Grab some popcorn and dim the lights – it’s show time! And best of all, no movie theater required. Thanks to the Kenner Give-A-Show Projector, you could be the envy of your friends and be the proprietor of your very own movie theater.
Well, sort of…
Back in the days when a home VCR was inconceivable, the Give-A-Show Projector was an innovative way for kids to bring the movies home. Well, not exactly movies, but rather a slide show (hey, let’s not be picky, we’re talking 1960 here). This was groundbreaking stuff at the time. The Give-A-Show Projector basically amounted to a combination slide projector and flashlight that had a slot on the side for you to insert a strip of film that contained six frames of action packed entertainment. All you needed was a blank wall to project upon and sufficient darkness to be able to see them. Pretty simple stuff really, but entertaining enough to keep this product on store shelves for over three decades.
Of course, as cool as the technology might have been at the time, it certainly didn’t hurt that there was plenty of popular content available, thanks to some extensive licensing agreements. No matter who your favorites were – Woody Woodpecker, Bugs Bunny, Yogi Bear, Mighty Mouse, Rocky and Bullwinkle … even Star Wars – there was probably a filmstrip or two to suit your tastes.
Just like in Hollywood, the silent era would eventually come to a close as sound was introduced to the Give-A-Show Projector, first by playing a record along with the slides, and later, one of those newfangled cassette tapes. A few years after that, the Hand Held Stereo Viewer would be introduced, which bore a bit of a resemblance to another toy you might remember, the View-Master.
The Give-A-Show Projector was simply one of those great ideas that lasted much longer than anyone could have anticipated. It was easy to pull out of the closet when mom wouldn’t let you go to the movies and provided hours of enjoyment for the whole gang. Not too bad for a mere flashlight and slide projector.
If you were once the proud owner of a Kenner Give-A-Show Projector, or if you were ever invited over to a friend’s house for an afternoon of Give-A-Show entertainment, we welcome all of your memories in our comments section.