Cover Up!

     So there I was last month, sat in my local town hall on an uncomfortable chair about to give blood. I have done it a few times now and can recommend it. It feels very rewarding, knowing that you are doing so much good by doing so little. I have often toyed with the idea of those ‘community projects’ that businesses try to get their employees to do, but it’s not for me. I don’t much fancy being up to my arse in brambles and stinging nettles all day clearing up shit in a youth centre car park – as far as I’m concerned that’s a job for young offenders. But giving blood, sure I can do that, and I recommend it to anyone as a way to a) feel a bit better about yourself and b) potentially mean the difference between life and death. So try it.
But I digress. I don’t want to write about giving blood, but rather by a strange thought that seemed to manifest itself for no other reason than to give my brain a little exercise as I was waiting for my name to be called – like the equivalent of watching GMTV when the fit weather girl is on. (You know the one). That, and trying to see up Kate Garraway’s skirt, is the only thing that gets me up in the morning (double entendre alert).
The thought that graced my scattered and misspent mind was of those 80’s TV shows that I used to love watching as a kid. The kind that were usually on a Friday night around 8 o’clock, always American and nearly all of them were Glen A. Larson productions.
There used to be a plethora of cracking American adventure shows. 
A point for you if you remember any of these:
MAGNUM P.I.
THE A TEAM
THE FALL GUY
BUCK ROGERS IN THE 25TH CENTURY
THE DUKES OF HAZZARD
THE EQUALIZER
REMINGTON STEEL
MANIMAL
TJ HOOKER
But those are the easy ones, the ones everyone always remembers. But how about some of the second stringers –  you know, the ones that no one has tried to remake and fuck up. 
Take an extra 2 points for each one of these shows that you remember (and don’t lie, I’ll be watching):
AUTOMAN
BJ AND THE BEAR
HUNTER
TALES OF THE GOLD MONKEY
MATT HOUSTON
And they’re just a small list that I can remember off the top of my head. 
The actual stray thought in the town hall was of one of the lesser known, a series from 1984 called 
COVER UP 
It had an ingenius concept……..good-looking spies go undercover as models to run top secret black operations. It has somehow slipped through the cracks of most people’s memories, but not mine. I remember it as clear as day and it was even better than C.A.T.S Eyes with Jill  (Gentle Touch’) Gascoigne and Leslie (trout lips) Ash.
You had ridiculously good-looking men with chiselled jaws and a .45mm neatly tucked into one of the indentations of their six-pack, lots of car chases against a pounding 80’s soundtrack, explosions, hot girls (for the dads) and one of the all-time greatest TV themes in the history of TV themes.
Don’t know it?
I’ll bet you do. You know it, and you know who sung it, but you forgot that it came from a TV show, (by way of the movie Footloose BTW)

Holding Out for a Hero by Bonnie Tyler, no less.
Yes, it’s true! 
That classic bit of Jim Steinman genius – although for the TV show it was sung by EG Daily, pop-fans! 
The series did well in the states up until Jon Erik Hexum (another name that joins the pantheon of brave thespians that have died for their art – alongside Brandon Lee and Roy Kinnear to name but two). Hexum screwed up filming schedules by finding out the hard way that putting a gun loaded with blanks to your temple and pulling the trigger is not the most successful way to not blow your frigging brains out.
And so they needed to replace Hexum STAT!!!! But problem…he needs to be ridiculously good-looking! Yipes! This is Hollywood! Wherever are we going to find a hunk at short notice?
They went for Anthony Hamilton, a British actor raised in Australia (who sadly died in 1995 from pneumonia). With the influx of British actors making it big on America TV at the moment, who would have thought that we had a Brit doing it way back in the 80’s.
It’s just a shame that shows like Cover Up – and its stars – have so quickly been forgotten.
Now I have a problem….some of those shows brought back TOO MANY memories and I am now confronted with how much of an 80’s TV geek I am. For example….the lead actor in HUNTER was played by Fred Dryer, and the TV show’s makers were involved in a bitter legal dispute with the makers of the Dirtty Harry films as Hunter was basically a Harry Callahan rip-off….right down to the Clint Eastwood hairstyle.
CHECK it out on the graveyard of memories that I like to call the internet.
NEXT TIME:  Tales of the Gold Monkey
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