TV Cream's Top 100 Toys
December 27, 2004 3:47 AM   Subscribe

TV Cream's Top 100 Toys
posted by ZippityBuddha (25 comments total)
Between me and my brothers and my sister we had:

Fuzzy Felt, Weebles, Rubik's Cube, Zoids, Transformers, Mastermind, Guess Who?, Buckaroo!, Viewmaster, Connect 4, Tonka truck, Twister, Perfection, Downfall, Kerplunk, Mousetrap, A radio controlled car, Operation, Haunted House, Etchasketch, Cluedo, Spirograph, Tiny Tears, Screwball Scramble, Computer Battleship, My Little Pony, Subbuteo, Top Trumps, Action Man, A computer (a Dragon 32, to be precise), and a bike.

Man, we were spoilt kids...
posted by ZippityBuddha at 3:55 AM on December 27, 2004

Does anyone else remember Marvel the Mustang?

The jingle that advertised this toy was one of the most persistent earworms ever conceived. "No winding, no batteries. What horse do?" What did that mean? What horse do what?
posted by Riot Sauce at 4:45 AM on December 27, 2004

Ok, I'll go there: Finger Frights, Fuzzy Felt, Weebles, Test Match, Quicksilver Maze, Rubik's Cube, Electronic Project Kit (200 in One!), Mastermind (electronic version, which I still have), Walkie-talkies, Tonka truck (big white semi-trailer), Spud Gun, Shrinky Dinks (I also had a kit where you could make your own- Shrink Art by Semco?), radio controlled car, Dungeons & Dragons, Slime, Game and Watch, Spirograph (the exact same set shown in the photo), Six Million Dollar Man, Top Trumps (in Supertrumps form) and a bike (duh). Bear in mind many of these were hand-me-downs. I wasn't like, spoilt.
A most enjoyable read ZippityBuddha. Thanks. Seriously though, electronic hangman?

This comment brought to you by tabbed browsing and the keys Ctrl, C and V.
posted by bdave at 5:00 AM on December 27, 2004

And I meant to not put in Dungeons & Dragons. I don't even know what that is. Really.
posted by bdave at 5:03 AM on December 27, 2004

First off Zoids need to be much, much higher on the list. When I lived in England one of the kids in my class had the 'Godzilla' model (True name escapes me at the moment) and it was a nearly religious experience watching that massive thing lumber about. Envy doesn't even begin to describe the rest of the classes' feeling towards the lucky sod. Secondly, where's Magic Sand? Was it not offered in the UK? Loved that stuff, though sadly it appears to have been taken off the shelves due to toxicity issues, least that's what I've heard.
posted by Vaska at 5:04 AM on December 27, 2004

What? No Matchbox or HotWheels?

Nice to see the Johnny-Seven OMA on there. Spent many a long summer's day laying waste to poorly-armed playmates with that one.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:02 AM on December 27, 2004

Vertibird! I'd forgotten all about that (not sure how as it gave me hours of fun). Crossfire ruled and flight deck was awesome, and went some way to persuading me that I should never be a pilot.

Great site, though sad to report it has reminded me of two traumatic childhood events - firstly that I never had TCR racing (as I never had it I will always imagine it was as fun as it looked on TV), and secondly the dark, dark day when I went to buy an action man helicopter with my birthday money only to find that all the shops had sold out of them. Instead of saving my money I bought a train for my train set. A month later there were action man helicopters everywhere in the shops, and I regretted my rash move into the world of steam.

And I never did get that helicopter. It's the reason I'm such a bitter and maladjusted adult.
posted by ciderwoman at 6:32 AM on December 27, 2004

I mostly remember the commercials and wanting many of these toys rather than having them. I had my fair share of toys but the commercials during kids programming, especially on Nickelodeon, were powerful brainwash. I can still hear some of the jingles in my head and see my beautiful smiling "peers'" showing me how my life would be perfect if i had the latest toy and my parents didn't love me enough if i didn't.
posted by Recockulous at 6:34 AM on December 27, 2004

BTW, I got the helicopter (actually, multiple iterations thereof) and about 80% of the rest (excepting the girly toys), and I am still a bitter and maladjusted adult.

(I miss my Merlin, though...)
posted by Samizdata at 7:04 AM on December 27, 2004

the Smoking Monkey was the source of much confusion for British youngsters, who could neither understand nor appreciate why anyone would actually want a toy chimpanzee dragging on a pretend cigarette nor indeed what possible use or purpose it might serve.

Yes, it soooo very obvious to me-- the American Gal--why someone would want a toy chimpanzee dragging on a pretend Gawd, there is no toy known to mankind that would not be better if it was able to drag on a pretend cigarette: My Little Pony, Shrinky Dinks, Tonka Trunks, Spirograph, all immeasurably improved by smoking.

Think of the many hours of play pretending you were a drunk in a bar, or a chanteuse in a cabaret.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:36 AM on December 27, 2004

Metafilter: It's the reason I'm such a bitter and maladjusted adult.
posted by fake at 8:05 AM on December 27, 2004

The ommission of the Johnny Bench Batter Up! is excused only by the fact that the list is British.

I got one for Xmas one year, but once we found out that assembling it involved mixing and pouring concrete, it never got put together. There went my Big League career. Actually, learlier on I hadt this contraption that had a wiffle ball mounted in a cup attached to a pedal. When you stepped on the pedal it launched the ball into the air and you could practice hitting. The name of this device escapes me at the moment but boy was it fun. There was also this battery powered contraption that fastened to your bikes crossbar and when you pulled a lever, it made the sound of a revving motorcycle. I woke up a lotta neigbors with that thing.

I'm also a bit stunned by the omission of Stratego.
posted by jonmc at 8:17 AM on December 27, 2004

I had 15 percent of these toys, which I guess means I had a pretty good childhood. I live in the US, and many of these toys look uniquely British.

What is up with that Nazi board game, though? Creepy.
posted by nathanrudy at 8:34 AM on December 27, 2004

I don't remember a Death Star playset! I certainly would have wanted something like that. I had a ginormous Star Wars figure collection back in the day.

No love for Cat's Eye! That was my favorite game as a kid.
posted by SisterHavana at 9:02 AM on December 27, 2004

This is great list. Screwball Scramble! I haven't thought about that game in years! My cousin had a Death Star playset. I was jealous.

But Jeez is this list ever British. Every single entry uses the word 'twee', I think.
posted by painquale at 9:08 AM on December 27, 2004

Having spent our first 17 Christmases in England, my sister and I amassed pretty much every single toy on this list. I had forgotten about Stay Alive -- that was my all-time favourite game.

Brings back memories of British Xmases; can anyone explain why I still have the theme to Blockbusters stuck in my head, despite not having seen it in almost a decade?
posted by krunk at 9:16 AM on December 27, 2004

Oh, man! Not criticiziing this post at all, because I'm very interested - but, damn! I hate clicking through tons of pages to get to #1. If anyone else is likewise oriented, you can begin here and use "previous".

Also, very, very much ♥inging SLofG.
posted by taz at 10:03 AM on December 27, 2004

um. ?ing.
posted by taz at 10:04 AM on December 27, 2004

Between me and my sisters I probably played 40% of these things which is kinda scary. The weird thing is that I had every single item on the list that I'd heard of. There was nothing there that I recall existing that I didn't have.

I was disappointed they didn't have the Evel Kneivel doll with motorcycle or the Steve Austin doll. And #1 being a bike? WTF? I love bikes but it seemed very out of place with the other 99 items. A Big Wheel would have been a more appropriate choice (and I'm amazed it's not on the list).
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 10:05 AM on December 27, 2004

Actually... "&hearts-ing". Yeah - that's it!

Gee, love is hard.
posted by taz at 10:08 AM on December 27, 2004

I think, YSSTOG, you may have been a victim of the jedi mind trick. These are the toys you looking for.
posted by ciderwoman at 12:36 PM on December 27, 2004

200-in-one electronics kits, Technics, Robotics, Erector Sets etc helped me become who I is. My parents got me lotsa "educational toys" for which I'm grateful.

If nothing else, my Radio Shack electronics kit allowed me to build some badass alarms that warned me when my older brother was coming to fuck with me and my friends at sleepovers.
posted by singletrack at 3:02 PM on December 27, 2004

posted by davebush at 5:39 PM on December 27, 2004

posted by davebush at 5:41 PM on December 27, 2004

You all fall to the wayside beside the 8-track hypertextual goodness that was 2XL. I still have one on my mantlepiece. Won it in a crossword competition when I was eight, dontchaknow.
posted by Sparx at 7:35 PM on December 27, 2004

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