1983 Trivia, Fun Facts and History

1983 Trivia, Fun Facts and History

Quick Facts from 1983:

  • World Changing Event: President Reagan referred to the Soviet Union as an “Evil Empire” in a speech in Florida.
  • The Top Song was Every Breath You Take by The Police
  • Influential Songs include: Rockit by Herbie Hancock, Puttin’ On The Ritz – Taco, She Blinded Me With Science by Thomas Dolby , She Works Hard for the Money by Donna Summer and Flashdance (What A Feeling) by Irene Cara
  • The Movies to Watch include WarGames, Yellowbeard, Zelig, Silkwood, The Outsiders, Yentl, The Big Chill, A Christmas Story, Vacation and Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
  • The Most Famous Person in America was probably Michael Jackson
  • Notable books include: Hollywood Wives by Jackie Collins
  • Programmer Jaron Lanier first coined the term “virtual reality”.
  • The final TV episode of M*A*S*H aired on CBS, an estimated 125 million watched in the US.
  • Price of 15 oz Arnold Stuffing mix in 1983: $1.35
    Swiss Cheese: $3.49/pound
  • The Funny Guy was: Eddie Murphy
    The Funny Duo were: Cheech and Chong
  • The Conversation: Mr. Rogers Neighborhood aired a 5 episode arc about nuclear war titled Conflict in November 1983. The episodes have not aired in reruns since.
Top Ten Baby Names of 1983:
Jennifer, Jessica, Amanda, Ashley, Sarah, Michael, Chris, Topher, Matthew, David, Joshua
The Hotties and Fashion Icons:
Loni Anderson, Catherine Bach, Kim Basinger, Jennifer Beals, Jacqueline Bisset, Christie Brinkley, Anne Carlisle, Phoebe Cates, Joan Collins, Lydia Cornell, Linda Evans, Farrah Fawcett, Deborah Foreman, Daryl Hannah, Goldie Hawn, Grace Jones, Nastassja Kinski, Jessica Lange, Heather Locklear, Madonna, Stevie Nicks, Dolly Parton, Victoria Principal, Betsy Russell, Brooke Shields, Suzanne Somers, Cheryl Tiegs, Heather Thomas, Mary Woronov, Sean Young
Hollywood Hunks and Leading Men:
Tom Cruise, Burt Reynolds, John Travolta, Richard Gere, Sean Connery

“The Quotes:”
“Go ahead, make my day”
– Clint Eastwood in Sudden Impact

“Say hello to my little friend!”
– Tony Montana in Scarface

“Would you like to play a game?”
– NORAD W.O.P.R. in WarGames

Time Magazine’s Men of the Year:
Ronald Reagan and Yuri Andropov
Miss America:
Debra Maffett (Anaheim, CA)
Miss USA:
Julie Hayek (California)

The Good Stuff:
Jim Thorpe regained his 1912 decathlon and pentathlon Olympic Gold Medals, 30 years after his death. They were originally taken from him because it was revealed that he played professional minor league baseball for a season in 1908.

Captain Bob Pearson landed Flight 143, piloting an Air Canada Boeing 767, at the RCAF Station Gimli, a closed air force base, with several mechanical failures going on, and NO FUEL.

The Scandals:
Germany’s Der Stern magazine obtained Adolf Hitler’s secret diaries. After announcing them, and showing them to the world, it was discovered that they were fake.

Korean Air flight 007 was shot down over Soviet airspace without warning.

Pop Star Death:
Karen Carpenter (eating disorder) The word ‘anorexia’ entered the American vocabulary.

Pop Culture News:
The computer mouse was invented.

Redondo Beach, CA adopted the Goodyear Blimp as the city’s official bird in 1983.

In 1966 Dick Shulze founded his stereo store, ‘The Sound of Music.’ In 1983, he renamed it “Best Buy” and statred the current chain of home electronics stores.

Sally Ride became the first woman in Space.

Actor Kevin Costner was ‘the dead guy in the opening of the film The Big Chill, but we never saw his face.

J. Crew began selling through a mail-order catalog.

The oldest continuous trophy in sports is America’s Cup. It started in 1851 with Americans winning for 132 consecutive years until Australia took the Cup in 1983.

Cost of a Superbowl ad in 1983: $400,000

The Habit:
Showing off your Swatch Watches, showing off your Break Dancing moves, Wacky Wallwalkers were octo-shaped sticky toys that could be tossed against a wall, then slowly ‘slime’ their way down.
1st appearances & 1983’s Most Popular Christmas gifts, toys and presents:
Nintendo Entertainment System, My Little Pony, Care Bears, WereBears stuffed bears, Cabbage Patch Kids were the must-have Christmas toy.
Popular and Notable Books From 1983:
Cathedral by Raymond Carver
Changes by Danielle Steel
Christine by Stephen King
Hollywood Wives by Jackie Collins
The Little Drummer Girl by John le Carré
The Lonesome Gods by Louis L’Amour
The Loser by Thomas Bernhard
Mistral’s Daughter by Judith Krantz
The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
Peek-a-Boo, I See You by Joan Phillips
Poland by James A. Michener
Pet Sematary by Stephen King
Poland by James Michner
Return of the Jedi by James Kahn
Space by James Michner
Star Wars: Return of the Jedi by Joan D. Vinge
White Gold Wielder by Stephen R. Donaldson
Winter’s Tale by Mark Helprin
Broadway Show – La Cage aux Folles (Musical) Opened on August 21, 1983 and Closed: November 15, 1987
Best Film Oscar Winner:
Gandhi (presented in 1983)
The Big Movies: (according to boxofficemojo)
1. Return Of The Jedi
2. Terms of Endearment
3. Flashdance
4. Trading Places
5. WarGames
6. Octopussy
7. Sudden Impact
8. Staying Alive
9. Mr. Mom
10. Risky Business
1983 Most Popular TV shows:
1. Dallas (CBS)
2. 60 Minutes (CBS)
3. Dynasty (ABC)
4. The A-Team (NBC)
5. Simon & Simon (CBS)
6. Magnum, P.I. (CBS)
7. Falcon Crest (CBS)
8. Kate & Allie (CBS)
9. Hotel (ABC)
10. Cagney & Lacey (CBS)

1983 Billboard Number One Songs:
December 18, 1982January 14, 1983:
Maneater – Hall & Oates

January 15 – February 11:
Down Under – Men at Work

February 12February 18:
Africa – Toto

February 19March 4:
Baby, Come To Me – Patti Austin featuring James Ingram

March 5April 22:
Billie Jean – Michael Jackson

April 23April 29:
Come On Eileen – Dexys Midnight Runners

April 30 – May 20:
Beat It – Michael Jackson

May 21May 27:
Let’s Dance – David Bowie

May 28 – July 8:
Flashdance… What A Feeling – Irene Cara

July 9 – September 2:
Every Breath You Take – The Police

September 3 – September 9:
Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) – Eurythmics

September 10 – September 23:
Maniac – Michael Sembello

September 24 – September 30:
Tell Her About It – Billy Joel

October 1 – October 28:
Total Eclipse of the Heart – Bonnie Tyler

October 29 – November 11:
Islands In the Stream – Kenny Rogers with Dolly Parton

November 12 – December 9:
All Night Long (All Night) – Lionel Richie

December 10, 1983 – January 20, 1984:
Say Say Say – Paul McCartney featuring Michael Jackson

World Series Champions: Baltimore Orioles
Superbowl XVII Champions: Washington Redskins
NBA Champions: Philadelphia 76ers
Stanley Cup Champs: New York Islanders
U.S. Open Golf Larry Nelson
U.S. Tennis: (Men/Ladies) Jimmy Connors/Martina Navratilova
Wimbledon (Men/Women): John McEnroe/Martina Navratilova
NCAA Football Champions: Miami
NCAA Basketball Champions: North Carolina State
Kentucky Derby: Sunny’s Halo