TV Series & Movies

Iconic Retro Entertainment That Influenced/Inspired Cultures

We live in the 21st century where the cultures around the world are no longer curated, we either get “inspired” or influenced by cultures those have been prominent for decades.

Well, the primary source of these cultures getting affiliated with our lives is by the source of entertainment.

Here, entertainment isn’t just books, movies, music or dance; it also includes a continuous exposure to a particular concept.

Let’s have a look at entertainment that profoundly influenced pop culture in India.

Saturday Night Fever

A classic 1977 American drama film that revolves around the story of Tony Manero, a teenager who works at a dead-end job at a hardware store in Brooklyn, New York.

Tony along with his pals, goes to a discotheque every Saturday to blow off the steam, so, they can start again on Monday. Doesn’t seem too indifferent now, does it?

It is portrayed excellently that people need to ease off once a week to enhance their productivity, and all this was on the screens in 1977.

Another pop-culture phrase was first heard in this film. When John Travolta’s dance partner, Annette asks him to get into intimidating relationships; he replies with the statement, “You are just a friend!”

GIF Image of Saturday night

Norwegian Wood

Norwegian Wood is a classic song by The Beatles recorded and released in 1965. Well, the term Norwegian Wood has multiple meanings, although, in modern times, it’s a slang when a girl leaves and the guy is left high and dry.

Yes, it has influenced culture amongst the youth in India to a wide extent; with an invention of a new phrase; KLPD.

This blog is supposed to be for a wider audience, so, the full form won’t be mentioned here. For your curiosity, you can always google it.

The phrase, Norwegian Wood has gained wide popularity with time as one of the most used slang in the English-speaking countries.

GIF Image of Beatles

When Harry Met Sally…

When Harry Met Sally is a classic American Rom-Com released in the year, 1989.

The movie stars Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal in the title roles. Though, this film has numerous iconic scenes that have somehow influenced various cultures across the world like, “A guy and girl can never be friends,” “You are not supposed to say exactly what you feel whenever you feel it” etc.

However, here I’m quoting a satirical dialogue written by Nora Ephron and delivered by Carrie Fisher, “Restaurants are to people in the 80s what theatre was to people in the 60s.”

Well, this statement has not been brought into the limelight, yet, without even realizing, we are rationalizing the concept.

Theatres in the 60s were a rich source of entertainment and the reason to get out of the house for socialization.

This trend has been changing the location from theatre to restaurants to gyms and now to clubbing. We have taken the next step, where entertainment is listening to music and dancing till the last breath, or so we claim.

Sleepless in Seattle

Another classic was starring Meg Ryan. The film has been a significant impact on the couples who are in a long-distance relationship.

This film started a trend where the long-lost lovers or couples in long-distance relationships shall meet on the observation deck of the Empire State Building in New York.

Well, this soon caught up, and it has been followed around the globe ever since, although not the Empire State Building in the US; lovers have found their spot in the city. Like the Eiffel Tower in Paris, The Gateway of India in Mumbai, The Qutub Minar in Delhi, etc.

14th February Valentine’s Day is not so prominent for these kinds of meetings.

However, special days like anniversaries, birthdays and first meet are still celebrated with the same enthusiasm. This trend did give birth to a new culture, where the couples would wait to meet their partner for one special night to relive the charm.

Living Next Door to Alice by Smokie

A super hit pop song by Smokie is a musical narration of a one-sided lover, who, for 24 years has lived next door to Alice but couldn’t confess his feelings for her.

The song narrates an incident of a specific day when Alice leaves her house. This song covers two themes, one is the unrequited love, and the other one is being hooked.

Sally, the narrator’s friend is the narrator’s one-sided lover.

This has significance on today’s youth; with many English & Hindi Films inspired by this narration with the tag of “Modern Love”; it has been a trend.

In the yesteryears, people did not use to confess one-sided love to anyone other than themselves and the church.

But, nowadays, it is a sign of dignity if you are a one-sided lover. Not a culture, but a trend longing through several decades, just quite to be announced as a culture.

You’ve Got Mail

The 1998 rom-com was one of the first digital love tales. Two business competitors meet over the internet and turn into best friends who adore each other without knowing their real identity.

However, in the real world, they are fierce business rivals, trying to break and burn each other down.

This film did not promote any culture; however, it did start a trend that has evolved into a culture which is in fashion more than ever.

Numerous online dating and mating websites, applications and wedding portals have been launched that allows people to connect to likeminded individuals with the possibility of eventually falling in love.

Several couples have found love over the internet and are enjoying a happily ever after.


A classic retro game which got favorite right from the time of its release. For almost four decades, this video game has served as one of the most popular arcade digital games.

Pac-Man; originally intended to be just a game has emerged to be a culture around the globe. Every year numerous events are held with its loyal followers who attend the events in masses are increasing day by day.

Sex and The City

This American sitcom provided the boost that women around the world desperately needed.

Sex and The City focused on the needs and desires of women to socialize, party and talk about particular issues with their girlfriends and trusted friends.

Although, Sex and The City never turned out to be a culture, although, the concept and idea of women enjoying success and social status as much as men have been observed in multiple women-only groups.

Image of the American Sitcom Sex and the City

There are many organizations which have ladies only memberships that allow females to indulge in fun activities.

Sex and The City also told girls and women that it’s alright to talk and discuss physical relationships with their pals. There is no shame while talking about sex in public, it’s natural, and discussion only helps in improving.

Marlboro Man

One of the most iconic cultural symbols in the smoking industry. The Marlboro Man was an advertising campaign launched in the mid-1950s by tobacco giant, Philip Morris to promote a new type of cigarette that had a cotton filter at the end.

Marlboro Man was portrayed as a masculine cowboy who used to smoke Marlboro cigarettes because of its great taste and filter.

Image of Marlboro Man that influenced culture

Within a few years, Marlboro Man became popular with all the classes who used to smoke. Marlboro hit the mindsets of Americans that if you want to be a man, you must smoke Marlboro.

This resulted in Marlboro getting highly popular and becoming industry leaders.

This has resulted in the evolution of a culture, that being a smoker, if you don’t smoke Marlboro then you are not a man because Marlboro is the manliest cigarette. Seems idiotic, but it has gained a cultural tag.

James Bond

This is the last one; it does not depict a culture, but, depicts a change in cultural thinking.

One of the most masculine pop-culture iconic has favored only clear alcohol; breaking the stereotype that whiskey is a man’s drink and vodka, gin and tequila is a ladies’ drink.

A mindset that was instantly influenced by a macho personality. This resulted in the introduction of Martini to all the bar menus across the world. 

Image of James Bond

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Hello, I am Paulomi Dutta stay in Pune, India with my loving husband. I love to read, travel and cook. I have been thinking about blogging for the past three years and now finally all is set to start my World Up Close. I will be writing about places, relationships, good and smart living and lastly, will be writing on money and financial tips. My motive is to help others through whatever knowledge I have and can share with you all. Being an introvert person, two things I love the most painting and writing. Both involve sharing thoughts with the outer world. I hope my little effort to help through my articles will be appreciable and noticed. Thank you.

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