Olivia Newton-John

She just passed away, and she had a good life.

Anyway, I asked a 30-something family friend, who lives in LA, if he knew who she was. He said no, and, when I asked if he knew of her iconic movie, Grease, he also said no. I then asked if he knew who John Travolta was, and he said he heard of the name but didn't really know who he was.

So this goes back to what I've been saying about iconic - in this increasingly fast age, iconic status is fading very fast. My opinion is of no consequence, of course, and I'm just making conversation.
 
It does really feel like the cycles are accelerating though. We're now seeing things become globally famous one year, and then are completely forgotten 3 years later. I don't think that happened so much in the 50s.

It's digit span I think. The amount of faces, events, archetypes we remember is the same, but they are being throw at us at 10x the speed we were used to. Growing up, I had 3 channels, and if you got on one, you were famous, for a long time. I still know who Bob Denver or Burgess Meredith are. Now, we have literally over 200 networks, and shows that you used to watch across 22 weeks are now released in an afternoon, and binge watched by the weekend. That has to affect the way we remember things.
 

sfoster

Staff Member
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I'm not surprised at all that they haven't seen grease - I haven't seen it either!!!
I'm not a big musical fan and the movie came out years before I was born, so you have to be very particular to seek out and watch it -- instead of that new episode of bobs burgers. what kid is gonna watch some old stale movie instead of a new episode of a show they like?

It's a much higher bar for something to persist as iconic from before your birth to after your death, movies in general honestly just don't last that long. They age, looked dated, CGI, resolution, style, etc or they simply get rebooted.

Chaplin was the most famous person on the planet and now people look at him and they say "hey that dude has a mustache like hitler!"
some people don't even know who charlie chaplin is.

 
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I think some of it also has to do with creative saturation. You can only invent the wheel once. There's people who then invented the car, and that was iconic, but 50 years later, the smartest automotive engineer in the world is just streamlining the door handles, and that doesn't stick in memory the way the original step did. Same with movies to a degree. Regardless of how good my CGI work gets, it will never make the kind of once in a lifetime splash that happened when Jurassic Park 1 first premiered it's digital dinosaurs.
 

sfoster

Staff Member
Moderator
Also easier to be iconic if the property is constantly producing new shows and movies.
Nobody is going to forget Star Wars anytime soon
 
True, some upkeep does help. I can't help but think (after this weeks Batman marathon) that Batman probably wouldn't be a thing anymore if they didn't reboot it every 5 years. I do like Batman though, maybe because it was a big part of childhood. It is truly iconic in a way not many things are.

I feel like I'm digressing from Olivia Newton John's funeral post. She was a big deal in the 80s, and while I was not a huge fan of those films, she was a lovely and energetic person. I think the most relevant memory I have, for people that weren't there, is that they played her music non stop at Karate Dojo's in the mid 80s. It was actually a pretty common sight to see people side kicking boards to the song "physical".
 
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