1985, what a time to be alive!
May 24, 2020 marks the 35th anniversary of beloved internet pioneer AOL. With so many different websites, apps and digital formats dominating our daily lives today, it's difficult to imagine a time before the internet as we know and love it today existed. But back in 1985, dial-up service was a luxury and emailing your friends was a hip, new form of "instantaneous" communication. Safe to say it was a much different time.
To get a feel for what the world was like when chat rooms and mail platforms were still non-existent and the idea of live streaming the Super Bowl on your phone would have sounded absurd, here's a snapshot of what the world of entertainment and sports looked like when AOL got started way back in 1985.
January 1, 1985 — VH1 is born
A new cable music video channel called VH1 is launched in the United States.
January 20, 1985 — 49ers win Super Bowl XIX
Joe Montana and the San Francisco 49ers defeat Don Shula and Dan Marino's Miami Dolphins in Super Bowl XIX. The most iconic NFL team of 1985 however, was the Chicago Bears, who toppled the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XX the following January.
February 14, 1985 — Whitney Houston releases her self-titled debut album
A new solo artist by the name of Whitney Houston releases her self-titled debut album. The album stays on the Billboard 200 for 14 weeks and produces three No. 1 singles.
March 7, 1985 — 'We Are The World' is released
The charity single 'We Are the World,' produced by Quincy Jones, is released in an effort to raise funds for famine in Ethiopia. Forty-six notable singers were featured on the track, including Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder and Bruce Springsteen. The song raises over $63 million.
March 25, 1985 — The 57th Academy Awards
The 57th Academy Awards are held at the Dorothy Chandler Pavillion in Los Angeles, California. Amadeus wins Oscars for Best Picture as well as Actor in a Leading Role (F. Murray Abraham) and Directing (Milos Forman).
April 10, 1985 — Madonna begins debut tour
The legendary Madonna begins her first-ever tour in Seattle, Washington, aptly named "The Virgin Tour."
May 1985 — Oilers win Stanley Cup
Wayne Gretzky and the Edmonton Oilers defeat the Philadelphia Flyers in five game to win hockey's greatest prize.
May-June 1985 — Lakers defeat Celtics for ninth NBA title
Marking the height of the Boston Celtics-Los Angeles Lakers rivalry, the teams traded championships throughout the decade. The Lakers, however, are crowned as victors in 1985.
August 14, 1985 — Michael Jackson buys the Beatles' catalog
Michael Jackson, under the guidance of his attorney John Branca, purchases the 4,000-song ATV catalog for a whopping $47.5 million. The purchase gave Jackson the rights to the entire Beatles song catalog as well as several titles by Bruce Springsteen, Elvis and The Rolling Stones.
September 11, 1985 — Pete Rose breaks the MLB hits record
Cincinnati Reds player/manager Pete Rose records his 4,192nd hit, breaking Ty Cobb's all-time hits record. Rose's record of 4,256 career hits still stands today but he, infamously, has not been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
September 15, 1985 — Prince Harry is born
The now-former royal, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, is born on September 15 in London.
October 1985 — Royals win team's first World Series
The Kansas City Royals defeat the St. Louis Cardinals in a seven-game World Series, winning the franchise's first championship since its founding as an expansion team in 1969.
1985 — Navratilova dominates tennis
Martina Navratilova continued to cement her legacy as one of the greatest tennis players of all time, taking home titles at both the Australian Open and Wimbledon.
1985 — 'Born in the USA' is the highest-grossing album of the year
Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the USA" album is the highest-grossing of the year. The cult-favorite has sold over 15 million copies in the US and 30 million worldwide to date. The album was originally released on June 4, 1984.
1985 — 'Back to the Future' is the highest-grossing film of the year
"Back to the Future" dominates, becoming the highest-grossing film of the year after its debut in theaters on July 3. The movie was the first of what would become a trilogy.
1985 — 'Careless Whisper' by Wham! featuring George Michael is the most popular song of the year
"Careless Whisper" by Wham! featuring George Michael becomes the most popular song of the year, according to Billboard's Year End Hot 100 chart.