Quiz about Dont Blink Television 1980s Edition
Quiz about Dont Blink Television 1980s Edition

Don't Blink Television: 1980s Edition Quiz


Television history is littered with shows that crashed and burned rather quickly. Here are some of the more notable failures from the 1980s.

A multiple-choice quiz by parrotman2006. Estimated time: 4 mins.
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Time
4 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
403,972
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
6 / 10
Plays
324
Last 3 plays: Guest 47 (5/10), Guest 35 (5/10), valleyaggie (5/10).
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. What 1970s era cop bombed as Rick Blaine in a 1983 television remake of the legendary film "Casablanca"? Hint

Robert Blake
Michael Douglas
Telly Savalas
David Soul

2. While a show based on "Westworld" was successful 35 years later, what science fiction writer bombed with a spinoff called "Beyond Westworld" in 1980? Hint

Michael Crichton
Dean Koontz
Terence Brook
Robert Anton Wilson

3. Which member of the cast of "Friends" has "Misfits of Science" (1985) on their resume? Hint

Jennifer Aniston
Matt LeBlanc
Lisa Kudrow
Courtney Cox

4. What future A-List actress was in the cast of the very short-lived 1980 police drama "B.A.D. Cats"? Hint

Sharon Stone
Annette Benning
Holly Hunter
Michelle Pfeiffer

5. "The Nutt House" (1989) bombed despite having what famous film director as one of its creators? Hint

Woody Allen
Mel Brooks
Garry Marshall
Mike Nichols

6. What member from the cast of "The Carol Burnett Show" tried to make a go of it as "Ace Crawford, Private Eye" (1983)? Hint

Harvey Korman
Tim Conway
Lyle Waggoner
Steve Lawrence

7. One of Scott Bakula's earliest roles was on the short lived series "Gung Ho" (1986). What was the name of his character? Hint

Hunt Stevenson
Googie
Kaz Kazuhiro
Buster

8. Suzanne Pleshette was in the short-lived series "Maggie Briggs" (1984). What was her profession on the show? Hint

Attorney
Teacher
Doctor
Journalist

9. What comedian starred in the short lived family sitcom "AKA Pablo" (1984)? Hint

Paul Rodriguez
Gabriel Iglesias
George Lopez
Freddie Prinze

10. The police drama "The Last Precinct" (1986) was pulled after only eight episodes. What "Batman" actor played Captain Rick Wright? Hint

Adam West
Alan Napier
Burt Ward
Neil Hamilton


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. What 1970s era cop bombed as Rick Blaine in a 1983 television remake of the legendary film "Casablanca"?

Answer: David Soul

David Soul attempted (and failed) to channel Humphrey Bogart in the very short lived "Casablanca" (1983). The show was on the air for only three episodes before getting canceled in April 1983. Soul was considerably more successful as Detective Ken "Hutch" Hutchinson in "Starsky and Hutch" (1975-1979). "Casablanca" also features a young Ray Liotta just two years into his acting career. Scatman Crothers played Sam, the piano player. The show was ranked number 17 on the TV Guide list of "Worst Shows of All Time."

Remarkably, "Casablanca" did win an Emmy Award. Cinematographer Joseph Biroc won for "The Masterbuilder's Woman," the show's second episode.

Robert Blake played Tony Barretta in the show of the same name from 1975 to 1978. Telly Savalas was NYPD Lieutenant Theo Kojak in the eponymous series which ran from 1973 to 1978. And Michael Douglas was Steve Keller in "The Streets of San Francisco" (1972-77).
2. While a show based on "Westworld" was successful 35 years later, what science fiction writer bombed with a spinoff called "Beyond Westworld" in 1980?

Answer: Michael Crichton

Crichton attempted to create a "Westworld" television show, and it failed after only three episodes. It is probably most notable as an early acting credit of Connie Selleca of "Greatest American Hero" (1981-86) fame. The basic storyline was about a corporate security chief trying to stop a mad scientist from taking over the world with killer robots.

Crichton was one of the more successful screenwriters of the 1970s, with "Westworld" (1973), "The Andromeda Strain" (1971) and "Coma" (1978) among his credits. He also created the "Jurassic Park" universe and "ER" (1994-2009), one of the most successful medical dramas in television history.
3. Which member of the cast of "Friends" has "Misfits of Science" (1985) on their resume?

Answer: Courtney Cox

"Misfits of Science" managed to last 16 episodes before NBC effectively pulled the plug on it in February 1986. Cox starred as Gloria Dinallo, a young woman with telekinesis. The show is about a team of wannabe superheroes who fight crime for a scientific institute. The producers did have some legal wrangles with Marvel over similarities with "X-Men."

Cox played Alex Keaton's girlfriend Lauren on "Family Ties" (1987-1989). She had a second bomb with "The Trouble with Larry", a sitcom starring Bronson Pinchot in 1993.

Jennifer Aniston was on the short-lived series "Molloy" (1990), "Ferris Bueller" (1990-91) and "Muddling Through" (1994) before getting "Friends" (1994-2004).

Matt LeBlanc starred in the short-lived shows "Top of the Heap" (1991) and "Vinnie and Bobby" (1992) before getting "Friends."

Lisa Kudrow gained fame as ditzy waitress Ursula on "Mad About You" (1992-1999).
4. What future A-List actress was in the cast of the very short-lived 1980 police drama "B.A.D. Cats"?

Answer: Michelle Pfeiffer

Michelle Pfeiffer played Samantha "Sunshine" Jensen, an LAPD detective who was part of the Burglary Auto Detail (hence BAD). The show lasted six episodes in January and February of 1980.

It was not Pfeiffer's first role in television; that would be "Delta House" (1979), a short-lived spinoff of "Animal House" in which Pfeiffer was known as "The Bombshell."

Pfeiffer got her big break in "Grease 2" (1983) and since then has starred in many Hollywood films, including "The Witches of Eastwick" (1987), "The Fabulous Baker Boys" (1989) and "White Oleander" (2002).
5. "The Nutt House" (1989) bombed despite having what famous film director as one of its creators?

Answer: Mel Brooks

Mel Brooks, Cloris Leachman, Harvey Korman, what could go wrong? Apparently a great deal, as the sitcom failed after only six episodes in the fall of 1989. It was set at a New York hotel. Korman was the manager of the hotel and Leachman was the head of housekeeping. The owner of the hotel was named Edwina Nutt (also Leachman). The show also starred Molly Hagan, fairly early in her career.

Brooks directed some of the funniest films of all time, including both "Blazing Saddles" and "Young Frankenstein" in 1974. Brooks also directed "The Producers" (1968) and later turned it into a hit Broadway Musical (intentionally).
6. What member from the cast of "The Carol Burnett Show" tried to make a go of it as "Ace Crawford, Private Eye" (1983)?

Answer: Tim Conway

Tim Conway played the bumbling detective, who would manage to solve the crimes despite his incompetence, much like Inspector Jacques Clousseau. The show lasted for five episodes on CBS in March and April 1983.

The core cast of "The Carol Burnett Show" was Burnett (obviously) and Vicki Lawrence, who were in every episode. Korman was in 256 episodes, Waggoner was in 185 and Tim Conway was in only 111 episodes. Steve Lawrence was a regular guest, with 29 episodes.
7. One of Scott Bakula's earliest roles was on the short lived series "Gung Ho" (1986). What was the name of his character?

Answer: Hunt Stevenson

"Gung Ho" was based on the 1986 film by Ron Howard that starred Michael Keaton. Bakula played Stevenson, the Keaton role, on the show. The show focused on labor-management relations in a Japanese owned auto plant in the United States. It only lasted nine episodes between December 1986 and February 1987.

Kaz Kazuhiro was played by Gedde Wattanabe, reprising his role from the film. Googie was played by Ron Howard's brother Clint. And Buster was played by Stephen Lee.

Bakula has had better luck since them. He played Doctor Sam Becket on the time travel drama "Quantum Leap" (1989-1993) and Captain Jonathan Archer on "Star Trek: Enterprise" (2001-2005). In 2014, he began playing Dwayne "King" Pride on "NCIS: New Orleans".
8. Suzanne Pleshette was in the short-lived series "Maggie Briggs" (1984). What was her profession on the show?

Answer: Journalist

Maggie Briggs was a reporter for the "New York Examiner" who worked on human interest stories. The show lasted only six episodes in March and April 1984.

Pleshette is best known for her work on "The Bob Newhart Show" (1972-78) where she played Emily, Bob's wife. She was a teacher on "Bob Newhart." Her first major film role was playing opposite Tippi Hedren in "The Birds" (1963).
9. What comedian starred in the short lived family sitcom "AKA Pablo" (1984)?

Answer: Paul Rodriguez

Comedian Paul Rodriguez was Paul Rivera. The show also starred Hector Elizondo, who appeared in five different shows that lasted less than one season during the 1980s. Pablo lasted for six weeks in March and April 1984, and is listed at number 45 on TV Guide's "50 Worst Television Shows of All Time."

The show focused on Rivera's attempts to become a stand-up comedian and his large extended family. The cast also included legendary Mexican actress Katy Jurado.

Rodriguez had two more failed series "Trial and Error" which lasted eight episodes in 1988, and "Grand Slam" which lasted six episodes in 1990. He has been considerably more successful in his film career, appearing in several dozen movies since 1984.

Gabriel Iglesias was born in 1976, and he was not one of the kids on the show. George Lopez had a sitcom from 2002 to 2007. Freddie Prinze died in 1977.
10. The police drama "The Last Precinct" (1986) was pulled after only eight episodes. What "Batman" actor played Captain Rick Wright?

Answer: Adam West

Batman himself, Adam West, played Captain Wright. The series was a knock-off of the "Police Academy" films, which were extremely popular in the mid 1980s. West played the slightly goofy captain in a precinct filled with crazy characters. Ernie Hudson from "Ghostbusters" is probably the most prominent 1980s name in the cast. The pilot aired in January 1986 and the show's other six episodes aired in April and May.

Burt Ward was Robin, Alan Napier (1903-1988) was butler Alfred Pennyworth and Neil Hamilton (1899-1984) played Commissioner Gordon.
Source: Author parrotman2006

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor kyleisalive before going online.
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