Pretty in Pink

I watched Pretty In Pink yesterday. Yup – Andie and Duckie. 1986. How I wish I could go back to that era – my favorite time. I was flipping through channels and there it was in all it’s 1980s glory.

Watching it was like a time capsule – the sayings, the places, the fashions. I don’t think I saw the movie since the ’80s, so it was nice to see.

All of those John Hughes movies ARE the 1980s. I think the Simple Minds song, “Don’t You Forget About Me” from The Breakfast Club, is one of the THE ’80s songs. It always brings me back there when I hear it. Always.

The Brat Pack, Madonna, Bruce Springsteen, Culture Club, George Michael, Prince, Guns ‘n Roses, Bon Jovi, Van Halen, Duran Duran, Tina Turner, Cyndi Lauper, The Police, Def Leppard, Metallica, Talking Heads, REM, etc. So great.

Cheers, Alf, The Golden Girls, Night Court, Hill Street Blues, Miami Vice, Moonlighting, Remington Steel, thirtysomething, Dynasty, Unsolved Mysteries, Dallas, etc. Such great tv, too. And movies – Ferris Bueller, The Outsiders, Moonstruck, Field of Dreams, Heathers, Top Gun, Weekend at Bernie’s, St. Elmo’s Fire, and of course all the John Hughes movies.

I sometimes think that when we die, we can then travel through time. Like if we want to visit a time and place, we can go there. I would visit the 1980s, I would start on January 1, 1980 and live it through to December 31, 1989 and do it all over again.



Too enveloped in your work to know there is a quarantine going on?

quarantine-color-print2Today’s comic, which you can see in larger format at TomFalco.com relates to how I feel. I work from home, so this shelter-in-place thing has not been too difficult since I’m doing what I usually do – stay at home and work – my regular work/job is not happening due to the shut down, but I have been drawing. And I’ll bet this is the same for so many people who work in a studio or even are addicted to things like games.

I have a cousin who is a gamer and has many followers and friends on YouTube, I don’t know his site or I would post it here, I’m not sure why I don’t know his site name, but every time I am was going to ask him, he was busy gaming and a lot of the time he was live online and I didn’t want to interrupt. But anyway, he could be gaming for hours and not really notice being quarantined. He makes a living at it. Yes, he makes money from playing games online!

A cartoonist, an artist, a cook, an architect, a writer, a designer, etc. Whomever is envelopes in their work and not really noticing the outside world is the guy in this cartoon today.

As for my gamer cousin, his brother is a performer in New York.

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My cousin TJ Fox who is a musician, has been doing bi-monthly concerts from Long Island on Facebook. This Saturday, May 9, will be the third Saturday night he’s doing “Live from the Living Room.” It’s free at his Facebook page here: facebook.com/tjfoxmusic it starts at 8 pm (eastern time) and usually goes for two hours. You can request songs, he plays the guitar and sings.

If you go to the site now, you can see past concerts.

It’s become a thing with me now. I really look forward to it. I’m a create of habit, do something twice and it’s a thing from now on. What I enjoy aside from his talent is we all chat along as we listen and it’s broadcast from their Hamptons house which I sort of get homesick for since I spend some time there each summer. I’m hoping to be there this summer.

TJ is quite big up north. So many times I’m walking around NYC and I see his name on a sandwich board or marquee – “TJ Fox here tonight!” He performs in NYC and Long Island mostly. He’s also written and performs his own music as well as so many things you already know.

Hollywood, the beginning

I’ve been watching this 13 part documentary about the film industry just called, “Hollywood,” it’s on YouTube. If you’re bored these days, this is something you might like. I’m still trying to catch up with Shameless and I love watching Breaking Bad, which I never get tired of, but this is something you don’t have to really think about and it’s enjoyable.

It’s great if this subject interests you, it starts from silent films and explains how it all begin in Ft. Lee, New Jersey and then ended up in Hollywood, CA. Each episode is 50 minutes or so and it’s mostly scenes from the actual movies they are talking about with commentary and interviews from people such as DW Griffith, Louise Brooks, Hal Roach and so many old stars and directors from the time. Since the documentary was filmed in 1980, many of these people were still around to discuss the time and the films and you see the movie footage of what they are discussing.

It’s interesting how actress Lillian Gish and writer Adela Rogers St. Johns, who thinks she was part of it all, feel that silent films were the be all and end all and when sound started, it was the beginning of the end of the art. Seriously.

Here is the first episode and from here you can go through the rest of them.

I’ve been watching it on tv where I have the YouTube app, so it’s more enjoyable on the large screen.

Caronavirus is our Jaws

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Mayor Vaughn wants the beaches open.

I was watching Jaws the other day. I don’t know if it’s my favorite movie, but I must have seen it 100 times. Every time I come across it on tv, I stop what I’m doing and I watch.

I happened to turn it on in the exact scene that reminded me of Florida these days. Mayor Larry Vaughn of Amity Island in Jaws wants the beaches open for July 4th through the whole summer, while the police want the beaches closed to protect people from the shark, the mayor wants the beaches open; sort of like the dolts in Florida these days who feel the beaches should be open, just adding to the spread of caronavirus.

No sheltering in place for these idiots.

The reason I like Jaws is not about the shark, the part I like is the little beach town in New England and that point in time, the mid 1970s. I love that. It reminds me so much of the Hamptons where I spend part of the summer with my cousins and I am hoping to be able to be there this summer, but if these idiots in parts of Florida are still spreading the virus by opening beaches and other businesses, who knows what summer will bring.

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Lots of super heroes at NY Comic Con

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I went back to NY Comic Con on Sunday, it was a bit gloomy on opening day, Thursday, I guess due to the rainy weather in NY, but on Sunday, it was really fun. There were thousands upon thousands of people there.

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And each year, the costumes and the co-play gets better and better. Spider-man seems to be the most popular and they all seem to congregate. This is only a few who were photographed together, before I took this photo, there were about a dozen or so.

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I try to capture the crowds, I posted videos on social media and it doesn’t do it justice, there are just so many people – all happy, all patient, you have to be in this crowd.

So another year has come to an end. Keep the NY Comic Con website handy and sign up for updates so you can get in on next year’s event: newyorkcomiccon.com. It comes up pretty fast.

Getting close to the action

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Miami Vice cast

I was talking about “old” Miami Beach, which to me was the 1980s. This was before all the glitz and glamour and before they called it “South Beach.” It was just Miami Beach.

We used to watch them film Miami Vice often. And we really got up close. Years later I would watch them film Burn Notice around town, but we couldn’t get as close, but I managed at times, I would take pictures and write about them here, and here and here). And this is a funny story called, The Accidental Extras, how we were mistaken for extras while they were filming.

I remember one time in the ’80s we were watching Miami Vice film and there was a car chase on Ocean Drive and we were standing right there on the sidewalk watching. Cars were speeding and spinning mere feet from us and there we were, watching the action.

Once I left the beach, the actual beach with the sand where I was laying out, and I got in my car and as I drove down Collins Avenue, I was stopped and asked if I wanted to be in a movie. I said, ok and was told to drive when they said, “action.” I did, but I never made in the movie. You can see the scene they were filming on the opening credits of “The Making of Mr. Right,” the 1987 film with John Malkovich and Ann Magnuson.  It’s where Ann is driving down Collins as the film titles roll at the beginning. You can see a lot of the Miami Beach I hung around in at that time, raw and not made into the pink and purple and neon place it is now.

Back to Miami Vice. Once my friend Jack and I were watching them film at the Hare Krishna hotel. Were were right up close and personal again. As we watched, my friend said, “Isn’t that Karen Black?” She was a big actress at the time. I asked, “Where?” And he says, “You’re leaning on her chair!” And so I was. She was sitting in a director’s style chair and I was leaning on the back of it, while she was sitting watching the scene. You could literally get up that close in those days.

I always remember in that episode, “Victim’s of Circumstance,” how they screwed the Hare Krishnas out of their moment on film. In the last scene, Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas are walking from the hotel, down a walkway/alley type thing and behind a wall were the Krishnas. As the two men reached that spot, the Krishnas came out from behind the wall and did their thing with drums and tambourines, you know how they do. Well, that was the final scene in the episode and on tv, as the two guys walked, the credits rolled. As they reached the wall, the scene froze, it just froze and the credits rolled over that. So the Krishnas were never seen on the show.

Years later, the Krishnas moved from that hotel to a church in my neighborhood and I got to know them on a first name basis.

Is this the first animated cartoon?

This is the first animated cartoon, released in July 1913, heck, it’s one of the first movies period. No, it’s not “Steamboat Willy.” That was 1928. And Gertie the Dinosaur was done in 1914.

It’s called ” The Artist’s Dream; The Dachshund and the Sausage.” It shows a live cartoonist, J.R. Bray, drawing the cartoon and then shows the animation.

Where do you go to my lovely

I saw two great movies yesterday – Mama Mia, which I saw so many times on tv and I think two or three times in the theater when it came out in 2008. And the Absolutely Fabulous movie. I had never seen that before. I enjoyed that.

At the very end of AbFab, during the credits, they play this song that I loved, I looked it up. It’s called, “Where Do You Go To My Lovely,” it’s by Peter Sarstedt.


The lyrics are so great. It was released in 1969 and hit number one in the UK, where it stayed for four weeks. It only hit number 61 in the US, which is surprising.

It’s about a girl named Marie Claire who grew up in poverty in Naples, Italy and then became the height of jet set society, speaking many languages, jetting around the world, being the “it” girl. People thought it was about Sofia Loren because she grew up in poverty in Italy and became a famous jet setter, but Sarstedt claimed he had no one in mind when he wrote the song. Year’s later he claimed it was about his wife.

Mama Mia always makes me feel sort of how the Sarstedt song does – melancholy. Not because of the story, but because of the music. The Abba songs being back so many wonderful memories, starting, I think when I was in junior high school. When I hear the song “Waterloo,” I can picture myself in my mother’s car, with the song playing on the radio, like it was yesterday. That song was released in 1974, so it was 1974 I am remembering.

Other songs from later years remind me of being out in the clubs, when I was young and it was my first experience going out, so the memories are special for that reason. So as I listen to the songs in Mama Mia, I can almost remember where I was during certain periods of my younger life, it’s like going back in time. It’s exactly in my head like one of the Abba songs in the movie, Slipping through my fingers, which says, “Sometimes I wish that I could freeze the picture, And save it from the funny tricks of time.” When I hear the music in the movie, I can almost see a photograph in my mind of that time period. Weird.