Sunday, 23 February 2020

2000 AD - January 1982.

How safe do you feel online?

If you were living in December 1981, you probably felt extremely safe - because the computer virus hadn't yet been invented.

Sadly, a month later and you were already in deadly peril.

That's because January 1982 was the month in which the very first computer virus, the Elk Cloner, created by 15-year old Rich Skrenta, was discovered after it had started infecting Apple II computers, via floppy disk.

Then again, you probably still felt pretty safe online because online wasn't really a thing back then.

But that wasn't the only significant computer news that month. Mere days earlier, the Commodore 64 home computer had been launched in Las Vegas and quickly went on to become the World's best-selling personal computer.

As far as I remember, if you wanted to load a program on the Commodore 64, you had to do it via a cassette tape.

Cassettes back then were, of course, all the rage and that realisation can only lead us to one place.

The Pop charts.

The month began with the Human League at Number One on the British Hit Parade with their massive smash Don't You Want Me? That was, though, soon deposed by Bucks Fizz's The Land of Make Believe which, in turn, lost its top slot to Oh Julie by Shakin' Stevens before The Model by Kraftwerk seized the summit right at the end of the month. Five Number Ones in a month? What a strangely turbulent period it was.

And, if I'm honest, I have a soft spot for all those songs.

Over on the UK album chart, things were somewhat calmer, with the month kicking off with the Human League's Dare at Number One before that was dethroned by Barbra Streisand's Love Songs.

"But what of the Galaxy's Greatest Comic, in that period?" I hear you ask?

You'll be excited to know it was still giving us The Ace Trucking Co, Nemesis the Warlock, Tharg's Future Shocks, The Mean Arena and Rogue Trooper.

Prog 245 saw the launch of Judge Dredd's Apocalypse War and, also, what appear to have been a pair of one-off strips called Abelard Snazz and Superbean. Needless to say, I have no memory of either of these.

I also have no recollection of Tharg's 1982 calendar, which was given away in Progs 245-246. I have no doubt it was highly useful, though.
2000 AD prog 245

2000 AD prog 246

2000 AD prog 247

2000 AD prog 248

2000 AD prog 249, Rogue Trooper

Possible further reading:


Anonymous said...

Can't say I have a soft spot for anything by Shakin' Stevens Steve, but Kraftwerk were great, its impossible to dislike Don't You Want Me?, and even that Bucks Fizz record has a certain kitsch appeal (if only because its amusing to try and hear the similarities with the lyricist's other well-known evergreen pop co-write, King Crimson's Twenty First Century Schizoid Man).

Funny you have no memory of Abelard Snazz, as you mentioned the series in this feature only last month. I worry about your short-term recall...


Steve W. said...

Sean, all I can do is blame Abelard Snazz for not lodging in my mind.

Anonymous said...

In the court of the Crimson King.
Did you fellas know that Steven King was inspired by that song to create the primary villain in the Dark Tower saga? And do you care in the least bit? Probably not. But it was a creepy song and a creepy (and very uneven) series of novels. Sometimes it was fantastic.
The Crimson King himself only shows up at the end of the final book, and he's rater like Santa Claus crossed with Merlin and strung out on meth or PCP. And he's throwing grenades.
That song gives me the willies. Brrr.


Steve W. said...

I must confess I didn't know that, MP.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if Steven King was inspired by Land of Make Believe too.


dangermash said...

Back on Thursday, Charlie suggested Steve start a discussion on "Are there any damsels for the world of rock that float your boat?"

And I had a thought when I was out in the car this afternoon. I'll share this now because if I wait for Steve to ask the question I'll have forgotten by then.

I have to nominate The Duchess from Space Elevator. Never heard of her? Watch and enjoy this Thin Lizzy cover...

Killdumpster said...

Damsels for the Rock that float my boat are:

Joan Jett.

Cherie Currie, from the Runaways. That was also Joan Jett's Band.

Ann Wilson from Heart, in the late 70's when she was thin.

Wendy O. Williams, of the Plazmatics. RIP.

Texacala Jones of Tex & The Horseheads.
Excellent southern punk-rock. Too bad they signed to a failed label. I still own 1 LP.

Siouxsie Sue, from Siouxsie the Banshees.

PJ Harvey. Not a pretty girl, but has relentlessness & puts on a good show.

Debbie Harry. Fell in love with her when Blondie appeared on SNL.

Beth Gibbons from Portishead. So much soul for a white British woman.

Anonymous said...

In the immortal words of actor Christopher Walken, "Okeydokey Artichoke."

Steve, I am a font of pointless information.

K.D., good choices all, but I would add Stevie Nicks. I saw her from the front row of a relatively small Fleetwood Mac concert in the late eighties. I'm talkin' maybe fifteen feet, man. I walked around on a cloud for weeks after that.

I agree, Ann Wilson was a goddess back then.

I think the debut of Debbie Harry at the end of the '70's coincided with the first stages of puberty for me. Maybe she jump-started it. All I know is I saw her on T.V. and my voice started to crack.


Killdumpster said...


Outside of Ann Wilson, there where not too many 70's rock females that turned me on.

Overall, female rockers need to have the dynamics, attitude, artistry, and innovation for my taste. That always precludes appearance, but appearance is a plus.

Stevie is a beautiful woman, but Fleetwood Mac was too mainstream for me. I liked few songs, but they were way overplayed.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

I was thinking Scotland's own Sheena Easton.

If you want a laugh watch the link below with Sheena, Eddie Murphy, and Arsenio Hall on Arsenio's show starting at 23:00 minutes in.

Valentine's Day is approaching, Sheena isn't happy b/c she is in-between boy friends... Arsenio tells Eddie "[Eddie] You don't wants a woman after Prince had her."

I was watching this "live" when it ran back in 1989. I fell out of my chair when Arsenio let that one go, lol!

Killdumpster said...

I think if Ann Wilson and Stevie Nicks had a singing contest in that era (reaching higher notes, holding notes, range changes, etc.) Ann would've blew Stevie out of the water.

Ann Wilson was definitely trying to marry Robert Plant with Janis Joplin in her vocal styling.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Charlie tells me he doesn't get what folks see in Kate Bush or Debbie Harry. He admits they have a huge following but has never been drawn to them like, say, Barbie Benton who would sing on Hee Haw.

Killdumpster said...

Charlie, I thought we were talking rockers, not pop-stars.

Killdumpster said...

I always thought Barbie Benton was attractive, but not so much that her non-existant talent needed to be thrust into movies, tv, and music.

Hugh Hefner went into overdrive for her.

Anonymous said...

Damsels? "Not a pretty girl but..."?!?
Come on lads, its the twenty-first century.


Anonymous said...

Charlie, the alternate-universe Charlie who is currently talking to you is Bizarro Charlie, from a square planet where they wear hats on their feet and hamburgers eat people.
I wouldn't put much stock in his views!


Killdumpster said...

Sean, just let us wile into the days when life was uncomplicated, for a few posts. Lol.

This is a site for nostalgia.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Hey Buckwheat!

Spanky has nothing more to do with Spanky and Our Gang than

Archie has to do with Archie Dell and the Bells!!!

C'mon and Tighten Up!!!

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Rockers, Poppers, whatever...

Let's just relax for a few minutes!

OK... Maybe Barbie Benton was overrated.

But all she, Sheena E, Deborah Harry, Benetar, etc. did was sing anyhow, so it all comes down to their relative hotness, no?

Danger Mash! The Duchess and The Space Elevator. To be quite honest, even though I flew choppers for 5 years, the animation of that trolley car riding up that tower half way to outer space, for a new type of airport... sh!t I got a severe case of acrophobia!!! Seriously! I forgot to pay attention to the Duchess.

Well, she looks like a comely lass for sure... I just wish she would have stood up!!!

Killdumpster said...

Man, forgot about Pat Benatar.

That little woman had a huge set of pipes. Her first album was screaming.

Heard she tried her hand at opera, but I'm uncertain.

Seen her performing on a late night talk show, promoting an all-jazz standard album. She did a torchy jazz song, and was pretty good.

Anonymous said...

Hi everybody! I'm Archie Bell of the Drells, and we're gonna play you a new song now, called "Tighten Up!" This is the music we tighten up c'mon everybody, tighten up!
Yeah, c'mon, tighten up everybody! Tighten up drums...Tighten up guitars...

Yeah, Pat Benatar was something else. At least she got my mind off Debbie Harry for a while.


Charlie Horse 47 said...

Hey MP! Hey Buckwheat! Hey Spanky!

Archie Bell and Drells Tighten up at the link below!

(MP - Thanks for writing that, above. I needed a lift this morning, buddy!)

Killdumpster said...

Hey guys, I just remembered I saw Joan Jett's right nipple at a show. That was all that was there, though.

Redartz said...

Ok, jumping in on the topic a bit late, but:
Kate Pierson of the B-52s. What a voice, what hair......she and Deborah Harry were my college crushes.

Killdumpster said...

She was excellent with Iggy Pop on the song "Candy". Wasn't a huge B-52's fan, but I did enjoy them, maybe a little less than Devo.

"Love Shack" is a great stripper song, almost as good as Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus".

Killdumpster said...

I remember folks on the dance floor making their hands like pitchers when the dj would play Rock Lobster. Lol!!!

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Grace Slick... 1960s version

Killdumpster said...

Grace Slick has a good bottom end voice, but her higher notes were always forced.

Yeah, she was kinda cute in the 60's.

Killdumpster said...

Now, think of Grace JONES. Maybe not alot of talent, but she made up for it in personality & attitude.

Her being a sultry beautiful woman probably didn't hurt.

Killdumpster said...

Another "damsel" of Rock that comes to mind is Dale Bozzio, from Missing Persons.

Some of her costumes were very productive.

Her husband, and maybe other members of the band, recorded with Frank Zappa.

Killdumpster said...

Meant to say "provocative". Pints. Cheers, oh my brothers.

Killdumpster said...

Before I sign-off tonight, Steve, I have to ask you a question.

Now that the Marvel UK reprint books are starting to diminish, maybe you'd think about that post about Siouxsie & the Banshees that you semi-promised approx a year ago?

Steve W. said...

I did? I'll see what I can do.

Killdumpster said...

Yeah, oh my brother. It was during either a post about punk, or one that was transformed into one.

You mentioned that you had a fondness for the Banshees, and might make them a topic.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve - Good morning from Chicago - I do recall you writing that. It was not so long ago... past month or two? I was a bit bemused that you suggested it b/c I really did not know there was much too the Banshees that it would make a column.

If you aren't into that and want to do a column on The Leopard on Lime Street... it works for me! You could do a thesis on the Leopard's and Spidey's similarities?

Steve W. said...

I genuinely have no memory of saying anything about Siouxsie and the Banshees lately. Now I'm trying to work out what I'd write about them.

Maybe a Top Ten list of their songs?

Charlie Horse 47 said...

That's what I was wondering when you wrote that! LOL! I thought... well I know the one song, maybe two. Perhaps they were huge in the UK and I just didn't know so they merit an SDC.

Well, did they live in Sheffield? Did Maclom Mcclaren pillage their band? Did they have fee bus transport?

I don't know what else you'd say...

Steve W. said...

Charlie, Siouxsie and the Banshees did have a lot of hits in Britain, and did so up until well into the 1990s, which, for a band who came out of the mid 1970s Punk explosion, was a serious achievement.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Sounds like you have your opening line buddy! Bring on Siouxsie!