Pop Culture References in The Goldbergs - Double Dare


ABC's The Goldbergs is a love letter the 1980s and contains a veritable cornucopia of pop culture references and jokes about decade in each and every single episode. While it's next to impossible to list every single 1980s reference on The Goldbergs, we're going to run down some of each episode's geekier and more obscure pop culture moments. Please note that this column tries to cover only the "unique" references that appear in each episode, while passing on the posters, toys and other background pieces that appear in every episode and are irrelevant to the plot.

Double Dare

Most of tonight's episode revolves around Adam and his friends' attempt to appear on the popular Nickelodeon game show Double Dare. Double Dare was one of Nickelodeon's cornerstone series during the 1980s and 1990s and helped put the young cable network on the map for millions of children. As mentioned on The Goldbergs, the show combined trivia questions and "physical challenges" that usually involved plenty of Nickelodeon's trademark green slime. Two teams competed for money, various prizes (like designer shoes and Walkmen) and the chance to enter the Obstacle Course, an especially slimy series of challenges. If a team completed the entire obstacle course within 60 seconds, they won a trip to Space Camp (or a similarly cool destination).

The show went through several iterations during its 9 season run, including Super Sloppy Double Dare, Family Double Dare, and Double Dare 2000. The original series ended in 1993 after a 500 episode run, but Nickelodeon briefly revived the series in 2000.


Marc Summers

The famed host of Double Dare, Marc Summers has made quite a career out of hosting game shows. After appearing on Double Dare for most of its original seven season run, Summers appeared as the host of several other game shows, including Couch Potatoes, What Would You Do and WinTuition. More recently, Summers became the host of Unwrapped, a Food Network series revealing the origins of different kinds of food and a game show spinoff called Trivia Unwrapped.

The Cabbage Patch (dance)

Barry attempts the cabbage patch dance in order to save the Philadelphia Eagles' season. The dance rose to popularity in the 1980s after Dr. Dre and DJ Yella wrote a rap that described the dance in detail.


The Animal (Toy Truck)

Since Barry and Murray's superstitions prevent Beverly from actually entering the living room during Eagles games, she tries using an "Animal" toy monster truck to transport nachos to her family. The "Animal" monster truck was best known for the claws that extended from the wheels to help it traverse difficult terrain. While the claws were only supposed to come out when it hit an obstacle, you could set the Animal to drive with the claws out all the time, which ironically made it nearly impossible to drive.


Tron T-Shirt

Adam wears a Tron t-shirt to school, the latest in his ever growing collection of geeky movie themed t-shirt. Tron, of course, was the groundbreaking 1982 movie starring a young Jeff Bridges as a computer engineer trapped in "the Grid", an advanced digital world. The movie became a cult hit and inspired a generation of future moviemakers to give CGI a chance in their own movies.