Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I was young (I needed the money...)

One of my nieces is watching that painful-yet-laughable cartoon "Dungeon And Dragons". You remember - the 1980's cartoon featuring annoying high school kids sucked into a fantasy vortex (naturally). Okay, you probably don't remember, but it was not good. The show lasted one season, if that. I LOVED it as a kid, but I knew it was hopelessly bad. Now, my niece loves it. I don't have the heart to tell her that it. is. a. bad. show. I can't do that to her.

I recently watched a couple of my favorite childhood movies only to discover how really bad they are, and I am just not the same. It is like learning that the Easter Bunny isn't real again. Actually, one of the movies is just bad, but the other is so bad that it is actually kind of entertaining, which salvages my childhood memory a little.

The first movie that is just plain bad is "Fame". The scene I remember loving is the one where Debbie Allen stomps her dancing-stick-thing on the dance floor and says something like, "...and right here is where you'll pain and sweat."  Well guess what?  That's not in the movie!  Uh-uh - that line is from the TV show (which I also loved, by the way). After watching "Fame", I realized that this movie was just a launching pad for the TV show. There is no other excuse for all of the dangling story lines and unfinished business. The teenage actress who does a topless shoot? Seemingly unfazed afterwards. The teenage prodigal pianist? Never shares his incredible music. The awkward girl? Experiments with drugs but... nothing. Every single storyline goes nowhere! UGH! It is BAD.

The second movie that is bad but entertaining in a hilarious way is "Xanadu". Wow, this is wildly horrible! The songs are hit and miss, the acting is a little painful to watch, but it has great sequences involving Gene Miller (poor guy) and Olivia-Newton John doing her singing thing. Throw in some roller skates and romantic chemistry, and you have yourself an entertaining movie.

I really don't think I should have rewatched these movies. When I saw that "Fame" or "Xanadu" were on the TV Guide List, I would get all giddy and remember how fond I was of them.  Now, that memory is tainted, and a piece of my childhood innocence is lost... or maybe I have finally developed some good taste.

In any case, I am not rewatching the TV show "Fame".

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