Wednesday, December 22, 2010

From the Mind of DER (Impossible/Impractical Christmas Gifts in the 1980s)

A time to be with one's family and friends. To reflect on the year that's passed. All the good and all the bad. While kids and adults sought proof and celebration in the existence of Santa/God alike...I look back on fond memories as a child surrounded by amazing toys.

Yes, it stemmed from a corporate cocaine influenced, money hungry special place but one cannot deny that being a kid in the 1980s meant "Best. Christmas. Ever." It meant spending all of December in deep worship with my bible, "The Sears Catalog".
This brings me to compile my list of "Top 5 Impossible and Impractical Christmas Toys in the 1980s".

This is a list of toys that in theory seemed awesome but...


A common theme you'll find in all my comments on this list is -"Where the hell would you put it?".

Seriously, where the hell would you put it? It's about the size of a small-medium dog. While very cool as a display item, it doesnt have much maneuverability as an actual toy. Ever want to re-create the exciting process of stop motion special effects by manually moving each of the AT-ATs legs one at a time to simulate walking? Now you can!!!


The marketing team for Hasbro in the 80s...
These guys while totally soulless were brilliant. With both Transformers and GI Joe, they created amazing thirty minute cartoon infomercials to push their products.
Don't get me wrong, I did own and love Transformers. However as a toy, really not that great. The actual transformation into a robot was always kind of lackluster. I don't think it's the grown up in me talking because I remember being a kid and really just enjoying playing with them as whatever vehicle thing they were. Not the robot. So when I wanted a new Transformer that turned into two other things that sucked my parents ignored this request.

*side rant: I don't care how smart you were as a kid. Many of those toys took a minute, and not an easy one at that, to transform. Back then I knew nothing of looping so I found it quite difficult to keep making the "transform" sound effect going while doing this.


Often in the 80s you had two companys pushing similar products. Here was the case of Photon and Lazer Tag. My parents while initially making the wrong call with the Beta/VHS decision got this one right. I'm pretty sure the big kids in the neighborhood would have hit me harder then normal had I shown up with that dumb helmet.


This is another example of cool display items as a grown-up nerd but as a toy...kinda shitty.
While great in detail and made up of an almost lethal amount of rubber, they really didn't serve well in the turnbuckle arena.
You would think being they are ya know.. WRESTLERS they would be pose-able.
Some of the figures, with a bit of imagination. you could get to do their signature move.
Unfortunately most were left out in the cold, such as the case of Greg "The Hammer" Valentine and his figure four leg lock.
Sorry, buddy.


The piece de la resistance. Shame. Shame on any parent who bought this for their kid. I'm guessing those "lucky" kids own hummers now. I ask...where in the hell would you put this.?! Made to scale so you could actually land the fighter jets on it this was the holy grail of toys for my generation. Everybody always had a friend who's cousin had it.  Liars. Only kid who did probably have it was Master Bates from "The Toy".

(written by Anderson Bradshaw. compiled by Douger.)

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