The Hilarious Era London Pop Icon Boy George Crashed On 1980s TV Show The A-Team
The A-Team was an absolutely legendary TV play – at least for a whole generation of 1980s school kids who lapped it up on a Saturday afternoon.
What better story could there be than four criminals on the run, charging and skidding across America trying to escape the “feds” in their black transit van.
The military misfits left the cliffs, rushed into rivers, crashed into walls, and were lifted into the air by helicopters as part of NBC’s vibrant shoot-em-up TV festival.
They were shot with more bullets than a very messy deer – but still never hit.
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Then, when their backs were against the wall, they would disappear into a hangar and miraculously equip their van with huge machine guns, cannons, armor, flamethrowers – whatever it took – then fired to crush the enemy.
That was basically the gist of most episodes.
The thing is, we loved it because they were the right ones. Members of a special forces unit who had been sent to a military prison for a crime they did not commit.
Somehow, they escaped and traveled to LA – of all places – to make a living and try to restore their damaged reputation.
Then there were the crazy characters – Lieutenant Templeton Peck (Dirk Benedict), the charming ladies’ man who could charmingly step out of a paper bag.
Lt. Col. John “Hannibal” Smith (George Peppard), the old steel general eating his cigar and saying “I love it when a plan comes together” in almost every episode.
It has become the mantra of a generation.
Then there was Howling Mad (HM) Murdock (Dwight Schultz) who was as mad as a box of frogs but possessed an incredible intelligence that took his companions from many scratches.
Finally, there was BA (Bad Attitude) Baracus, (Mr T) the huge guy who was a real badass and rose to fame on his own after the series.
His reviews such as “Fool” have stood the test of time – making him a mainstay of television commercials.
But in all this chaos, was there room for a soft-spoken camp punk pop star to step into the fray?
You bet there was!
Enter Boy George at the height of his glory in the 1980s with Culture Club, topping the charts with top pop tracks like “Karma Chameleon”.
Everything this oft-controversial New Wave prince of pop brought into the fray with a gang of mad criminals on the run, everyone’s guessing – but the show was known for its guest stars.
It all starts when the ever-opportunistic Face tries to put on a gig at a local country dance hall with a bogus artist called Cowboy George – played by Hannibal.
The goal is simply to earn some money.
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As usual, he’s discovered, and a problem in the contract means he has to put Boy George and the Culture Club on stage with Cowboy George.
As Face tells him, “This may not be your usual demographic.”
But Boy George cleverly retorts, “Don’t talk nonsense – everyone loves Culture Club.”
The BA scenes swaying to the sound of Boy George singing on stage are classic as George sings “I’m a man who doesn’t know!”
The pair seem to really get along in the episode.
Meanwhile, armed bank robbers decide to destroy the joint, and Team A must stop them from running away with the money.
Boy George finds himself in the legendary Team A van chasing bank robbers, and he loves every minute of it – turning to Murdock at one point and saying “This is awesome!” He seems to think so!
Then, at the end of the day, the main thief turns to Team A and asks incredulously, “Who are you guys?” “
Hannibal boasts: “We are the A team”, and George intervenes in a very scholarly way: “So there!”.
It’s classic cheesy American TV, but George is really proving he has a chic star quality here, which he’s proven time and time again over the past few years.
These days he has almost become a British national treasure, despite years of trouble and criminal offenses threatening to derail his career.
There is no doubt that the A-Team episode would have done a lot to make it even cooler in the eyes of the teenagers of the day – and it certainly wouldn’t have hurt the A-Team’s reputation with the. British public.
The shows only lasted from 1983-86 with 98 episodes, but have since gained cult status.
In 2010, it was even made into a feature film starring Liam Neeson and Bradley Cooper.
Dirk Benedict (Faceman) and Dwight Schultz (Murdock) both made brief appearances in the film (as a prisoner using a recliner and a psychiatrist overseeing Murdock’s shock therapy).
It must be said that we love it when a plan is put in place!
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