The Not-So-Mean Streets?

February 1995

X-Force #43

I’ve never really been into Street Fighter – always much more of a Mortal Kombat fan, and from what I’m reading about this movie, that’s probably for the best: 3.8/10 on IMDB, 15% on Rotten Tomatoes… it doesn’t sound like I missed much by skipping this movie!

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So we all know that this movie is based on a video game, but did you know that Capcom took it one step further, and made a video game based on the movie based on the video game?? Yep, in 1995 they released Street Fighter: The Movie as both a coin-op game and as home versions for PlayStation and Sega Saturn.

Anyway, I’m hoping I got all the tags for characters/actors correct – I had to spend a bunch of time flipping between Google and IMDB to figure out who’s who. I guess you can let me know if I made any mistakes.

I Could Eat Wolverine for Breakfast!… Or a Snack…

February 1995

X-Force #43

After posting an entire series of ads from an X-Men comic, here’s an ad that actually features the X-Men! The ’90s were a good time for the X-Men – it seemed like there was every conceivable type of X-Men-branded product everywhere you turned! Well, here’s one result of that: X-Men gummy snacks!

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Personally, I don’t think I’d want to put anything “X-ploding with power” in my mouth, but to each his own, I guess.

Genesis’ Big Brother – Video Gaming Milestone!

March 1988

Visionaries #3

I’m finally able to use my scanner again – yay!!! Oh, ’80s, how I’ve missed you! So to celebrate, here’s my favorite ad from my newly scanned comic – the Sega Master System! I wasn’t really aware of this system during its heyday, but am more familiar with it now, and it’s actually a pretty cool system! Back when the NES ruled home gaming, the Master System actually had more powerful hardware, but NES had Mario, so eventually the NES’ game library is what allowed the NES to triumph over the Master System… in America, anyway. It turns out that in Europe, it actually surpassed the NES by quite a bit! And in Brazil, it’s the best-selling game system of all time, with compatible systems still being produced!

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One thing that I think is pretty cool about the Sega Master System is that games came in two formats: Mega Cartridges and Sega Cards. The cartridges are pretty standard, but the cards were the size of a credit card – they couldn’t hold nearly as much data as cartridges, but they were substantially cheaper, so you could build your game collection without breaking the bank!

However, the part about this system that I think is the most impressive is the 3D glasses (SegaScope – sold separately, of course). Considering that it was released in the mid-’80s, the 3D is pretty amazing! I know that the Vectrex also had 3D around this time, but other than that, the next one I can think of is the 3DS – a full 25 years later!

EDIT: While originally writing this, somehow the Virtual Boy completely slipped my mind (Sorry, Virtual Boy, it doesn’t mean I don’t love you!) – so that would make it more like 10 years until the next 3D gaming system. Were there any between the Master System and Virtual Boy that I’m forgetting about? If so, let me know in the comments!

Everyone Can Sell – Unlike Those Snobs at GRIT!

September 1963

X-Men #1

Well, this is it – the final ad from X-Men #1! Here’s a great opportunity for you to earn money by selling Christmas cards!

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Just based on this ad, I like Wallace Brown better than GRIT – they actually encourage everyone to participate in this – not just boys! If I’d been a kid in the ’60s who wanted to earn money, this seems like a better (and somewhat more legitimate) option than a lot of the other choices out there.

Encyclopedias: The Pre-Internet!

September 1963

X-Men #1

Encyclopedias! Back in my day, when we had to look something up, this is where we turned – not that new-fangled internet! While I was growing up, we had a set of World Book encyclopedias – I think they were from 1967 or ’68, so not too far off from when this set was around!

The unique thing about these, though, is that rather than being organized alphabetically, they’re organized by subject. To me, that makes them seem more like textbooks than encyclopedias, so I’m not really sure what the distinction is.

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A few things strike me about this ad:

  1. All that white space at the bottom! Did someone fail to plan this very well?
  2. This is an educational product, yet they unnecessarily/incorrectly capitalize “School” in the blurb on the top right.
  3. In the section describing the different volumes, they start out giving a brief description of each one, and then halfway through it’s like they just said “Screw it – this is too much work!,” and started listing them all with no elaboration whatsoever.
  4. This set claims to free you from the hassle of “having to look in books to solve every problem”… Umm, maybe I’m missing something, but isn’t looking in books to solve your problems exactly the point of this set?

Get an Actual Replica!

September 1963

X-Men #1

You can get a FREE $100,000 Confederate bill! That’s right, this “lots-of-fun actual replica” – wait a minute – “actual replica”?? They’re boasting about the authenticity of a reproduction?

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I also like the “Free China – our ally” bit – this was smack dab in the middle of the Cold War, so whether or not someone was Communist was a big deal back then!

Don’t Use Your Karate Skills on the Seahorses!

February 1976

Claw The Unconquered #5

It’s another random grab bag of mini ads!

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The one that strikes me the most here is the one for live seahorses – they’ll send you two “freshly caught” mated pairs, with at least one pregnant. OK, I have two main thoughts on this:

  1. Sending live, pregnant seahorses through the mail seems like it would be prohibitively difficult/risky.
  2. Capturing seahorses from the wild and then sending them through the mail seems rather cruel… and seems like it should be illegal.

At least Sea Monkeys are in a type of suspended animation when they’re shipped, but live, conscious animals is a whole different story!