Getting back to the subject of Brazilian television, I said before that I have been converting my old VHS tapes to DVD, starting with the oldest recordings I have. As a result, I've been watching some really old stuff that I haven't viewed in years. Among my oldest recordings are those made back in 1987 when I was living in Brazil. Some of the stuff is really interesting (to me at least), so from time to time I will post about a particular show.
Today I will write about "O Cassino do Chacrinha", which in English would be "Chacrinha's Casino". This was aired weekday afternoons on the Globo Network (Rede Globo). Chacrinha was a little old man who looked like this:
Judging from the Santa outfit, the particular episode that I recorded aired in December.
The show featured famous Brazilian musicians of that period. No artist was too big for the show. Such musicians as Titãs, Ultraje a Rigor, and Rita Lee made appearances.
Now here's where things start getting weird. Throughout all the performances Chacrinha wandered around the set making noise, shouting, commenting, and even blowing on a whistle. A lot of what he says is meaningless or incoherent. Since he has a large microphone strapped to his chest, he is fully audible. That must have been incredibly distracting to the musicians. Here he is passing out candy canes to people in the audience.
But the weirdness is just beginning. Note the scantily-clad dancing girls in the background.
The cameras focus on them a lot.
And some of the camera angles are truly bizarre.
But the overall weirdness continues. There is a large studio audience.
And everyone in the audience is female.
They just love to be on camera.
Except when they're tired.
This girl was more interested in getting her photo on TV than her actual face. (Looks like she won a beauty contest, but where are her clothes?)
Apparently there is no minimum age requirement for being in the audience.
Oh, I almost forgot. Some people have signs.
Chacrinha passed away from cancer one or two years after this was recorded, so that was the end of the show.
What's strange is that back when the Chacrinha was on the air, I didn't find the program nearly as bizarre and disturbing as I do now. I just thought it was mildly unusual. The 80s were indeed a crazy time, and I'm happy to have gotten through them with most of my sanity intact.