Ice Capades just popped into my head. I was thinking about this bookshelf in my grandmother’s house. The bookshelf was part of a reciever/phono wooden cabinet, a classic piece of furniture. Mentally I was looking through the books that were on that shelf — a Princess Diana Memorial, Martha Stewart cookbooks, and 70s issues of the Readers Digest…then I saw it. The Ice Capades program.
My grandmother’s house. After filling up on a serving tray of cake which she would not just have allowed me to eat, but would have encouraged it, I’d schlump onto the carpet. She had this tan carpeting, but you couldn’t call it tan; it was beige, like beige was somehow classier. And I loved these books–it was the thing a nerdy, cake-loving kid does, thumb through the weirdness of Reader’s Digest special editions.
But one of the books down there was the 1989 Ice Capades program. I probably read it 50 times too. We actually went to the show. I don’t remember anything about the actual show except wanting a glow stick real bad. And that I did not get one.
But I had this souvenir program to help me remember the show.
Now, Mario Brothers was a part of the show too. The segment was called World of Nintendo. Imagine that shit, 9 foot puppet Mario and Luigi and Goombas ice skating around. Koopa Troopas dancing. Bowser with a painted green human face.
I know. What the hell is going on? Bowser, is that you? This 50th Anniversary also had a Barbie segment. That’s probably why we went. I was big on Nintendo and my sister was big on Barbie. Something for everyone. It looks like the Ninja Turtles whored themselves out for this thing as well, according to an old New York Times review of the show. Basically it was my childhood in puppet form on ice, which actually sounds deeply disturbing.
This Ice Capades was also filmed for a special aired ABC, and was hosted by Alyssa Milano (who of course hosted everything) and freaking Jason Bateman. I did not recall any of this on my own. Thank you Google. If you watch the video, you’ll see me in the audience, looking mournfully at the glow sticks. Just kidding.
Sadly it seems ice skating entertainment shows are something that died in the 90s. You’ll occasionally see a Dinosaurs or Dora on Ice advertisement. I want to see Dinosaurs Eat Dora on Ice. The raptor puppets would hunt strategically, faking her out with one raptor doing a hyponotic figure-8, and she wouldn’t even see when the others would swarm in doing triple pivot spirals. They would begin to eat her while she was still alive.
I am really messed up. You see what reading dusty issues of Readers Digest at 8 years old does to your head?
Thank you to the dedicated people who have strangely scanned every program cover of Ice Capades, like ever: http://www.icesk8.com/collect/progrm02.htm
And thank you this site that has more pictures of the Mario nightmare on ice:
Mario Ice Capades