Big Trak

November of 1979 was the moment the future finally arrived in the American living room. When the holidays arrived a month later, many American children (mostly boys) were treated to the toy of their dreams, lovingly realized in injection mold plastic and the invisible world of internal chip technology.

Imagine the revelatory shock that spread like miniature mushroom clouds of excitement through your nervous system when underneath the torn wrapping of a holiday gift lay a bright, shining box containing Big Trak, the first artificial intelligence robotic vehicle made expressly for children. The mind raced with evil genius delusions of grandeur, fantasizing about all the limitless applications of your new six wheeled, programmable domestic assault vehicle.

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Talking Mother Goose

Product of the Past: The Talking Mother Goose

Talking Mother Goose

So in what appears to be a marketing gimmick to capitalize on the success of the Teddy Ruxpin dolls, we’ve got The Talking Mother Goose.  A big, plush, goose that reads stories to you and moves…just like Teddy.

Teddy Ruxpin was a good toy to copy, as it’s sales were off the chart for a while there in the mid-1980s.  And what better “character” to get behind than Mother Goose.  Kids everywhere were familiar with her from hearing the stories and nursery rhymes.  That’s also not a bad selection of story titles that were available for this.  Worlds of Wonder was hitting on all cylinders at this point apparently.

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Product of the Past: HyperColor Clothing

We saw the future, and it changed color with heat.

What wasn’t to love about HyperColor shirts? Well, a few things, but we’ll get to those later. For now, let’s talk about how rad they were. Introduced by Generra at the tail end of those color-crazy 80’s, HyperColor promised a t-shirt revolution. A patented “Metamorphic Color System” caused the shirt’s color to change when it came in contact with heat. Press a warm hand onto your belly, and your purple shirt would have a temporary pink handprint. How cool was that?

Really, you practically couldn’t afford not to buy a HyperColor shirt. I mean, it changed color, right? That was like getting two shirts for the price of one. So that price tag you saw? Remember, that was 50% off what it should have cost you. You should probably buy two then, since you’re such a great bargain shopper.

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