Adding a Little Flair to the Game

February 1995

X-Force #43

If you know me, you know that I’m not into sports. At all. So that means I don’t have a whole lot to say about these basketball cards.

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It seems like collector cards were huge in the ’90s, so this is just one of the many, many sets out there at the time, trying to cash in on the craze. However, these cards do sound pretty fancy, with their “dazzling ‘hi-fi’ six-color printing, lavish foil stamping and a slick, durable polyester laminate coating.” Wait a minute – hi-fi printing? Hi-fi refers to audio! Well, if these cards make sound, then I guess they’re some really deluxe collector cards!

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Pop(ple) Till You Drop?

March 1988

Visionaries #3

Who out there remembers Popples? They were like the less exciting, plush version of Transformers: they could transform from a cute creature into… a ball!

Despite my current teasing, I actually did think they were pretty cool back in the day. If I remember correctly, I had a purple one, and my cousin had a basketball one (though the blue one in this ad with the guitar and the pierced ear looks pretty badass – in retrospect, I wish I’d had that one!).

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So, I see that the name of the company that made Popples was “Those Characters from Cleveland” – while I concede that it’s certainly a descriptive company name, not exactly the catchiest company name.

 

A Touch of Evel

February 1976

Claw The Unconquered #5

I saved the best (at least in my opinion) for last – here’s the last ad I’ve got from Claw The Unconquered: Evel Knievel! He was huge in the ’70s, with all sorts of stunts, TV appearances, and – most importantly – merchandise!

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This line of toys ran from 1972 to ’77, and after releasing the Stunt Cycle in ’73, became Ideal’s best sellers! Despite being so popular, the line was dropped (along with most of Knievel’s other sponsorships) when Knievel assaulted the writer of an unflattering book about him. But the really interesting part about that? Knievel managed to beat the guy to a pulp while still recovering from a stunt gone bad, and both of his arms were in casts at the time! Now that takes determination! (Not that I’m endorsing assault or anything, but still, wow!)

Watch Out for Snakes… or Alligators!

February 1995

X-Force #43

It’s amazing how much a video game can evolve in 12 years – the original Pitfall was released in 1982 on the Atari 2600. At the time, it was considered a huge breakthrough in terms of graphics and gameplay. This newer, updated version of Pitfall was released in 1994 – and these graphics are quite a bit more advanced than the original! However, many thought the gameplay was a bit lacking (or lagging) on this one.

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But there is a fun marriage of the classic with the new on this one: If you find a secret doorway, it takes you to the original game – pretty cool, huh?

 

I Know Colors! I’m a Musical Genius!

March 1988

Visionaries #3

I find this ad in this comic kind of odd in that the ad’s intended audience seems much younger than the comic’s intended audience. I’d say this kid is – what? – maybe three? Whereas I’d say the low end of this comic’s audience is maybe seven.

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Anyway, here are two Muppets-themed keyboards – a regular Muppets keyboard for regular kids, and a Muppet Babies keyboard for baby kids!

Classic Revivals

February 1976

Claw The Unconquered #5

I wasn’t very familiar with either of these titles, so had to look up info on both of them. It turns out that they both began in the 1940s, were canceled, and then revived in the ’70s. Both of the comics advertised here are the first in their new series.

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Interestingly, even though they’d been out of print for a while (in the case of All Star Comics, 25 years!), DC decided to continue the issue numbering where it left off.