Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tom Corbet Space Cadet

It is 1955... and kids are in front of the tube to watch Tom Corbet. It's in black and white but who cares, so is the universe ! As soon as the show began to have success on American) TV, tons of SPACE CADET items arrived on the market: rayguns, puzzles etc. This pair of dolls also cashed in on the show (and the show cashed in on a lot of sponsoring, like Kellogs Cornflakes etc.) Note the original boots on Dr Joan Dale. All of these dolls had a sleeping-eye mechanism, and clothes stapled on them (hello toy safety !)

Tom Corbet and Dr. Joan Dale, Marcie Co,
USA, 1950's
Dr. Joan Dale, Marcie Co,
USA, 1950's

Tom Corbet, Marcie Co, USA, 1950's

Tom Corbet (detail), Marcie Co,
USA, 1950's


Where's the Doctor when you need him ? Which Doctor ? Doctor Who.

Another classic Brittish icon, the DALEK is to Sci-Fi fans much more than a washing-machine type of robot... it is pure evil incarnated into a torture device ! (and don't ask me what these plumber type arms are supposed to do...)

(to the right:) DALEK, Product Enterprise Ltd., China

Talking DALEK, Tomy, Hong Kong,

Behold the Santa Fe F7 warbonnet !

F7 GM Diesellock, Marklin, Germany,
One of my favorite locomotives, the "SANTA FE" has all the power it need to transport mile long trains from Vegas to L.A. or Frisco.

A classic from Marklin (has been in the catalogue for years) - comes with a central unit (no driving cabin) and a third unit that is not powered (not pictured). Classic 1950's streamlined "warbonnet" logo. Why don't they paint locs like this anymore ?

Friday, November 19, 2010

"V" - the Visitors

I know, I know... there has been a remake of this one. But the original series of rat-eating aliens and resistance has always been one of my favorites... and come on, Micheal Ironside played a good "bad" guy in the series...

"V" figurines and original header card, maker unknown, Spain,
Not a lot of toys were made of this series, even though in the show itself we see kids play with the "action" figures that later on would capture humans for food...
Yummy !

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Captain Harlock vinyl set

Captain Harlock Set, Takatoku, Japan,
 In Japan, very popular TV shows got easily their toyline in the 70ies. Usually, there were diecast and expensive toys, but also very often cheaper toys that kids could buy with their pocket money. Since they were considered "cheap", paps and moms threw these away very quickly, so few survive. Even less in their original packaging. This set is made out of vinyl (like the Godzillas of that time and tons of other toys and robots). The figurines are crude, their look naive. But again, that's what makes them so charming for me.

Mini Spacewolf

One of the smallest ships in my collection - mini spacewolf of Captain Harlock.

Spacewolf, maker unknown, Japan,

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Goldorak - Grendizer - Grandizer - Goldrake

Goldorak, Shogun Warriors,
Mattel (Popy) Japan, 1970's
Goldorak, Shogun Warriors,
Mattel (Popy) Japan, 1970's

Goldorak (detail), Shogun Warriors,
Mattel (Popy) Japan, 1970's

Some toys seem to travel with me wherever I go. This Goldorak from my childhood has spent some time in Funchal, Madeira.

Classic Plastic

Robot, unknown, Hong Kong,

He has the look of a Shogun Warrior, but the walking stance of a classic Bot. Who is he? Which galaxy does he come from?

Whistle when in danger !

Space Whistles, Pyro, USA,
For all space astronauts out there, here is the ultimate whistle for your earth missions. An exact replica of your spaceship - Pyrotomic propulsion !
When in danger, just blow and the cavalery will arrive !

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Space Scout doll


Space Scout Doll, the House of Dolls, Chicago, USA,
As a preliminary to the conquest of space, America did sell the concept of interplanetary travel through the new medias, radio (Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon in the 30ies and 40ies) and TV. In the baby boomer years, lots of space shows tickled the imagination of girls and boys from Alaska to Florida. As this toy shows, space was not only a boys play (even though the tons of rockets and robots and rayguns seem to prove otherwise). Also, even though you had to breathe in a plastic helmet - having fashionable hair was still really important.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Crayola Spacetank

Camouflage definitely not needed on moon. STOP.
Very nice way to paint a tank. STOP.
Give me box of crayons...

Jet and Rocket Tank, Peter Pan, England, 1950's

Robotic plastic

Mr. Jig, Artech, Hong Kong,

Spinning dishes on the head ? My name is Mr.Radar... what do you expect ?

Radar robot, KY, Japan,
Radar Robot, Yokota, Japan,

Hands up, it is a robot robbery .... or at least some classic toy-design. Love the rivets... a Robot needs to have rivets. It gives it some retro look.

Push robot, Imperial Toy corp.,
Hong Kong, 1950's

Saturday, November 6, 2010


Yes, ... the missile comes in black 

Another great English space show, and from the same maker as the Thunderbirds, was UFO - but this time not made with puppets but real actors. The plot ? A base on the moon that helped a secret organization free the earth of UFO attacks.

(or orange...) Shado Interceptor, UFO, Dinky Toys, UK,


Space tank w/missile, Tudor Rose, UK,

What is the best way to go around the moon and still be prepared for any alien attack that can occur ? You bet it - it's the space tank.

This one is very colorfull - and has a rubber bladder dome that can shoot bursts of air ! Hence the missile that goes on the canon.

And what do you do when no tracks are available ? You go for this version : the "walking" tank / space vehicle.

Walking space vehicle, Gakken, Japan,

Monday, November 1, 2010


The pride and joy of father and son - here are some pictures of the Marklin Layout I left in my home country.

We are only able to make it run once in a while (about every year or so) - but except some spider webs in the tunnels, it always works like a charm as soon as we plug in the transfo.

Marklin Layout, Belgium - David helping dad put cars on the track