Fantasy Island, Mr. Roarke's Paradise Where Dreams (Or Nightmares) Come True
The diminutive Tattoo (Hervé Villechaize) alerted the mysterious Mr. Roarke (Ricardo Montalban) that de plane, de plane of visitors had arrived -- so began Fantasy Island every Saturday night on ABC at 10:00 p.m., from 1978 to 1984. Fantasy Island was a place where dreams come true, and where visitors always get what they want for better or for worse. The series was executive produced by Aaron Spelling, a genius of '70s TV who was also responsible for for Starsky & Hutch, The Love Boat and Charlie's Angels.
Like The Love Boat, Fantasy Island's weekly series followed a cast of guest stars made up of a mix of soon to be famous people like Michelle Pfeiffer and Cassandra Peterson (Elvira), and well known television stars like Sammy Davis Jr. and Sonny Bono. Unlike The Love Boat, the fantasies on this series often took a dark turn.
This huge primetime hit was a strange series at a time when television was pretty straightforward, and it was all helmed by Mr. Roarke, the seemingly magical caretake of Fantasy Island, where your dreams could turn to nightmares in a matter of moments.