Reminiscing on: TOTP 1983 xxx


It’s another Friday night and I’m happily snuggled on the sofa under a throw and hot water bottle watching tv – well it’s bloody freezing out there and I’m knackered after my first post festive break week back at work.  In fact I’m not going to be apologetic about it – I love spending my Friday nights curled up with a glass of something in front of the box.

It’s currently 10:11pm and there’s a 1983 TOTP double bill on some anonymous SKY channel- ah the nostalgia!  All those well loved bands in their kitsch, flamboyant glory.  Thank God I grew up in those colourful, camp, androgynous times.

  • Culture Club – Karma Chameleon – I really hated that tune.  Beautiful Boy George really did have the X Factor.  How could he have been so subversive for the times and yet so nonthreatening and cute.  And who were the rest of his band?  I probably wouldn’t recognise them if they walked past me in the street!
  • Wham!  Bad Boys – so camp!  It’s excruciating to watch Andrew Ridgely attempt the choreographed dance moves.   Mortifying and yet hilarious.  I bet he must want to shrivel up when he sees that. Ha ha ha.

Each song is so different – take note 2017.  Men in the crowd with string vests, bad taste shades, makeup, weird and wonderful clothes.  Love it!

There seems to be a proliferation of shots of bra-less bouncing boobs alongside under-skirt camera close ups of gyrating hips.  A woman in barely there tin foil dress with substantially more than a side boob hanging out.  She looks like an auld stripper in her barely there outfit! I don’t remember any of that at the time!

  • UB40 – Red, red wine.  Old favourite – my parents loved it.  Ali Campbell with strangely bouffant hair.  I’m sitting here wondering now I didn’t realise how how handsome his older brother (Robin) was at the time.
  • Howard Jones – New Song.  I always had a soft spot for him; thinning hair bleached and spiked up to within an inch of it’s life.  A skinny but strangely handsome man with small eyes and a lovely smile. Couldn’t understand a word he sang, but I realised I hadn’t really noticed at the time, being distracted as I was by the irritating painted mime artist cavorting around the stage.
  • Elton John – Yawn.  Until I realise he’s singing ‘I guess thats why they call it the blues’ – always love this song.  Enjoyed a lot of the old Elton tunes, but I can’t look at him without seeing a koala bear and he really looks like one in this video.

All the artists are miming quite badly.  obviously this was a time when you weren’t slated for not singing live.  Back in the day, I actually preferred to hear the song sound like the 45 I had saved up to purchased from Woolworths!

  • Malcolm McClaren – Double Dutch.  4 girls dressed in white shorts and yellow tee shirts showing us how to do the Double Dutch with marked skill; switch to a couple of well muscled, shirtless black guys skipping in tight jeans and football shorts!    So random and unpolished.  Love it!  The girls are still showing us their rope skills whilst the guys sweating and puffing have given up.
  • Police – Every Breath you take.  Are you kidding me this was 1983?  Sting with his pouty and cheek blowing singing style.  He looks tall and sultry whereas the guitarist looks like an old geezer with bleached hair.  I can’t even remember his name.  How can I remember the drummer is called Steward Copeland and can’t remember the old geezers name – think I always thought of him as ‘the old bloke’ and he was probably only 30!  The factoid says that Sting makes £2k a day from royalties of this song, mainly due to the Puff Daddy remix.  Jammy beggar.

Yes! This is such a treat.

  • The Beat – Can’t get used to losing you.  Sweaty lead singer Dave Wakeling and Ranking Rodger with his chiseled cheekbones.  I don’t remember him looking so camp either.
  • Duran Duran – Please, please tell me now.  I used to LOVE DD – particularly Nick Rhodes and Simon, who somehow manages to look 7ft tall on the screen.  He has the most gorgeous mouth.  The nights I spent dreaming of kissing it (stop now………).
  • Paul Young – Love of the Common People.  Leather trousers.  Tucked in.  Sweater. White plimsolls   🙁
  • Mike Oldfield – Moonlight Shadow.  Woman old enough to know better wearing a shocker of an outfit, topped off with a straw boater.  Don’t know who she is – don’t care.  Never seen her before and never seen her since.


  • Kajagoogoo – Too Shy.  I remember hearing what this was about in the school playground and being mortified by it’s hidden meaning.  Loved Nick Beggs and his weird haircut, but was strangely aroused by Limahl and his  Monocrome, spikey hair – despite looking only about 4 foot tall.  Dressed yellow jeans and yellow vest top but he wears it well.  Too shy too shy, hush hush I do I…..
  • Bananarama – Cruel Summer.  I loved Siobahan Fahey who was by far the most enigmatic and edgy out of the 3.  I notice the other 2 tend to sing to each other and leave her out.  Always thought the middle one was a bit plain and skanky whilst the other one (who married Andrew Ridgely – hilarious) was just boring.
  • Bonnie Tyler – Total Eclipse of the Heart.  Looks about 100 but has really good legs. Sounds like she’s smoked 20 before coming on to mime the track.  Essential wind machine to blow fag ends off the stage.

                                                                                            I love the ’80’s  

2 Replies to “Reminiscing on: TOTP 1983 xxx”

  1. Jumpers tucked into trousers! Oh god I remember that. Woul dhave to buy even bigger size trousers to do that now. (I secretly loved Howard Jones but he was really uncool I think at the time)

    1. It’s funny how old I thought they were at the time and they were only a few years older than me! Crazy!

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