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1988 Countdown #78: Pat Benatar, “All Fired Up”

Back from the commercial break, we find Kevin Seal standing on top of a ladder, with the top half of his body out of the frame. “The top one hundred of 1988!” he shouts. He jumps off the ladder and then lies down on the floor. Standing up and dusting himself off, Seal says, “It’s […]

posted 9 October 2008 in 1988. 2 comments

1988 Countdown #81: Van Halen, “Finish What Ya Started”

Kevin Seal returns, and ponders the question of whether the Van Halen album title OU812 was a shot at David Lee Roth’s Eat ’Em and Smile. He says that this video (“Finish What Ya Started”–he makes sure to overenunciate the “Ya”) was directed by Andy Morahan, “who did George Michael’s videos, which is why it […]

posted 18 September 2008 in 1988. 6 comments

1988 Countdown: U2, “Angel of Harlem”

Kevin Seal explains that they’re shoehorning in another video that didn’t make the cutoff date, one that will in all likelihood appear in the 1989 countdown. (Basically, this means that MTV blocked out time based on ten videos an hour, but some hours (two out of the first two), they have time to play eleven.) […]

posted 7 August 2008 in 1988. 2 comments

1988 Countdown #88: Michael Bolton, “(Sittin’ on) The Dock of the Bay”

Back from the commercial break, we are joined again by Kevin Seal, wearing a black jacket over a black t-shirt. “This is the top funky one hundred of 1988,” he says, and then hypes the “Big Bang ’89” New Year’s Eve event later that night on MTV: “We’ll count down the minutes to midnight, in […]

posted 17 July 2008 in 1988. 2 comments

1988 Countdown #94: Michael Jackson, “Another Part of Me”

(There was actually one more ad in that last commercial break, a promo spot for MTV, featuring a guy tied up on the floor of an elevator, being forced to listen to the elevator operator sing along to a swelling orchestral melody.) “Five of the top 100 videos of 1988 are Michael Jackson videos,” Kevin […]

posted 12 June 2008 in 1988. 2 comments

1988 Countdown #96: Glenn Frey, “True Love”

Back to Kevin Seal, who looks into the camera seriously, apparently channeling Dan Rather, and says, “’88 was a really heavy year for a lot of us, including Glenn Frey.” Seal then cracks a smile and snarks about Frey for a little while, egregiously dropping the G in the title of his latest album, Soul […]

posted 29 May 2008 in 1988. 7 comments

1988 Countdown: Commercial Break #1

And we go to a commercial break! First, there’s an MTV promo touting their dedication to new music. “Every major band was a new name at one time,” says a bass voice (moderately portentous, but without enough presence to get movie-trailer work). Then they flash the names of these brand-new bands that they’re backing with […]

posted 15 May 2008 in 1988. 2 comments