What was Used for Entertainment in the 1980/80s?

In the 1980s, several formats were used for watching movies at home. While CDs were not the primary format for movies during that decade (they were primarily used for music), several other formats were popular for home movie consumption:

VHS Tapes:

VHS (Video Home System) tapes were the dominant format for watching movies in the 1980s. People would rent or purchase VHS tapes from video rental stores, and VCRs (Videocassette Recorders) were commonplace in households. VHS tapes were known for their bulky plastic cases and the need to rewind them after watching.

Betamax Tapes:

Betamax was a competing format to VHS, but it didn’t gain as much traction. Some households did use Betamax players and tapes to watch movies, but VHS ultimately prevailed as the standard home video format.


LaserDiscs, also known as “LDs,” were a format that offered better video and audio quality than VHS tapes. They were larger in diameter than CDs and DVDs and required a special player. However, they were not as widely adopted as VHS tapes due to their higher cost and limited availability of movies in this format.

Cable and Satellite TV:

In the 1980s, cable and satellite television services started offering movie channels like HBO and Cinemax. Subscribers could watch a selection of movies on these channels without the need for physical media.

Broadcast TV:

Regular broadcast television networks aired movies as well, often during primetime or as part of special movie nights. Families would gather around their television sets to watch these broadcasts.

Movie Theaters:

Going to the movie theater was, and still is, a popular way to watch newly released films. In the 1980s, theaters were a common destination for moviegoers.

Video Rental Stores:

Video rental stores, such as Blockbuster Video, began to proliferate in the ’80s. People could rent VHS tapes for a certain period and return them once they had watched the movie.

The 1980s was a remarkable decade that left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. From iconic movies and music to groundbreaking video games and beloved TV shows, the ’80s had it all. In this extensive article, we will take a nostalgic journey through the various forms of entertainment that defined this era. We’ll also answer frequently asked questions (FAQs) about ’80s entertainment and sprinkle in some retro jokes to keep the memories alive.

Movies of the ’80s

Epic Blockbusters and Memorable Moments

The 1980s was a golden era for cinema, with a slew of iconic films that continue to captivate audiences today. From “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” to “Back to the Future” and “The Breakfast Club,” the ’80s delivered unforgettable movies.

1. What were some of the top-grossing movies of the 1980s?

  • “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial”
  • “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back”
  • “Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark”
  • “Ghostbusters”
  • “The Return of the Jedi”

2. Who were the prominent actors and actresses of the ’80s?

  • Tom Cruise
  • Harrison Ford
  • Meryl Streep
  • Eddie Murphy
  • Sigourney Weaver

Why did the ’80s movie always bring a ladder to the theater?

Because it wanted to see a high-impact film! 😀

Music That Defined an Era

Catchy Tunes and Memorable Bands

The ’80s gave birth to some of the most enduring music and bands in history. From the pop sensation of Michael Jackson to the rock anthems of Queen, the music scene was electrifying.

1. What were the iconic music genres of the ’80s?

  • Pop
  • Rock
  • New Wave
  • Hip Hop
  • Hair Metal

2. Who were some of the top musical artists of the ’80s?

  • Michael Jackson
  • Madonna
  • Queen
  • Prince
  • The Police

Why did the ’80s music fan refuse to wear a jacket?

Because they were already wearing their favorite vinyl! 😀

Television in the ’80s

Classic TV Shows and Must-Watch Series

Television in the 1980s brought us memorable characters and iconic shows. From “The A-Team” to “The Cosby Show” and “Cheers,” there was something for everyone.

1. What were some of the most popular TV shows of the 1980s?

  • “The Simpsons”
  • “Dallas”
  • “Knight Rider”
  • “The Golden Girls”
  • “MAS*H”

2. Were there any groundbreaking moments in ’80s TV?

  • Yes, shows like “The Cosby Show” and “The Golden Girls” tackled important social issues and broke new ground in terms of representation and diversity.

Joke: Why did the ’80s TV viewer refuse to play cards with their remote control? Because it always wanted to change the channel!

Video Games and Arcades

The Birth of Gaming Culture

The ’80s saw the birth of video game culture, with arcades popping up everywhere and home gaming consoles making their debut. From “Pac-Man” to “Super Mario Bros.,” the ’80s revolutionized gaming.

1. What were some of the most iconic arcade games of the ’80s?

  • “Pac-Man”
  • “Donkey Kong”
  • “Space Invaders”
  • “Centipede”
  • “Galaga”

2. Which home gaming consoles were popular in the ’80s?

  • Atari 2600
  • Nintendo Entertainment System (NES)
  • Sega Master System
  • Commodore 64

Why did the ’80s gamer always carry a ladder to the arcade?

Because they wanted to reach the highest score! 😀

Fashion and Pop Culture Trends

Neon Colors, Big Hair, and Leg Warmers

The ’80s were known for their unique fashion trends, including neon colors, oversized sweaters, and leg warmers. It was a decade where individuality and self-expression reigned supreme.

1. What were some of the standout fashion trends of the ’80s?

  • Shoulder pads
  • Acid-washed jeans
  • Members Only jackets
  • Scrunchies
  • Fanny packs

2. Did the ’80s have any significant pop culture moments?

  • Yes, the ’80s witnessed the rise of MTV, which changed the way music was consumed and promoted.

Why did the ’80s fashionista refuse to wear a belt?

Because they were already holding up their pants with their hair!


The 1980s was a decade like no other, leaving an indelible mark on the world of entertainment and pop culture. Whether you fondly remember the movies, music, TV shows, video games, or fashion, the ’80s had something for everyone. As we look back on this remarkable era, let’s celebrate the nostalgia and keep the spirit of the ’80s alive with its unforgettable entertainment and a dash of humor. After all, in the ’80s, laughter was as much a part of life as neon leg warmers!

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