The Little Rascals

The Little Rascals

Between 1922 and 1948, comedic film director Hal Roach created a total of 220 film shorts under the name Our Gang. Featuring over 41 different child actors over the years, the beloved shorts chronicled the adventures of a group of children who lived in a poverty-stricken neighborhood together. In the early 50s, thanks to the enormous popularity of the series, MGM took 80 of the shorts and packaged them for television as The Little Rascals. And, in the decades that followed, millions of former kids sat mesmerized by the hilarious antics and colorful characters. A staple of syndicated television for many years, they still hold a fond place in our hearts. Continue reading...

BurgerTime

BurgerTime

To create a successful video game, one must provide both a unique premise and a certain level of frenzied excitement. Combine the two successfully and people will part ways with every quarter in their pocket. One such game was the quirky and fast-paced BurgerTime, which pitted the player against a variety of fast food objects and edible enemies while they raced against time to build the perfect burger. Continue reading...

Kool-Aid

Kool-Aid

Few soft drinks share the pop culture significance of an ice-cold pitcher of Kool-Aid. A staple of summertime for literally generations of tykes, it is also a favorite among parents for it costs mere pennies per serving and is so easy to make - any youngster can whip up a batch on their own in just a few minutes - providing a perfect refreshment after a hard day's play. Continue reading...

Silly Putty

Silly Putty

What an inert, innocent appearance for such a versatile toy. Silly Putty would just sit there like a lump—literally—until you deigned to pick it up. But then, oh then…it came alive. Well, not really; there was a fair amount of elbow grease involved in getting enjoyment out of the Putty. It bounced; it flowed (if given enough time); it stuck to the wall; it stuck to newsprint and comic books and copied whatever was on the page; it even picked up pet hair and dust, should the average 8-year old feel a sudden urge to clean the living room. It could be kneaded and bent, stretched and flattened. And it owed its existence to an accident. Continue reading...

Tetris

Tetris

Call it the Russian Revolution ... In 1987, software company Spectrum Holobyte, Inc., released a PC game designed by Russian programmer Alexey Pazhitnov. Dubbed Tetris (from the Greek word for "four"), the game was deceptively simple: Using seven different shapes, each made of four blocks, players tried to build complete rows at the bottom of the screen. But what appeared an easy task at first glance proved maddening once the pressure was on, which made this one addictive video game. Continue reading...

Mood Rings

Mood Rings

During the mid-70s, it was no longer necessary to wear your emotions on your sleeve; any appendage would do! Science and marketing merged to unleash one of the biggest fads of all time, the mood ring. Soon, everyone and their mother seemed to be wearing one of these jewelry accessories on their finger, making it easy for the bystander (if the ads were to be believed, at least) to tell what the other person was feeling. Continue reading...

Capn Crunch

Cap’n Crunch

Of the many modern urban myths that tangentially involve breakfast foods, there is one universally accepted truth that has been handed down unchanged from successive generations since the introduction of Cap'n Crunch in 1962. Read forth, if you want to know about this popular breakfast cereal's injury-riddled history. Continue reading...

The Smurfs

The Smurfs

Forget the British Invasion of the 60s; let’s talk about the lesser-known Flemish Invasion of the early 80s. For that is when America was introduced to a herd of little blue humanoids known as Schtroumphs in their native land. Not ringing a bell yet? Perhaps you know them by their American translation – Smurfs. Created back in 1957 by cartoonist Peyo Culliford, they first made their presence known in the form of toys, but once TV executive Fred Silverman wisely bought the rights to use their likeness on NBC, The Smurfs quickly won over the hearts of tykes from coast to coast and Smurfmania was on the rise. Continue reading...