Oct 12, 2018

12 Forgotten Beefcake Boys of the 1980s

When I was living in West Hollywood during the 1980s, we didn't go to movies much, due to the rampant homophobia. Nearly every movie featured a discussion of how much the main characters hated gay people.  In Teen Wolf, Michael J. Fox protests that he's not a "fag."  In American Werewolf in London, David Naughton calls Prince Charles "a fag."  In Breakfast Club, Judd Nelson writes a warning on his school locker: "Keep out, fags."

But in spite of the homophobia, there was a lot of beefcake.  Men took off their shirts regularly, in frat houses, swimming pools, locker rooms, on wilderness treks.  Some famous, others obscure.  Here are 10 forgotten beefcake boys, actors who surprised us by displaying impressive physiques in one or two movies, and and then vanished.

Or at least never took off their clothes again.

1. Dan Shor talking to his dad nude in Strange Behavior (1981).

2. Anthony Edwards (above) stripped down to his rather impressive underwear by customs agents in Gotcha (1985).

3, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, now a history professor, in underwear in Weird Science (1985).  Also starring a semi-nude Michael Anthony Hall and a bare-butt Bill Paxton.

4. Kevin Van Hentenryck running down the street naked in Basket Case (1982).

5. Don Michael Paul (left) in The Brotherhood of Justice (1986). 

6. Jsu Garcia, killed while naked in Nightmare on Elm Street (1984).

7. Robert Bryan Wilson as a muscular, naked killer in Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)

8. The super-muscular Anthony Starke in Return of the Killer Tomatoes (1988).  You heard me.

9. Keith Gordon (right) as a college swimmer embarrassed by his dad, Rodney Dangerfield, in Back to School (1986).  

10. William Zabka (left) as Chas in Back to School.  He also played a shirtless bully in Karate Kid (1984, 1986)

11-12. Tom Hodges and Jeremy Piven as locker-room bullies in Lucas (1986), the guys Corey Haim refers to as "fags." 

See also: Gay Nerds of the 1980s


  1. I heard you, but I knew about the killer tomatoes years ago.

    I was a huge Troma fan ever since the (turns out, not faithful at all) Killer Tomato and Toxic Crusader (Someone on staff must be anti-revenge but pro-Christian domination of the Levant.) cartoons.

    1. I was never a fan of the Troma movies. They always seemed to go with gross for its own sake, sort of like "Family Guy."

    2. Remind me to tell you about the six days I spent as a production assistant on a Troma movie some time.

    3. Iian Mitchell-Smith was 16 at the time

  2. And really, really cute, in my opinion.

  3. That Don Michael Paul image is from the 1984 film "Lovelines."


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