Entertainment Industry Nostalgia: July 1991

Yeah yeah, this is an August issue. I don’t care, it’s relevant to a July incident.

Riot at Guns N’ Roses concert in St Louis. Major league umpire Steve Palermo and former NFL defensive lineman Terence Mann shot trying to help 2 waitresses from being robbed. South Africa readmitted to Olympics. Boris Yeltsin sworn in as 1st elected President of the Russian Federation. Total solar eclipse is seen in Hawaii. US troops leave northern Iraq. Mike Tyson is accused of raping a Miss Black America contestant. Jeffrey Dahmer confesses to killing 17 men in 1978. University of Manchester scientist announce finding a planet outside of solar system. Paul Reubens (Pee Wee Herman) is arrested in Florida, for exposing himself at an adult movie theater. Dennis Martínez pitches the 13th perfect game in baseball history. Yankee Stadium fans throw cups and blowup dolls at Jose Canseco. MTV announces it will split into 3 channels in 1993. Russia and US sign long range nuclear weapons reduction pact. Senate votes to allow women to fly combat aircraft.




Music

Honorable mentions: The Nation of Ulysses: 13-Point Program to Destroy America. Cannibal Corpse: Butchered at Birth. John & Mary: Victory Gardens. Heavy D & the Boys: Peaceful Journey. Slick Rick: The Ruler’s Back; notable for being quickly filmed and released before Slick Rick (aka Richard Martin Lloyd Walters) had to serve a 5 year prison sentence for attempted murder. Trisha Yearwood: Trisha Yearwood. Geto Boys: We Can’t be Stopped. Jimi Jamison: When Love Comes Down. Above the Law: Vocally Pimpin’. Compton’s most wanted Straight Checkn ‘Em. Main Source: Breaking Atoms. Mary’s Danish: Circa. Gary Clail: Emotional Hooligan. Squeeze: Play. Robbie Nevil: Day 1. The Psychedelic Furs: World Outside. Godflesh: Slavestate.

Fugazi: Steady Diet of Nothing (1?)


Alice Cooper: Hey Stoopid (2)

I mean, with an album title like that, and the titular music video doubling down on it, I can’t help but enjoy this. And as much as I wanted to make the track “Hey Stoopid” the feature video, I have to give that honor to the more well-known “Feed my Frankenstein.”


Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Into the Great Wide Open (2)

Notable tracks include “Learning to Fly”, and “Out in the Cold”.


The Allman Brothers Band: Shades of Two Worlds (2)

Legends.


Therapy?: Babyteeth (15)

So let’s see, a rock album here, rap album there, decent heavy metal track here, thrash metal there, alternative rock there, and…

*looks at album cover*

WHAT IN THE NAME OF GOD IS THIS!?


LFO: Frequencies (22)

One of the 50 albums that changed music, according to a 2006 issue of The Observer. Whatever. Here’s the techno electronica album of the month.

LFO = Low Frequency Oscillation


Main Source: Breaking Atoms (23)

Now, while this isn’t my kind of album, I have to give kudos to the Breaking Atoms album cover. Plus it was released to wide acclaim, so… so here’s the rap album for the month.


DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince: Homebase (23)

It’s got Fresh Prince.


Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch: Music for the People (23)

Ahahahahahahahahahahahahah!!!!!

And man, the backstory to this album. It’s worth looking up the jailtime and shit that went on leading up to and after this album’s release.


Widespread Panic: Widespread Panic (30)

Surprised me a bit.




Movies

Honorable mentions: Mobsters, a decent (and violent) albeit underwhelming mob movie that tried to capitalize on the mobster craze that was going on thanks to Goodfellas and Miller’s Crossing. Hot Shots!, some people like this, but the sequel completely overshadows it. Dutch, eh, it’s just an ok road trip movie with an annoying dipshit kid that I wanted to see get killed.

If you thought the previous months were lacking in quality films (especially compared to last year), brace yourselves, because this one month is going to make up for all of it. You would get not 1, not 2, not 3, but 4 culturally phenomenal hits.

Conagher (1; TV movie)

Not a half-bad western flick, even one made for TV. Plus it stars Sam Elliot. It takes a lot to fuck up a film with him as the lead role.


Terminator 2: Judgment Day (3)

Phenominal hit #1. Mine as well give up now. There’s no film this year that’s going to top this one. To this day, this is considered (one of) the greatest action film(s) of all time. Many will claim it is superior to the original in every way (I disagree, but I see their points). Whatever you think of it, this was one of the biggest hits of not just the month, not just the year, but of the entire decade. It’s cultural impact (and the hype leading up to its release) cannot be understated. It’s probably the only action film sequel to exceed everyone’s expectations. The previous couple years were still riding the tide of the Tim Burton Batman film for popularity. This would finally be the one to dethrone it as the new popular jock on the block. It also has one of the best teaser trailers of all time.


Slacker (5)

Personally not my kind of film. But it is considered one of the most significant indie films ever made. Plus some interesting bits of dialogue here and there. If nothing else, it’s foreshadowing to how the slacker generation led to the generation we got in the 2010s and 2020s. Cult classic that showed the indie scene was still thriving, and not going away anytime soon (it would be over a decade before it began to suffer).


Regarding Henry (10)

Decent Harrison Ford drama. He was on a roll with these more serious and understated roles he’s been playing.


Boyz n the Hood (12)

Phenominal hit #2. I thought this film was just ok. But this came out at exactly the right moment when the racial/gangster pot was beginning to bubble due to the Rodney King beating. A film exploring how one falls into the gangster lifestyle, and dealing with the racial element cops have towards boys they perceive as thugs. It tackled all the relevant and topical issues in an effective way, from the viewpoint of the black boyz (something that hadn’t really been done prior to this film, not like this). Ice Cube’s successful transition from rap to film (though he would still rap).


Point Break (12)

Phenominal hit #3. Yeah, this movie with Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves. The film with the surfers and the robbers wearing president masks. The film that The Fast and the Furious ripped off. Swayze would act circles around Keanu, but the film that came out next week would give Keanu another chance to show another side to his acting chops.


Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey (19)

Phenominal hit #4. Now this. I think this is way better than the first movie. So frikkin’ zany and crazy with such ludicrous stuff put onto the screen. It’s a hell of an experience to sit through this thing. I don’t even know why they even try to bother making a sequel to this. They’re not going to top it.




Games

Honorable mentions: Frankenstein: The Monster Returns (NES). The Faery Tale Adventure (July 1991; Sega Genesis). Might and Magic: Gates to Another World (July 1991; Sega Genesis).

Disney’s the Little Mermaid (July 1991; NES)


High Speed (July 1991; NES)

If you like a more traditional retro pinball videogame.


Master of Monsters (July 26, 1991; Sega Genesis)

Another interesting turn-based-strategy on the Sega Genesis. A little bit like Warsong, but more along the lines of Heroes of Might and Magic, and Masters of Magic. And from what I’ve heard (from a review on GameFAQs), this is actually better than the PC, Sega Saturn, and PSX versions.


Thunder Fox (July 26, 1991; Sega Genesis)

Side scrolling shoot-em-up, beat-em-up.


688 Attack Sub (July 1991; Sega Genesis)


Blockout (July 1991; Sega Genesis)

Used to play this on a PC port.


Centurion: Defender of Rome (July 1991, Sega Genesis, Amiga)

Never could understand how to really play and beat this game. But that’s probably because I wasn’t even 10 years old when I tried it.


King’s Bounty: The Conqueror’s Quest (July 1991; Sega Genesis)

Port of the PC game. Precursor to Heroes of Might and Magic. Guess we’re going to have a few of those this month.


Ms. Pac-Man (July 1991, Sega Genesis [released on NES last year; port of arcade])


Batman (July 27, 1991; Sega Genesis)

This may not be as renown as the NES title, but it’s still a fun time.


Turrican (July 1991, Sega Genesis [Amiga version 1990; TurboGrafx-16 version in August 1991)

Hard as hell side scrolling shooter.


Battle Unit Zeoth (July 1991; Game Boy)

The Game Boy still has some life left in it.


Bonk’s Revenge (July 19, 1991; TurboGrafx-16)

The TurboGraFX mascot had decent game.


Duke Nukem (July 1, 1991; MS-DOS)

Where this gaming icon first began. I’ve beaten the first 2 episodes, but never did manage to get through the final episode 3. It may have aged considerably, but it’s still quite fun to play if you don’t mind the old school graphics. One of my earliest gaming memories.


Might and Magic III: Isles of Terra (July 29, 1991; PC, Amiga)




Shows

Match Game series ended July 12, would return in 1998; aired 1962. China Beach series ended July 22; aired 1988.

Shop ‘Till You Drop (8; Lifetime)

Shopping game show. Lasted for quite a while.


Hi Honey, I’m Home (19; ABC)

Well, looks like something inspired that film Pleasantville. Almost seems like it was made in response to the 1991 TV Movie Hi Honey – I’m Dead. Technically the pilot episode aired in June, but the show really got going in July. Originally aired on ABC (for 1 season) before Nickelodeon (Nick at Nite) picked it up for reruns, made 1 more season, and let the reruns go until it faded away into obscurity.

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