Gilligan’s Island Vs. Lost In Space On Family Feud (1983)

Friends, growing up one of the things that my Grandparents quite enjoyed were game shows – their favorites were Press Your Luck, Wheel of Fortune, Let’s Make A Deal, Scrabble, $25,000 Pyramid, and The Price Is Right. As I mentioned on the recent Diary of An Arcade Employee podcast, I felt and still believe that Starcade was in fact the greatest game show ever created – but with it’s arcade game premise I will admit I am rather biased. Family Feud was a game show that we did not generally watch, my Grandmother had a real dislike for Richard Dawson who was then the host of the show, besides the long-running game show, he is probably best remembered for his role in Hogan’s Heroes.

During the Summer months of my youth, when school was out, I was always down at my Grandparents house – generally long into the night until my Father got off work. I became kind of addicted to game shows around my teenage years when spending the mornings and the afternoons with them – so much so that when school would start up again I would tape them – Press Your Luck in particular. There is one time that my Grandparents would tune into Family Feud though – those were the special weeks when it was a celebrity week, like when the cast of The Dukes of Hazzard challenged The Waltons, etc.

There were times though that two iconic television show casts would come together to challenge each other and it was something legendary – all for charitable causes of course. Such is the case with this episode of Family Feud where Alan Hale Jr., Jim Backus, Dawn Wells, Natalie Schafer, and Russell Johnson of Gilligan’s Island went head to head with Guy Williams, June Lockhart, Angela Cartwright, Marta Kristen, and Bob May of Lost in Space.

Video and Article Image Provided by Ty Miller.

Now this episode originally aired on May 13th of 1983 and marked the end of the special week of celebrity contestants – which is why you saw some of the cast of Batman and Hawaiian Eye taking the stage at the conclusion of this show. Even more fascinating is that I read online that this was the final appearance of Guy Williams on American television – it was his first since he retired in 1968 – as he was living in Argentina in the early ’70s. The reason being that while the Walt Disney produced Zorro series made him a very big star from 1957 until 1961 – he was considered an absolute legend in Argentina for his role as Don Diego de la Vega and his masked alter-ego.

Video Provided by TeeVees Greatest.

Diary Of An Arcade Employee Podcast Ep. 050 – Starcade

Friends, it really is hard to believe but we’ve reached the 50th episode of the Diary of An Arcade Employee podcast – when I started out on the Retroist with the show I could only dream we would make it this far. Having reached the 50th mark – I think I can honestly say there might even be an episode or possibly two that managed to be good. As I hinted at with the Kung-Fu Master episode last week – this week we are tackling Starcade – that iconic arcade video game show that aired on WTBS the Super Station beginning in 1982 and with it’s last first-run show broadcast in 1984. I have done my best to shine a spotlight on the creation of the series – which is thanks to James Caruso as well as Mavis Arthur of JM Productions. You might be surprised at just how many obstacles the duo had to overcome before Starcade was picked up by Ted Turner for his cable TV station – broadcast on December 27th of 1982. When all is said and done this is a television game show that can claim to have had four hosts – beginning with the original pilot in 1981 until it’s first broadcast on WTBS.

I am happy to say that Starcade has an official site where you can watch many of those classic episode – in addition they also have an official YouTube channel you can enjoy as well. As I mention in the show itself – I owe a great deal of thanks to Bleeding Cool, The Golden Age Arcade Historian, and Dragon’s Lair Project sites – as they managed to collect information and interviews with the likes of James Caruso and Mavis Arthur of JM Productions. Giving us fans of Starcade a glimpse behind the curtain of just how much work they put into the show to get it on our television sets. Thanks to this information we also learned why the game show managed to have so many hosts – including Mark Richards and of course Geoff Edwards.

On this show we have the return of Earl Green, who not only provided a clip from his Best of the Classic Gaming Expo 2003 DVD that features Richards, but also shares the time he attempted to become a contestant on Starcade. We also have Gary Burton with a new segment – not focusing on any one arcade title this go around but sharing a personal memory of how we became the best of friends.

As always I thank you one and all for supporting the podcast – I know there are hundreds of shows out there that tackle classic arcade and home console games – so the fact you would take the time out of your busy schedule to listen to mine is an absolute gift. So I hope you will enjoy this 50th episode of the Diary podcast and are ready to find out all about the Starcade TV series!

Remember that for even more pop culture related goodness – make sure to check out Earl’s own website, the Logbook.Com – absolutely one of the best and longest running sites for all your retro needs.

If you have a moment, why not help us reach new listeners? Not only subscribe but leave us a rating and review for the Diary of An Arcade Employee podcast – whether that be on iTunes, Google Podcasts, or Spotify?

If you possibly have suggestions for future episodes or want to chat about the current show – you can reach me at VicSagePopCulture@gmail.com. You can find me on Facebook or Twitter and make sure to check out the Arkadia Retrocade Facebook page. Or for daily updates you can hop on over to the Diary of an Arcade Employee Facebook page – heck -you can see videos and more fun a couple of times a week by checking out my Instagram page!

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Episode Mirror #1 (MP3)

This 1982 Xevious Promotional Video Presents An Epic Sci-Fi Backstory

Friends, while we haven’t gotten around to tackling the classic 1982 Xevious on the Diary of An Arcade Employee Podcast as of yet – I can assure you that it is definitely on the list. For what it might be worth this was an arcade title I first experienced at the Showbiz Pizza of my youth – in addition though I also saw it played quite a bit on the Starcade television series. It was one of those games that seemed to also pop up at the local gas stations and grocery stores with the likes of Dig Dug, BurgerTime, Pac-Man, and Galaga. Furthermore while not every arcade game was talked about during class at school, I can honestly say that Xevious was one that many of us young video game fans chatted about – it might have had something to do with the fact that the game had secret flags and towers to uncover while playing?

While I certainly remember seeing Xevious pop up on the Starcade game show quite a bit – I’ve read online that supposedly the game didn’t do as well here in the States as in Japan. I obviously cannot say off the top of my head if that is true or not – I can however point out that since most of us were not arcade game distributors there was no way we could have seen this awesome 1982 Xevious promotional video back in the day. One that adds a whole lot more to the science fiction backstory of the game than even the flyer that was sent out by Atari. That particular flyer has this description before laying out the key features that are sure to make the game popular at the arcades:

“Many eons ago, and advanced technologically oriented civilization was forced to evacuate the Earth prior to the Ice Age. Now, these Xevious people are returning to reclaim their heritage through conquest.”

I should point out that you didn’t find that information on the arcade game itself – so take a few minutes and enjoy this 1982 Xevious promotional video that adds just a little more to the story by way of a sales pitch.

Video and Article Image Provided by oritech.

Where did you happen to first play Xevious – was it at the arcade or did you experience it on a home console or computer port?

Diary Of An Arcade Employee Podcast Ep. 043 – Elevator Action

Friends, welcome back to the Diary of An Arcade Employee podcast – for this episode we are going to be tackling Elevator Action, which was released into the wilds of the arcades by Taito back in 1983. Right up front I will warn you this is one of those episodes where the majority of the people responsible for designing or programming a classic arcade title -is simply not known. Although having said that I still managed to shine a spotlight on Taito and Yoshio Imamura – the iconic composer responsible for a few themes and tunes from the heyday of the arcades. I do share my memories of experiencing Elevator Action for the first time – a rather surprisingly positive encounter with some teenagers at the local gas station. Of course as always I have brought along a few vintage audio treats for your listening enjoyment – plus with this episode there was some viewer mail from the Popeye show, giving me a chance to talk a little more about my duties at the Arkadia Retrocade.

On this episode I make mention of a publication that any of you fans of old school gaming should check out – the Old School Gamer magazine. For one thing, Brett Weiss, who frequently shares videos and articles on this site also provides content for the magazine. I am also happy to say that Earl Green joins me on the podcast again – in this case to discuss the many ports of Elevator Action to the home consoles and computers of the day. In addition we have a brand new segment featuring none other than Gary Burton – the chief tech at Arkadia who gives you a little insight as to what his job entails at the arcade.

Friends, as always I do hope you will enjoy the show and I truly thank you for taking time out of your schedule to listen to the podcast. So don your trench coats and sunglasses and prepare to hear the ups and downs of 1983’s Elevator Action!

For even more pop culture related goodness by Earl – make sure to check out his own website, the Logbook.Com – absolutely one of the best and longest running sites for all your retro needs.

If you have a moment, why not help us reach new listeners? Not only subscribe but leave us a rating and review for the Diary of An Arcade Employee podcast – whether that be on iTunes, Google Podcasts, or Spotify?

If you possibly have suggestions for future episodes or want to chat about the current show – you can reach me at VicSagePopCulture@gmail.com. You can find me on Facebook or Twitter and make sure to check out the Arkadia Retrocade Facebook page. Or for daily updates you can hop on over to the Diary of an Arcade Employee Facebook page – heck -you can see videos and more fun a couple of times a week by checking out my Instagram page!

Subscribe to the Diary of An Arcade Employee Podcast:

[iTunes] Subscribe to the Diary of An Arcade Employee Podcast.

Download the Diary of An Arcade Employee Podcast:

Episode Mirror (MP3)