The Viva VHS Video Palace mystery VHS tape!

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Back in March of this year I was up in Birmingham to visit the Video Palace pop-up rental store that had been put together for one weekend by the great VIVA VHS aka the video king Dale.

This trip back to celebrate the past glories of the video store was so well put together and so much fun to look through that it was completely worth the day trip up there to check it out.

One funny thing on the day was that Dale had been given a mystery box of blank VHS tapes by someone who’d just walked in and donated them. So Dale just wrote FREE on the box and let people help themselves, which is where things got interesting for me as I decided to look through everything in the box and try and find the oldest looking tape in there. None of the tapes had anything written on them so you had no idea of what was on them, digging right to the bottom I found one very interesting looking tape, one that looked much older than anything else in the box.

This very 1980s looking Ferguson Videostar tape really stood out form the rest as it looked in great condition and  was a very rare 60-minute tape which you don’t see very often. So that was the one tape I decided to take on the day.

Now fast forward to November and the time was right to watch this tape and find out just what was on it! So what did I find…?

A  1984 TV recording of the Torvill And Dean TV special Path To Perfection, with the original adverts in it! OK maybe not the most exciting find, but it’s still fun to watch a 31-year old TV recording and it’s those adverts that really make it more interesting. One thing to note is that in this hour long TV show there’s only one advert break, if this was on TV now there’d be at least 3 or 4 advert breaks plus those annoying sponsorship idents to deal with as well, so things sure have changed.

Here’s a look at the documentary, it’s from a Central TV recording:

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And here’s my Top 5 Adverts from the tape, all from 1984, which I just uploaded to YouTube this week:

What was the mystery artwork we gave away at DukeFest?

We got a bit carried away this year with our DukeFest loyalty scheme; already having two things we’d planned to give away we decided to get hold of pizza boxes to house them in. This left space to put other bits in, so I put into action something else that I’d been thinking about, something very unique that we could also give away.

You see one of the many things I’m interested in is when an inappropriate film is marketed at kids, the best case is all the children’s toys that were created for Alien. But that’s not the only example, because David Lynch’s mind melting 1984 Sci-FI epic Dune, also had its marketing squarely aimed at young kids. Which lead us to the Dune coloring book!

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So armed with an original uncolored copy of the book I photocopied every page in it, then took the pages to anyone who I knew who was artistic and got them to pick their favourite page and color the photocopy in for us! So that’s what the mystery unique artwork was – a hand colored photocopy page from the children’s Dune coloring activity book!

Here’s a video we shot letting you look at how much went into coloring one of these in, it takes much longer than you expect:

Take a look below for our 10 original pieces that we gave away along with the other DukeFest goodies to anyone who attended all 4-nights this year.

“He who controls the Spice, controls the universe!”

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Here’s a great example of how weird this book is: “Hey kids, here’s some dead bodies to color in!”

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All the way from Germany, circa 1984…

Get VHS trailer tape delivery this morning, all the way from Germany, here’s an Atlas Video/Thorn EMI tape from way back in 1984, amazing condition as well. The only drawback is that all the trailers are in German, the seller had loads more available, but I went for this one as it has a lot of original local German film trailers on it. Keep your fingers crossed for some great finds.

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