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1984 Fun Facts and Trivia

Gregory DeVictor is a trivia enthusiast who loves to write articles on American nostalgia.

This article teaches you fun facts, trivia, and history from the year 1984.

This article teaches you fun facts, trivia, and history from the year 1984.

A Look Back at 1984

What are some fun facts, trivia, and history events from the year 1984?

  1. What was the U.S. economy like in 1984? According to ClevelandFed.org, the American economy “steamed into its second year of recovery, with little perceptible reacceleration in inflation. In the first quarter of 1984, gains in employment and production accelerated at near-record rates; new-auto sales rose to their highest levels since 1979; and housing starts reached their highest rates since 1978.”
  2. In the 1984 U.S. presidential election, incumbent Republican President Ronald Reagan defeated former Vice President Walter Mondale, the Democratic candidate. Reagan carried every state except for Washington, D.C. and Mondale's home state of Minnesota. He also won 525 electoral votes to Mondale’s 13.
  3. AT&T officially “spun off” its 22 local operating companies into seven regional phone companies.
  4. Geneticist Alec Jeffreys invented DNA fingerprinting, after he realized that you could detect variations in human DNA in the form of minisatellites.
  5. In 1980, the United States led a boycott of the Moscow Summer Olympics. In 1984, “when the event moved to Los Angeles, the Soviet Union returned the favor. Fourteen Eastern Bloc countries and allies (including Cuba, Poland, and East Germany) refused to compete in the 1984 games.”
  6. British coal miners began a twelve-month strike, which became known as "the most bitter industrial dispute in British history."
  7. Clara Peller first asked "Where's the Beef?" in a Wendy’s television commercial.
  8. McDonald’s made their 50 billionth hamburger.
  9. In 1984, A&E Networks, Dell Computer, Kashi, LA Fitness, Morningstar, Papa John’s Pizza, and Rita’s Italian Ice all opened for business.
  10. Virgin Atlantic Airways began operations with a maiden flight from Gatwick Airport in London to Newark Airport in New Jersey.
  11. The LA Raiders were the Super Bowl champs, the Detroit Tigers won the World Series, and the Edmonton Oilers clinched the Stanley Cup.
  12. The Chicago White Sox and Milwaukee Brewers played the longest game in MLB history—eight hours and six minutes and over 25 innings. Harold Baines ended the game by hitting a home run to lift the White Sox to a 7-6 win over the Brewers.
  13. Luis Aparicio, Don Drysdale, Harmon Killebrew, Rick Ferrell, and Pee Wee Reese were all inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
  14. Prince’s Purple Rain album spent 24 consecutive weeks at number one on the Billboard 200, and more than 32 weeks in the top 10.
  15. On January 27, Michael Jackson’s heavily-gelled hair caught on fire while he was filming a pyrotechnical shot for a Pepsi commercial.
  16. Terms of Endearment won five Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director.
  17. The first syndicated version of Jeopardy! aired, and the TV soap Edge of Night ended a 28-year run.
  18. The first annual Soap Opera Digest Awards were held, and Days of Our Lives won every award in the daytime categories.
  19. At the 57th Scripps National Spelling Bee, 13-year-old Daniel Greenblatt of Sterling, Virginia spelled the winning word "luge."
  20. On June 8, 1949, George Orwell's "dystopian" novel—1984—first appeared on bookstore shelves from Portland, Maine to Portland, Oregon. BestLifeOnline tells us that 1984 has been adapted “into plays, ballets, operas, TV shows, and films. It also made an indelible mark on our lexicon, ushering in such words and phrases as ‘Orwellian,’ ‘Newspeak,’ and ‘memory hole.’”

Here are the five most popular TV shows from 1984-85:

  1. Dynasty (ABC)
  2. Dallas (CBS)
  3. The Cosby Show (NBC)
  4. 60 Minutes (CBS)
  5. Family Ties (NBC)

Here are ten food and beverage trends for the year:

  1. Bagel Bites
  2. Capri Sun
  3. Chicken and veal marsala
  4. Chocolate mousse
  5. Cool Ranch Doritos
  6. Diet Coke
  7. Jell-O Pudding Pops
  8. Lean Cuisine frozen dinners
  9. Quiche
  10. Sloppy Joes

Whether you’re a millennial, a 50-something, or a baby boomer, this article teaches you fun facts, trivia, and history from the year 1984. Find out about popular TV shows, movies, music, famous authors and novels, cool sports facts, and other interesting pop culture trends to get the right mix of questions and answers for your 1980s-themed trivia quiz.

Table of Contents

For easier reading, I have divided this article into the following categories:

  1. Grocery Prices in the Year 1984
  2. What Was the U.S. Economy Like in 1984?
  3. History Facts From the USA and World
  4. Sports Trivia
  5. Miscellaneous Fun Facts, Trivia, and Pop Culture Trends
  6. Nobel Prize Winners
  7. Best-Selling Fiction Books
  8. Most Popular Television Shows From 1984-85
  9. Highest-Grossing Films
  10. Horror Movies From 1984
  11. Biggest Pop Music Artists
  12. Top 40 Songs for the Year
  13. Favorite Video Games
  14. Food and Beverage Trivia
  15. Famous Weddings and Divorces
  16. Well-Known People Who Died in 1984
  17. America’s Largest Corporations
  18. Companies and Brands Launched in 1984
In 1984, the Ford Motor Company was one of America’s largest corporations.

In 1984, the Ford Motor Company was one of America’s largest corporations.

1. Grocery Prices in the Year 1984

These grocery facts have been made available courtesy of the Morris County Public Library in Whippany, NJ.

  1. Apples (Granny Smith): 69 cents a pound
  2. Bacon (ShopRite): $1.19 for a one-pound package
  3. Beans (Hanover, baked): 99 cents for four 14.5-ounce cans
  4. Beef (ground, extra lean): $1.87 per pound
  5. Bread: 59 cents for a 20-ounce loaf
  6. Cereal (Kellogg’s Rice Krispies): $1.89 for a 19-ounce box
  7. Cheese (Borden singles): $1.89 for a one-pound package
  8. Chicken (Perdue OVEN STUFFER®): 79 cents a pound
  9. Coffee (Hills Brothers): $1.79 for a 13-ounce can
  10. Cookies (Oreos): $1.89 for a 20-ounce package
  11. Corn (Green Giant): 63 cents for a 12-ounce can
  12. Eggs: 89 cents a dozen
  13. Fish (cod fillets, fresh): $1.99 a pound
  14. Hot dogs (Oscar Mayer): $1.39 for a one-pound package
  15. Ice cream (Dolly Madison): $1.99 for a half-gallon carton
  16. Juice (Hawaiian Punch): 59 cents for a 46-ounce can
  17. Juice (Minute Maid, orange): $1.69 for a half-gallon carton
  18. Ketchup (Heinz): $1.19 for a 32-ounce bottle
  19. Margarine (Land O’Lakes): 39 cents for a one-pound package
  20. Mayonnaise (Kraft): $1.59 for a quart jar
  21. Milk: $2.26 a gallon
  22. Lettuce (large head): 49 cents apiece
  23. Oranges: Five for 99 cents
  24. Peanut butter (Peter Pan): $1.29 for an 18-ounce jar
  25. Potatoes (Idaho): $1.29 for a five-pound bag
  26. Preserves (Welch’s, grape): 99 cents for a 32-ounce jar
  27. Soda (Sprite): 99 cents for a two-liter bottle
  28. Spaghetti (Prince): $1.00 for three 16-ounce boxes
  29. Tea (Salada): $1.79 for a 100-count box
  30. Tuna (Starkist, solid, oil or water): 89 cents for one 6.5-ounce can
In 1984, A&E Networks—an American media company that owns a group of television channels that are available via cable and satellite in the U.S. and abroad—was founded. A&E stands for Arts & Entertainment.

In 1984, A&E Networks—an American media company that owns a group of television channels that are available via cable and satellite in the U.S. and abroad—was founded. A&E stands for Arts & Entertainment.

2. What Was the U.S. Economy Like in 1984?

  1. From July 1981 to November 1982, the U.S. economy experienced the most significant recession since the Great Depression of 1929-33. By 1983, however, the economy had rebounded and the United States entered into one of the longest periods of sustained economic growth since World War II.
  2. What was the U.S. economy like in 1984? According to ClevelandFed.org, the American economy “steamed into its second year of recovery, with little perceptible reacceleration in inflation. In the first quarter of 1984, gains in employment and production accelerated at near-record rates; new-auto sales rose to their highest levels since 1979; and housing starts reached their highest rates since 1978.”
  3. BLS.gov remarks that “U.S. import prices declined for the second consecutive year in 1984, decreasing 1.7 percent after a 2.5-percent drop in 1983.” The BLS adds that “The appreciation of the U.S. dollar and plentiful supplies of foreign-produced goods were the principal factors exerting downward pressure on import prices, despite the Nation's vigorous economic growth.”
  4. In January 1984, the national unemployment rate was 7.9%. The New York Times reports that total employment—including 1,686,000 members of the armed forces—rose by 250,000 in December 1983 to 104,876,000. On the other hand, 9,026,000 people were still without jobs and looking for work.
  5. In 1984, an unprecedented number of working mothers were part of the labor force. BLS.gov explains that “A record 19.5 million, or 6 out of 10 [mothers] with children under 18 years old, were in the labor force in March 1984. In contrast, 14 years earlier, 6 out of 10 [mothers] stayed at home.”
  6. The inflation rate was 4.32%. According to In2013Dollars.com, “Purchasing power decreased by 4.32% in 1984 compared to 1983. On average, you would have to spend 4.32% more money in 1984 than in 1983 for the same item. In other words, $1 in 1983 is equivalent in purchasing power to about $1.04 in 1984.”
  7. In 1984, median household income in the United States was $26,430, about 7.7 percent higher than the 1983 median of $24,550. Census.gov tells us that “After adjusting for the 4.3-percent increase in consumer prices between 1983 and 1984, real median family income still showed a significant gain of 3.3 percent. Not since 1972 has family income increased at a faster rate.”
  8. Census.gov also points out that “Between 1983 and 1984, the poverty population fell from 35.5 million to 33.7 million. The poverty rate in 1984 was 14.4 percent, also significantly lower than the 1983 rate of 15.3 percent.” (The poverty threshold for a family of four in 1984 was $10,609.)
  9. In 1984, the average price of a new home sold in the United States was $79,000.
  10. The average monthly rent was $350.
  11. Americans paid an average of $11,374 for a new car, up $767 from the previous year.
  12. The sticker price on a 1984 Ford Mustang convertible was $13,499, while a new Chevrolet Chevette cost $5,289.
  13. A gallon of milk cost $2.26, bacon was $1.19 for a one-pound package, and eggs were 89 cents a dozen.
  14. In January, the original Macintosh computer went on sale for $2,500.
  15. The price of a movie ticket was $2.50.
  16. You could purchase a Chevrolet Corvette for $23,392.
  17. The average price for a ticket to the 1984 Olympics was $17.00.
  18. Tuition, room, and board for all four-year colleges and universities in the U.S. averaged $4,167.
  19. The National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners reported that “their national survey of residential electric bills showed [that] rates climbed from roughly 7.6 cents per kilowatt hour to 8.2 cents during June, July and August 1984 over the same three months in 1983.”
  20. A gallon of gas averaged $1.10.
  21. The cost of a first-class stamp was 20 cents.
  22. People born between 1980 and 1984 have an average of $5,689 more in credit card debt than their parents did at that age.
  23. On the last day of trading for the year, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 1,178.59, down 3.74% from the previous year. The Dow’s high for the year was 1,287, and its low was 1,086.
  24. On December 19, the prime rate was $10.75%.
  25. DollarTimes.com reminds us that “In the year 1984, the price of gold was $383.00 per ounce. This is equivalent to $971.58 in 2020 dollars.”
In 1984, McDonald’s made their 50 billionth hamburger.

In 1984, McDonald’s made their 50 billionth hamburger.

3. History Facts From the USA and World

  1. In 1984, Ronald Reagan was president of the United States, and George H. W. Bush was the vice president.
  2. On January 8, 1982, the Justice Department and AT&T reached a settlement in the U.S. government's seven-year-old antitrust suit against the communications giant. The breakup of AT&T would affect every aspect of the American telephone industry, from monthly residential bills to the yellow pages. On January 1, 1984, AT&T officially “spun off its 22 local operating companies into seven regional phone companies.” These companies included NYNEX Corporation, Pacific Telesis, Ameritech, Bell Atlantic, Southwestern Bell Corporation, BellSouth, and US West. Under the agreement, each company would control a certain geographical area in the U.S. For example, Ameritech would oversee the five-state region of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin.
  3. On January 1, New York City’s transit fare increased from 75 cents to 90 cents.
  4. On January 2, Wilson Goode became Philadelphia’s first black mayor.
  5. On January 10, Clara Peller first asked "Where's the Beef?" in a Wendy’s television commercial.
  6. On January 10, the U.S. re-established diplomatic relations with the Vatican after nearly 117 years.
  7. On January 29, President Reagan announced that he would seek a second term.
  8. On February 1, American attorney and businessman David Stern became the new NBA Commissioner, succeeding Larry O'Brien.
  9. On February 18, Italy and the Vatican agreed to abolish Roman Catholicism as the state religion.
  10. On March 6, British coal miners began a twelve-month strike. ArchivesHub.jisc.ac.uk tells us that “The miners' strike of 1984-1985 was one of the most bitter industrial disputes Britain has ever seen. The year-long strike involved hardship and violence as pit communities from South Wales to Scotland fought to retain their local collieries—for many the only source of employment. The catalyst for the strike was the announcement by the National Coal Board (NCB) on 6th March 1984 that it intended to cut national capacity by 4 million tonnes and close 20 pits with the loss of 20,000 jobs.”
  11. On March 29, the Baltimore Colts relocated to Indianapolis.
  12. On April 13, baseball legend Pete Rose became the first National League player to get 4,000 hits in a career.
  13. On June 19, in a rare television interview on ABC’s Nightline, Chief Justice Warren Burger “made a plea for giving prison inmates work, educational opportunities, and better living conditions.”
  14. On June 22, Virgin Atlantic Airways began operations with a flight from Gatwick, England to Newark.
  15. On June 29, MLB legend Pete Rose played in his 3,309th game, surpassing former MLB player Carl Yastrzemski.
  16. On July 19, the Democratic National Convention nominated Walter F. Mondale for president and Geraldine A. Ferraro for vice president.
  17. On August 22, the Republican National Convention nominated President Ronald W. Reagan and Vice President George H. W. Bush for reelection.
  18. On September 10, geneticist Alec Jeffreys invented DNA fingerprinting, after he realised that you could detect variations in human DNA in the form of minisatellites.
  19. On September 17, Reggie Jackson became the 13th MLB player to hit 500 home runs.
  20. On October 12, an IRA bombing took place at Brighton’s Grand Hotel, where British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and “members of Britain's Conservative Party were gathered for a party conference.” The BBC tells us that “Five people died and 34 were injured in the attack aimed at prime minister Margaret Thatcher and her cabinet.”
  21. On October 31, Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her bodyguards, Satwant Singh and Beant Singh, at her home in New Delhi.
  22. On November 6, the U.S. presidential election was held. Incumbent Republican President Ronald Reagan defeated former Vice President Walter Mondale, the Democratic candidate.
  23. President Reagan was 3,761 votes shy of winning Minnesota, Walter Mondale’s home state. If Reagan had carried Minnesota, he would have won every state in the 1984 presidential election.
  24. On November 20, McDonald’s made their 50 billionth hamburger.
  25. On December 19, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang signed the Sino-British Joint Declaration, “formally committing Britain to surrender Hong Kong to China in 1997 in return for terms guaranteeing a 50-year extension of its capitalist economic system.”
In 1984, the TV soap Edge of Night ended a 28-year run on CBS.

In 1984, the TV soap Edge of Night ended a 28-year run on CBS.

4. Sports Trivia

Generally suitable for all age groups, sports questions are a welcome addition to any trivia quiz.

  1. Indianapolis 500: Rick Mears
  2. Kentucky Derby: Swale
  3. NBA Champions: Boston Celtics
  4. NCAA Basketball Champions: Georgetown
  5. NCAA Football Champs: BYU
  6. Orange Bowl: Miami over Nebraska
  7. Rose Bowl: UCLA over Illinois
  8. Stanley Cup Champs: Edmonton Oilers
  9. Sugar Bowl: Auburn over Michigan
  10. Super Bowl XVII Champions: Los Angeles Raiders
  11. Tour de France: Greg LeMond and Bernard Hinault
  12. U.S. Open Golf: Fuzzy Zoeller
  13. U.S. Open Tennis (men/women): John McEnroe/Martina Navratilova
  14. Wimbledon (men/women): John McEnroe/Martina Navratilova
  15. World Series: Detroit Tigers
In 1984, the Detroit Tigers won the World Series.

In 1984, the Detroit Tigers won the World Series.

5. Miscellaneous Fun Facts, Trivia, and Pop Culture Trends

PBS.org explains that pop culture is that loose blend of books, music, fashion and other daily ephemera that contributes to the identity of a society at a particular point in time. In the 1980s, radio, film, television, and books defined the essence of American pop culture.

  1. In 1984, popular baby names were Michael, Christopher, Matthew, Joshua, Jennifer, Jessica, Ashley, and Amanda.
  2. The average life expectancy at birth in the United States was 74.7 years.
  3. The cost of a Super Bowl ad was $368,000.
  4. Popular Halloween costumes included Alex Owens (Flashdance), Madonna, Prince, Ghostbusters, and a 1980s prom queen.
  5. Must-have back-to-school supplies were Casio wrist calculators, pencil cases, manual pencil sharpeners, square metal lunch boxes, and Mead Composition notebooks.
  6. Favorite holiday gifts were Cabbage Patch Kids, Trivial Pursuit, Transformers Action Figures, and Tetris—perhaps one of the most popular video games of all time.
  7. Fashion trends included off-the-shoulder sweatshirts, members-only jackets, Hawaiian shirts, baracuta jackets, Guess jeans, Ray-Ban sunglasses, Calvin Klein underwear, and Kangol hats.
  8. Fashion icons for the year included Carol Alt, Catherine Bach, Kim Basinger, Jacqueline Bisset, Christie Brinkley, Diahann Carroll, Joan Collins, Bo Derek, Farrah Fawcett, Melanie Griffith, Kathy Ireland, Jessica Lange, Kelly LeBrock, Heather Locklear, Elle Macpherson, Madonna, Dolly Parton, Princess Diana, Victoria Principal, Molly Ringwald, Brooke Shields, Helen Slater, and Suzanne Somers.
  9. Vanessa Williams (New Jersey) won the Miss America crown.
  10. Mai Shanley (New Mexico) became Miss USA.
  11. Time magazine’s “Person of the Year” was Peter Ueberroth, “an American sports and business executive known for his involvement in the Olympics and in Major League Baseball.”
  12. At the 56th Academy Awards, which honored the best films of 1983, Terms of Endearment won an Oscar for Best Picture, James L. Brooks (Terms of Endearment) won an Oscar for Best Director, Robert Duvall (Tender Mercies) won an Oscar for Best Actor, and Shirley MacLaine (Terms of Endearment) won an Oscar for Best Actress.
  13. At the 36th Primetime Emmy Awards, Cheers (NBC) won an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series, and Hill Street Blues (NBC) won an Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series. Likewise, John Ritter (Three’s Company) won an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, and Jane Curtin (Kate & Allie) won an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series.
  14. On January 9, TV's Bloopers & Practical Jokes premiered on NBC.
  15. On February 2, the first annual Soap Opera Digest Awards were held, and Days of Our Lives won every award in the daytime categories.
  16. On February 28, musician and entertainer Michael Jackson won eight awards at the 26th Grammy Awards show.
  17. On March 19, the sitcom Kate & Allie—starring Susan Saint James and Jane Curtin—premiered on CBS.
  18. On June 25, Prince released his Purple Rain album. On August 4, after five weeks on Billboard’s chart, Purple Rain reached number one. “The album spent 24 consecutive weeks at number one on the Billboard 200 from August 4, 1984 to January 18, 1985, and more than 32 weeks in the top 10, becoming one of the most successful soundtracks ever.”
  19. On September 10, the first syndicated version of Jeopardy! aired, and Alex Trebek was the program's host.
  20. On September 16, the crime drama Miami Vice debuted on NBC.
  21. On September 20, The Cosby Show premiered on NBC.
  22. On September 30, the crime-drama television series Murder, She Wrote, starring Angela Landsbury, debuted on CBS.
  23. On December 14, sportscaster Howard Cosell retired from Monday Night Football.
  24. On December 28, the TV soap Edge of Night ended a 28-year run on CBS. Soaps.Fandom.com tells us that “Edge premiered on April 2, 1956, the same day that As the World Turns premiered, and throughout its history had always been unique as a soap opera. Along with As the World Turns, which was a more traditional soap opera, Edge was the first soap opera that ran thirty minutes in length. (At that time, 15 minutes was the usual standard running time for soaps.) Edge was very unique, in that the show focused more on crime, mystery, and courtroom action as opposed to the usual marital and romantic dilemmas that other soaps focused on.”
  25. In 1984, sugar-free Jell-O appeared on grocery store shelves for the first time.
In 1984, Dynasty was the most popular TV show.

In 1984, Dynasty was the most popular TV show.

6. Nobel Prize Winners

Beth Rowen tells us that winning a Nobel Prize is a life-changing honor. Whether the laureate is an internationally known figure (such as Mother Teresa) or a scientist from obscurity (like Richard R. Ernst), the award brings worldwide recognition that highlights one's life work and provides the funds to continue the mission.

This Nobel Prize information from 1984 has been made available courtesy of NobelPrize.com.

  1. Chemistry: Robert Bruce Merrifield
  2. Economics: Richard Stone
  3. Literature: Jaroslav Seifert
  4. Peace: Desmond Tutu
  5. Physics: Carlo Rubbia and Simon van der Meer
  6. Physiology or medicine: Georges J. F. Köhler, César Milstein, and Niels Kaj Jerne

7. Best-Selling Fiction Books

This book trivia has been made available courtesy of PublishersWeekly.com.

  1. The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub
  2. The Aquitaine Progression by Robert Ludlum
  3. The Sicilian by Mario Puzo
  4. Love and War by John Jakes
  5. The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Seuss
  6. ". . . And Ladies of the Club" by Helen Hooven Santmyer
  7. The Fourth Protocol by Frederick Forsyth
  8. Full Circle by Danielle Steel
  9. The Life and Hard Times of Heidi Abromowitz by Joan Rivers
  10. Lincoln by Gore Vidal

8. Most Popular Television Shows From 1984-85

This TV trivia has been made available courtesy of Nielsen TV Research.

1. Dynasty (ABC)

2. Dallas (CBS)

3. The Cosby Show (NBC)

4. 60 Minutes (CBS)

5. Family Ties (NBC)

6. The A-Team (NBC)

7. Simon & Simon (CBS)

8. Murder, She Wrote (CBS)

9. Knots Landing (CBS)

10. Falcon Crest (CBS)

In 1984, Ghostbusters was one of the highest-grossing films.

In 1984, Ghostbusters was one of the highest-grossing films.

9. Highest-Grossing Films

This movie trivia has been made available courtesy of The-Numbers.com.

1. Beverly Hills Cop

2. Ghostbuster

3. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

4. Gremlins

5. The Karate Kid

6. Police Academy

7. Footloose

8. Romancing The Stone

9. Star Trek III: The Search For Spock

10. Splash

10. Horror Movies From 1984

  1. A Nightmare on Elm Street
  2. Body Double
  3. Deadly Intruder
  4. Disconnected
  5. Don’t Open Till Christmas
  6. Frankenweenie
  7. Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter
  8. Ghostbusters
  9. Gremlins
  10. Invitation to Hell
  11. Night of the Comet
  12. Ninja III: The Domination
  13. Razorback
  14. Satan’s Blade
  15. Scream for Help
  16. Silent Madness
  17. Silent Night, Deadly Night
  18. Strangler vs. Strangler
  19. The Company of Wolves
  20. The Hills Have Eyes Part II
  21. The Initiation
  22. The Legend of Boggy Creek
  23. The Terminator
  24. The Toxic Avenger

11. Biggest Pop Music Artists

Popular music artists from the year 1984 include Ashford & Simpson, Billy Ocean, Billy Joel, Bruce Springsteen, Culture Club, Cyndi Lauper, Duran Duran, Elton John, Eurythmics, Huey Lewis & the News, Jeffrey Osborne, Laura Branigan, Lionel Richie, Madonna, Micheal Jackson, Patti LaBelle, Phil Collins, Pointer Sisters, Prince, Ray Parker Jr, Rick Springfield, Shannon, Stevie Wonder, The Time, Tina Turner, Van Halen, and Yes.

In 1984, sugar-free Jell-O appeared on grocery store shelves for the first time.

In 1984, sugar-free Jell-O appeared on grocery store shelves for the first time.

12. Top 40 Songs for the Year

This music trivia from 1984 has been made available courtesy of MusicOutfitters.com.

1. When Doves Cry: Prince and The Revolution

2. What's Love Got to Do With It: Tina Turner

3. Say Say Say: Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson

4. Footloose: Kenny Loggins

5. Against All Odds (Take a Look At Me Now): Phil Collins

6. Jump: Van Halen

7. Hello: Lionel Richie

8. Owner of a Lonely Heart: Yes

9. Ghostbusters: Ray Parker Jr.

10. Karma Chameleon: Culture Club

11. Missing You: John Waite

12. All Night Long (All Night): Lionel Richie

13. Let's Hear It for the Boy: Deniece Williams

14. Dancing In the Dark: Bruce Springsteen

15. Girls Just Want to Have Fun: Cyndi Lauper

16. The Reflex: Duran Duran

17. Time After Time: Cyndi Lauper

18. Jump (For My Love): The Pointer Sisters

19. Talking In Your Sleep: The Romantics

20. Self Control: Laura Branigan

21. Let's Go Crazy: Prince and The Revolution

22. Say It Isn't So: Daryl Hall and John Oates

23. Hold Me Now: Thompson Twins

24. Joanna: Kool and The Gang

25. I Just Called to Say I Love You: Stevie Wonder

26. Somebody's Watching Me: Rockwell

27. Break My Stride: Matthew Wilder

28. 99 Luftballons: Nena

29. I Can Dream About You: Dan Hartman

30. The Glamorous Life: Sheila E.

31. Oh Sherrie: Steve Perry

32. Stuck On You: Lionel Richie

33. I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues: Elton John

34. She Bop: Cyndi Lauper

35. Borderline: Madonna

36. Sunglasses at Night: Corey Hart

37. Eyes Without a Face: Billy Idol

38. Here Comes the Rain Again: The Eurythmics

39. Uptown Girl: Billy Joel

40. Sister Christian: Night Ranger

In 1984, Diet Coke was a popular soft drink.

In 1984, Diet Coke was a popular soft drink.

13. Favorite Video Games

Popular video games in 1984 were Tetris, Elite, Balloon Fight, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Kung-Fu Master, Karateka, Impossible Mission, 1942, Duck Hunt, Excitebike, Dragon Slayer, Golf, Marble Madness, Bomb Jack, Karate Champ, The Lords of Midnight, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein, Gaplus, Cobra Command, Tennis, Knight Lore, Star Force, Bruce Lee, Boulder Dash, Deus Ex Machina, The Tower of Druaga, Break Dance, Cutthroats, F1 Race, Hogan’s Alley, Pitfall II: Lost Caverns, Clu Clu Land, Hyper Sports, Grobda, The Black Onyx, and The Ancient Art of War.

14. Food and Beverage Trivia

Here are some foods and beverages that were popular in 1984:

  1. Angel hair pasta
  2. Bagel Bites
  3. Capri Sun
  4. Chicken and veal marsala
  5. Chocolate mousse
  6. Cool Ranch Doritos
  7. Diet Coke
  8. Ecto Cooler
  9. French onion soup
  10. Frozen yogurt
  11. Fruit Roll-Ups
  12. Fruit Wrinkles
  13. Hot Pockets
  14. Jell-O Pudding Pops
  15. Lean Cuisine frozen dinners
  16. Pac-Man cereal
  17. Pasta primavera and pasta salad
  18. Pesto
  19. Quiche
  20. Quisp cereal
  21. Ranch dressing
  22. Seven-layer dip
  23. Sloppy Joes
  24. SuperPretzel
  25. Sushi
In 1984, the Los Angeles Raiders were the Super Bowl champs.

In 1984, the Los Angeles Raiders were the Super Bowl champs.

15. Famous Weddings and Divorces

Marriages of interest:

  1. On February 14, singer Elton John married Renate Blauel.
  2. On March 3, Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway wed swimmer Janet Buchan.
  3. On March 22, composer Andrew Lloyd Webber married singer and dancer Sarah Brightman.
  4. On April 1, filmmaker Joel Coel wed actress Frances McDormand.
  5. On April 11, MLB manager Pete Rose married Carol J. Woliung.
  6. On May 5, musician Chrissie Hynde wed musician Jim Kerr.
  7. On June 14, MLB baseball player Ernie Banks married Marjorie Wardlawholm.
  8. On September 7, actress and singer Janet Jackson wed R&B singer James DeBarge.
  9. On September 14, stage and screen actor Gene Wilder married Saturday Night Live actress and comedian Gilda Radner.
  10. On December 14, singer and actress Bette Midler wed Martin Von Hasselberg.
  11. On December 15, singer and actress Olivia Newton-John married actor Matt Lattanzi.
  12. On December 15, actress Sally Field wed Alan Greisman.
  13. On December 18, actress Jamie Lee Curtis married actor Christopher Guest.
  14. On December 29, MLB player Paul O'Neill wed Nevalee Davis.
  15. On December 29, MLB player Mark McGwire married Kathlene Hughes.

Divorces:

  1. On April 2, Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau divorced Margaret Sinclair.
  2. On October 16, Joyce King divorced NBA guard George Gervin.

16. Well-Known People Who Died in 1984

  1. January 14: Ray Kroc (an American fast food entrepreneur who founded McDonald's)
  2. January 21: Jackie Wilson (an American singer and songwriter)
  3. February 15: Ethel Merman (an American singer and actress)
  4. March 1: Jackie Coogan (an American actor who played in the Addams Family)
  5. March 24: Sam Jaffe (an American actor)
  6. April 1: Marvin Gaye (an American singer)
  7. June 24: Clarence Campbell (a former president of the Canadian NHL)
  8. June 30: Lillian Hellman (an American playwright)
  9. July 26: George Gallup (the American inventor of the Gallup survey poll)
  10. August 5: Richard Burton (a Welsh stage and screen actor who played in the film Cleopatra)
  11. August 25: Truman Capote (an American author who wrote the novel In Cold Blood)
  12. September 27: John Facenda (an American sportscaster)
  13. October 20: Paul Dirac (an English physicist)
  14. November 11: Martin Luther King Sr. (the father of MLK Jr.)
  15. December 30: Massa (Believed to have been born in 1930, Massa was the oldest gorilla on record.)
In 1984, Dell Computer—a computer technology company that develops and sells computers—was launched by Michael Dell.

In 1984, Dell Computer—a computer technology company that develops and sells computers—was launched by Michael Dell.

17. America’s Largest Corporations

Money.CNN tells us that “Since 1955, when the first FORTUNE 500 was created, more than 1,800 companies have appeared on the list. Many of these companies have changed names over this period, owing to mergers, acquisitions, and bankruptcies. Other companies have gone private, or simply changed their names.”

Here were America’s biggest companies in 1984:

  1. Exxon Mobil
  2. General Motors
  3. Mobil
  4. Ford Motor
  5. IBM
  6. Texaco
  7. DuPont
  8. Amoco
  9. ChevronTexaco
  10. General Electric

18. Companies and Brands Launched in 1984

  1. A&E Networks (According to Ranker.com, A&E Networks is an American media company that owns a group of television channels that are available via cable and satellite in the U.S. and abroad. A&E stands for Arts & Entertainment.)
  2. Burt’s Bees (a personal care products company)
  3. Cinemark USA, Inc. (an American movie theater chain)
  4. CompUSA is “a retailer and reseller of personal computers, consumer electronics, technology products, and computer services.”
  5. Dell Computer (a PC manufacturer)
  6. Kashi (a maker of whole grain cereals)
  7. LA Fitness (an American gym chain with over 700 locations across the USA and Canada)
  8. Morningstar, Inc. (a global financial services firm)
  9. Papa John’s Pizza (an American pizza restaurant franchise)
  10. Rita’s Italian Ice (a restaurant chain that specializes in Italian ice and frozen custard)
In 1984, quiche was a real crowd-pleaser.

In 1984, quiche was a real crowd-pleaser.

References:

In 1984, you could buy a five-pound bag of Idaho potatoes for $1.29.

In 1984, you could buy a five-pound bag of Idaho potatoes for $1.29.

© 2020 Gregory DeVictor