Trope Workshop:Analog Punk

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This is a Trope Workshop page, still under consideration for creation.
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Trope Workshop Guidelines

Works that employ an aesthetic reminiscent of the early 1980s through the 1990s (possibly even extending into the early 2000s as far as technology is concerned), often taking place in the future or an alternate timeline. Especially typical is the use of post-1960s tech such as audio cassettes, CRT displays, floppy disks or CD-ROMs rather than USB flash drives, cell phones, and flat-screen monitors, along with other such late analog and early digital devices. The presence of the Internet is optional; if it does exist, it's small and far from the all-encompassing digital domain we know and love.

Examples of Analog Punk include:

Anime and Manga

  • Despite taking place in the 2070s on Mars, Cowboy Bebop has a strong 1970s aesthetic, right down to computers that run on vinyl records.
  • Since having a cellphone on hand wasn't common in 1995 when the film was made, it explains why such tech was absent in Ghost in the Shell.
  • The original Bubblegum Crisis is set in 2032, but generally has music, fashions, hairstyles, and technologies that all look like copies from or extrapolations of the 1980s, such as "retro thrash" songs that sound like Jim Steinman wrote them, all-in-one computer-monitor-keyboard units like the original TRS-80 personal computers and personal fax-video phones.
  • Akira takes place in 2019, yet newspapers and chunky computers without touch-screen are still in use. Considering The Tokyo Fireball likely held back a portion of technological evolution, it seems justified.

Fan Works

  • Spice Force Logic: Mind Games takes place in an alternate 2000 where Mars has been colonized and houses buildings such as a hospital where Earth medicine wouldn't be likely, let alone allowed, where Melanie and Emma ends up being stationed. Back on Earth, it was still common to use items like cassettes to records data, along with CRT monitors being the norm.


  • A Clockwork Orange has Alex playing music on a microcassette and a hydraulic turntable. The latter existed in 1971 in real life when the film was made and can still be found in films like Looper along with being available for purchase. Given the setting in an unknown year in the future, it makes sense to have a microcassette, where such could only be used as diction at the time. A device to allow such was developed a decade later.

Live-Action TV

  • Despite being set millions of years into the future, Red Dwarf has parts that mean this trope, which makes sense considering the original ran from the late 1980s till early 90s. Some include using oversize diskettes for media storage with the machines for them. One episode, memories would be stored on a microcassette.


  • Concept of the music video for 'Say You'll Be There by the Spice Girls

Oral Tradition, Folklore, Myths and Legends

Western Animation

  • Futurama has traits of this thanks to the usage of giant floppy disks for video, along with some tapes. Robotology's The Good Book 3.0 is a diskette.

Other Media