No. 177 – Disco Fever

Prog 301’s Rogue Trooper cover for the story Fort Neuro (progs 291310 (1982–83)) written by Gerry Finley-Day and drawn by Brett Ewins (1955–2015) v John Badham’s Saturday Night Fever (1977) theatrical poster

Dancing queens Britt, Agnetha and Ingrid

Saturday Night Fever is based on an entirely fabricated article by British writer Nik Cohn published in New York magazine in 1976 entitled Tribal Rites of the New Saturday Night. New to the United States and assigned to write about the disco lifestyle, the utterly bewildered Cohn invented the character of Tony Moreno (played by John Travolta in the film) who was based on an English mod acquaintance. Despite the subterfuge the film nonetheless significantly popularized disco music internationally and made Travolta a household name.

The film features music by British pop band the Bee Gees, formed in 1958, and their theme tune Stayin’ Alive became the title for Sylvester Stallone’s considerably less successful sequel in 1983.

Fort Neuro also gives a nod to Swedish pop sensation ABBA, formed in 1972, who dominated the pop charts until 1982.

ABBA (pictured here in 1978) members (left to right) Björn Ulvaeus with wife (m. 1971; div. 1980) Agnetha Fältskog, [Norwegian born] Anni-Frid Lyngstad with husband (m. 1978; div. 1981) Benny Andersson

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