More TV Memories – The Chart Show 1986 Special.

The Chart Show 1986 Special (Channel 4, 1986)

This is something that I have wanted to review for a while, so I am pleased to have tracked it down. This is the first end-of-year review special of The Chart Show, that was shown on Channel 4 on 30 December 1986, coming in at a whopping 80 minutes! The opening sequence has been amended to feature different music videos, and I think that I am right in saying that this was the final edition until May 1987.

I also think that this was the final edition to feature the sludge green-coloured captions, and the rather impenetrable HUD graphics. There were a few awards, along with the charts of the year. First off is Best New Act, which goes to The Housemartins. The fourth best band in Hull did indeed have a great year, including the chart-topping “Caravan Of Love”. Then it’s the Dance Chart, which has to be among my favourites.

Played are Billy Ocean’s “When The Go And Get Stuffed”, Janet Jackson’s “What Have You Done For Me Lately”, Gwen Guthrie’s “Ain’t Nothin’ Goin’ On But The Rent”, and Number One is Cameo with “Word Up”. Great songs all. Best Foreign Video goes to Prince with “Kiss”. Next is the Heavy Metal Chart, a genre that I am not hugely interested in.

Played are AC/DC, Iron Maiden, Van Halen, and Number One is Bon Jovi. After the break, The One That Got Away is Inxs with “What You Need”. They would eventually break through to the big time though. Then it’s the Album Chart. Played are Run DMC’s “Walk This Way” (which was on “Now 8” when compilations were still on the main chart), Madonna’s “Open Your Heart” (from “True Blue”), and the Number One is Dire Straits with “Brothers In Arms” (“Money For Nothing” is played). You play the guitar on The Chart Show.

The Worst Video Of The Year goes to “Rage Hard” by Frankie Goes To Hollywood. A little harsh perhaps, but their return was considered to be rather disappointing, and couldn’t live up to the hype. The Indie Chart is next. Played are We’ve Got A Fuzzbox And We’re Gonna Use It’s “Rules And Regulations”, The Mission’s “Serpent’s Kiss”, Erasure’s (of course) “Sometimes” (“Vince used to be in Yazoo”), and Number One is The Smiths with “Panic”.

Next is a 1987 Preview. Big things are predicted for new singles by Thrashing Doves, Eric Clapton, and World Party. On to part three, and Best Reggae goes to Smiley Culture. Then it’s the Network Chart Top 20. Yes, 20! These are the biggest hits of the year. Played are Wham’s “The Edge Of Heaven”, Falco’s “Rock Me Amadeus”, The Communards’ “Don’t Leave Me This Way” (Number 2 on this chart, but actually the biggest-seller of the year), Doctor And The Medics’ “Spirit In The Sky”, and Diana Ross’s “Chain Reaction”.

But the Number One is Nick Berry with “Every Loser Wins”, an all-time classic if ever there was one. Then there’s another 1987 Preview, with Heaven 17 (they were still going?), Europe, Was Not Was, and Swing Out Sister. Finally, The Best Video Of The Year is revealed, which maybe not too surprisingly is “Sledgehammer” by Peter Gabriel. Well done, Peter.


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