Charles Atlas

Charles Atlas

Anyone with a penchant for comic books from yesteryear has encountered the story of the 97-pound weakling. Losing his girl after having sand kicked in his face by a bully, he discovers the miracle of “dynamic tension” and comes back a mountain of muscle, exacting revenge upon his former tormentor. This comic strip advertisement would be enough of an enticement to get millions of males between the ages of 15-25 to send Charles Atlas their money and make him a household name the world over. Continue reading...

Smokey Bear

Smokey Bear

With World War II raging away, natural resources needed to be protected at all costs. A forest fire could be devastating in terms of lost lumber. The government handed a very special bear the task of informing the public on the dangers of forest fires and the need for watchful vigilance. And for over 60 years, he has proven himself worthy of the task. He is Smokey Bear and his contributions to the war effort and beyond have made him a legend. Continue reading...

Evel Knievel

Evel Knievel

It was just about impossible to be a kid in the 70s and not know who Evel Knievel was. He was the iconic folk hero of a generation that grew up a little too late to catch the space race or Daniel Boone. Eyes were transfixed to television sets everywhere each time he would put on his helmet and propel his motorcycle towards a ramp that would send him flying over cars, buses, fountains, canyons, and anything else that seemed to have a need to be jumped over. Of course, part of the allure of these spectacles was that Mr. Knieval didn’t always make the most graceful landing. Continue reading...

Iron Eyes Cody

Iron Eyes Cody

The story of Iron Eyes Cody is a rather fascinating one. With a solitary tear dripping down his cheek as he mourned the increasingly polluted land around him, his image served as a catalyst for modern environmentalism and encouraged many to do their part in helping to clean up the growing litter problem. A champion of Native-American causes, an actor that appeared in dozens of films, he is without doubt the single most recognizable Native -American face in modern culture. Of course, there’s just one little tiny detail, a seldom -mentioned tidbit of information that somewhat clouds the history of this iconic character – he wasn’t really an Indian. Continue reading...

Ludwig Von Drake

Ludwig Von Drake

There seems to be an unwritten rule that anyone who is a genius must also be eccentric. The same holds true for the duck with all the answers, Ludwig Von Drake. While he may never have possessed the same star power as his beloved nephew, Donald, he is certainly enough of a character to warrant his inclusion as a Retroland icon. Let’s take a look back. Continue reading...

Bozo the Clown

Bozo the Clown

Few clowns have ever enjoyed the same enduring popularity as the lovable red-haired, white-faced icon known as Bozo. For over half a century, literally dozens of men have donned the floppy shoes and red nose for the television cameras and endeared Bozo the clown to generations of young viewers. Continue reading...

The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams

The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams

The idea of escaping the pressures of civilized society in favor of a solitary life in the wilderness is a captivating one. In the 70s, the poster child for such an adventurer was a bearded mountain man with a smiling face named Grizzly Adams. First introduced by way of a a novel in 1972, the cinematic version of The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams came out in theaters two years later and captured the hearts of millions, making Grizzly Adams a household name throughout the remainder of the decade. Continue reading...

Hello Kitty

Hello Kitty

Surprisingly, it all started with a mere change purse, one adorned with the face of a sweet little mouthless kitty – a nice little product that one would imagine would make for a cute little short-lived fad. But “fad” doesn’t even begin to describe the magnitude, the enormous impact, the marketing machine, the iconic status that this darling little feline we know as Hello Kitty would have on the world. Continue reading...