This Week In Awesome History Vol. 4

This week is a prime example to the amazing-ness of the human race.

Nash Herringtonby Nash Herrington

August 15, 1969: The infamous Woodstock Festival begins

Arguably the greatest music festival in recent history, ‘69s Woodstock saw bearded hippies from every city congregate in Bethel, New York, for a psychedelic celebration of epic proportions. Among the 32 artists who performed were Santana, Jefferson Airplane, The Who and the iconic Jimi Hendrix, whose 2-hour performance is widely regarded as being the highest point of his career. His disjointed and haunting rendition of the American national anthem “Star Spangled Banner” will forever be cemented in rock history, as will the memory of Woodstock’s unabashed celebration of life, love, and recreational drug consumption. Woodstock Video!

 

August 16, 1977: Elvis Presley dies in his bathroom

Professional hip-swinger Elvis Presley’s spiralling career came to an end on this day in ’77, when “The King’s” body was found lifeless on his bathroom floor (NOT sitting on the toilet, as rumours suggest).

Spending the years through ’73 – ’77 paranoid, lonely and self-destructive, Presley’s health began to deteriorate as his popularity slowly dwindled. Turning up to shows overweight and incoherent, Presley became a bloated caricature of his former self and found himself consumed by his addiction to the drug Demerol. 

On the evening of his death Presley was scheduled to fly out of Memphis to begin another tour. His time of death was 3.30pm. Thousands of fans gathered to view his open casket on the day of his funeral, and an issue of the National Enquirer ran with a photo of the corpse on its front page.

 

August 18, 1958: “Lolita” is published in the US

Vladimir Nabokov’s super controversial tale of protagonist Humbert Humbert’s sexual relationship with 12-year-old Dolores Haze (who he affectionately nicknames “Lolita”) has been acknowledged as a literary classic of the 20th century, despite its provocative subject matter.

After finding difficulty with publication, Nabokov finally managed to bring his magnum opus to US shores on this day in ’58, and the book has since gone on to be adapted to film twice, the first of which saw Stanley Kubrick take the helm.

The term Lolita has since become a term to describe a precocious young girl, and a keyword in the Google searches of perverts worldwide.

 

August 18, 1995: The Mortal Kombat movie is released

A true literary classic was released on this day in ’58. In ’95, we got this.

One of the first game-to-movie adaptations (preceded by the likes of Street Fighter, Double Dragon and *gulp* Super Mario Bros.) Mortal Kombat reassured us that no, we were never going to see our favourite and videogames adapted to the big screen with care and yes, this has been the case for the past 2 and a half decades.

The intro was still awesome though. Mortal Kombat Intro.

 

August 20, 2002: Last ever Nintendo 64 game goes on sale

On this day in 2002 Activision released Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3, and thus cemented its place in history as the last game to be released on the Nintendo 64 in North America.

A firm staple of a majority of 90s kids childhoods, the N64 provided us with many of gaming’s pivotal moments, including the first 3D platformer in the form of Super Mario 64, and what is largely considered to be The Best Game Ever, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

Although it eventually succumbed to the irrepressible power of the PlayStation, the N64 stood proud as the last bastion of ROM cartridge gaming, and is considered by many as the last truly great Nintendo console, in spite of it bestowing us with THIS…   Terrible Nintendo Gamer