Here’s another great Children’s Palace ad, this one focusing on Nintendo games. What heady times those were!
As you can probably tell between last week’s TCT and this one, I went down a bit of a rabbit hole on YouTube looking at various Children’s Palace ads. This was my local toy store as a kid. There’s a Best Buy where it used to be, another place I spent a lot of money when still kicking around Toledo. The Ghostbusters are just the best.
There used to be a Children’s Palace near my house growing up. I don’t remember a roller skating panda being a part of the proceedings, but then again, I wasn’t born until four years after this bonkers spot aired.
It seems pretty clear that Hasbro was desperately grasping for ways to make kids want to buy G.I. Joe toys in the mid 90s. At one point they went with awesome live action commercials then switched gears from the war on drugs thing to neon ninjas to the environment to monsters!
According to the fantastic YoJoe.com, Dr. Mindbender whipped up Mega Monsters Bio-Viper and Monstro-Viper to take on the Mega Marines who have moldable armor in the form of Play-Doh. The monsters look rad, but the idea of putting play clay on my figures sounds super-messy now. My kids love Play-Doh and I’ve seen how hard it can be to get the hardened stuff out of crevices and whatnot! Jeez, I sound old.
Anyway, I though this would be a good way to kick of TCTs for October as I love bonkers mash-ups like this! Enjoy and come back for hopefully-maybe daily posts leading up to Halloween.
While at my folks’ place a few weeks back, I looked through a bunch of boxes in the garage, mostly toys. I was looking for a trip down memory lane, but also a few things I could bring into the house for my kids — now five and two — to play with. So, when I found the Micro Machines box, I was pretty excited. The kids had a great time playing with the tiny vehicles plus the larger plane and boat I found.
It wasn’t until the last day that I looked through another box and found the Super Van City. What could have been! Oh well, it’ll be fun to break out next time we’re at the cottage! That is one cool playset made even better in my eyes because of the transforming nature. You could have made a stick that transformed into a tree with a few flips and twists and I probably would have been in love with it back then.
I still think it’s amazing that, back in the 80s, it was standard practice to simultaneously launch a comic book along with a cartoon/toy line. These days, comic book characters are bigger than ever, but I’m not so sure that reflects back on the medium itself, but back then it was assumed that kids would want to plunk down the money they didn’t spend on toys on a monthly comic to fill out the story.
Just today, I wrote a post for Marvel.com about the tie-in comic for Star Wars Droids as part of my weekly Star Wars Spotlight column. While researching, I was reminded that the Kenner toys based on this short-lived cartoon were actually pretty rare so this will probably the most I ever see of them. It’s too bad because those vehicles sure look cool!
It’s pretty funny that Hasbro decided to follow-up the short-lived Drug Elimination Force line with the over-the-top macho craziness of Battle Force. I mean, it’s not like the D.E.F. line was overly serious (see: Headman), but all that “very special episode” stuff is out the window in favor of neon, muscles and spring-launching weapons.
From perusing the fantastic YOJOE.com I realized that the early 90s were my personal heyday when it came to getting Joe toys. Some of the lines were crazier than others, but I was a kid who wanted to play with he-men, ninjas and evil bad guys, some covered in armor, so it was all gravy for me. How, I didn’t get into the sci-fi-themed Star Brigade figures and why there’s not a commercial for the whole line on YouTube will remain a mystery for now.