Imagine it’s 1983. The Cold War is in full swing, the hair is big, and the threat of nuclear war hangs heavy in the air.

Then, in a televised address, President Ronald Reagan threw a curveball: a plan to shoot down incoming missiles with lasers—a real-life “Star Wars” defense system.

Buckle up because we’re diving into the story of the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), also known as Reagan’s “Star Wars” program.

Nuclear Nightmares and the MAD Dance

The world in 1983 wasn’t exactly sunshine and rainbows.