'80s Flashbacks: Current TV Shows That Had Pivotal Moments in 1987

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Keen TV fans may have noticed an interesting TV trend in recent years. Tons of popular TV shows have featured pivotal flashback scenes that all take place in the same year: 1987.

It was a notable year in history: Canada introduced the "Loonie," Michael Jackson released his album "Bad," and the Dow Jones closed above 2,000 for the very first time. But while it was a momentous year for the real world, it also appears to have been a momentous year for fictional TV worlds.

Here are some prime examples of contemporary TV shows that aired long after the 1980s, but still featured important flashbacks to the year 1987!


Fans of The CW's short-lived "Cult" already know that the mysterious Detective Sakelik lived with a bunch of other abandoned children in a home in the 1980s. Sakelik was discovered there by authorities in 1988, the same year she was involved in the mysterious death Olivia Leland.

Sadly, "Cult" got canceled before the episode entitled "1987" could air. It's likely that this episode would have shed some light on what the cult was up to in 1987, just before Sakelik was captured by the authorities. Hopefully The CW will make "1987" available for fans at some point. Clearly, something major in the "Cult" universe occurred on that date, and fans want answers!


The year 1987 was a big deal in the Fringe-verse. As seen in "The Arrival," 1987 was the year that the first documented Observer beacon appeared. In addition, 1987 also saw Olivia shoot her abusive stepfather. This was arguably her most formative experience and shaped her character as an adult.


In 1987, the Hanso Foundation cut their funding to the DHARMA Initiative. In addition, Kate tried to steal a lunchbox while Jacob watched, and Danielle left Tahiti to investigate the numbers being transmitted from the Island. Also, 1987 was the year that Ben Linus killed his own father during the Purge, one of the most memorable deaths in the series.


Chandler first met Monica and Rachel in 1987, during the Thanksgiving that Monica calls "the worst ever." Chandler, rocking a pretty sweet Flock of Seagulls haircut, attends Thanksgiving as Ross's guest. When Monica overhears Chandler and Ross talking, she stops eating all fatty foods, bringing an end to her overweight phase.
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