During my childhood the one film I wanted to see was "Blue Thunder" but unfortunately, I was too young. However, imagine my delight, as a 14 year old, to one day find the Blue Thunder TV series being shown on BBC1. And now, 25 years later, relive the series thanks to this Sony DVD release.
Has it aged well? Er...................no. What might have been exciting to young eyes all that time ago, is a little cringe inducing now; the writers relied heavily on situations where the helicopter could be used to full effect, and what stock footage from the movie was available, and judging from what I watched so far, they used a lot, thus limiting the story lines, so we get jet fighters being stolen, maniacs in helicopters and one story featuring the then novelty, space shuttle. Remember this was the time that "The A-Team" ruled early Saturday night TV.
The cast do their best playing second fiddle to Blue Thunder, herself. James Farentino takes on the Roy Scheider role as the maverick pilot, here re-named Chaney, with a pre- Wayne's World, Dana Carvey as JAFO (if you've seen the film you'll know what it means) throw in two ex-NFL stars, Bubba Smith, later of the Police Academy movies, and Dick Butkus as the light comedic pairing that the show perhaps could have done without, and you have your cast.
What surprised me was that the series only lasted for 11 episodes, all on this release. Unfortunately, Blue Thunder's thunder was taken by a more successful super helicopter, Airwolf, originally premiering in the USA a few weeks after the first few episodes of Blue Thunder.
Now to the discs. All episodes are spread over 3 discs; no extras really to speak off only a trailer for other titles available from Sony. However, the biggest surprise is that even though the discs are marked Region 1, they are in fact Region 1 AND 2!!! It even played on my £14.99 Region 2 player!!
So, for want of nostalgia or another example of a short lived Eighties TV action series, and for the price, give the old girl back her thunder, that's Blue Thunder.