Tag Archives: Raiders of the Lost Ark

“GOOD EVENING, FRAULEIN.”

I know this is a childish comparison to make, but does anyone else look at acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and totally see Toht from 1981’s “Raiders of the Lost Ark?”

 

 

 

 

Throwback Thursday: “Pitfall!” for the Atari 2600!

“Pitfall!” was quite the hit when Activision released it in 1982.  (I’m a little unclear on what I’m reading about the relationship between Activision and Atari … it looks like the former was a group of defected employees who were then sued by latter, but who then inadvertently pioneered the third-party-developer arrangement for video games.)

“Pitfall!” hit the shelves the same year that the priceless “Raiders of the Lost Ark” galloped through theaters, which I’ll bet helped with the popularity of the jungle adventure game.  But the game became a bestseller because of its own merits.  Wikipedia informs me that its took a lot of innovation by its creator, David Crane, to get his newer, more advanced graphics stored and operable on a 4-kilobyte game.

And I could kinda see that, as a kid.  “Pitfall!” was far sleeker and seemingly more complex than other Atari games my family had, like “Combat,” “Missile Command,” “Frogger” and “Donkey Kong.”  And it was a lot of fun.  See for yourself; you can play the original game for free right here at the Virtual Atari website.  (Seriously, the people who set up that site did something really cool for the rest of us.)

When I sat down to write this, I actually got my memories of “Pitfall!” confused with a later, more advanced side-scrolling PC game called “Impossible Mission.”  I played that in high school, and I loved it even more than “Pitfall!”  The two games look pretty similar; I wonder if anyone else gets them confused.

By the way, does that kid in the pith helmet in the ad below look familiar to you?  That’s because he’s none other than Jack Black, age 13.

 

Throwback Thursday: the “Raiders of the Lost Ark” board game!

Parker Brothers released this game in 1982.  It was a hell of a lot more fun than it looks.  The kid next door and I wore this thing out on my front porch.

I just wish I could find a better picture of it.

It would be both ironic and meta if my cache of 1980’s Indiana Jones merchandise was someday uncovered by a future archeologist.

 

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Throwback Thursday: this theater poster for “Raiders of the Lost Ark” (1981)!

I had this poster for “Raiders of the Lost Ark” (1981) when I was 11 or so.  It was goddam gigantic.  It took up nearly an entire wall in my room.

It wasn’t store bought; it came from a theater.  My father used to do something that was pretty damned cool for any parent to do — he’d occasionally ask the manager of a movie theater to save their in-house advertising for my favorite movies.  (I don’t know how things are done nowadays, but back then they’d just throw them out after using them.)  Then my Dad would hand the guy $10 or $20 for one of these, or maybe the manager would just give it to him.

Sometimes that meant a truly industrial-size poster, like this one.  Sometimes it meant one of those huge cardboard stand-up advertisments.  (I could only have a couple of these at a time … I had a small room.)

I also had a cardboard stand-up for “Colors,” the 1988 film depicting Los Angeles gangs — but my older brother brought me that one.  It had nearly life-size cutouts of Sean Penn and Robert Duvall, the movie’s police protagonists.  I don’t know why the nerdiest kid in East Coast suburbia was so taken with a movie about inner-city West Coast gangs, but that movie meant a lot to me.

Come to think of it, a lot of people were talking about “Colors” back in the day.  It was a big deal.  It was considered pretty edgy at the time, the critics loved it, and I’m surprised I never heard about it again after the close of the decade.  Its soundtrack had a damned good title track by Ice-T, too.

The poster below was my favorite, though.  To this day, “Raiders of the Lost Ark” is probably my favorite film of all time.

 

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Throwback Thursday: Indiana Jones action figures!!

I was thrilled when these Indiana Jones action figures arrived for me under the Christmas tree in 1983.  I loved “Raiders of the Lost Ark” more than I loved “Star Wars.”  I was truly surprised, too — I didn’t even know that they existed.

Why was that, I wonder?  Was Kenner just not advertising them much?  The company sure wasn’t shy about advertising its “Star Wars” figures.

That very last figure you see is the German mechanic that Indy fought at the desert base, when he and Marion were trying to hijack that plane.  (Dear God, was that one of the greatest movie scenes of all time.)  Anyway, the German mechanic toy had a spring-activated arm for clobbering action, and he came with a little plastic wrench.  Good times.

 

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Do NOT view the solar eclipse tomorrow without the special glasses.

Guys, please do not view the solar eclipse tomorrow without the ISO-certified eclipse-viewing glasses.  You could go blind.

Do not allow any children to view the eclipse without the special glasses.  (Wouldn’t a lot of kids just ignore adults’ advice and watch an eclipse unprotected anyway, especially if their eyes don’t hurt when they first look at it?  I was that kind of kid.)

Sunglasses are not a substitute.  I’m a little confused by what I’ve read so far online about taking pictures, but I understand you should not be looking at the eclipse through a camera or a smartphone camera either.

I don’t know why this whole thing has me acting like such a mother hen on the Internet, seriously.  But here we are.

If your eyes aren’t protected, MARION, DON’T LOOK AT IT.

 

“Raiders of the Lost Ark” reference in “Alien: Covenant?”

Does anyone else think that the “Alien: Covenant” ship logo looks a hell of a lot like the sculpted top of “Raiders'” Ark of the Covenant?!

Am I just realizing something everyone else has already noticed?  I’m not known for being the first guy to notice important details …

Or maybe both are based on the same ancient Hebrew art or something?

[UPDATE:] Okay, various smart people on Facebook are informing me that while the Bible doesn’t contain illustrations, it does contain a detailed textual description of the top of the ark.  So both movies took their cue from Exodus: 25.  (Thanks, Lisa L.)

NERDS.

Whatever.  I’m still counting this as my own “Sherlock” moment.

 

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