retroland_intellivision

Intellivision

The video game console wars of the early 80s were reminiscent of the video format wars a few years earlier, where VHS won the popularity contest hands-down, yet Betamax still boasted a better quality. In this arena, the Atari 2600 played the role of the VHS tape and underdog challenger was Mattel’s Intellivision, a fine little video game system that never quite captured the same spotlight, but will forever be remembered by many from that era as the superior system. Continue reading...

schoolhouserock

Schoolhouse Rock

When it comes to scholastic studies, most kids loathe having to memorize things. When it comes to song lyrics, however, most kids can master them after only hearing the words a handful of times. With this in mind, Schoolhouse Rock debuted in 1972, catching children off-guard with their infectious little tunes that taught important lessons about history, science and grammar - without most kids ever realizing what was going on. How well did it work? Well, decades later, many of us can still remember the lyrics to some of our favorite Schoolhouse Rock segments as if it were yesterday. Let’s take a look back at these perpetually-popular educational shorts. Continue reading...

tonka

Tonka Trucks

Let's face it: There are few ways to demonstrate the invincibility of a toy that are as convincing as having an elephant stand on it. And, as viewers of the highly successful 1974 commercial could readily attest, the imagery merely re-enforced a fact that every boy in America already knew; Tonka Trucks are virtually indestructible. This reputation of durability has made Tonka easily the most recognizable name in toy trucks for over 5 decades. Let’s take a look back. Continue reading...

blazingsaddles_retroland

Blazing Saddles

The king of parodies, Mel Brooks, took on the wild west in his 1974 classic, Blazing Saddles. Featuring an all-star cast, this tale of a black sheriff in an all-white town pulled no comedic punches (not even in regard to a horse), delivering what is considered to be one of the funniest movies of all time. Continue reading...

ArkIIFinal

Ark II

When the Saturday morning series Ark II debuted in 1976, it bore little more than a slight resemblance to its biblical counterpart. Sure, there was a post-apocalyptic world and a small group of survivors determined to repopulate the earth. And yes, they had an Ark of sorts, alhtough this one was a tad more advanced than its gopher-wood constructed ancestor. It was more of a high-tech Land Rover on steroids. Missing, however, were the countless pairs of animals - although to their credit, they did have a monkey. Regardless, Ark II made enough of an impression on young tykes in the 70s to stick around for a few years on television, then live on in their collective memories for decades beyond. Continue reading...

snackpack

Snack Pack

If you ever sliced open your tongue while desperately trying to lick the last remaining morsels of pudding from a pull-top lid, it is safe to say that you might remember a childhood delight of the 70s and beyond called Snack Pack. Introduced in 1969, they remain a staple of lunchboxes (or brown bags, if you prefer) to this day. Continue reading...

hot-wheels

Hot Wheels

In the world of die-cast toy cars, attention to detail is appreciated, but what kids really crave is speed. And for over forty years, Mattel's Hot Wheels have delivered the goods, proclaiming themselves not only fast, but the fastest. As such, they have remained enormously popular (and collectable) ever since they were first introduced in 1968. Continue reading...

WoodsyOwlFinal

Woodsy Owl

He sports a hat reminiscent of Robin Hood, his matching pants as forest green as his message. He is an official spokes-owl for the National Forest Service and his name is Woodsy. And, for the last four decades, he has probably done more to spread the word about environmentalism than even Al Gore. Continue reading...