Commodore Format launched in the late summer of 1990. It officially hit the streets on September 20th, but magazines always live in the future – so the cover said October. Anyway. We all know that Gazza cried his way out of a World Cup semi-final and that the Iraq War had kicked off – but what else was going on around the same time as CF emerged?


Soap operas dominated the charts! Coronation Street on ITV was the most watched of them in September 1990, attracting 16 million viewers. It had recently gone three-times-a-week following a Friday episode launched back in ’89.

Eastenders was next up. It starred Nick Berry and Michelle Gayle that month! It was followed by Neighbours, which was still attracting 14 million viewers (at tea-time as well! – Ed). Comedy played a top part in entertaining the UK this September, too. On Sunday nights, Bread’s Jean Boht played mothership to a Liverpudlian family. On The Up with Dennis Waterman was about a taxi-driver-turned millionaire, and Never The Twain by Thames Television was popular, too.

Other programmes gracing UK TV screens in September 1990 included Les Dennis’ Family Fortunes (Central Television) and Krypton Factor (Granada). Gordon Burns was at the helm there, as quiz hopefuls also got to grips with an assault course. Drama wise, Howards’ Way (BBC) – about rich people and boats! – was in its final series.

Children’s BBC was spending its fifth year in the Broom Cupboard, and on the day Commodore Format launched Simon Parkin was the presenter. You can watch here:


The UK summer hung on into September 1990! Timmy Mallett and Bombalurina’s Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini stayed number one for half of it (what we want to know is was it really Timmy singing on there, eh? Always seemed a bit suspect – Ed). The catchy Groove Is In The Heart by Deee-Lite, which you still hear on radio stations today, was riding high in the charts and towards the end of the month so was Show Me Heaven by Maria McKee.

What else? New Kids On The Block with Tonight, The Steve Miller Band with The Joker, the Farm with the Groovy Train and Jason Donovan with Rhythm Of The Rain.


The summer season of blockbuster films at the cinema were drawing to a close as CF1 came out. Back To The Future III was the final film in the trilogy and took over $87m! Dick Tracy with Warren Beatty had copious amounts of promotion (and a terrible C64 version! – Ed) and timeless classic Ghost, starring Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore appeared. It was the second biggest film of the year. The first? Home AloneCF 

  • With thanks to our friend Russ for this article. Find him on Twitter @Russty_Russ, where he talks about TV, Teletext, music and all sorts of other cool things from the past. 

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