Eighties Hairstyles

TrollDollEvolution is arguably the most advanced theory in modern science. Big life forms evolved from lowly singular cell animals into the brontosaurus and Tyrannosaurus Rex. But evolution didn’t just stop doing big with the advent of man. It went on to evolve Big Hair in the 80s.

If you thought that fries were the only thing you could super-size then think again. In the 80s the skinheads’ preference for no hair gave way to Big Hair. The fashion for Big hair took off like a ten bob rocket in the 80s when hairstyle choice was the same as lifestyle choice.

Big Hair came in several flavours. You had, for instance, several variations on the Mullet. The Mullet and its close relative, the permed Mullet – favourite of prima donna super-league football players was itself a development of the emerging fashion for men’s perms.

For a while, a fad arose for adding the accessory of a ‘tash to the Mullet to create a new ‘tash-Mullet combo. Growing a moustache to compliment a Mullet was considered to be a babe magnet – though mostly in the minds of those who wore them. They were virtually a badge of success in some places. If you had a Mullet then you’d arrived – “I see Arthur’s got himself a mullet, Doris. And a ‘tash. He hasn’t half gone up in the world, eh?”

mulletsIf the Mullet wasn’t your thing, or just wasn’t outlandish enough for your liking – if you wanted to make a bolder fashion statement, then you really had take the New Romantic way. If Big Hair had been an Olympic sport then New Romantics, with their fluffy clothes and matching barnets would have taken gold every time.

Upkeep was expensive though. Hair lacquer bills were second only to mortgage payments in the household budgets of serious New Romantics with serious hairstyles. Worse yet – the only way you could preserve a style overnight was to sleep standing up in the hallway.

For style junkies, emulating the superstars of the American super-soaps like Dallas or Dynasty was a no-brainer if you wanted Big Hair. The ludicrous hairstyles of the hammy actresses who featured in these shows spread like Dutch Elm disease across whole populations as their success flourished.

Then again, if glamour wasn’t your bag at all, you could always fall back on the punk inspired Mohican. Though they were far less fluffy than New Romantic hair styles and far more aggressive, they still qualified as Big Hair. The Mohican was really a combination of Big Hair and no hair. Big spiky hair along the centre of the head and no hair anywhere else. This neither one thing nor the other approach seemed to exactly capture the punk lifestyle.

If none of these hair cuts or their associated lifestyles floated your boat, men were stuck with the short back and sides and women with the standard perm. And they’d just have to suffer the social stigma of their fashion car crash.

Evolution never stops. For now Big Hair has receded. But we should always be on our guard in case it comes back again. We all have a duty of care to avoid psychological damage to the next generation as a result of our generations’ hairstyle choices.


The Goonies (1985)

goonies clipThey don’t make films like this any more: written by Steven Spielberg and directed by Richard Donner; The Goonies is an adventure that appeals to both kids and adults in equal measures. The Goonies are a group of kids who live on the “Goon Docks” in Astoria, Oregon – but not for long. A ruthless businessman is turning the local area into a golf course and the local residents have seemingly no choice but to sell up and leave their beloved area. When the gang find an old treasure map however they decide to go on one last adventure in the hope of finding the riches that could rescue their homes.

I hadn’t seen this film for many, many years and finally watching it on DVD after all this time was pure enjoyment from beginning to end. Films like this, made today rarely work this well, the key elements are a great story by Spielberg, great direction from Donner and some excellent acting from the kids – add these up and you have a superbly enjoyable action adventure movie. As I say the acting on the whole is very good, extremely mature performances are put in Corey Feldman, Jeff Cohen and Sean Astin to name just three and all manage to be realistic and very funny. The action throughout is great, just think of a small scale Indiana Jones and you’ll be somewhere close to what you see here. Set piece after set piece put together by Donner provide fantastic excitement and the excellent special effects stand up even against some of today’s efforts. The comedy is also paramount to the enjoyment, and it’s not childish humour either, Chunk is the obvious laugh throughout but the baddies are also great value played by Robert Davi and Memento’s Joe Pantoliano.

goonies dvd

The enjoyment I got from watching The Goonies was not just nostalgic memories, this film is great entertainment and should be in everyone’s collection.

Movie Quote : “I’m gonna hit you so hard, when you wake up your clothes will be out of style!”

starring : Sean Astin, Josh Brolin, Jeff Cohen, Corey Feldman, Kerri Green, Martha Plimpton, Jonathan Ke Quan, John Matuszak, Robert Davi, Joe Pantoliano

Gremlins (1984)

Steven Spielberg’s’ Amblin Entertainment was responsible for some brilliantly entertaining films during the 1980’s, such as Back to the Future (which has some interesting similarities to this movie, which I will explain in a moment), The Goonies, and of course Gremlins. I think it is safe to say that most people will have seen this movie at least once, but just in case you haven’t, let me explain.


Billy (Zach Galligan) is 18yrs old, a bank clerk during the day, and a budding artist in his spare time. His father is a hapless inventor who brings home an unusual present for Christmas, a magwi. This little creature is cute and cuddly but comes with three rules that cannot be broken: keep it away from bright light, don’t allow it near water, and never, ever feed it after Midnight!

Of course it wouldn’t be much of a movie if these rules were not broken, and so all hell is unleashed as hundreds of little creatures are reproduced when water is spilt on Gizmo the magwi. They turn into monsters after feeding after midnight, and start their oftentimes quite comedic attack on the population. Can Billy and Gizmo save the day?

Not for the very young but I think one of the more enjoyable christmas movies shown each year.

Oh and what does this movie have in common with Back to the Future apart from Steven Speilberg? Have a close look at the Town setting; does it look a little like Hill Valley of 1985 to you?