Technically, Houdini did appear on the cover of Genii in the '80s many times. That's because in 1982 Genii did a cover redesign that featured a background montage of famous magicians, including a nice image of Houdini (hopefully I don't need to point him out). But apart for this, Genii showed little love for the Master Mystifier during the "Me Decade."
But it could also be that there were no seismic Houdini events in the 1980s as there had been in the 1970s with a wave of books and tributes commemorating the 50th Anniversary of his death. In fact, the '70s were so Houdini packed, the magic world might have been suffering a bit of a Houdini hangover in the '80s.
|Genii, May 1980|
However, the tradition of a Houdini Special Issue would be revived in the 1990s, and by a familiar champion.
Coming next: November 1993