The Star Wars R2-D2 Pizza Cutter!

If I can say one thing for certain, it is that I will always be late to the main event. When something is at its most zenith, the top of popularity, the thing to pay attention to, I will usually catch up with it a year or two later. It happens with almost everything that the populace is engaged with. For example, I just finished The Sopranos on Amazon Prime last month. This show had references to Netscape, for Christ Sake! I loved ever minute of it and have been bring it up in social events only to be left empty of witty dialogue because most of my friends where finishing college in the heyday of the HBO classic. Shit, I just recently became an Amazon Prime member, too!

With that in mind, (I am not a hipster) it is no surprise that I am rolling in Star Wars novelty junk like my dog Theodore rolls in cat puke. With the year leading up to one of the biggest movie events in modern history, The Force Awakens jammed the stores with all sorts of silly shit from a galaxy far, far away. Not to mention the franchise is now owned by Disney who is only second to Gene Simmons when it comes to branding merchandise.

This is kind of why I blog, really. I blog to talk about or review the items that makes us smile not because we need them but because it’s just there. And with the new Star Wars movies slated to be pop-culture fodder for the foreseeable future, I will say that VeggieMacabre should never run out of silly things to talk about and perhaps smile over.

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 12.31.35 PM

So, with that being said, let us chat about the Star Wars R2-D2 Pizza Cutter! This is not just your ordinary pizza cutter because when you divide up the pie, you get delighted with a series of “bleeps” and “blurps” as authentic R2 sounds emanate from the tool. It’s pretty loud and if someone wasn’t a huge Star Wars fan, I could see them committing mass murder in a Pizza Hut. For one pizza on a Friday night and a movie, however, R2-D2 would be an awesome droid to pretend he is approving of the topping selections.

Come and watch my quick video, review and demonstration of the R2 series Astromech Droid pizza cutter. It is sure to leave you saying, “He paid $24.95 for that?”.

Christmas Rewound

It is Sunday Funday here over at VeggieMacabre HQ and we are smack in the middle of the Holiday Hell Show. Today, I am dipping into the realm that Dinosaur Dracula does so well. I have been on the couch with Christmas movies on the TV, homemade chicken soup cooking in the crockpot, a glass of merlot by my side and the YouTube Time Machine whisking me away to the commercials that filled the time between Merry Christmas Charlie Brown. It is magical. Let’s take a look and dissect these toy ads we grew up with and rip on the kids who were in these.

I was only marginally into He-Man growing up. I loved the idea and Castle Grey Skull was cool but at the end of the day, I just couldn’t get down with characters that look like a well fibrous poop. The accessories, however, were pretty damn amazing. Take Skeletor’s Dragon Water Blaster pack, for an example. You had the ability to soak your friends’ toys and be the little dick of the neighborhood.

HeMan Dork

Let us look at this advertisement. It is hilarious to look back and see these kids imitate their He-Man characters in the gruffest voice a nine-year old could make. I think it was just in the 1980’s that toy advertisers propped up kids to overact their group playtime. I never remember doing any of this! And look at the little fool who takes it to a new level and freezes himself for the duration of the commercial. He is only over to play because either these are all his toys or his mom is friend’s with one of their mothers. No one likes him.

Crappy kid

But the one that stood out the most was the little nut-weed who had the Dragon Blaster Skeletor. Just look at him cackle with delight forcing his playmates to freeze. I know this kid. He’s the neighborhood dick who bullied you into throwing oranges at cars or rings door bells and running. He had an older brother who would beat the hell out of him so shit would roll downhill if you ever came over to his house. He is Reed and he was the one who threw the Cadberry Cream Egg through the kitchen window, not me Dad. “I SAID FREEZE!..OR I’M NOT PLAYING!”

The Sly Snootles and the Max Rebo play set was such a weird toy to get. I guess if you had the entire Jabba Palace play set it wouldn’t be complete without musical entertainment but to just have this set, I don’t know. I guess you could pretend they are a Nirvana galactic cover band touring for your other toys. It’s a stretch but I guess it works.

At least these kids got to kill Sly Snootles.

Screen Shot 2014-12-14 at 4.58.27 PM

Is it just me or is Droopy McCool the shittiest of all Star Wars characters? He looks like a waterlogged pig who was put in jorts and pushed down a well.

I’ve covered this one before and every Christmas I tend to bring it up again. It’s getting to be a tradition. I never got the USS FLAGG and I’m still bitter about it. Looking back I understand because it was hard to sell the folks why I needed a toy bigger than the dinning room table. But I didn’t care and I blame this commercial.

GI Joes commercials always superimposed kids into the battle to ride in the vehicles and immerse themselves into the world and fight against COBRA. It worked and watching three kids run up and down the flight deck of the USS FLAGG made me want it worse than my dog wanting his hump blanket.

I have faith the new line of GI Joe will release the FLAGG and this time, it will be mine. I want to eat sushi off the deck of it in my living room and watch Nightmare On Elm Street 3. You have to have goals in life otherwise you’ll never have anything!

Oh hell, I had a lot of these. I don’t know if it was all at once or over the course of many Christmases but even today, if you go down in the parent’s basement, I bet in under ten minutes you will find a ROTJ Speeder Bike part. They blew apart with a little button in the back and in my house, that means they never stayed assembled.

While researching for this nonsensical post, I learned the Kenner Star Wars theme song never changed for any toy over the course of the trilogy. It wasn’t anything Lucas but it was something that has been in my head since three this afternoon. And will probably be there until three o’clock in the afternoon of December 14th 2027.

I love watching these kids race their speeders around the yard showing off the speed breaks and blow-apart action of the Speeder Bikes. This was a little before my time judging by their hairstyles. They seemed to have the Rocky Balboa and Apollo Creed cuts.

Alright, for a guy who remembers not being the biggest He-Man fan, I have to add another vintage commercial. Boy did I like this and it solidifies why I am such a big fan of monster movies and the dark side. The He-Man Snake Mountain play set looked evil it completely lived up to expectation. Even including a Hensen inspired bird face that would move its beak as you spoke through the echoing (reverb) microphone. Pure gold.

Snake Mountain

Today, the true prize is watching these kids play with it and imitate Skeleton in a voice that makes you question if they even watched the cartoon. And the ginger kid rocking the mic made my millennium. Look at his contorted face! I hope he grew up to be the scary warning voice for animatronics horror rides on the boardwalk.

Well, that concludes my little skip through time to revisit some of the great toys we grew up. It’s nice to relive some of the best times of our childhood while watching the advertisements and the silly kids who played with their toys all wrong.

Goodnight! I SAID FREEEEEEEZE!

9 Things I Don’t Regret Buying

Before I begin this post about frivolous spending to decorate an office that should be renamed “Josh Baskins’ apartment”, I need to say something about the passing of Robin Williams.

Screen Shot 2014-08-11 at 11.32.46 PM

He died today. I never knew him but the effect he had on me was nothing short of the impact of losing a family member and maybe we can all blame that on this TV generation. I loved him as a small kid on the show Mork and Mindy, cheered in the theater with Hook, confused by Mrs. Doubtfire, cried for his character in Good Will Hunting and forever changed by Dead Poet Society. He is gone but like all great people, his legacy is forever. It’s not like me to be emotional but you, Robin, were a giant and your fall has crushed me.

So! With drier eyes I will now get on with the show. I have been so very busy between work and this crazy upcoming season that I have been finding smaller enjoyment by drinking a couple of glasses of wine at night and let my fingers do the shopping via iPad. You know what that leads to? That’s right, a surprise package a couple of weeks later and possible re-gifts later in the year.

This is what I have acquired thanks to eBay, online links and the random local antique shops who have no idea what gold is hiding in their inventory. Well, not gold they may consider but gold to me.

IMG_0662

WUUUUT? You mean to tell me that President Nixon had Charles Shultz in his political pocket? No way. No way, no how. But I have to hand it to the campaign! They knew how to get to the Halloween and Pagan voters, although in the 1960/70’s, being a macabre lover was a bold underground reach. If I had this hung on my doorknob it would be difficult if not impossible to vote another way.

I saw this on eBay and bought it for a friend. I honestly can not believe I won this for only $10 which leads me to question its authenticity. Made of cardboard paper and in amazing shape, I will say this was an actual campaign door-hanger but can not be an original. But that doesn’t mean I don’t love it any less. I never buy things for monitory worth. It’s VeggieMacabre worth and this is worth 17,900,453 Plinkyplanks which is my currency. Equivalent to three pounds of wild cherry Starbursts. So, a lot!

IMG_0661

Say it ones, say it twice, third times the charm…

Holy shit, it is the cleverly placed ad that fell out of the Guidebook For the Recently Diseased. Er…Deceased!

I loved this the second I laid eyes on it and I knew it had to be mine. Tim Burton has a way with making the supernatural feel completely normal and this extermination ad has been planted in my brain since 1988. It’s even perfectly torn to hide the treacherous third “Beetlegeuse” so not to accidentally resurrect the deceased graduate of Julliard who has seen The Exorcist way too many times.

The role reversal in this ad is fantastic, even making the fleeing family obese. I have tried pausing the scene in the movie and while I don’t think it’s 100% a match, the fact it’s prepackaged with the same fold lines makes it pretty great. If I find another, I will place this in a gospel next time I go to church. So…stay tuned this Christmas.

IMG_0658

Shitassdickticklefuck!- “If I fake Tourette’s I know I don’t have it.” – Bob Whiley

Can you believe Jack Palance was Dracula?!?! This happened. Not only did that happen but the “Queen of Macabre” and “Mistress of the Dark”, Elvira hosted this ThrillerVideo copy on VHS and I feel like smacking my thumbs with a hammer for not having a VCR. Holy shit! I love Jack Palace and he shit bigger than Billy Crystal which we all know, but at the end of the day, it’s all about Elvira. ALL ABOUT ELVIRA.

I paid $1.00. The curse of Dracula ain’t so bad.

IMG_0663

Back in my day we like the fast food advertisements. We even wore them to work! Well, maybe some people did who worked there. I lucked out and found this in a pile of ties in the town of Pittsboro, NC. They gave it to me for free. How many McMuffins do you think I will score, mang?

IMG_0659

Another conundrum by having the means without the way. I have a classic collection of Simpson episodes placed in amazing packaging and no way to view them. The same place I score the tie and the Jack Palance Dracula video but this time I paid the price of $7.00. Pretty awesome considering the going rate on eBay is $29.

I love the Simpson macabre episodes and this collection is not just the Halloween episodes but the darker ones which makes my cold blood a degree higher. Plus, it’s strange to see the biology of The Simpsons. Their skeletal structure includes their hairline. BEEEESH!

IMG_0408

What the fuck was Max Headroom? Seriously. It seemed like a glitchy advertisement which 80’s companies could not harness well until Back To The Future 2 came out and even then relied on the the dickhole from Iran and Michael Jackson instead of Max. “BBBBBeans”.

The only reason I bought this was because of a family get-together in New Jersey with the whole family during Christmas sometime around when the Max Headroom show was popular. My drunk step uncle was telling a joke about how to blame the dog for farts and made my great-aunt laugh so hard she leaned down and started a forward momentum which resulted in a run/fall/hip injury. I was a little kid and before being rushed from the room had to hear, “Rose needs another pair of panties. Go upstairs and get some panties!

This will be passed alone to one of you luck readers.

IMG_0660

I own half of a set of Pac-Man glasses. Paid waaaay too much for these. But milk looks better with a black fore-drop.

IMG_0665

The toy among toys, the ships among ships, the movie among movies; the Millennium Falcon. Good Christ I wanted this toy so bad but sadly had to get pieces of it at a garage sale in the early 1990’s for .50.  At that time I really didn’t care about the fun of starship toys but rather the defeated marathon race runner who crossed the finished line with the final words, “see…told you I would own it.” Then died.

Today as an adult, I found a place which sells a couple of Millennium Falcons and I bought not only this one but the another just to throw it out of my sunroof. Apparently it IS impossible to make the jump to light speed without R2-D2’s help.

Bought it for a cool $20. Thanks to my buddy at a store already blogged about.

(hint hint read more on this blog)

Okay, we come to the last item. This was not a drunken eBay item or a flea market find. This has been a dream since I was five years old. See, I grew up in Marietta, Georgia in the early 80’s and lived only a half-mile from Showbiz Pizza Palace. My dream was to have a tunnel from my room to the their main game room in that restaurant. Honestly, it was actually proposed to my parents many times before I finally moved out to go to college.

IMG_0667

Today, I have all these games in an arcade platform and no quarters are needed. I’ve played seven of the sixty.

I guess old and silly fantasies feel good to finally capture though the chase is sometimes more rewarding than the catch. I love this arcade game, don’t get me wrong, but deep down I still want a tunnel to Showbiz after all.

Thanks for not completely judging me for these silly buys. I thought you might like a few and actually, if you read along you might be the new owner of  most of these finds. FOR FREE! Keep posted because it is coming!

Who is excited for September? Me Me Me!

Chester’s Collectibles

IMG_9525

Oh lawdy lawd, you guys, I have recently found a gem. A diamond in the rough. A gold nugget in the land of pyrite. Some rock that is deemed more valuable than all the other rocks. I have found Chester’s Collectables and this is a huge win for VeggieMacabre for so many reasons.

A few weeks ago I was driving back from a meeting at Wake Forest University and spotted a little shop in a dying strip mall. It wasn’t the flashing open sign that caught my attention or even the word “collectables” out front but it was a mask from one of the most iconic horror characters of all time; Pinhead. No shit, Pinhead’s mask was in the storefront window and right then I knew magic happened. It happened all over the place.

IMG_9425

You see, I live in an area of the country that makes life for a nostalgic weirdo, like myself, very difficult. If it wasn’t for eBay, I would probably be a spending money on responsible things and no one wants that. I mean, even Target drags its ass when putting out it’s annual Halloween loot around here. I swear by the God of Thundar, if I see backpacks the last week of September I will cut someone. So, having a collectible shop like this is a real treat.

Another bonus is the owner, Chester, who is a real standup fellow. Maybe it is because he sees dollar signs when I pull up but I like to think he enjoys the conversation and our mutual love for old toys. Or maybe it’s because I’m a buyer and not a seller. Who  knows? But regardless, Chester does give me an all-access pass into the back room full of everything he hasn’t priced out yet or horror movie finds that could scare little kids who could potentially piss the floor. I don’t know Chester too well but I suspect he doesn’t like cleaning pee.

IMG_9527

Sometimes looking a gift horse in the mouth is a bad idea. Brian, from Review the World, had a great idea of starting another segment for this wacky site called, “Chester’s Finds”. Okay, I am still working on the title but essentially its random stuff that I buy to feed random posts and then put together “give away” packs to lucky winners via Twitter every month. I think this might be a fun little way to involve the reader. Also, there’s no way I have room for the random stuff I am about to acquire.

So, a little later on the first post will be popping up and I am excited to show you my haul from this month.

 

McBoo Pails…Sort Of.

As a kid nothing signified that Halloween was truly here like the launch of the McDonald’s Boo Pales. I am guessing the first ones came out around 1986 which carried strong all the way through the 90’s and then something happened. Maybe kids got fat and Burger University did a study and came to the conclusion that tradition and awesomeness was to blame? Whatever the reason, the Boo Pails disappeared for a few years leaving me sad and broken with nowhere to put candy that it can marinate in french fry smell. But luckily for us nostalgia nuts, they brought them back in the mid-2000’s. Happy days were had by all until now, 2013.

IMG_4143

What the Hell is this? What does this have to do with Halloween? WHO SOLD THEIR SOUL TO DISNEY AND….GIRL TOY MAKER? You can actually hear the boardroom conversation where McDonald executives laugh evilly as they award contracts to Monster High, Star Wars, Lucas Film Ltd and Angry Birds. This sucks and I hate it.

And that is when I need to remind myself I am in my mid-30’s and what is neat to a six-year-old is probably total dog shit to me. I just hate when companies like these ride on the Halloween wave with no intention of giving a nod to the holiday. Or the people who made them a success.

Well, since I bought two of them I might as well see what they are all about.

Let us start with the girl bucket. (Or boy bucket if they so choose. I wouldn’t but that’s me.) From the Monster High toy line we see Frankie Stein and her diva face performing a hip 1960’s dance with a severed arm. Okay, I guess that is a little Halloween but it’s also clearly a year-round toy line so, I am sorry, it does not count.

IMG_4144

Inside the bucket we have the same old Happy Meal that you can get in April; a tiny french fry, burger or chicken nugget, apples and small drink. McDonald’s cuts a corner with the toy but does provide stickers which I am sure all parents will be chiseling off the TV and a link to a phone app where kids can play a game. This will make parents even happier. RABBLE RABBLE RABBLE SARCASM RABBLE RABBLE.

The Angry Bird Star Wars  bucket is exactly the same; stickers to be stuck somewhere and phone apps to smudge apple-sticky fingers on mom and dad’s iPhone screen. I don’t feel I need to give a side by side comparison.

 

The app is the only real Halloween themed part of the pails this year. I guess I am okay with this but McDonald’s really doesn’t hide the fact it’s all about low overhead. It’s as if the entire American society blamed little Fat Fatty Kevin’s obesity on puppet McNuggets dressed in Halloween costumes and demanded McDonald’s be lame and provide fruit.

Oh…wait. They actually did.

Let’s take a look at the app. Maybe there is some soul preserving qualities here.

IMG_4147

“Hey kids, this is advertising!”

Noooo shit, McDonald’s. I guess it’s just a little funny to see them state that in such a way. It’s even funnier that they are addressing kids when clearly it’s meant for adults (with no life) who care.

Okay, I feel the spooky vibe they are giving here. It’s very much like an Angry Bird skill where you pull the ball back and try to land it in the cauldron using trajectory and a bit of gentle skill. The hilarity begins when you have to collect vegetables, protein and fruit. Notice how the protein is a fish?

IMG_4150

 

Who does McDonalds think they are? I bought two buckets to write this review and Lord knows I don’t have any self-control so I ate two tiny fries, a hamburger, four chicken nuggets, two sprites and half an apple that I am sure is 40% preserves. Absolutely nothing in this meal is good for me or for my diet (yes, I am on a diet) so to have a game where you need to collect a carrot, a fish and a pear gives me the giggles. Sorry McD’s, you ain’t health no matter what you shove at kids. Sure, deep-fried meat pellets have protein but they also have fat-butt.

In conclusion I will say, I looked forward to what McDonalds was going to bring to the season since August. Not that I feel good about buying kids meals at 11pm and getting the weird eye from the McDonalds employee who HAS ONLY ONE EYE but I feel that a bit of my childhood is alive in Boo Pales and kids of today should experience them without having shit they already enjoy everyday plastered all over it. LET IT BE HALLOWEEN AND UNHEALTHY! IT WON’T KILL ANYONE!

D Minus. Try again next year.

 

 

 

Randomly Blogging About Blue Hot Cocoa and The Hub

I can tell a very busy work week is about to hit me between the eyes so before I get knocked stupid by F-stick 1 and F-stick 2 who can’t understand the difference between a print driver and a golf driver, I better get this writing bug out of the system. I have a couple of items that need to be shared and it’s a great way to break my horror movie constant that I have been on for the past couple of months. I am sorry about that. But before I go into the randomly ridiculous, I need to take a second out to thank my buddy Grover who is the marketing director at The Hub channel. We were school chums and he is proof that success did come from my educational institution. Such a great guy.

Whaaaat? I came home from work this evening to find an unexpected package at the door and when I saw the Hub logo on the box I knew it was from Michael. A whole box of The Hub channel swag and he sent it just because he’s a great person. I love that channel and every Thursday night I am having an ALF attack. Now I can say I know someone on the inside.

If you don’t have The Hub network I really feel for you. Take a good percentage of this blog’s history and make it into a channel and there is The Hub. There is something very special about airing Gremlins 2: A New Batch and following it up with G.I Joe on a Sunday afternoon. Especially when you are working on budget reports and drinking beer. It’s all such a weird mix.

On a recent trip to Bed Bath and Beyond, I spied this canister of UNC baby blue…hot chocolate??? I live in North Carolina and no matter where you turn there is some UNC this or NC State that or Wake Forest this or Duke that. If you are a transplant, like myself, and went to a different undergrad university in another state, it’s fairly annoying. It’s as if no one really graduated and moved on. Well, as far as me not caring about UNC, I can’t pass on blue hot cocoa. I am thinking about just removing the label and writing “Blue Hot Cocoa” just for great cupboard effect. I need to have guests exclaim, “YOU HAVE BLUE COCOA!?!?” I spent $5 on this so I think I am entitled to at least one of those.

Okay, this was not what I was hoping for when I opened the lid. I really wanted to see blue powder. But that magical Blue #1 requires science in order to turn from anthrax to a baby blue hue. It is a tad boring but acceptable.

Add water for magic! I must say I am impressed and it was exactly what I imagined it to be. It reminded me of the Judy Bloom book I was forced to read as a small kid and before I was aware that Judy Bloom books were for girls. The story is about a kid who pukes in class and how yarfing in class is something most kids will do. Thoughts of blue oatmeal plagued her until she finally spewed. From then on, any food item that was unnaturally blue reminded me of that. As a 35-year-old today, it’s still my first reaction. Damn it, Judy Bloom!

So, the color is wacky but how about the taste?

Not great. It’s like white chocolate and in my opinion, that’s not chocolate. Now that I said that, I am prepared for a fight.

The overall concept is great and that is what I need to remember. But I refuse to think that this is UNC hot chocolate. Oh no. In my mind this is Aunt Beru and Uncle Owen’s blue drink.

Screen Shot 2013-04-22 at 9.08.17 PM

A Tribute to Famous Monster Magazine

Screen Shot 2013-04-15 at 3.46.39 PM

This one goes back to 1984, when feathered hair was in and my only concern in life was not crashing my bike on the neighborhood hill dubbed “The Matterhorn” named not only for the insane steep grade but the number of wobbly-handlebar out of control bike wrecks almost every kid had experienced. I was a very impressionable kid and still traumatized by the opening scene of the movie Ghostbusters, I dreaded the thought of 8:30 at night and the ever-looming gloom of going to bed. In bed the thoughts of ghosts and goblins always seemed to overtake my imagination. It was the pinnacle of stress to a six-year-old. Other than “The Matterhorn” of course.

That same year, friends’ of my parents had two older sons (Brent and Nate. I remember you two!) who were well into high school. I remembered one of them to have a mustache so in my eyes they were like grownups but would give “wet willies” and put me on the phone to their girlfriends so they could tell me to say stupid things. I didn’t care for those two much. Their only redeeming factor, after cleaning their room, I received boxes of their books and magazine they no longer wanted. Seeing as I was in the beginning stages of reading, I guess having three hundred Boys Life magazines couldn’t hurt. And an occasional Zoo Book.

I believe that box of discarded magazines and books stayed in my room for the better part of that summer until one fateful evening when I was forced into confinement of my bedroom early. I am sure it was for some sort mischief. With nothing better to do I opened the box of hand-me-down publications and in sheer shock the first ten or twelve magazines were not the wimpy Boys Life magazines I had no intention of reading but a jolt of terrifying monsters magazines with horrid creatures staring right at me. My reaction was violent. I was an only child and like I said, the beginning of Ghostbusters damn near sent me to therapy. Can you imagine being that innocent and opening a box to be greeted by this:

Soon I had conjured up enough courage from curiosity and approached the box again. With one eye shut and the other barely open, I opened the box again and quickly moved the half-skulled girl. Digging right past that horrid face into pure six-year-old ecstasy was Star Wars. It was a Famous Monster issue of nothing but Star Wars pictures! The rest of the box could have been chockfull of Linda Blair terrors but when mixed with C3PO, I couldn’t care less. This was near and dear to the heart and that was when I officially became a fan of Famous Monster Magazine.

Fast forward nearly thirty years later or…yesterday when I was dropping by a local comic con to give love to my pals over at Lost Story Studios and picking up some amazing personalized art when I spied a familiar face. Holy macaroni it was the same skull faced girl on the cover of Famous Monster Magazine sitting lonely in a box. But wait…she wasn’t lonely at all.

She came with friends! And you know I had to take them all home.

It’s amazing the flood of memories that come along with certain childhood items. I swear, I have no clue what was in that box other than these Famous Monster magazines and to be perfectly honest, I don’t really care. For many years later, I would sit under the covers reading about Peter Cushing and staring at the numerous monsters that I would later meet in my dreams. (Talking to you, Dr. Phobes.)

I spent last night flipping through some of what I loved the most from these magazines. Let’s delve in, shall we?

The cover art for this particular magazine really can’t be contended with. Sure Creep and Tales from the Crypt have pretty neat covers but if you want to get a tattoo that is inspired by magazine art, why not Jaws getting punched in the dick by King Kong? And no one is ever going to believe that girl if she makes it out.

There are so many stories and photos crammed in these magazine that the cover keeps the mystery by just giving a few top articles. I like that. Less is always more.

Oh gosh, the mail-in toy advertisements. Many of these items were not sold on the open retail market (from what I am told) so if you were to somehow obtain these magazines years later by, let’s say, two jerk-o bullies, then you were just shit out of luck. I have sent my parents on an absolute failure missions for multiple Christmases because of these advertisements. The date on the issue was just a number in my feeble young mind.

Unfortunately for me, most of my inherited Famous Monster issues were around the late seventies and early eighties so they were  full of Star Wars merchandise that was impossible to find. I have no idea if kids back then really sent away for these items but I am sure if they did, they were the envy of the neighborhood.

I also love the shout-outs to the kids who read Famous Monster Magazine. I have to remind myself today, kids back then actually wrote letters to the editor and sent wallet size photos. I HAVE DONE THIS TOO! Looking at these kids, I imagine we would have all been great friends. Especially Dave. Poor Dave.

The contests! Oh cats, the contests! Every issue had some sort of creative contest that was either sponsored by a movie or created within the Warren Magazine Publication. I think these types of contests are lost today. Well, other that the cool stuff over at DinoDrac, but still, I would like to see more movies that inspire kids to breakout the ol’ pen and paper and send it to some P.O. Box, NY NY. We live in such an immediate gratification society.

This was for the more serious creepy kid of the neighborhood. It’s one thing to order a model kit or send away for a contest but dropping $40 on an ape head, you had to be committed. Or needed to be committed. Forty big ones back in 1971 wasn’t chump change.

It was a simpler time back when Famous Monster Magazine was a well syndicated.  Ten-year-olds could easily order a cannon that could be heard five miles away and why should they NOT be able to? It’s true that today, if a ten-year-old kid chewed his cheese sandwich into the shape of a pistol he or she could be expelled but back then kids were much smarter. This was the dumbest paragraph I have ever written. And now I want a mini canon . Without the problems of having the FBI showing up at my door.

Famous Monster Magazine was long running that came to an end in 1983 but ten years later, Ray Ferry, a fan, revived it and shared rights with Forrest Ackerman. They also changed the title to Famous Monsters of Filmland and ran pretty successfully until around ’97 when the relationship fell apart and law suits were flying. That’s too bad too.

It’s still around today and you can order it online for six issues at a time. But it’s just not the same. I know it’s all perspective but with the thousand horror blogs and sites and many magazine circulations, I thing Famous Monster Magazine died when it should have in 1983. I just feel lucky that I was of the age and shared the same joy those kids did in the shout-out sections years and years before.

Lando Calrissian Disguise Kit: Smoooooth

It isn’t very often that I have buyers remorse on eBaby and this time is no exception. While strolling the virtual aisle of eBay in the “nerd” section I stumbled across and item that I could not say no to. Actually, I am shocked anyone could say no to this. May I present to you…

…the Lando Calrissian Disguise Kit. Holy cow!

I know that this is just a novelty item but it’s nice to see LucasFilm Ltd has a bit of a sense of humor. Now if only they had official Star Wars Colt 45 12 packs for sale. Now that would be more of a VeggieMacabre-type item for review. Until they do that, you’ll have to just watch this.  Enjoy!

 

 

It’s Christmas Time Already?

What? When did this happen? I am not going to say that I don’t like it, but what happened to, well, the year? I suppose there is no use in being upset by a year that when from zero to “Ba-Zing” so…let’s start the holiday off with a bang!

If the above image is confusing to you, then I guess you don’t have X-Entertainment.com in your life, and I am sad for you. Like a broken record, every year at the same time, I shout from the mountain tops to check out Matt’s famous site of all things great. So this year is no different. Make a point to click the link and take a fun trip, whether it is the blog or the wacky antics in the advent calender, I promise you’ll feel colors. Red and Green colors.

For the first official day of the 2009 Christmas season, I believe I will discuss the greatest memories I have and that is the countless hours spent browsing the Sears catalog, making a “wish list” and checking twice. Or three hundred times. Ok, five hundred. Whatever. Combing my memory, here are some great toys that even today, I wouldn’t mind having.

The USS FLAGG was the greatest toy a boy could have. It was like a toy for your toys. That didn’t make any sense, I know, but go with me here. It was so massive it required a permanent portion of a room. I had fantasies about this thing. I dreamed of being the kid that truly had the best gift every kid wanted and the massive amounts superficial friends I would acquire because of it. I dreamed of eating cheeseburgers on the deck while watching Thundercats. I dreamed of reenacting the opening scene of  Top Gun while humming the theme song. A kid can dream, can’t he? But sadly enough, it was a dream. Never had the damn thing.

Holy shit did I have a few of these. I think this was the present that all my relatives bought for me when I was six. It was as if everyone got a memo for that Christmas stating my aspirations to build a fleet for the Rebel Alliance. What ever the case, if you needed a Kenner X-Wing; I was your guy. The one thing I hated about this toy was the laser sound. It made a noise that would turn a cat inside out and explode. What ever that noise was, it was not a laser sound. Watch this below and see what I am talking about. “REEEEE”

Speaking of lasers, remember this awesomeness of awesome? The Hasbro Lazer Tag set was one of my most treasured Christmas gifts and even though I never found a kid in the neighborhood who had a set to compete with, I did enjoy shooting myself with the help of the bathroom mirror. The only thing I didn’t like about this was the noisy heartbeat sounds on the monitor. Made sneaking around pretty much impossible.

When I was searching for the perfect Transformer picture to rant and rave for the “must have” toy of the mid to late 80’s, I came upon this. Megatron. In an instant I was whisked off the couch back to 1987, sitting in my PJ’s on the blue carpeted den in Marietta, Georgia on Christmas morning. On my lap was this glorious purple box. When I took it out of the static clinging styrofoam I immediately began to “transform” the Rugger pistol into the nemesis of Optimus Prime, ignoring the pleads of my father not to force it. But before I knew it, I forced it, and hyper-extended it. I broke off the leg of Megatron. Though the disappointment was apparent, I still managed to enjoy it for what it was. God, I can still smell the pine, scotch tape and new plastic. Some nostalgia can rival any of Einstein’s greatest theories.

Pow Pow Power Wheels! Much like the dream of owning the USS Flagg, another pipe dream of mine was owning a set of Power Wheels. I had plenty of first grade daydreams of driving my Power Wheel Jeep to the store for my Mom or picking up my pal Toby and cruising to Showbiz Pizza and catching a Rock-A-Fire Explosion animatronic show. But it was not in the stars. But the next year I did car jack the neighbors daughter and take her Barbie Jeep around the block. That is until Mom found out and a foot chase issued. Turns out Power Wheels were a lot faster in my dreams. I was escorted by the elbow to a cell without dinner.

The WWF Wrestling Buddies were a big item for my friends and me. What toy could be better than an Ultimate Warrior a 75 pound kid can body slam? In fact, this pillow character above is directly responsible for a dislocated shoulder. I will just say the couch is not a platform for a pile driver. It’s embarrassing to admit losing a match to a half pound pillow. Even if it was this dude:

Yeah, would you mess with this guy? I didn’t think so.

Perhaps it was for a lack of siblings but I really wanted a bear that could read me bedtime stories and have conversations about Star Wars. This was the one time it was sociably acceptable to have a teddy bear as a boy. We all knew Christopher Robin was a pansy. But going through my old photos from my time home for Thanksgiving I found a troubling picture.

Ah shit. No wonder. I will leave it at that. No wonder.

Nothing will fuck a vacuum up like a Lite Brite peg. I know this from experience. But really, I have received this a couple of different times during Christmas and even though I understood the concept, I never made anything more than an illuminated Jackson Pullock. Seriously, if Lite Brite was an intelligence test, I would have scored somewhere between “cat with paintbrush in mouth” and “chimp with paint on it’s ass”. Meh, this was a shit gift.

No, I have never owned a Strawberry Shortcake doll but I have tried to eat one. Like you haven’t at least thought about it. But I can attest, it just tastes like plastic.

I believe this is a good way to wrap up this old Christmas-want article. The one, the only Castle Greyskull. Even my Grandmother knows what Castle Greyskull is. This magnificent play set was a Masters of the Universe staple in every snotty kid’s room. I was shit, I admit. I even had Skeletor’s Castle. In fact, there are fond memories of saying “boner” over the Doom microphone. I suppose you have to be eight to see the humor. I still cackle when I hear “boner”.

I hope some of my memories have brought up a few of yours. I know I can’t be alone in my head toy chest. Tis the season to be happy and these memories make me smile no matter where or when. Let’s kick off the X-Mas fun starting….right…….NOW!

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: