1984 Fun Facts, History and Trivia

1984 Fun Facts, History and Trivia

Quick Facts from 1984:

  • World Changing Event: Apple Computer Inc unveiled the Macintosh personal computer for $1,995, selling almost 250,000 in 1984.
  • The Top Song was Like A Virgin by Madonna
  • Influential Songs include: White Horse by Laid Back, Better Be Good to Me by Tina Turner, Jam on It by Newcleus and Thriller by Michael Jackson
  • The Movies to Watch include Gremlins, Karate Kid, Ghostbusters, 16 Candles, Footloose, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai, Red Dawn, The Natural, Purple Rain, This is Spinal Tap, The Gods Must Be Crazy and Amadeus
  • The Most Famous Person in The World was probably Bob Geldof
  • US Life Expectancy: Males: 71.1 years, Females: 78.2 years
  • Notable books include: You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay and What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Arlene Eisenberg & Heidi Murkoff
  • Price of a Panasonic VCR in 1984: $419 to 499.00
    120 minute JVC video tape: $9.99
    Health Club membership: $99.00/year
  • The Funny Band was: Spinal Tap
    The Funny Musician was: Weird Al Yankovic
    The Funny Lady was Joan Rivers
  • The Question: “Where’s The Beef?” – Clara Peller, in a Wendy’s advertisement.
  • The Conversation/Mystery: Did performance artist/comedian Andy Kaufman really die at age 34?

Top Ten Baby Names of 1984:
Jennifer, Jessica, Ashley, Amanda, Sarah, Michael, Chris, Topher, Matthew, Joshua, David

The Hotties and Fashion Icons:
Loni Anderson, Catherine Bach, Kim Basinger, Jacqueline Bisset, Linda Blair, Christie Brinkley, Phoebe Cates, Joan Collins, Lydia Cornell, Sybil Danning, Bo Derek, Farrah Fawcett, Melanie Griffith, Daryl Hannah, Kathy Ireland, Grace Jones, Nastassja Kinski, Jessica Lange, Heather Langenkamp, Kelly LeBrock, Heather Locklear, Madonna, Kelli Maroney, Dolly Parton, Paulina Porizkova, Victoria Principal, Helen Slater, Suzanne Somers, Brinke Stevens, Catherine Mary Stewart, Heather Thomas, Mary Woronov

Sex Symbols, Leading Men and Hollywood Hunks:
Mel Gibson, Michael Hutchence, Christopher Reeve, Patrick Swayze, Robert Redford

“The Quotes:”
“Where’s the Beef?”
– Clara Peller, Wendy’s commercial

“I’ll be back.”
– Arnold Schwarzenegger, in ‘The Terminator’

Time Magazine’s Man of the Year:
Peter Ueberroth

Miss America:
Vanessa Williams (9/17/83-7/23/84) (Millwood, NJ)
Suzette Charles (7/23/84-9/15/84) (Mays Landing, NJ)

Miss USA:
Mai Shanley (New Mexico)

The Scandals:
On December 3rd, a Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, India, began leaking 27 tons of the deadly gas methyl isocyanate. 20,000 people were killed and an additional 120,000 suffered ailments from this disaster later.

Vanessa Williams, the first black Miss America loses her crown, because of some ‘artsy’ nude photos taken several years earlier, were published in Penthouse magazine… It was also the first time a male (George Burns) appeared on the cover. Since an underage Traci Lords was the centerfold, no one is actually allowed to own this particular issue either. Vanessa went on to become one of the most successful Miss Americas ever.

Singer Marvin Gaye (April 2, 1939 – April 1, 1984)was shot and killed by his father on the day before his 45th birthday.

Pop Culture News:
Michael Dell started selling Dell Computers, targeting small businesses and households instead of the high-end consumers like his competitors (IBM, Apple, Compaq).

Molecular biologist Alec Jeffreys developed DNA testing.

The Boston Beer Company, makers of Samuel Adams Beer, was founded.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles first appeared in comic books. In 1987, the first TMNT cartoons appeared.

American Kim Coberly Hula-Hooped for 72 hours in October 2004.

Lowest PGA score of 63 was played by Gary Player

Cost of a Superbowl ad in 1984: $368,000

Doomsday Clock:
3 minutes to midnight, according to the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists.
1984: “U.S.-Soviet relations reach their iciest point in decades. Dialogue between the two superpowers virtually stops. “Every channel of communications has been constricted or shut down; every form of contact has been attenuated or cut off. And arms control negotiations have been reduced to a species of propaganda,” a concerned Bulletin informs readers. The United States seems to flout the few arms control agreements in place by seeking an expansive, space-based anti-ballistic missile capability, raising worries that a new arms race will begin.”

The Habit:
Playing Trivial Pursuit, listening to sex therapist and expert Dr. Ruth Westheimer (born June 4, 1928), watching Robin Leach’s Life Styles of the Rich and Famous.

1st appearances & 1984’s Most Popular Christmas gifts, toys and presents:
Cabbage Patch Kids (again), Trivial Pursuit (specialty editions), Transformers

Do They Know It’s Christmas was released.
Written by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure, it was produced by Trevor Horn, to help people in Ethiopia. The band was named “Band Aid” and recodred the song and raw video footage within a day. The band included:

Adam Clayton (U2)
Phil Collins (Genesis)
Bob Geldof (The Boomtown Rats)
Steve Norman (Spandau Ballet)
Chris Cross (Ultravox)
John Taylor (Duran Duran)
Paul Young
Tony Hadley (Spandau Ballet)
Glenn Gregory (Heaven 17)
Simon Le Bon (Duran Duran)
Simon Crowe (The Boomtown Rats)
Keren Woodward (Bananarama)
Martin Kemp (Spandau Ballet)
Jody Watley (Shalamar)
Bono (U2)
Paul Weller (The Style Council)
James “J.T.” Taylor (Kool & the Gang)
George Michael (Wham!)
Midge Ure (Ultravox)
Martyn Ware (Heaven 17)
John Keeble (Spandau Ballet)
Gary Kemp (Spandau Ballet)
Roger Taylor (Duran Duran)
Sarah Dallin (Bananarama)
Siobhan Fahey (Bananarama)
Pete Briquette (The Boomtown Rats)
Francis Rossi (Status Quo)
Robert ‘Kool’ Bell (Kool & the Gang)
Dennis J. T. Thomas (Kool & the Gang)
Andy Taylor (Duran Duran)
Jon Moss (Culture Club)
Sting (The Police)
Rick Parfitt (Status Quo)
Nick Rhodes (Duran Duran)
Johnny Fingers (The Boomtown Rats)
David Bowie
Boy George (Culture Club)
Holly Johnson (Frankie Goes to Hollywood)
Paul McCartney
Stuart Adamson (Big Country)
Bruce Watson (Big Country)
Tony Butler (Big Country)
Mark Brzezicki (Big Country)

Popular and Notable Books From 1984:
“…And Ladies of the Club” by Helen Hooven Santmyer
The Aquitaine Progression by Robert Ludlum
The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Seuss
First Among Equals by Jeffrey Archer
First Lady from Plains by Rosalynn Carter
The Fourth Protocol by Frederick Forsyth
Full Circle by Danielle Steel
Heretics of Dune by Frank Herbert
The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cosneros
Iacocca: an Autobiography by Lee Iacocca with William Novak
In Search of Excellence by Thomas J. Peters and Robert H. Waterman Jr.
The Kennedys: an American Drama by Peter Collier and David Horowitz
The Life and Hard Times of Heidi Abromowitz by Joan Rivers
Lincoln by Gore Vidal
Love and War by John Jakes
Loving Each Other by Leo Buscaglia
Mayor by Edward I. Koch with William Rauch
Money by Martin Amis
Motherhood: the Second Oldest Profession by Erma Bombech
Neuromancer by William Gibson
The Sicilian by Mario Puzo
The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub
Thinner by Stephen King
The Wasp Family by Iain Banks
The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundra
Who Killed the Robins Family? by Thomas Chastain

Best Film Oscar Winner:
Terms of Endearment (presented in 1984)

The Big Movies: (according to boxofficemojo)
1. Beverly Hills Cop
2. Ghostbuster
3. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
4. Gremlins
5. The Karate Kid
6. Police Academy
7. Footloose
8. Romancing The Stone
9. Star Trek III: The Search For Spock
10. Splash

1984 Most Popular TV shows:
1. Dynasty (ABC)
2. Dallas (CBS)
3. The Cosby Show (NBC)
4. 60 Minutes (CBS)
5. Family Ties (NBC)
6. The A-Team (NBC)
7. Simon & Simon (CBS)
8. Murder, She Wrote (CBS)
9. Knots Landing (CBS)
10. Falcon Crest (CBS)

1984 Billboard Number One Songs
December 10, 1983 – January 20, 1984:
Say Say Say – Paul McCartney featuring Michael Jackson

January 21 – February 3:
Owner of a Lonely Heart – Yes

February 4 – February 24:
Karma Chameleon – Culture Club

February 25 – March 20:
Jump – Van Halen

March 31 – April 20:
Footloose – Kenny Loggins

April 21 – May 11:
Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now) – Phil Collins

May 12 – May 25:
Hello – Lionel Richie

May 26 – June 8:
Let’s Hear It For the Boy – Deniece Williams

June 9 – June 22:
Time After Time – Cyndi Lauper

June 23 – July 6:
The Reflex – Duran Duran

July 7 – August 10:
When Doves Cry – Prince

August 11 – August 31:
Ghostbusters – Ray Parker, Jr.

September 1 – September 21:
What’s Love Got to Do With It – Tina Turner

September 22 – September 28:
Missing You – John Waite

September 29 – October 12:
Let’s Go Crazy – Prince & The Revolution

October 13 – November 2:
I Just Called To Say I Love You – Stevie Wonder

November 3 – November 16:
Caribbean Queen (No More Love On the Run) – Billy Ocean

November 17 – December 7:
Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go – Wham!

December 8 – December 21:
Out of Touch – Hall & Oates

December 22, 1984 – February 1, 1985:
Like a Virgin – Madonna

World Series Champions:     Detroit Tigers
Superbowl XVIII Champions:     Los Angeles Raiders
NBA Champions:     Boston Celtics
Stanley Cup Champs:     Edmonton Oilers
U.S. Open Golf     Fuzzy Zoeller
U.S. Tennis: (Men/Ladies)     John McEnroe/Martina Navratilova
Wimbledon (Men/Women):     John McEnroe/Martina Navratilova
NCAA Football Champions:     BYU
NCAA Basketball Champions:     Georgetown
Kentucky Derby:     Swale


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