We all love That ‘70s Show, right? The concept was so much fun that they could have followed it through with other shows too, don’t you think? Well, studios had this same idea almost twenty years ago and failed - the show being That ‘80s Show.
It was an attempt at cashing in on the tried-and-tested gimmick, but the series lacked the charm of the main show and petered out without much notice. Since the internet brings with it easy information to access, some fans have just found out about the existence of That ‘80s Show, and we’re here to make it a lot easier for you by presenting these 10 facts about the show.
10 It Wasn't Related To 'That '70s Show'
What we now know is that the series made a fatal mistake of not connecting itself with the main show. It’s understandable why they didn’t go that way, considering That ‘80s Show was set after everything that happened in the 1970s and it began in 2002.
Around this time, That ‘70s Show was in its fourth season, meaning the characters couldn’t appear on the other show because it would mean spoiling what would happen in later seasons. However, That ‘80s Show separated itself so much from the main series that it wasn’t even considered a spin-off.
9 It was Set In 1984
Maybe fans aren’t aware even of That ‘70s Show’s chronology of being set started from 1976 onwards, and That ‘80s Show did something similar by starting around midway of the decade at 1984.
It made sense to go that route, though, because the show wouldn’t have had any material to make the setting look like the stereotypical 1980s had they started out right at the start of the decade. Still, starting out relatively early in 1984 must have indicated the showrunners were confident they could stretch the series out for a few years.
8 Every Episode Visited The Same Locations
This part of the show followed the same formula of That ‘70s Show, as we had the same locations shown in every episode. Fans will remember the main series had basically Eric’s house as the setting for each episode, and That ‘80s Show was also restricted in this regard, although there was more room for it to breathe.
Within an episode, the main location would be the record store where the characters worked, with additional scenes set in the office, a dance club, and the main character’s house. Most of this would happen within the span of a day.
7 That '80s Intro
You’d think a failed series would’ve had an awful song that led to its cancellation, but That ‘80s Show’s intro really wasn’t so bad. Unlike That ‘70s Show, however, it didn’t have the benefit of showing the cast in the intro to make it more memorable.
The theme song would play showing the characters’ faces on a record along with the actor’s name, while the song featured was “Eighties” by Killing Joke. Perhaps had the cast been singing the intro like it was the case for the mains series, maybe the theme song might have saved them.
6 The Format Changed In The Second Half Of The Season
The main character on the show was a guy called Corey, who was an out-of-work musician working in a record store to earn his way through his career. The original half of the series had focused upon Corey and the people he interacted with; halfway through, however, it shifted its gears.
From here on out, the format followed Corey and his girlfriend June’s clashes with one another. June was a radically different personality than Corey, and the two would butt heads due to their different points of view, but connected through their attraction to one another.
5 Kelly Clarkson Appeared Here Before 'American Idol'
Kelly Clarkson tasted quite a lot of failure before winning American Idol, as she was seen as an extra in shows like Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Dharma & Greg and, you guessed it, That ‘80s Show. Since she was a singer who only appeared on these shows for the paying jobs, Kelly would never have a meaty appearance.
Instead, you can find Kelly in one of the episodes of the series in the background. She didn’t do anything but make up the numbers for dancers, being an extra who was never meant to be in focus. Little did anyone know that she would become the biggest name of anyone who had ever been on the show!
4 It Lasted Only 4 Months
When you think of a show’s season, you instantly assume it to be one year. Almost every series out there plays its seasons from the second half of one year into the mid-half of the next; That ‘80s Show only began in the starting of the year.
It premiered in January 2002, and had all its episodes play out in relatively quick succession until May, which is the month show’s go on hiatus. As the series was canceled after airing only 13 episodes, it has the dubious distinction of only having been alive for 4 months.
3 Unlike 'That '70s Show', This One Focused On Adults
The central theme of That ‘70s Show was that the main characters were a bunch of slackers, who still lived with their parents and hadn’t been to college yet. This placed these characters as relatively old enough to understand how the world worked, but young enough for them still to be at home.
The roles were fast-forwarded on That ‘80s Show, where the question of college didn’t come up, as these characters were meant to be in their early-20s. This gave the series the perspective of a young-adult show that focused on the characters realizing how it was to be on their own in the 1980s.
2 Is That Lexie?
Out of the cast who were part of the show, the most well-known actor today is Chyler Leigh. She gained her fame by starring in Grey’s Anatomy near the late-2000s, before which she sort of floundered around finding her breakthrough role.
This has meant that fans aren’t generally aware that the actress that played Lexie Grey was once the star of a sitcom. Her character was nothing like Lexie either, as Tuesday was a punk rock chick who had a very dry demeanor and wore her hair in spikes.
1 It Lost Out To 'My Wife And Kids'
The early-2000s was flooded with multi-camera sitcoms, and it was a cutthroat environment where a show had to sink or swim to stay alive. Unfortunately for That ‘80s Show, its main competition in the sitcom genre was My Wife and Kids.
The hit series starring Damon Wayons was just picking up steam at the time, and That ‘80s Show turned out to be one of the casualties. The two shows went on at the same time slot on two different networks, which meant that the audience favored My Wife and Kids more than the ‘80s.