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The best things about the 1980s…


The best things about the 1980s…

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It was acceptable in the 80s – and it’s acceptable now, as the majority of young Brits (six in ten) have voted the 1980s the decade they would most loved to have lived through.

As the era that saw the rise of cinematic adventure blockbusters, science fiction, iconic music genres and video games, the 80s, arguably, kicked off life as we know it now, and for those of us old enough to remember it, heading down to Woolies for some Pic n Mix was hailed the best thing about the decade (36 percent).

It was a decade that also gave us Madonna, George Michael, David Bowie, varsity jackets, the once-again-popular, Adidas Sambas trainers (15 percent) – which appear at 33 in the top 40 list – and the iconic Axel F theme song from Beverly Hills Cop (25 percent) in at number 15.

Rubik’s Cubes (27 percent), The A-Team (26 percent), games of PacMan at the arcade (26 percent), Duran Duran (26 percent) and leg warmers (18 percent) are also things Brits look back on fondly.

Nine in ten (90 percent) of the under 30s surveyed go so far as to say that the decade’s fashion is back with vengeance, with a further three quarters (76 percent) believing that both Gen Z and millennials are embracing the 1980s aesthetic.

80s themed TV shows like Stranger Things (56 percent), a backlash against social media (37 percent) and retro games coming back in fashion (32 percent) were cited as the main reasons the 80s has seen a resurgence in popularity.

One in three (27 percent) believe the younger generation are yearning for simpler times, while a fifth (20 percent) think Kate Bush’s musical comeback and the release of Top Gun 2 (18 percent) were also key factors in making the decade cool again.

According to the research, which was commissioned to mark the release of the new Beverly Hills Cop film – Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F available now on Netflix, which comes out 40 years after the original smash hit with Eddie Murphy –  seven in ten (70 percent) of modern Brits go so far to say that life was simpler in the 80s, with 83 percent claiming that they were the best years to be a teen.

69 percent would even transport back to the period if they could.

Mark Molloy, director of the new movie, Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F:

“As a huge fan of the 80s myself and someone who grew up during that period, I’m thrilled to see that modern Brits are embracing these iconic styles again. While ‘Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F’ brings the franchise up to date, there’s still a ton of 80s greatness in store for fans of the franchise, between Foley’s Adidas Sambas trainers and some incredible varsity jackets.”

The survey also found the nation’s favourite 80s pop stars, actors and films with David Bowie (34 percent), George Michael (31 percent) and Whitney Houston (30 percent) topping the list of pop musicians.  Tom Cruise (46 percent), Arnold Schwarzenegger (45 percent), Michael J Fox (44 percent) and Axel Foley, himself Eddie Murphy (44 percent) were voted the most iconic stars.

It’s not all roses though for the 1980s, almost half (44 percent) of those that grew up in the decade admit they cringe when they look back at photos of themselves. While 60 percent feel sad that modern Brits will never understand only having four TV channels, half (53 percent) feel sadness that young Brits will never go to the video shop to rent a film.

Watching Top of the Pops to see what songs are in the charts (51 percent), buying the latest music in a music shop (47 percent), waiting a week until you can watch the next episode of your favourite TV show (45 percent) and missing your TV show and not being able to catch up (44 percent) are other things that children of the 80s believe that modern Brits will never understand.

See the full top 40 list on the next page…

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