1980 and all that: 1985


Pop quiz. There were three hit singles that went by the name of ‘The Power of Love’ in 1985. Name each of the bands/artists.

Okay, I’m going to reveal one-third of the answer straightaway.*

There can be few songs more evocative of that over produced 80s sound than Huey Lewis and the News’ ‘The Power of Love’. Those blasts of synthetic brass that are, for some reason blunted of their full impact, will instantly take you back to a time of garish leggings, big shoulder pads and even bigger hair.

They are Proust’s madeleine for Generation X-ers.

Of course this particular Huey Lewis and the News song would have quite easily become tomorrow’s chip wrappings if it hadn’t been for its use in a certain 1985 movie.

Back to the Future is – without question – the best film of the 1980s.

I told you. Don’t question it.

It’s got everything. Time travel, spectacular skateboarding stunts and a spectacular deconstruction/reconstruction of ‘Johnny B. Goode’. Oh, and a plot line involving your own mother wanting to get it on with you.

Who could ask for anything more?

In his role as Marty McFly, Michael J Fox was every little boy’s hero. He could do everything: from playing guitar like he was ringing a bell through to taking on bad guy Biff and winning.

Perhaps this was just as well. Otherwise, I might have spent a little less time focussing on my time travelling hero and a little more time listening to the lyrics of the film’s accompanying song.

Which might have then prompted me to ask the following question:

‘Mum…what does “tougher than diamonds, whips like cream/stronger and harder than a bad girl’s dream” mean?’

*The other two ‘Power of Love’s are by Jennifer Rush and Frankie Goes to Hollywood.

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