Gatorland

Gatorland

You squirm impatiently in the back seat of the family sedan, waiting for the endless greenway of Florida’s Orange Blossom Trail to yield something of interest. For miles now, roadway signs have promised wonders ahead at “The Alligator Capital of the World.” Soon, there it is, a long strip of buildings and walkways, fronted by a classic entrance, a giant concrete gator head, its mouth wide open, beckoning you to enter. Welcome to Gatorland. Continue reading...

Rock 'em Sock 'em Robots

Rock’em Sock’em Robots

Ladies and gentlemen, may we present to you — in this corner, the ancient and noble sport of pugilism. In the opposite corner, tiny robots with fists. The winner and still champion - kids everywhere, who got to enjoy vicarious violence in bright, primary colors, thanks to Rock’em Sock’em Robots. Continue reading...

Song of the South

Song of the South

The series of “Uncle Remus” stories penned by Joel Chandler Harris seemed a perfect vehicle for Walt Disney to finally employ a form of technology he had long experimented with – the merging of animated images with live actors. The concepts had been toyed with in films such as The Reluctant Dragon and The Three Caballeros, and Walt had first explored the possibilities in a cartoon called Alice’s Wonderland as far back as 1923. It was finally time to truly put the techniques to the test in a feature film, and the result was The Song of the South. Continue reading...

Teletubbies

Teletubbies

“Over the hills and far away, Teletubbies come to play.” It was a British Invasion of another sort, when a new fab four arrived on American shores after finding much success in their home country of England. This time around, however, the moptop hairdos were absent, replaced by geometrical antennae, as well as far more colorful (and furry) attire. And, while this description might fit a typical 80s glam band, instead it is about a quartet of four lovable and nonsensical creatures called Teletubbies. Anne Wood and Andrew Davenport created Teletubbies in 1997, a children’s show which targeted the youngest set of television viewers, the preschoolers. The idea was to help boost confidence and diminish anxiety as their future school […] Continue reading...

Snik Snak candy bar

Snik Snak

First introduced by Mars in the mid-60s, Snik Snak bars were once the primary rival of the similarly-titled Hershey concoction, the Kit Kat bar (which arrived on the market first.) But for fans of the long-extinct candy, there was really never any comparison. Continue reading...

Garbage Pail Kids

Garbage Pail Kids

If anyone in this world can appreciate the classless, tasteless, and downright disgusting humor of this world, it’s children. While gas may strain a marriage, it brings mirth to a classroom. While boogers are a taboo subject among adult circles, they can be found under desks and on the back of school bus seats everywhere. If it’s grosser than gross, chances are, kids wanna hear about it. Continue reading...

Sigmund and the Sea Monsters

Sigmund and the Sea Monsters

Few people made a more profound impact on the Saturday mornings of the 70s than the creative duo of Sid and Marty Krofft. They whisked us off to one magical locale after another with such offerings as H.R. Pufnstuf, The Bugaloos and Lidsville. In 1973, a floating piece of seaweed inspired the pair to create a series a little closer to home. Breaking with their surrealistic style, they set their new show at a southern California beach, and called it Sigmund and the Sea Monsters. Continue reading...

Matchbox

Matchbox

One might think that a delightful collection of scale model cars would be something that a child would want to lovingly protect from harm. Something about a car, however, brings out a more sadistic side to kids. Try as they might, they can’t help being lured into a world of fantastic car crashes and death-defying stunts - paint scratches be damned. Probably no other toy has consistently faced the abuse that Matchbox cars have been put through; an impromptu demolition derby is just too enticing to pass up. But for over fifty years, these little die-cast metal beauties have won the hearts of kids everywhere and somehow a small portion have survived unscathed enough to be coveted by collectors everywhere. Continue reading...