New Kids On The Block Are For Real

No games in this week's Forgotten Video
  • New Kids On The Block in "Games"
October 07, 2010 -- 8:32 am PDT
GRAMMY.com

Welcome to Forgotten Videos. Well, for some forgotten, for others just filed away, and for others still, a totally brand-new discovery. Whichever category you fall into, each week we'll feature a video that's possibly been collecting dust when what it really deserves is a fresh look. Or, we'll be giving a fresh look at a video that deserves to be collecting dust. We're not here to judge, we just want to take you on a little trip down memory lane. Yep, you'll remember when hair was really that big, when drums were that up front in the mix, when video was young(er) and so were you.

New Kids On The Block
"Games"
1990

Hot on the heels of his success with teen R&B boy group New Edition (you may have also forgotten "Cool It Now"), producer Maurice Starr set out in search of another singing group to throb the hearts of young teenage girls. During a 1985 talent search in Boston, Starr came across the perfect five-ingredient recipe for a new all-boy vocal group — Jonathan Knight, Jordan Knight, Joey McIntyre, Donnie Wahlberg, and Danny Wood. The recruits, aptly named New Kids On The Block, landed a recording contract with Columbia Records and released their debut self-titled album in 1986, before any of the members had reached voting age.

As New Kids mania (you may remember, or recently threw out, the plethora of New Kids-labeled merchandise available from bed sheets and pajamas to dolls and lunch boxes) started to pick up speed in 1988, the group released Hangin' Tough, which reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and spawned five Top 10 hits, including "Please Don't Go Girl," "You Got It (The Right Stuff)" and the title track. The guys hung tough into 1990 with the release of Step By Step, which again peaked at No. 1 and featured the rough-and-tumble "Games." The kids seemed tougher than ever in this video, which opens with a message for all the "suckas" from a street-ready Wahlberg, who proceeds to troll a semi-sketchy neighborhood and pick up hooligans along the way. The five-piece crew eventually meets up in nightclub with the rest of the "Beantown posse," except for Jordan Knight, who is seen singing off in a secluded spotlight until he arrives fashionably late and breaks into a dance.

The guys wouldn't reconvene until 1994, when they rebranded themselves NKOTB in an attempt to appeal to their former tween fans and released Face The Music, which fell short of their previous successes. Shortly after, the group acrimoniously parted ways. In 2008 NKOTB resurfaced and announced a tour and the release of a new album, The Block. The album debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and sold 100,000 copies in its first week, proving to the "suckas" that NKOTB was still hangin' tough.

Did you talk junk about the NKOTB? Got a Forgotten Video recommendation? Leave us a comment.

Last week's Forgotten Video
 

Email Newsletter