Thanks to another reader of this blog who shared additional instances of spandex disco pants being seen in various tv shows and movies. This post will be about the February 14, 1986 episode from the second season of Miami Vice. (I assure you I did not purposely plan to write about this episode seeing how tomorrow is February 14. It is purely coincidence but interesting to note that tomorrow will be the 33rd anniversary of the debut airing of this one).
I didn’t watch this episode. I may have years ago when I used to watch this show as a child with my sister. But for the sake of this blog post I skimmed through it looking for any and every instance of disco pants I could find. These stills are not the highest quality but nonetheless display the wonderful glory of a tight-fitting, shiny, purple pair of vintage spandex jeans.
The good news about the character wearing the disco pants is that she is a police detective. The bad news—and it’s nothing new—-is that she is wearing the pants to work undercover as a, well, you know. The detective’s name is Gina Calabrese and is played by Saundra Santiago:
Based on what I saw from skimming this one, it does have a decent amount of disco pant screen time. As the stills indicate they’re mostly on the street but also some in the police building.
As this episode is from 1986 it’s a rather late date in terms of disco pants fashion. Yes, lycra and spandex leggings were still very much in vogue but by the mid-80s the actual pants were becoming a rarer sight and mostly relegated to the seedier types of society. Hookers, murderers and the dimwitted types were being portrayed as the only ones still donning the fabulous shiny, spandex jeans. I have nothing but praise for American Apparel for bringing back these pants and helping destroy that image created by Hollywood. Spandex disco pants no longer had to rest on its first demise as the choice pants of ‘bad girls’ or ‘bad boys.’