An introduction to the 1980s
Dynamic could be one way to summarize the era of the 1980s. Bank failures, bailouts, bad real estate loans and deregulation, along with Reaganomics and the Iran-Contra Affair, marked it as a time of consistent change and uncertainty. This same decade saw one of the best stock market gains, followed swiftly by a significant crash—all in conjunction with mass consumerism and the birth of the yuppie.
While the economic and political climate evolved, the pop culture of the 1980s had its share of flair. Thanks to the advance of New Wave music, the Rubik’s Cube, Ray-Bans, acid wash jeans, the Swatch watch and big hair bands, the trends of the time are unforgettable. This pop culture explosion also launched iconic trendsetters onto the scene in film, television and music. The celebrity Brat Pack appeared in coming-of-age films like The Breakfast Club and St. Elmo’s Fire, and the concept of music videos was propelled to new levels with the introduction of MTV in 1981. Famous names and faces—including Molly Ringwald, Sean Penn, Demi Moore, Michael Jackson, Prince, Bon Jovi, Beastie Boys, Motley Crue and Run-D.M.C. (to name just a few)—owe it all to Excessive Eighties dynamics.
Skim the sections below to read some fun facts on Arizona, BCBSAZ, pop culture and the cost of living in the 1980s!