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Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum

In a way this one is a dubious entry in the list of loud eighties themes, because it's from a mini-series that aired once. In 1986, yes, but it's hardly iconically eighties. I love it, though, so there. And it is loud, and it is bouncy, and it does have all manner of wonderful things in it, as does the TV show it accompanies. Forget flying cars, forget huge, shouty machine guns, forget giant explosions. What's the one thing guaranteed to beat all of those things hands down?

Yep. Pirates.

Return To Treasure Island was made in 1985, in Jamaica, Spain and Wales, back in the days when ITV actually had some money to spend on TV shows (or, more accurately, before Margaret Thatcher killed ITV, but let's not get political. Actually yes, let's. Grr). Anyway... it told the story of Jim Hawkins, all growed up since the original Treasure Island, and embarking on a trip across the world to take up a job on one of Squire Trelawney's plantations. Since Jim's simple ship voyage across the Atlantic managed to take in mutiny, pirates, war with the Spanish, several kinds of capture and near death experience; plus several other brushes with death before he'd even managed to get on the damned boat, you can see that it wasn't a very sedate sort of show. Happily. Over ten episodes, Jim managed to get into more trouble than most TV heroes manage in several full seasons, most of it whilst wearing the same, increasingly bedraggled, blue waistcoast. And it was wonderful, all of it. The cast, the swords, the sailing ships, the swords, the sparkly treasure, the swords and everything. So you can see why it was only screened once, and why the company who made it went bust shortly afterwards.


Pirates, people. Pirates. And swords and sailing ships and Brian Blessed with a beard even wilder than usual. And swords. And yes, okay, so there were explosions too. That is what television's for, after all.

Otherworld update. Episode seven (the penultimate one) is a bizarre fairy tale, sort of Beauty And The Beast meets Lost In Space. The mother, whose role in proceedings has so far amounted to looking worried a lot, gets kidnapped by a monster, at which point it all goes weird and soft focus, with a peculiar camera filter. I really think they'd better stick to letting the two teenagers lead the action. And they've lost their youngest son again. Perhaps it's time to put him on a leash.

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