Pandemonium was the second movie shown on the second episode of USA Up All Night and aired on January 14, 1989. It was a complete departure for Up All Night in that this movie had actual actors in it.
Set in the great state of Indiana at world renown college It Had To Be U where, despite a long history of murders during Cheerleader Camps, a wannabe cheerleader decides to reopen the camp.
And the only person who can save cheerleaders, Mandy, Randy, Candy, Andy, Sandy, and Glenn, is Yo-Yo Man himself, Tommy Smothers, as a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and his sidekick, Pee Wee Herman.
It’s meant to be a spoof with gags like Eve Arden playing the warden of a prison. And her name is Warden June. Get it? Like Leave It To Beaver, Ward and June. Get it?
There are escaped convicts and escaped mental patients. And murder. And lots of gags centered around Tommy Smothers’ horse.
But none of that is what’s important about this film.
If you love anything that happened in comedy in the 80s, you owe Pandemonium a debt of gratitude because this movie is directly connected to almost everything that happened on TV or in the movies for the entire decade.
Don’t believe me. How’s this for other projects the actors in this movie also appeared in during the 80s.
Beverly Hills Cop
Back to the Future
Planes, Trains, & Automobiles
Pee Wee’s Playhouse
Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Back to School
The Dukes of Hazzard
Superman II, III, and IV
And so much more.
I also made you a handy infographic displaying all of these connections.
And what more needs to be said about the movie that is the Dark Tower of 80s entertainment? All paths serve the beam, and the beam connects at Pandemonium.
I’m not suggesting that you need to go watch Pandemonium. In fact, that’s actually a small challenge to accomplish. But I am saying that you may not know it, but you owe so much to Pandemonium and don’t really want to live in a world without it.