Category: 70’s

Recreating and Reviewing the Diablo Sandwich from Smokey and the Bandit

Diablo Sandwich

This past Friday marked the 41st anniversary of the release date of one of my favorite movies, Smokey and the Bandit!  To celebrate this fact, my daughter and I decided to do a video on her food review YouTube channel where we would take a look at The Diablo Sandwich.  Check out this classic scene from the movie:

The problem was, I had no idea just what the heck a Diablo sandwich actually was.  After doing some digging around on the internet, I found an awesome post on a message board where a user had broken the scene down frame by frame to try and solve the mystery of the Diablo Sandwich.  If you have time, it’s a very fascinating read.  Check out the thread:  Diablo & Doc

So armed with that knowledge, we set out to make this iconic mystery sandwich, and I think we had pretty good luck with it.  CHeck out our YouTube video review of it, and if you enjoy the vibe of the video, consider subscribing to our channel.  We have a lot of reviews up, with more coming on a mostly daily basis.


The Bad News Bears

Bad News Bears

Written by Bill Lancaster (Burt’s son) and directed by Michael Ritchie (who had helmed adult fare like The Candidate and Smile), this winning 1976 film worked on a lot of levels—and not just the “hey, those naughty kids are cussing” level either. There was the underdog triumph story at the movie’s core; there was the satire of the uniquely American institution of Little League and its overly-involved bench parents (in the year of our country’s bicentennial, no less). There was also a redemptive character piece at work, as Buttermaker, via his group of misfits, tried to get his shambled life together once and for all.

Morris Buttermaker (Walter Matthau) is a former minor league baseball player, and currently, a disheveled drunk and a not-so-devoted pool-cleaner. And if you think he’s mastered the fine art of uncouth and offensive language, wait until you meet the kids on his future Little League Team.

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Nearly Forgotten TV Shows

Through the many years of television, there have been thousands of TV shows created.  Usually only the cream of the crop last for multiple seasons, and go on to live vividly in the memories of the people who enjoyed them.  There are also the shows that captured people’s imaginations, and even though they didn’t last too long, are still widely remembered.  Then there are those shows that only ran a few episodes or a short season or two, but were so good, they’ve not totally faded from memory yet.  These are the shows I’m talking about.  Shows that are worth seeking out if you’ve never watched them before.  Here’s five of these shows that are nearly lost to time.

Man From Atlantis

The Man From Atlantis

The Man From Atlantis only lasted for one season of 13 episodes, and ran on NBC during the 1977-1978 season.  The series actually began as a series of 4 made for television movies, and based on the ratings success of these movies, a TV series was given the green light.

The Man From Atlantis starred Patrick Duffy (Bobby Ewing on Dallas) as an amnesiac man who is given the name of Mark Harris, and he’s believed to be the only surviving citizen of the lost civilization of Atlantis.  He has extraordinary powers, such as the ability to breathe underwater, and endure extreme depth pressures.  He also has superhuman strength, and his hands and feet are webbed.  His weakness though is that his eyes are unusually sensitive to light.

Yesterdayland Archives | Man From Atlantis


Following his discovery, he is recruited by The Foundation of Oceanic Research, which is a government agency that conducts top-secret research and explores the depths of the ocean in a sophisticated submarine.

The Man From Atlantis was an early attempt at a superhero television show, coming along in the same time frame as Wonder Woman, The Six Million Dollar Man, and The Bionic Woman.  It enjoyed a few brief runs in syndication, but episodes of this show haven’t seen the light of day in years.

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Looking Back at Electric Football

Electric Football


With the Superbowl coming up this weekend, I thought it would be fun to take a look back at a time before video game systems emulated the fun of football inside the home.  A time when you really had to work to set up your plays, and then hope that everything worked perfectly, and the little football players actually went where you wanted them to.  So here’s a look back at what “playing football” was like before things like Coleco Football, Tecmo Bowl, and Madden football games came along…..

Ever since enterprising toymakers hit on the gimmick of combining electricity and sports, many a fan has whiled his rainy-day hours away over miniaturized electric versions of his favorite outdoor games. Few U.S. sports are as popular as American football, so it came as no surprise when electric football became the king of this toy trend. These games have been popular for over five decades and continue to enjoy a fervent following today.

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Do You Remember Green Stamps?

Raise your hand if you remember S&H Green Stamps.  For those of you without telepathy, my hand is high in the air.  That’s because I certainly remember Green Stamps.  Now, for those of you who don’t remember them, or aren’t old enough to know about them, let me give you a brief summary of what they were.

I guess the easiest way to explain them would be to say that they were like bonus points you get when you use your credit card, or frequent flyer miles that you can rack up with the airlines, but for everyday things.  The most common place you would get them were at grocery stores.  How much you spent on your grocery shopping trip determined how many green stamps you earned.  


Green Stamps


There was a little machine next to the register, and the cashier would dial-up how many stamps you had earned and it would spit them out.  The actual green stamps themselves were about the size of a postage stamp, and worked in much the same way, as you had to lick the back of them to stick them in the green stamp books.


Green Stamps


Now those books, once they were filled, could be used to buy all sorts of stuff from the Green Stamps Catalog.  It was usually the type of merchandise you would find at a Dollar General store, but they also carried some nicer items as well.  So for just doing what you normally would by doing your weekly grocery shopping, you earned some free shopping spree money!  These things were so popular, that the grocery stores used them as a way to bring in folks.  They would often run “double stamp day” promotions where you would earn double the amount of green stamps that you normally would.  This was a big deal in my house, and shopping day always lined up with double stamp day.

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Weekly Wrap-Up


Another week has come to a close here at Retro Ramblings, and that means it’s time for the wrap-up.  The wrap-up is where I hit the highlights from the previous week, talk about some upcoming stuff on the site, and share some fun retro content I’ve found in my travels around the web that week.  Let’s get to it….


New Posts at Retro Ramblings This Week

My Earliest Video Game Memories – I took a trip back in time to when I first played Nintendo, and those first games that instantly hooked me on the system and video gaming in general.

Top 5 Tuesday:  Favorite Happy Meal Toys – I used this week’s Top 5 Tuesday post to look back at my favorite Happy Meal toys from McDonalds through the years.  Check it out and see if any of mine would make YOUR list of favorites.  Dave at Banzai Retro Club played along this week, and you can check out his Top 5 choices here.

TV Guide Fall Preview:  1984 – I uploaded full scans of every page of fall previews from the 1984 TV Guide Fall Preview issue.  There were a lot of iconic shows that debuted that year, and there are first looks at shows like Night Court, The Cosby Show, Airwolf, and more.  I’ll be adding more and more years in the coming weeks.

Do You Remember Morning Funnies Cereal? – A look back at the short lived Morning Funnies cereal that I enjoyed in the late 80’s.

Check Out This Cool Selection of Character Sleeping Bags From 1984 – Full scans of 3 pages from the 1984 Sears Wish Book featuring a ton of sleeping bags featuring properties like Knight Rider, Masters of the Universe, Cabbage Patch Kids and more.


Coming Up on Retro Ramblings

I’ve got some news that I’m very happy to announce, and that is Joel Geraghty is bringing his Chrononaut Chronicles, his old school wrestling reviews, to Retro Ramblings!  He does an awesome job at bringing these old wrestling shows we all loved back to life, and I’ve been a big fan of his for a while.  He is kicking things off here with his first post on Retro Ramblings by looking back at one of my favorite shows, Clash of the Champions 1 from 1988!  You can look for that to hit the site on Tuesday, but until then, you can check out some of his work at Scott’s Blog of Doom, and his own site at The Chrononaut Chronicles.

As for me, I’ve got some stuff lined up for this week including an installment of Retro Comic Book ads, where I go back through a random comic from the past and go through all the fun old ads.  This week’s Top 5 Tuesday post is on My Favorite Retro Modes of Transportation.  Then on Wednesday I’m looking back at a fun old featured of grocery stores everywhere, and to late in the week I’ll be remembering my favorite Nintendo game, since I spent so much space talking about Nintendo earlier this week.


The Best of the Rest

I ran across a lot of cool retro stuff this week, so here are the links to what I dug the most.

Which Fast Food Chains Sold These Menu Items Quiz – MeTV
Action Figure Reclamation Project Phase 2 – Hoju Koolander
Tiny Tributes to Minor Monsters, #1 – Dinosaur Dracula
Nor’Easter With a Temper:  Remembering the Blizzard of 1996 – Retroist
In Defense of Fester’s Quest – Retrojunk
The Great Sci-Fi Toy Slump of 1979 – Plaid Stallions
41 Things You Definitely Had in Your Bedroom in the 90’s – BuzzFeed Rewind
80’s Show, Critters, is Making a Comeback – Like Totally 80’s
Kickstarter:  Toy Sales Add Up to Billions – Battlegrip
30 Awesome Record Ads From the 1970s – Flashbak
22 Wacky ‘As Seen on TV’ Products Sold By K-Tel in the 1970s – MeTV
Trading Card Treasures Volume 2 – Hoju Koolander
Five Retro TV Commercials Part 20 – Dinosaur Dracula
Do You Remember These 80’s Horror Novels? – Like Totally 80’s
The Joy of Lunchables – Retrojunk
The Secret Reason McDonald’s Cokes Taste Better Than All the Other Cokes – Do You Remember