UnNews:Top 5 hoaxes of the 1980's exposed
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Ah, the 1980's. Anyone who lived through them will tell you that they were America's glory years. A middle of the road actor, Ronald Reagan, became president, The olympics were boycotted, Reebok introduced us to the pump, and a little film called Back to the Future introduced us to the possibility of time travel.
As fond as these memories are to those who experienced them, the 80's were not all glitz and glamour. In this special edition of UnNews, our crack research staff has uncovered five of the most sensational new stories of the 1980's that turned out to be nothing more than hoaxes.
#5 - Madonna's pointy boobs
Fashion trends in the 1980's could easily be defined as anything goes. But when pop singer and spiratualist Madonna rolled out her now infamous pointy boob look in the spring of 1985, even the fashion world was stunned.
When asked about the look, Madonna stated that she had actually been born with conical shaped breasts and had hidden this fact from the public for years for fear of media backlash. Madonna went on to say "Now that I'm like super famous and junk I can do whatever I want and no one can touch me".
The pointy boob craze caught on and soon thousands of girls in their early 20's were lining up to have their breasts augmented to look like the queen of pop. The craze may have proved to be a permanent one had it not been for the release of the 1993 film Body of Evidence. In the film, Madonna spent most of the time topless and it soon became apparent that her boobs were not at all pointy.
After the truth was..*ahem*....exposed, Madonna finally came clean. She admitted that it was all just a hoax and said that it all stemmed from a bet she had made with one of her dancers. Thousands of women were left with hideously deformed boobs and Madonna won a $50 bet.
#4 - Michael Jackson moonwalks
If there ever were a scandal that could top the queen of pop's, it would naturally be one that was perpitrated by the king of pop himself, Michael Jackson. Jackson's stock was already high going into the 80's, thanks in large part to his succesful stint as the frontman for the Jackson 5. But it was the 1982 album Thriller that rocketed him into the stratosphere. Jackson would follow his record breaking album up with an equally impressive effort in Billie Jean.
In the video for Billie Jean, Michael Jackson unleashed on the world what would become his signature move; the moonwalk. The moonwalk was a dance technique that gave the appearance that the dancer was being pulled backwards while trying to move forward. Days after the video first began airing, every American over the age of eight was attempting to master the technique.
Shortly after Michael Jackson's death in 2009, a diary was found that revealed the true secret to moonwalking. The diary contained a note from one of Jackson's stage crew explaining that they were having trouble getting the moving sidewalk to work on the stage of his latest concert. It turns out that Jackson was simply walking along a moving sidewalk that was hidden on all of his stages.
#3 - John Lennon shot dead
If you were alive on December 8th, 1980, you certainly remember exactly where you where when you heard the news that John Lennon was dead. Shot down in front of his own home by Mark David Chapman. "The World has lost a visionary" the headline of the New York Times read.
Lennon was a beloved figure in America and Europe, thanks to his success with The Beatles. Many people still remember the anniversary of Lennon's death by placing flowers or candles on the Strawberry Fields memorial that was erected as a tribute to Lennon in Hartsdale, New York.
All of that changed in 2010 when an aspiring UnNews journalist began looking into clues planted throughout Beatles albums that seemed to suggest Lennon's bandmate,Paul Mcartney, was actually a zombie. That claim turned out to be bogus but the reporter stumbled onto something much bigger. Lennon was, in fact, very alive. Turns out, he had been hiding out in Laos for the past 30 years. Lennon stated that the need to get out of the spotlight and the public eye were contributing factors for his elaborate ruse. When asked about Chapman, who is serving a life sentence, Lennon replied "He was a great sport for agreeing to help me disappear and it was a real shame what happened to him. I considered coming out of hiding several times so they would set him free. But I figured, hey, he's already comfortable in there by now and there is absolutely no way I'm going to rejoin society as long as Yoko is still alive. I mean, I feel terrible for the guy but prison has got to be better than spending one more second with that troll faced hag."
#2 - America boycotts the Summer Olympics
The Olympics are usually a time set aside to celebrate those great athletes who excel at sports that most people don't really care about. It is a chance for those athletes who were not talented enough to play real sports to earn a living. None of that pagentry would be found surrounding the 1980 Olympics though.
Instead, the world was busy watching the situation in Afghanistan. The Soviets were closing in and war looked iminent. In a last ditch effort to keep the peace, American president Jimmy Carter vowed to boycott the Olympics, which were being held in Moscow, if Russia did not back down. Carter's bluff didn't work and the Soviets kept doing whatever it was they were doing. America held it's own version of the games in Philadelphia that year, calling it the Boycott Olympics. Carter went on to be renowned for his diplomacy in this move and to this day is still considered a foriegn affairs expert. At least, he was, until the truth came out about the boycott.
In 2007, Carter published his memoirs and the truth was finally told. America had boycotted the Olympics because they knew they did not stand a chance against the Russians. Carter explains in an exerpt from his book:
"...After arriving in Moscow to meet with Brezhnev, I was treated to a delightful exhibition by the Soviet olympians. I remember watching them all perform and thinking to myself, my God, they are going to destroy us. My wife, Rosalynn, remarked that all the women looked like Silverback Gorillas and the men where twice the size of the women. I knew we were going to be humiliated on a world stage if I didn't do something."
#1 - MTV means Music Television
Without a doubt, the greatest hoax ever pulled in the 1980's, and possibly one of the greatest hoaxes all time, started in 1981. On August 1st, viewers witnessed the birth of music television when a fledgling station, MTV, took to the air. MTV was billed as a station that played music videos around the clock. The reception was nothing short of incredible. MTV quickly rose to the top level of the television industry. It became so popular, many artists could not release a single without having a music video to go along with it.
By 1988, MTV was the preferred station for anyone under the age of 25. Around this time, MTV began expirimenting with actually airing television shows, instead of just music videos. MTV introduced shows like The 1/2 Hour Comedy Hour, Andy Warhol's 15 Minutes, and Shorts, which were well received by the viewing public as a break from the constant musical onslaught. By 1993, MTV was achieving an almost 50/50 balance between music and television.
Then, in 1999, things went horribly wrong. The young group of driven entrepenours who had started MTV in the hopes that it would be a beacon in the storm for people in the 13-25 demographic, had grown older. They were now far more concerned with money than entertainment. MTV began to sell out. By the dawn of the new millineum, MTV aired no less than 28 television programs per day. This left only a meager 10 hours per day for actual music videos.
By 2009, MTV had stopped airing all music videos entirely and instead pushed a heavy rotation of reality shows. In 2010 a lawsuit was filed by the organazation People Who Think You Should Do What You Say You Do, or PWTYSDWYSYD, accusing MTV of false advertising. They won and MTV was forced to change their name to JSTSTV, which stands for Jersey Shore Teen Sex Television. The case was finally closed on our #1 hoax of the 80's.
While the MTV scandal may not technically be a hoax, this author thinks MTV is single handedly responsible for ruining music as we knew it. Since I'm not writing an article entitled "Top 5 companies that should rot in Hell", I was forced to stick them here.