It’s always fun for me to see how radio gets portrayed in popular culture and I often revel in all of the inaccuracies. David Silver as a high school, college, and commercial radio DJ on the original Beverly Hills, 90210 was always a treat to watch and make fun of.
DJ David Silver would rap on and on about his personal life and bantered with his girlfriend Donna (played by Tori Spelling) over the air while his mouth hovered miles away from the microphone. Behind the scenes, his character helped to cast a sleazy haze over college radio graveyard shifts when he became addicted to speed (given to him by his program director) in order to survive the sleep deprivation.
Well…gear up. Tomorrow the comedy “Pirate Radio” opens in the United States. It’s a fictionalized take on radio pirates in 1960s Britain. Retooled for U.S. audiences, the originally titled “The Boat that Rocked,” explores a cast of characters broadcasting illegally from the seas off Britain.
Rock scholar and critic Simon Frith wrote a great piece about the history of pirate radio in Europe, which is a nice bit of background to have before taking in the film.