View Master

View-Master

Sure, there have been plenty of technological breakthroughs over the years that make something like a View-Master seem more than a bit antiquated. But there is such a simplistic charm to this little plastic box that allowed the young mind to travel to faraway lands, once visited or never before explored, and see them in all of their three-dimensional splendor. Everyone who has experienced the pleasure of a View-Master distinctly remembers the little lever and the clicking sound it made when advancing to the next frame. And any tourist of earlier decades can remember a time when seemingly every destination, not to mention every department and toy store, displayed racks containing hundreds of little discs. Today, we look at the history of, and our fascination with, the View-Master. Continue reading...

Wacky Packages

Wacky Packages

In the 70s, there was hardly a store that didn’t have a proud display of Wacky Packages right next to the cash register. Sold in the same packaging as baseball cards (which was no surprise since a company named Topps created them), they were literally irresistible to darn near every little kid with a few extra cents in his or her pocket. And the appeal was very simple – wonderfully demented versions of product art that every kid knew from the grocery story aisles. They were funny, they were completely politically incorrect, and much to the horror of every parent, they were backed with an adhesive – meaning that not only could they be affixed to school folders and lunch boxes, but also every square inch of wall, door or furniture within their path. Continue reading...

Wacky Wall Walkers

Wacky Wall Walkers

In the 80s, it wasn’t an uncommon sight to see a rubber octopus slowly make its way down a wall - a slimy and slithering slinky of sorts. The critter retained its hold, thanks to its remarkably sticky eight legs which adhered when thrown, then methodically walked towards the ground under the merciless forces of gravity. The Wacky Wall Walker would become a toy fad that gripped the entire nation like no other, to the astounding tune of a quarter of a billion of the wiggly beasts being sold in a few short years. Continue reading...

Wall Posters

Wall Posters

Once upon a time, there was no more fitting way to show your loyalty to your favorite teen idol or rock star than to adorn your bedroom wall (or ceiling) with a full-sized image of their smiling mug - staring at you lovingly, as if to say “You are the only one for me.” And if celebrity worship wasn’t your thing, perhaps you just wanted to ogle your favorite automobile, sports team, or a cat hanging from a pole reminding you to “Hang in there, Baby!” And if you happened to own a black light, there were hundreds of psychedelic scenes just waiting for their fluorescent colors to be vibrantly illuminated in your darkened room. Today, we take a look back at the iconic artwork that many of us spent hundreds of hours staring at through the course of our adolescence. Continue reading...

WarGames

WarGames

Home computers were quite the fad in the early 80s but most people didn’t know what exactly could be accomplished with them other than very simple word processing programs and rudimentary games. WarGames, released in 1983, showed the world the advantages (and disadvantages) to be had from computers’ increasingly important role in our lives. Continue reading...

Water Rockets

Water Rockets

Who says that science and summer can't co-exist? Thanks to these nifty spaceship-shaped toys, kids were able to get some firsthand experience of the power of water pressure, and have loads of fun while doing it. A staple on toy store shelves for over 50 years, they are affectionately remembered as water rockets. Continue reading...

Water Wiggle

Water Wiggle

Kids love to abuse their toys, but every once in a while a toy turns the tables and inflicts a little abuse of its own. With its goofy smiling face, the Water Wiggle seemed innocent enough. Simply throw on your bathing suit, attach the toy to the outdoor faucet, turn the water on … and watch all hell break loose. Continue reading...