Just like the kids in the video, I played with my Adventure People sets outdoors, more so than with other action figures. I guess the ads worked: these toy characters wanted “adventure,” and there is more adventure outside in tall grass and gardens than indoors.
I had a few sets. Sea, medical, but what I most remember is the Safari Adventure People set. Lions, tigers, zebras, cages, jeep and safari dude. Way cool! When digging up a garden in the yard of my childhood home, one or two “Adventure People” were rescued from their soil imprisonment. What years of “adventure” they had under the grass!
I had several sets of Colorforms. My favorite was Batman.
At the age of 4, I had to be hospitalized for convulsions. Whenever I had a high fever, my eyes would roll back, I would lose consciousness, and scare the crap out of my poor parents and sisters. So into the hospital I went, where I was placed in a crib with steel bars that kind of resembled a cage.
My family came with gifts. There was some plastic pinball machine, books, and other things. My favorite gift: The Batman Colorforms. It had some kind of nighttime, urban background. The Colorforms were of Batman (of course) and all these bad guys!
My mom would say, “What do you want to play with Danny?” My answer was always the same: “Batman Colorforms!”
“Again?? You were just playing with those. How about this toy, or that toy?”
No, no and no. I just wanted the Colorforms. I remember taking the Colorforms and sticking them to the steel bars of the crib.
Not only did I have hundreds of these plastic soldiers, but I had jeeps and tanks that shot little plastic (mortars? bullets?). I had enough men and machinery to play war with a partner. My guys lined up against his guys. My tanks against his.
Now the soldiers I had were of different ranks. I had several of what were obviously generals. So my friend suggested that because they were very important, they should be lying on their bellies so that they would be very difficult for a plastic mortar to hit. I pointed out that they would be impossible to hit. His solution: we could shoot pretend missiles as well. So whenever it was my turn, I just ignored the tanks and used my finger to launch an imaginary projectile that always hit one of his prone generals right in the ass. He started to get pissed and said this was unfair. Hey, it was his rules.
He had wheels on his feet. He shot missiles from his fingers. He had a removable headpiece. I don’t remember what it did, but hey, it was removable! And he had a plastic red sword that fit either in his hand or on a pouch at his side. Mazinga! (With the red chest guard in the video) What an awesome Showgun Warrior he was!
Well, my pachinko game didn’t look exactly like this. The video shows a professional gambling machine. Mine was smaller, a toy, but I think better. It had better depictions of space objects (suns, moons, etc.) My dad bought me this while he was on a business trip to Japan.
When I thought I had enough of this game, I tried to sell it at our yard toy sale for 50 cents. Thankfully, my dad stopped me and let me know if was worth a lot more. So I kept it. For awhile. Sadly, I don’t have it anymore. I cannot recall what happened to it. It was unique.
As with the race track, the magic set advertised in the video was not the one I owned. Come to think of it, I had more than one set. One had pictures of the classic magicians (Houdini, Thurston, etc.). Heck, I don’t even remember what the tricks were. But I knew that just as I had wanted to be a Dominos guy, I wanted to be a magician, and I just loved having the sets I owned. If I could only remember what was inside them. Hmmm…..
I’m not sure if the race track in this video was the one I owned. There seem to be more loops than I remember. But whatever I had was very similar. It worked via handheld controls. It glowed in the dark. It was indeed fun, fun, fun!
It was my 5th or 6th birthday when I received Silly Putty as a present. It was a gift from my sister and she was hosting my birthday party at her apartment. I loved it! It could stretch – that was cool! It could capture an image of a newspaper, a comic. That was better. But what was best about it was that it could bounce! A super ball worked the same way (I probably would have been just as thrilled with that, oh well)
I took it into my sister’s bedroom and bounced the thing all over the place. It bounced off this wall, off that wall, and then…it was gone. We couldn’t find it. A week or so later, my sister found it stuck to one of her dresses. The putty melted and ruined the dress.
I got replacement silly putty after that. One time I believe I got Silly Putty that glowed in the dark! How awesome that was!
Punching Bag + Socker Boppers = Fun Fun Fun! I couldn’t find a vintage ad, so here’s a modern clip of some kid beating the shit out of Spiderman!
When I was growing up, there was no YouTube, no smartphones or tablets either. No hand-held device for watching videos. But I had the Viewmaster and it was cool!