"

Ushers attempted to calmly escort the panicking horde of movie goers out of the movie theater, but Shatner blocked all the exists trapping everyone inside. Later, police determined Shatner had an accomplice. Perhaps a disgruntled extra that was killed off in the first five minutes of the airing of an original episode in the 1960s, police believe.

Meanwhile, back up in the projector room, while waiting for the police to arrive, the theater manager with a couple of ushers were busy attempting to reclaim control of the projection room by ramming open the door, as Shatner treated the captive audience below to homemade behind the scene movies taken on the set of the original 'Star Trek' TV series with all the original cast members casually talking amongst themselves, rehearsing in costume and pulling practical jokes on each other.

"You see," said Shatner with a reflective tone in his voice that could still be heard above the din of the ramming of the projection room door. "I thought we all were a team. That everybody more than just got along with each other, but that we all loved each other, too. That...do I dare say it openly and in public? Yes. I dare...that we were all family god damn it!"

"Excuse me Mr. Shatner," came a voice up from the audience in the dark. "I have a question sir."

"Oh, a question. I didn't realize we were taking questions. But good ahead disembodied voice from the darken theater. What's your question," said Shatner as he braced the projector room door with heavy equipment.

"Weren't you the one that first broke up the team?" said the voice from the audience.

"Ah, yes," said Shatner as he projected still photo images of Spock onto the movie screen with devil's horns, thin mustaches and pirate eye patches penciled on them. "You are referring to that movie I did with the 'Next Generation Star Trek' folks. Well, you see that didn't really count because -"

Suddenly, the constant pounding at the project room door stopped as a struggle could be heard just outside in the corridor.

"Open the door Captain Kirk...ah, I mean Mr. Shatner," said a nervous and cracking voice from the opposite side of the door. "It's us your true fans. We're here to rescue you. My mom's down stairs waiting for us in her car."

As Shatner opened the door a herd of nerds dressed as a Stormtroopers rushed into the projection room with blasters in hand.

"Stormtroopers?" said a very surprised Shatner. "Why are you all dressed as Stormtroopers? Are you boys sure you're crashing the right party?"

"We were at a 'Star Wars' convention down the street when he heard you were in trouble over the police scanner," said one nerd with an orange patch on his shoulder, denoting the privilege of rank. "But we can talk about that later in my basement. First, we got to get you out of here before a S.W.A.T. team gets into position."

As the Stormtrooper cautiously peeked out of the projection room with a bewildered looking Shatner in tow, red laser sniper targeting beams could be seen sweeping the corridor.

"It's too late," said one Stormtrooper to the others. "They're already here. Delta formation with the client center front."

"Okay, everybody set your blasters to kill," ordered the Stormtrooper with the orange commanding sash.

"Are those real guns?" asked Shatner.

"No. Mr. Shatner," replied another Stormtrooper. "These aren't mere armaments based on a chemical reaction of black gun powder and a firing pin. These babies are fully operational class five industrial lasers each powered by its own fusion reactor ingeniously disguised as the butt of the riffle for optimal balance and minimal recoil."

"I must be dreaming," said Shatner to himself. "I must be having a really bad dream."

"I assure you Mr. Shatner you appear to me to be completely lucent and in control of your faculties and motor skills," said another Stormtrooper.

"Yeah, I was afraid of that," said Shatner. "I need a good stiff drink."

As the alarm at Shatner's bedside rang, he arose with a hangover but still let out a sigh of relief that he awoken from a bad dream. Only to realize as he rubbed his bloodshot eyes that he was not in his own bed or home.

"Oh boy," said Shatner to himself. "I must have really tied one on last night."

Looking around the bedroom he realized he was in someone's basement with the walls adorned with movie posters from both the 'Star Wars' and 'Star Trek' movies. Placing his feet on the floor he felt something sharp stick his foot. Looking down, there before him lay action figures from both Sci-Fi series still in their original packaging meticulously arranged in a circle on the floor around the bed he was asleep on.

"Good morning Captain Kirk...ah, I mean Mr. Shatner. No wait. I prefer Captain James Tiberius Kirk," said the same familiar nervous and cracking voice from the other side of the projection door, but now it came over an intercom system. "Welcome to my little menagerie."

"Oh no," said Shatner. "Not again."