If the 1960s were a 20-car pop culture pileup, the 1970s were a time for America and the world in general to return to a something that resembled normalcy. Many people, particularly broad swaths of the middle class, rejected “far out” arts in favor of more typical fare. Everything from music to Broadway plays found a distinctly ‘70s tilt — in our daunting “Me Decade” quiz, what do you remember about the pop culture of the 1970s?
In film, the ‘70s produced some of the most memorable titles of the entire century. Some movies, like “Apocalypse Now” and “A Clockwork Orange” were outright startling in their content, but they drew massive crowds, anyway. Other big films like “The Sting,” “Deliverance,” “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Patton” all made a lasting mark. Do you recall the other major blockbusters of this decade?
The Seventies were an equally fertile time for music. Hippie music maintained its grip on the counterculture, but glam rock and disco exploded in popularity. Acts like the Jackson 5, the Eagles, the Ramones, and the Bee Gees found immense success all over world. But the deaths of icons like Elvis Presley and Bing Crosby left an unmistakable stain of sadness, too. What do you remember about the music of the ‘70s?
The ‘70s were the days of the Nixon and Carter Administrations, the decade in which the Vietnam War finally ended, and pop culture once again regenerated itself. Take our ‘70s pop culture right now and see if you’re a hairy-chested champion or a greaser still stuck in the ‘50s!
Archie Bunker and his family were the focal point of "All in the Family," the most popular show in the ‘70s. It was a sitcom, yes, but the show also tackled sensitive issues such as homosexuality, racism and a lot more during its nine-season run.
Male pattern baldness has never looked so good — Bradshaw never had gaudy numbers, but he always led the Steelers to big wins. He won four Super Bows in the Seventies.
With songs like "Go Your Own Way" and "Don’t Stop," Fleetwood Mac’s "Rumours" was the number one album of 1977. The band still tours today largely on the strength of this album.
In 1974, the offbeat Western comedy "Blazing Saddles" made director Mel Brooks look like a genius. The film directly addresses racial stereotypes and manages to be funny in the process.
In 1971, "Grease" started its run on Broadway in New York. The musical was later adapted into a 1978 film of the same name.
In the ‘70s, polyester was all the rage. Paired with bright colors, polyester was what all the cool kids were wearing.
It was a prime-time soap opera that struck a chord in America, starring the evil J.R. Ewing doing everything in his power to make big bucks as a Texas oil tycoon. The show ran from 1978 to 1991.
Only one team has ever one every single regular season game and also the Super Bowl. That was the ‘72 Dolphins, who won the Super Bowl on January 14, 1973.
The 1970 Ford Galaxie was a pretty boring sedan. But apparently that was exactly what consumers in the U.S. wanted — it was the country’s best-selling car.
Elton John was in his prime during the ‘70s. Two years in a row, ‘74 and ‘75, he had the number one album, "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and "Elton John’s Greatest Hits."
Sideburns — big, hairy, beefy sideburns — became very common in the 1970s. Mustaches were cool then, too, and not associated primarily with artist types.
The ‘76 Oldsmobile Cutlass became the most popular car in America. The Supreme coupe version was an especially hot seller.
Nicklaus, The Golden Bear, used his powerful swing and blonde locks to dominate golf’s fairways in the ‘70s. He eventually won 18 major titles, more than anyone else in history.
As part of the muscle car trend of the 60’s and ‘70s, the Pontiac Firebird became an icon. Versions with a great big Firebird painted right on the hood were especially cool.
In 1972’s "The Godfather," Brando was a revelation, thrilling audiences with his cold, calculating depiction of a mob boss. "The Godfather" is often called one of the best movies of the century.
Andrew Lloyd Webber drew rave reviews for his work with "Jesus Christ Superstar," which hit Broadway in 1971. It centers around the conflict between Jesus and his betrayer, Judas.
Before the ‘70s, few women wore pants regularly. In this decade, though, pants became commonplace for women just about everywhere.
The Chevy Impala lost a foot of length and a quarter-ton of weight in 1977, and Americans loved the trim new look. It was the country’s favorite car that year.
The Beatles owned the ‘60s, turning pop culture upside down — but their star faded just as quickly. In 1970, the band broke up for good.
It was a run of success most baseball fans can only dream of — from ‘72 to ‘74, Oakland won the World Series. Then, the team won the Series again in ‘89 ... and has been in a drought ever since.
“Harvest" was a huge hit for Young, and it soared to the number one spot on the Billboard charts. One track, "Heart of Gold," became a number one hit.
In 1970, Diana Ross opted to leave The Supremes, the Motown group that helped make her famous. Ross’s career didn’t suffer — she continued as an even bigger singing star.
Led by legendary coach John Wooden, 1970s UCLA basketball hit a stretch of success that will never, ever be equaled. The team won five — five — titles in this decade alone.
Buddy Holly died in a 1959 plane crash. Hendrix and Joplin, though, both died in 1970, and both of drug-related issues, inspiring legions of wannabe rock stars like Kurt Cobain to do the same.
Based on the comic strip "Little Orphan Annie," "Annie" the musical got its start in 1977. Rave reviews and a popular following helped this show last six years on Broadway.
In 1977, "Star Wars" found Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, perhaps the biggest hero of the 20th century, as he learned to harness the Force to battle ultimate evil.
By 1973, Ali’s dominance was fading. He lost his title belt to Joe Frazier ... who then lost to George Foreman, who later became even more famous for his informerical indoor grills.
In Super Bowl IV, the Minnesota Vikings were heavy favorites, but the Chiefs and their stout defense pulled the upset, winning 23-7 in January 1970.
A vomiting spell has never been so horrifying. "The Exorcist" depicted a young girl possessed by a demon, and inspired nightmares in an entire generation of scarred children.
Before his days as a Laker, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was a star center for the Milwaukee Bucks, and he led the team to the Finals against Boston. They lost four games to three.