80s Xmas, Pete & Pete vs Larry Flynt, Jonbenet mystery and Children of Men – Dec 23-29

What were the hottest toys of 1986, 1996 and 2006? We’ll tell ya, then discuss Pete & Pete, The People vs Larry Flynt and the murder mystery of Jonbenet Ramsey. Then. this week in 06 brought us sci-fi classic Children of Men.

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Top 10 toys of 1986 – GI Joe is #1, used to be foot tall but since those were petroleum based toys, the gas crises led to them becoming 5 inch toys, then combined with the cartoon to make a hit. Rounded out by Pound Puppies, Barbie, Teddy Ruxpin, MASK, CPK, Transformers, Lazer Tag, WWF toys, and rounding out top 10 MUSCLE men.

The Morning After – Christmas Day release, Jane Fonda, Jeff Bridges. Former was nominated for Best Supporting Actress

Brighton Beach Memoirs – Jonathan Silverman, written by Neil Simon

Two shows end their run the day after Xmas; Sanchez of Bel Air, a USA Network comedy that ran 13 episodes. It is, however, notable as the first basic cable show that had a contract for a residual agreement for reruns.

Also that day, Search for Tomorrow ended its 9130 episode run which started on September 3, 1951.

The Love Boat episode, A Christmas Cruise airs, where a criminal on the boat dresses as Santa

Kennedy Center Honors airs, honoring Lucille Ball, Ray Charles, Hume Cronyn & Jessica Tandy, Yehudi Menuhin, and Antony Tudor

Final episode of Rambo: The Force of Freedom airs. It started in September and ended in 3 months with 65 episodes.

Chiller was earlier this year, noteworthy for being super gory and mean, chained up people in dungeon and you just shoot the shit out of them. NES conversion followed later with much of the violence intact, unlicensed.

What Do You Know, Deutschland? – KMFDM second album, would be re-released by Wax Trax and again in 2006, band still finding their sound but it’s v late-80s experimental clanging noise. We played Power from Xtort earlier this year, which came out in 1996. In other words, this band has been at it for 30+ years.

I came in with Nihil and Angst, with Xtort releasing a year later in 1996. They got roped into the Columbine shooting, which happened the same day their album Adios released. That was 4/20 by the way. En Esch, Sascha K, Raymond Watts nail down the sound but the band changes a lot.


Love Fool – Cardigans, back in September ahead of the movie’s release. Don’t think we ever played it? Album was First Band on the Moon, just under 700k sold, likely off the strength of that single and soundtrack.

Child pageant girl Jon-Benet Ramsey killed in her Boulder, Co. home.

The Evening Star, Michael, Evita and The People vs Larry Flynt all release in theaters.

E! True Hollywood Story debuts with an episode covering the murder of Rebecca Schaeffer. It is currently on its 17th season with 501 eps

Kennedy Center Honors airs with Lauren Bacall, Bob Dylan, Charlton Heston, Jessye Norman, and Edward Villella being honored

Final episode of Roundhouse (honestly thought it was cancelled after a season).

The more important Nick show ending was…The Adventures of Pete and Pete ends its run after 3 seasons, 35 episodes, and five specials.

The Simpsons episode “Hurricane Neddy” airs, where Ned Flanders snaps after Springfield citizens do a poor job of fixing his house.

Cool Boarders – part of early rush of extreme sports games, played it on a demo disc

Missed Dark Savior on Saturn from 12/12. Isometric adventure, similar to Genesis game LandStalker but not related. Mixed puzzles, platforming and fighting mechanics into one game. Sprite characters on kinda bland backgrounds, weird game.



Switchfoot – Oh! Gravity released the day after Christmas, includes that song and Dirty Second Hands
Mos Def – True Magic, third album, got middling reviews

12/25/06: James Brown dies (73), 12/26/06 Gerald Ford (93)

“The Audacity of Hope” by Sen. Barack Obama tops nonfiction bestseller list.

Top toys – PS3 and Wii listed, TMX Tickle Me Elmo, which would be a 10 year anniversary edition, hence TMX or TM Extreme, My Furreal Friends and High School Musical stuff. Flew home so this was probably the end of Christmas, and the start of “adult” christmas.

Black Christmas, Children of Men, Notes on a Scandal, Arthur and the Invisibles release

Pan’s Labyrinth – limited release, wider in January

12/26/06 – Kennedy Center Honors airs, honoring Zubin Mehta, Dolly Parton, Smokey Robinson, Steven Spielberg, and Andrew Lloyd Webber

12/29/06- Final episode of The Big Comfy Couch, a Canadian kids show that most nerds probably know for having the clown girl main character ALSO voice Claire Redfield in RE2

Novadrome XBLA out, vehicle combat game that didn’t review well, never played it.

New Rally X – old arcade game also out on XBLA







12 thoughts on “80s Xmas, Pete & Pete vs Larry Flynt, Jonbenet mystery and Children of Men – Dec 23-29

  1. Over this past summer I actually watched both the original Black Christmas and the remake. The original is pretty great, creepy in it’s simplicity and realistic nature – it’s just some random creepy stalker turned killer toying with coeds and nobody can quite figure out what’s what. The remake, like a lot of others (especially of the era) adds too much backstory and needlessly bizarre stuff (there are 2 killers, one of whom was an inbred child of previous homeowners!) that ends up making it less creepy (because you know too much, sorta like Rob Zombie’s Halloween). That being said, it’s not terrible, but I’d watch the original over it if I had to pick one.

    Also, it’s an obvious statement, but Hurricane Neddy is great.

  2. I’ve seen KMFDM in concert seven times, and in three different states, Have pics with and autographs of every (current) member. Just saw my first Pig concert a little while back (Raymond Watts, En Esch, Gunter Schultz) – it was in a tiny club and fantastic.

  3. I’ll always think of Teddy Ruxpin as a hunk of junk. Many times my parents regaled me of the time they tried to get me one for Christmas (if it was ’86 then I was 2). They got one and it didn’t work. They tried exchanging it FOUR times, each time taking it back because it didn’t work. It’s possible they couldn’t properly work a Teddy Ruxpin, but it doesn’t seem like rocket science. But whatever the case, they just couldn’t make Teddy Ruxpin happen. Somehow, I survived.

  4. oh god ROUNDHOUSE. i remember loving Clarissa, Ren & Stimpy, etc……and HATING that earnest musical dreck Roundhouse. it seemed so so corny *as a ten year old*
    love the Polaris song, I had that cassingle!!

  5. Children of Men is such a fantastic and increasingly relevant movie. And it’s especially appropriate it came out on Christmas, because it’s probably the most brutal, realistic take on the Nativity Story (way more so than the actual Nativity Story movie that came out earlier that year, despite the actor playing Mary ACTUALLY becoming pregnant during filming). Think about it: it’s about a world that is falling apart and a refugee gives birth to a miraculous baby that represents the savior of all mankind. And everyone is suddenly interested in this baby for their own political purposes. The birth scene in particular is a far more realistic crèche than any other you’d see. When Joseph and Mary are turned away from every inn and they have to settle in a manger, it’s not a beautiful, clean picture perfect pastoral scene. Real barns are full of animal shit and smell terrible, and the place the baby is born in Children of Men is just like that: a dirty, collapsing tenement building.

  6. Given the Christmas season, let me share what great gifts I raked in during these years:
    1986: I was still waiting to be conceived 6 years later, but my mom assured me that she would have bought me a GI Joe.
    1996: I got plenty of Hot Wheels, Star Wars toys, Batman toys, Power Ranger toys, and Thomas the Tank Engine toys. It was my last year as an only child, so I had to go out with a bang.
    2006: I got Gears of War, a crappy Samsung MP3 player, and a Guns N’ Roses CD.

    Speaking of GNR, you guys brushed over “Live ?!*@ Like a Suicide” last week in 1986. That CD was actually their debut EP, making it a pretty big deal in hindsight. They wouldn’t release Appetite for Destruction and really hit it big until the next year.

    Cheers on a great first year for T3! I can’t wait to hear about ’87, ’97, and the undoubtedly-great ’07.

  7. Love the podcast! A great first year and a great show (as always)!

    To give a little more context to the Obama-Keyes Illinois US Senate race in 2004, Keyes was not the original opponent. Jack Ryan (Jeri Ryan’s ex-husband) actually won the GOP primary, but decided to drop out of the race three months later when sealed custody records were released that showed Jeri Ryan complained about him taking her to sex clubs. After that, the GOP had to scramble to find a candidate to go against State Senator Obama.

  8. Hey Laser Time Crew,
    I know I’m a bit late on this but I just got to this episode but had some background on the reason why Alan Keyes was even running against Obama for Illinois US Senate seat. The quick version is that in that race there was a republican named Jack Ryan that had actually won the party’s nomination but he ended up being involved in a sex scandal. The fight was over whether is divorce papers should remain sealed because of what was on them. What ended up being on them was that he was into BDSM and his wife was not. Obviously being open about being into BDSM wasn’t going to fly for a Midwest Republican so he dropped out. What may interest the Laser Time pals is that Jack Ryan’s wife was Jeri Ryan the Star Trek actress. Growing up in Illinois and just starting to get into politics and what not, it was a fascinating story to follow.

  9. I’ve just discovered your podcast and going back to hear them all and this episode had me favorite line so far. When you yelled at Chris that he “talked over the joke!!” I laughed so hard I almost shit my pants……hehe almost?! (Dirty Work) thank you from a fellow nerd.

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