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This Day In History – The A-Team Debuts And Mr. T Changes My Childhood

30 years ago today, something happened that changed the way we, the children of the 80’s lived.  I’m talking about the TV debut of ‘The A-Team.’  It was that show that made Mr. T a household name and it filled my life with many more Mr. T encounters….sucka!

I still have a problem believing I can talk about things that happened ’30 years ago,’ but it’s true.  January 23rd, 1983, it was Murdock, Face, Hannibal, and of course B.A. fighting the bad guys in that black van on the TV for the first time.

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If ‘The A-Team’ wasn’t enough, kids like me got into more of the action with Mr. T with his very own cartoon show.  I can’t remember what it was about, but by the looks of this, Mr. T and his small, freckled-face clone kidnapped the US Gymnastics team in a bus.  They all occasionally do flips, kick folks in the face, and swing alligators around like a helicopter.  Oh yeah, there’s also a dog with a mohawk.  I remember this intro like it was yesterday, but not a thing about the cartoon.

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Now, here’s something I remember well.  The Mr. T, B.A. Baracus action figure.  Let’s be serious.  If you have Hannibal or Murdock, you are holding on to a gold mine.  Nobody had those, but I like everyone else had B.A. in my toy collection!

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And what 80’s character would be complete without being part of your complete breakfast?  Mr. T had a cereal alright.  So popular, that even Pee Wee Herman raved about it in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure.  I remember the ‘touch of brown sugar’ being not quite enough of a touch in this bland, but ‘cool’ cereal.

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And with just about every story from my childhood, if wrestling wasn’t involved, forget it.  Luckily for me, Mr. T joined up with Hulk Hogan in the very first Wrestlemania to make history, defeating ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper and ‘Mr. Wonderful’ Paul Orndorf.

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If you didn’t like Mr. T or you were just born too early or late to appreciate his Shakespearean-like delivery, I pity the fool as well.  Happy Anniversary ‘A-Team,’ and long live Mr. T!

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