Toronto
1 min

Blast from the past

A jukebox with visuals!

SHABAM! POW! BLOP! WHIZZ! Rare camp videos from the 1960s.

Site: Scopitones

Time magazine informed readers in 1964 of the revolutionary Scopitone Machine — a jukebox with visuals! For just a quarter you could choose one of 36 musical movies in “delirious colour and hi-fi Scooby-ooby-doo.” They were in at least 500 bars, restaurants and servicemen’s clubs across the US. But it was in France and Europe where they took off.

At Scopitones.com you can watch more than 40 of these classic early videos. Skinny French chanteuses, goofy floppy-haired boys and big buxom American starlets abound. See and hear Les Surfs, Petula Clark, Sylvie Vartan, Julie Driscoll and January Jones! You would swear gay boys and girls directed all the videos.

Favourites include “Comic Strip” featuring the sly Serge Gainsbourg sauntering through a room filled with balloons as a brunette Brigitte Bardot (in pink tights and a cape) sings “Shabam! Pow! Blop! Whizz!” But “Web Of Love” with bombed blonde-shell Joi Lansing writhing in a soundstage voodoo cauldron and seductively caressing a dancing boy snake is the charmer.