Archive for November, 2010

11 Kool-Aid products you probably didn’t know existed

Posted in Atari, comic books, ice cream, Kool Aid, pop culture, video games with tags , , , , on November 23, 2010 by Paxton

Kool-Aid Man animated gif

Everyone knows the famous Kool-Aid drink packets. Purplesaurus Rex, Cherry, Berry Blue, etc, etc. But drink packets aren’t the only thing Kool-Aid made. There is a plethora of items made under the Kool-Aid banner trying to capitalize on the popularity of one Mr Man (Kool-Aid Man).

Here are 11 items made under the Kool-Aid brand that you may not have known existed.

Adventures of Kool-Aid Man comics Advs of Kool-Aid Man 2
Kool-Aid Man comic books – Kool-Aid and Marvel Comics collaborated on issues #1, #2 and #3 of The Adventures of Kool-Aid Man comic book.  Archie Comics then published issues #4 and #5.  Several of these issues were given out free in a mail away premium, and several issues were also available in stores.  You might think it would be difficult to come up with engaging stories involving a talking pitcher of Kool-Aid quenching the thirsts of little children, and you would be mostly right.  However, the stories were zany and mostly entertaining, considering the entire comic is an advertisement for drink mix.

Kool-Aid Man video game ad Kool-Aid Man Intellivision box
Kool-Aid Man video game – Yes, there was a video game based on Kool-Aid Man.  It was released for the Atari 2600, Intellivision and Sears video game systems.  The ad and box above are for the Intellivision version.  Here is the box for the Atari 2600 version.  If you really want to understand the meaning of the word tedious, then download a ROM of this game and play it.

Kool-Aid bottles ad Kool-Aid bottle
Kool-Aid bottled drinks – For a while back in the 50s and 60s, Kool-Aid offered their flavors pre-mixed in glass bottles.  I’m not sure if they were carbonated or not, but I don’t believe so.

Kool-Aid Pumps
Kool-Aid Kool Pumps – This was a fast food promotion with Burger King.  The “push-up” style sherbert bars were flavored with the elusive Sharkleberry Fin.  Matt talked about them on X-Entertainment a while back.

Kool Aid Kid's Trivia Game
Kool-Aid Kid’s Trivia Game – From 1985. This actually existed.  It played like Trivial Pursuit, but I would hope the questions dealt with more than just Kool-Aid.  How many questions can there be about Kool-Aid?

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Microsoft Windows 1.0 was released 25 years ago this week

Posted in 80s, computers, Microsoft, pop culture, technology, Windows with tags , , , , , on November 19, 2010 by Paxton

Orig MicroSoft logo

The original version of Microsoft Windows (v1.0) was released around 25 years ago this week. I say about 25 years ago because It’s really tough to pin down the actual release date due to differing information depending on where you look. If you look at official Microsoft history, they mention in one paragraph that Windows 1.0 was released in 1983, but then in the next paragraph they say Windows 1.0 was released in 1985.  Other places alternately list 1983 or 1985.  It’s possible that the first few releases of 1.0 (ie, 1.0, 1.01, 1.02) were not official and only demo releases.  Most places I check have the release date for Windows 1.0 to be Nov 20, 1985.  So I’m going with that.

Here’s the box for that first release of Windows.

Microsoft Windows 1.0 box

Windows 1.0 required you to use 10 installation disks. And they were floppies!!

Windows 1.0 disks(Via Digibarn Computer Museum)

The original Windows used a radical new GUI interface to handle typical computer tasks like starting programs and file management. This freed the user from having to type commands at a DOS prompt. Delivered applications for this release included a File Manager, calendar, clock, notepad and calculator.

Windows 1.0 screenshot

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7 Kids’ cartoons based on R-rated movies

Posted in 80s, cartoons, movies, pop culture, TV shows with tags , , , on November 8, 2010 by Paxton

They will make cartoons based on anything at this point.  Movies, TV shows, video games, dolls, stickers, etc, etc.  The list goes on and on.  If the suits think they can make money off it, they’ll do it.

There have been countless cartoons based on movies.  Usually it’s a dumbed down kid friendly version of the movie with an added talking animal sidekick or something ridiculous like that.  But it’s something special when an adult oriented, R rated movie is translated into a kid friendly cartoon.  It’s literally amazing that this happens.  Now, there have been several R rated movies turned into cartoons that are not actually meant for kids.  I’m talking about Kevin Smith’s Clerks the Animated Series and Ice Cube’s Friday the Animated Series (seriously, check You Tube if you don’t believe me) when I say that.  They were both created for adult fans of the movie an not meant for children, which is why I’m not including them on this list.  Here, you’ll only see Saturday morning, kid-friendly cartoons in this list.  And what a list it is.

Let’s get started…

Rambo: The Force of Freedom (1986) – Released the year after First Blood Part II.  I can see where you’d want a psychologically damaged one-man killing machine as a  role model for children on Saturday mornings.  It just fits.  It’s what the corporate suits call “synergy”.  The cartoon had a nice cast of voice talent though.  Neil Ross (Transformers, GI Joe, Galaxy High) was Rambo.  James Avery (Capt Sisko from ST: Deep Space Nine) was Turbo.  Colonel Trautman was voiced by Allen Oppenheimer from He-Man, Transformers and GI Joe fame and one of the villains, Sgt Havok, was voiced by the great Peter Cullen (Optimus Prime).

Toxic Crusaders (1991) – Based on Troma’s surprise B horror sensation, The Toxic Avenger.  The movie featured wall-to-wall language, nudity and extremely graphic scenes of violence and sex.  The movie actually showed a dude, while robbing a fast food joint, try to rape a blind girl.  Also Toxie kills someone by crushing their head in a weight machine at the gym.  And if I remember correctly, he either punches completely through someone’s face or takes their head off with a punch.  I totally get why one would watch that movie and think, “Kids’ll love this!”

Robocop (1988) – Based on the Paul Verhoeven classic.  I actually see this as a cool cartoon, but damn this movie was violent.  Copious amounts of nudity and drug use also earned every ounce of the R it was rated.  The cartoon had several nods to the movie including an appearance by Kurtwood Smith’s Clarence Boddicker, despite the fact that character died in the movie.

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Krush Groove turned 25 years old + Time Travel turns 55 years old

Posted in movies, music, rap with tags , , , , on November 5, 2010 by Paxton

Well, I was going to take this week off, but, now, I can’t. I just remembered two things I really want to talk about.

The first being that today is the 55th anniversary of Doc Brown slipping on the edge of his toilet and inventing time travel (Nov 5, 1955).

Doc Brown(Via Gizmodo)

So let’s all remember one of the greatest American inventors of all time and his Flux Capacitor and his incredible time traveling Delorean.

The other thing I want to talk about?  In the madness of AWESOME-tober-fest, there is one thing I didn’t get to mention while I was going on and on and on about werewolves and monsters.  The movie Krush Groove turned 25 years old on Oct 25 (it was released in 1985).

Krush Groove poster

I don’t know about you guys, but I LOVED this movie.  I saw it in the theater, I recorded it off HBO, I now have watched it twice since it popped up on Netflix Instant Streaming.  It is still a good movie.  It helps that I was introduced into rap music by both Run-DMC and The Fat Boys, who appear prominently in this movie.  It’s the fictionalized retelling of the rise of Def Jam records, its owner Russell Simmons, its most popular acts Kurtis Blow and Run-DMC and the appearance of newcomers The Fat Boys.  The movie is funny, the music is great and I had a lot of fun watching it again recently.

Just as awesome as the movie is the kickass soundtrack.  Featuring songs by Rap/R&B heavyweights Run-DMC, Kurtis Blow, Full Force and The Fat Boys.  You also get songs from Sheila E and the then unknown Beastie Boys and LL Cool J (who both cameo in the movie).  I listened the s**t out of this tape back in the 80s.  You can download the entire soundtrack and see for yourself how badass it is here.  Check out the awesome video for the title single on the album here.

Krush Groove soundtrack 1 Krush Groove soundtrack 2

I think the movie is more famous as a joke than anything else. Kevin Smith even wrote a quick joke line about it in his movie Dogma. It’s between Matt Damon and Ben Affleck while they are on the bus talking about being able to tell right from wrong.  During the discussion Affleck mentions a bet they have about which would be the bigger movie; ET or Krush Groove. Matt Damon says time will tell on that one.

I’ll agree, the movie is cheesy, and you really have to be interested in the music and subject matter to really enjoy it. It works on the same level as Breakin’ or Beat Street (but Krush Groove is a much better written movie).  One of my favorite scenes in the movie, and I mentioned this in my unofficial movie trilogies article back in July, is the quick cameo by LL Cool J. At the time, LL was not world famous. This was his big break. The scene involves auditions for Def Jam artists and they say the interviews are over, but LL Cool J ain’t havin’ none of that. He busts in, yells, “BOX!” at his friend who turns on the “box”, and Cool J begins spouting some sick ass lyrics to a booming beat. As an introduction to movie audiences, this can’t be beat and it’s hard to really describe the shock of seeing this scene when LL Cool J was still a n00b. Here’s the scene:

I love that scene and that song.  Now, to be fair, there is one thing in the movie I hate.  It brings the movie to a screeching halt.  It’s Sheila E.  Don’t get me wrong, I like Sheila E’s music and her contribution to the soundtrack album is actually pretty good (Holly Rock).  However, her movie scenes are terrible.  She’s inserted as somewhat of a love interest in a love triangle with brothers Run and Russell (played by a young Blair Underwood).  I. HATE. HER. IN. THIS. MOVIE.  Whenever she’s not on-screen, though, I love it.

If you’ve never seen this movie, I say check it out.  It’s a fun movie with good music.  Not bad considering it’s a quarter of a century old now.