Thursday, January 3, 2008

Night Flight

When not thoroughly engrossed in the wonder of Seagalogy, I found a little time to surf the Internet during the holiday. As is so often the case, I did some hunting on random topics that came to mind, one being the 1980's series Night Flight which aired on the USA network in the 80's. For those who didn't experience this groundbreaking series, Night Flight was a 4-hour show which featured segments on New Wave musical artists/videos, cult films, avant garde film shorts and documentaries, and much more. Growing up I can remember spending many a Friday and/or Saturday evening staying up most of the night watching a parade of some of the coolest videos/films I had ever seen. It was there that I was first introduced to cult films such as Eraserhead, Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Andy Warhol's Dracula & Frankenstein, Fantastic Planet, and a host of others. Even neater, they often showed videos MTV wouldn't touch for a variety of reasons. It was just an amazing show, and truly ahead of its time.

The series ran from 1981-1988, and then morphed into USA's Up All Night with hostess Rhonda Shear. From that point forward it just featured B-movies all night long, most of which were the bottom of the barrel. It was fun, but never achieved the degree of cool it did in its original incarnation. Eventually Gilbert Gottfried took over hosting duties, and it simply wasn't worth watching. Thankfully MonsterVision with Joe Bob Briggs showed up a few years later on TNT to give weekend night owls something decent to watch : )

Anyhoo, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that there are several fan sites out there for the original Night Flight, including everything from episode guides to clips. If you're curious, check out the Wikipedia entry (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Night_Flight_(TV_series)) as it has a good description and several links to get you started. In an era when there was no Internet Night Flight was an amazing resource for learning about cult filmdom (and music), and here's hoping a talked about revival eventually sees the light of day!

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