Archive for the Memories Category

Topps Juice Gum Cartons from 1982-1985

Posted in Food/Beverage, Memories with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 10, 2013 by Jason

This just goes to show you that you can pretty much find anything for sale on Ebay.

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This post from Dinosaur Dracula sparked my memory of these.

I only really wanted the Pink Lemonade carton(Pink Lemonade was my favorite, based on taste, and the look of the carton.  Look at it!), but the auction, as it turns out, was for all four.  They are pictured in the order of the years printed on their sides, starting with Grape from 1982, and ending with Orange from 1985.  All four have gum inside, but I am not tempted to eat any of it.  Well maybe I am just a bit curious to see if, at least the Pink Lemonade tastes the way I remember it.

Bat-Duck Completes the Team!

Posted in Memories, Toys with tags , , , , , on January 21, 2013 by Jason

I finally found an acceptable price for this guy!  This has always been one of my all-time favorite Happy Meal promotions.  And Bat-Duck has always been my favorite of the 4.  He ran me $1.99 + $3.00 shipping.  $5.00 seems a little steep, but if you factor out the shipping, it seems like a pretty good deal.  Add to the fact that most of the listings for these are for the set of 4, and they are priced 4 times or more what I paid for the single figure(can I call it that?).  I only paid 50 cents for each of the other three, so I really can’t complain.

I know I bought a Bat-Duck from Ebay a few years ago, but he must of got lost in the shuffle(along with Delta Chameleon).

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Seeing them all together makes for a pretty nice picture, don’t ‘ya think?

So Long, Nintendo Power.

Posted in Memories, Video Games with tags , , , , , on December 17, 2012 by Jason

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Nintendo Power has released it’s final issue.

Even though I have hardly kept up with the publication for many years(due to my lack of being into systems when they’re current; with the exceptions of the NES & SNES), it’s sad to see them go.  This was the go to place for(Nintendo) video games in the years before the internet.

I have been a Nintendo loyalist since the NES arrived in my house.  As time went on, Nintendo was everywhere you looked.  In short, they were a big part of my childhood.  I remember when the first issue arrived in the mail.  I read that issue(as well as subsequent issues), from front to back countless times.

It was always a thrill to try the latest tips and tricks, and was always something to look forward to every 2 months(back in the early days).

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Included with the final issue is a poster of every single issue of Nintendo Power.  I’m actually thinking about getting it framed.

Nintendo Power December 2012

The cover is a great throwback to the first issue, and is a fitting choice for the final.

This isn’t a review(if I did review it, it would be insanely long).  I just wanted to pay my respects to the only gaming magazine I really cared for.

But I will show a few pages to entice you to buy your own copy(or borrow it from one of your friends ;) ).

Nintendo Power December 2012 Page10

Nintendo Power December 2012 Page19

Nintendo Power December 2012 Page 31

Nintendo Power December 2012 Page 37

Nintendo Power December 2012 Page 69

So much good stuff!

Nintendo Power December 2012 Page 96

So long, old friend.

Patriotic Pop Culture

Posted in Memories, Toys, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on July 1, 2012 by Jason

Another week, and another assignment from “The League”.  I haven’t been contributing as much as I would like for these assignments, but I try.  And I just couldn’t pass up on this one.

“Patriotic pop culture. What movie, TV show, comic book, etc. makes you want to stand up and salute Old Glory?”

Well, I could go with a few things here.  But the number 1 for me would have to be(probably everyone else thought of it first), is G.I. Joe.

I know this seems like the easy route.  But that’s not at all, what I’m going for.  Even as a kid, this show, made me proud to be an American.  It not only entertained me, but I think it may have helped to make me a better person.  And I mean that.  I really think the end segments(“And knowing is half the battle”), helped me to understand what was right, and good.  It sounds funny, even cheesy to say, being an adult and all, but it’s true.

I have always been grateful for the freedoms we have in our great country.  I appreciate the efforts our soldiers exert, to ensure that the American people, and our future generations are able to have these freedoms.  While I may not agree with everything our government does, I am damn proud to be an American!  And the song that sounds just like what I typed, is oh, so true(you know the song)!

My dad was in the Navy(before I was born), and seemed to dig that my brother and I were into a cartoon such as G.I. Joe.  I say this because I can remember many birthdays and Christmas’s where we got toys pertaining to G.I. Joe.  We absolutely loved the show, and toys(I still do!)!

So, even though I’m talking about toys and cartoons…remember those who have sacrificed everything for us to be able to enjoy such things.  Yo Joe!!

Reis says it better than me over at Lair of the Dork Horde

Over at Branded in the 80s, shawn goes all out with G.I. Joe as well(Awesome, Shawn!!!)

And Adam from Adamotomy, goes of the beaten path, with something I love, that also makes sense(if that makes sense)

League Assignment – Top 10 Movies

Posted in Memories, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 9, 2012 by Jason

Brian from Cool & Collected came up with yet another great topic for this week’s League assignment.  Top 10 movies.

He asked, What are your Top Ten Movies?”.  But it doesn’t have to be a typical top 10 movies of all-time list, which is nice.

For more clarity…

“Note, this list can be your top ten all time favorites, or your top ten in a given genre–go ahead and make up your own qualifiers! Google loves top ten lists, so make sure to use those words in your title and watch your traffic soar.”

I went with what my 10 favorite movies are these days.  But I did exclude holiday titles like, “A Christmas Story” and “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, “Planes, Trains & Automoibiles”, “Halloween” etc., because, while these movies are great, and a good watch every time, they just hold more meaning to me during their respective holidays.

It was very hard to narrow the list down.  I came up with a list off the top of my head that was 14 titles long.  This was already more than enough, so I stopped there and had to cut 4 titles from the list.  Those being, “Gremlins”, “Back to the Future”, “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” and “Grandma’s Boy”.

This list could be different next week, but most of these have long been favorites of mine.  So let’s get to it!

10.) The Karate Kid

I used to watch the hell out of this movie when I was kid(among others, some of which are on this list)!  This is the classic underdog tale.  There is so much to like about this movie.  And even though it’s a bit embarrising to say, I really like the soundtrack.  I’ve never seen the remake(and don’t plan to), as I don’t want to tarnish what a great movie the orignal is.

9.) Pulp Fiction

I was introduced to this movie by my older brother back in 1997.  I was blown away!  The intertwining stories were great.  The acting was phenomenal, as was the casting choices.  Pulp Fiction is extremely quotable(as is the rest of the list), and after watching it, Quentin Tarantino became one of my favorite directors.

8.) The Crow

For many years, this was my absolute favorite movie.  In my opinion, this is the finest movie ever made that was adapted from a comic book.  Brandon Lee was great in this, and actually died during the filming(it’s a sad story, and a real shame because his star was on the rise).  It has a feel similar to Batman, in that it’s dark and gritty.  There were a few other movies made based on The Crow, but none of them come close to the original.  If you haven’t seen it, I can’t urge you enough to give it a watch.

7.) GoodFellas

The greatest gangster movie of all-time!  I’d also say that this is Joe Pesci’s career performance.  While most of Martin Scorsese’s films are really good, this was is his best.  The acting of everyone involved is top-notch, complimenting Scorsese’s direction.  The fact that it was based on true story, makes it just that much more compelling.

6.) Dumb and Dumber

This is one of the funniest movies I have ever seen.  I know a lot of the humor in this movie is kind of childish, but I think that’s what makes it so funny(to me anyway).  The title is most fitting, as it will have you thinking frequently, “are they really that dumb?”.   Jim Carrey had a lot of great movies in the nineties, and this is no exception.  This is another highly quotable movie, and I have many favorites.  I couldn’t choose just one, so here’s the full list from IMDB.

5.) Spaceballs

Before we had all of the parody movies like Scary Movies, and the “Not Another(insert movie genre here)”, we had Mel Brooks.  I’m no expert on Mel Brooks’  movies, but Spaceballs is an exception.  I loved this movie since I first saw it back in 1987-88.  My step brother was into sci-fi and horror movies big-time, which in turn got me into those genres as well.  This movies spoofs every sci-fi movie from Aliens – Star Wars, and does it well!  The subject matter and John Candy make for a winning combination. If you’ve never seen it(which I would find hard to believe), get on it!

4.) Clerks

Kevin Smith’s first and finest work.  This movie details a day in the life of 2 store clerks, Dante and Randal.  If you have ever worked in the retail sector, most of this movie will hit close to home.  I for one, have worked in a convenience store as well as a video store, so I can relate to some of it.  There’s a slim possibility for some of the stuff that happens in the movie would ever happen in real life, but it also seems like some of it legitimately could happen.  The film is in black and white, and I feel that that’s a good thing.  There is nothing to distract you from what is going on.  Kevin Smith worked at the store he filmed at, and most of it was filmed at night when he wasn’t working.  In the movie, Dante arrives at work to find that someone jammed gum in the shutters’ locks(“Bunch of savages in this town.”).  I can go on and on, so I’ll just leave it at see this now!  If you haven’t already.

3.) Beetlejuice

This was released in 1988, and I remember when my dad rented it as a new release(’88-’89?).  Directed by Tim Burton and scored by Danny Elfman(who have done numerous projects together), and featuring an all-star cast(not all of them were legit stars at this time), this movie just screams win!  It has the feel of classic Tim Burton, which it is(I’m not saying that the movies he’s made in the past 15 years is bad, but, in my opinion, his stuff in the 80′s through the early nineties is flawless).  I can’t say that I’ve seen anything like it, and that’s the main reason why it’s #3 on my list.  The movie spawned an animated series, as well as a line of action figures(I’m a huge fan of both btw).  I think I’m going to watch this again at some point this weekend.  :)

2.) The Goonies

If you have a pulse, I’m sure all of you have seen this movie, and love it as well.  If yuo first saw this movie as a child, you’d be lying if you said you never wanted to be a Goonie(Goony?).  Some of the cast has gone on to bigger and better things, while some of them just kind of fell off the map(no pun intended).  It’s got humor, action and suspense, so there’s something for everyone.  This was one of the first movies I could recite word for word, and it didn’t take long because this was one of the movies me and my brother would regularly choose to watch whenever we were home and wanted to watch a movie.

1.) Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure

This is the movie I think that I’ve seen more than any other movie.  Just like The Goonies, this is another of the first movies I learned to recite word for word.  This is Tim Buton’s feature-length directorial debut, as well as the beginning of collaborations of Burton and Danny Elfman.  If you’ve been reading my blog long enough, you know that I am a huge Pee-Wee Herman fan.  Co-written by the late, great Phil Hartman(along with Paul Reubens and Michael Varhol), this is a tale about a man(boy) and his quest to get back his most prized posession…his bike(and what an awesome bike it is!).  This was the beginning of my fandom for Tim Burton and Pee-Wee Herman.  There isn’t a single thing I would change about the movie(although I would have liked to have seen more of the inside of his house in the movie), and I don’t think it ever has, or ever will be out of my top 3.  But I’d say it’s been my #1 for 10 years or more.

For now, these are my top 10 movies.  And while the order may change slightly from time to time, I don’t think any of these would ever fall out of my top 20.  But that’s a subject for a later time(this was tough enough as it was).

 

Check out Shawn’s Top 10 Favorite 80′s Villains over at Branded in the 80′s

Brian “goes ape” at Cool and Collected

Colbey mixes it up with an eclectic list over at Random Toy Reviews

 

 

The League of Extraordinary Bloggers – Holy Grails and White Whales

Posted in Memories, Toys, Transformers, Video Games with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2012 by Jason

The League of Extraordinary Bloggers is a project that Brian from Cool and Collected started about 2 months ago(for those of you who are not familiar with this, click here for the scoop).  The topic this week is, as stated in this post’s title, Holy Grails and White Whales.

While I could go on and on with stuff I would love to get, the idea is what would we most like to find, and be able to take home with us.  There’s got to be  something that has eluded you, that you think you may never get, or get the opportunity for a chance at.  There are a few things that instantly came to mind.

I collect video games, among other things, so that’s where we’ll start.

What you see above is the very definition of Holy Grail, when it comes to the Nintendo Entertainment System.

I have many fond memories attached to the NES, which is probably why I have so much interest in the system itself.  I collect games for quite a few consoles,  but I have more NES games than all of my other consoles combined(200+).  If you are not familiar with the story behind these cartridges, I’ll give you a little history.

In 1990, Nintendo held a video game championship across the country(not unlike the one in the movie The Wizard).  There were competitions in cities across the nation, looking for the best Nintendo player in that city.  Then the “best” players from each age group would play against each other in the finals of the tournament to determine the winner.  I’m not sure just how these were distributed, but I do know that some went to the champions and finalists, and some were given away in a Nintendo Power contest.  There are only 90 of the gray cartridges, and just 26 copies of the gold one.

The games contained within are Super Mario Brothers(get 50 coins), Rad Racer(complete the first course), and Tetris(get the highest score you can).  There is a dipswitch on the outside of the cart, that you can use to adjust the amount of time to play.  Even though all the games are pretty common, the cartridges are not.  This is something I’m pretty sure I will never own, but it’s nice to dream of finding it a at a garage sale or flea market.

And there are a few toys that came to mind as well.  Now, there are a lot(tons), of toys that I would love to add to my collection.  There are plenty of lines that I collect, and others that I would like to collect.  But there is one line that stands above the rest, and that’s Transformers.  Or more specifically, Generation 1 Transformers.

The first of the two?

Transformers and I go way back.  My brother and I received our first Transformers on the Christmas of 1984 or 1985.  We got one each, and they were both Megatron.  Megatron is high on my want list, but Ultra Magnus is just a little more important to me.  You see, when I saw Transformers the Movie back in 1987, Ultra Magnus quickly became my new Favorite Transformer.  My older brother ended up getting it for me, I believe, for my 9th birthday in 1988.  For some reason I didn’t have it very long.  My stepmother, took him away for some reason(probably jealous that my younger brother didn’t have one), and I never saw him again.  I’m sure I probably cried my eyes out, because I really wanted that toy, and really loved it for the short time that I had it.  So, maybe, finally getting him again may give me some closure.

And the one I wanted, but never got.

Soundwave, is perhaps the coolest looking Transformer in robot mode(and a little dated in alt mode).  I knew a few kids who had this guy, and boy, did I want it!  There were quite a few times I would pick out cassette 2-packs(for Soundwave or Blaster), when we would ask if we could get a toy(you know what I’m talking about).  I have had a few chances to pick this guy up, but at the time(s), I just didn’t have the $40-$50 to spare.  But that may all change when the toy show comes to town on April 22!

Check out what has eluded Reis over at Lair of the Dork Horde.

Brian talks about the item he would love to add to his ever-growing King Kong collection over at Cool and Collected.

And Tim searches for “The Non-Existent” over at Flashlights are Something to Eat.

The Maxx Action Figure

Posted in Comic Books, Memories, Toys with tags , , , , , , on March 26, 2012 by Jason

I believe that this is a series 3 figure from the early days of McFarlane Toys.  This was in the days before McFarlane started making figures of sports stars and video games.  In the early days, McFarlane toys made a lot of(if not entirely), Image Comics characters, mostly from Spawn(McFarlane’s creation).  I bought him around 1999-2000, from a small comic book store in the Bronx(when I lived down there).  The store owner wanted $40 for it, mint-in-box.  I chatted with him as he rang me up, and he thought that I was crazy to buy it and open it.  Sam Kieth is my favorite artist of all time, and buying his creation in plastic form was a no-brainer.

His accessories were the headdress that he wears in “The Outback”, and an Isz.  The most common is the white one(which is the one I got, but did not photograph…oops!).  There were also black ones, and an exclusive that had 2 white and 2 black.  There was also a “Bag of Iszs”(which I believe were a McFarlane club exclusive), the bag contained a bunch of white, black and red iszs(I would love to locate a bag of these guys).

Anyway, this is yet another of my favorite figures(top 5).

I Used to Really Like Basketball

Posted in Memories, Trading cards with tags , , , , , on March 18, 2012 by Jason

Hockey has always been my favorite sport since I was about 10 years old.  But at the same time I really liked basketball almost as much.  These days, I usually only watch hockey and football.  But in the early nineties, everyone was watching basketball.  If today, you were to ask me who my favorite NBA team was(even though I don’t actively follow basketball), I would tell you the New York Knicks(hey, I’m a native New Yorker).  If you were to ask me that same question back in 1990, my answer would be the Chicago Bulls.  This was when the Bulls were at the beginning of their dynasty.  Everyone was a Bulls fan at this time.  Scottie Pippen was my favorite player at the time, but there was no denying that Michael Jordan was the best player in the game.  He made watching basketball really fun.

I have been collecting trading cards(sports and non-sports), for as long as I can remember.  It all started back in elementary school with baseball cards and Garbage Pail Kids(they were more or less just stickers though).  From 7th grade through high school, I heavily collected and traded hockey and basketball cards.  These days, I don’t purchase trading cards in general, anywhere near as much as I did back in the day.  I own very few basketball cards these days, and only 3 of them are Michael Jordan (basketball) cards.

Here is my favorite MJ card that I have ever owned, or seen for that matter.

This is from Upper Deck’s 92-93 series.  This design is a sentimental favorite of mine, plus, the shot of Jordan in mid-flight is phenomenal!  I do still somewhat collect cards in the present.  However, I do not buy any basketball cards.  But, if I run across any of Jordan’s cards, at a price in my range, I may just make the purchase.

Reminiscing With Old Comic Book Ads #2

Posted in Comic Books, Memories, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Video Games with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 7, 2012 by Jason

This past weekend, there was a little(and I do mean little), comic convention at the local SUNY college.  There were a handful of vendors, and lots of people playing Magic The Gathering.  There was a Batman coloring contest, for which they only suplied you with crayons to color him with.  I of course went with the old-school blue and gray look, that he sported in Super Friends.  I had only $5 to spend, so I had to spend it wisely.  So, I went ahead and checked out the $1 boxes, and found 5 comics that I thought were worth picking up.  Four out of the five ended up being New Mutants comics.  But were her to talk about the ads contained within.

Above is the cover for The New Mutants #100, which, as you can see, was the final issue of the series.  The characters you see in The New Mutants are the members who ended up making X-Force.  Even though the cover is done by Rob Liefeld(ugh), it’s still very memorable to me.  This issue hit stands a few months before I turned 12, so this was a time when I was heavily into comics.

On the inside cover, we have an ad for Double Dragon III for the Nintendo Entertainment System.  While I presently own all 3 Double Dragon games for the NES, I only had and played the first one when I was a kid.  This ad had me believing that this was a can’t-miss game.  It’s okay, but it’s not the blockbuster my younger self thought it would be.

Now this was a game I had and played!  In my opinion, I find this to be the second best Mega Man game on the NES(with Mega Man 2 being the best).  This was a can’t miss series in the NES’s heyday.  The comics of this era are peppered with NES ads(which is awesome), and this was one of the better ones.  Some of the other ads had insae scenes depicted, which made the games seem a lot cooler than they actually were.

This is an ad I remember seeing a lot of!  I never got into playing Dungeons and Dragons, but believe me, this was an ad that peaked my interest every time I laid eye upon it.  Looking at it now, it still has me interested.

Here’s an ad for one of the hardest Nintendo games ever!  I have never played this game, even to this very day.  I definitely wouldn’t mind adding it to my collection, but I don’t think it would get played very often.   But wait there’s more!

This Silver Surfer contest gave you a chance to win you very own “Customized Silver Surfer Jet-Ski”.  I wonder if anyone really won this, and if it still exists.  Hell, I’d like to see what the Silver Surfer watches look like.  You had to send in a photo of your high score to enter, and you could enter as many times as you wanted.  I would really like to see the high scores that won prizes.

This is another one I remember seeing a lot of!  I’m pretty sure I bought a few 3 Musketeers bars because of ads like this.  I mean, c’mon, reading comics and eating candy go perfectly together(as long as none of the said candy ends up on the comic).

Is it any surprise that the las ad in this comic is another ad for an NES game?  This is by far, my favorite ad in this comic.  Nintendo and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were 2 of my biggest childhood vices, and this put both together.  Yes, there was an NES Turtles game before this one, but this was the game to have!  I just love how the arcade cabinet is dripping with retromutagen ooze.  So many things to like in this one.

There were only 3 ads I did not cover(not including ads for subscriptions).  2 Were for baseball cards, and another was for a sci-fi book club.  But let’s not forget that I bought four other comics.  And I plan on covering the ads from those as well.  There will be a little variety, as the comics range from 1982-1989.

Christmas Fallout 2011

Posted in Memories, Toys, Transformers, Video Games with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 26, 2011 by Jason

I hope that everyone had a merry Christmas!  I must have been good, because I did very well this year!  Here’s everything(minus gift cards and cash).

I was like my kid-self this past Christmas.  I love opening presents, and I’m sure a lot of you can relate to that.  I got most everything I wanted, and some other stuff that wasn’t on my list, that I’m happy to have received.  Let’s look a little closer.

I finally got a Wii!!  This was the big gift from my wife.  This Wii is black and came with New Super Mario Bros.(as well as a music cd, which I haven’t checked out yet).  My wife also got me Punch-Out!!, and her parents got me (The Legend of Zelda) Skyward Sword.  My friend Mike got me the Genesis games you see, as well as Kung-Fu for the NES.  It looks like I’ll be busy for a while!  :)

In the clothing department, I also did well.  But most of these items were things that I needed.  I got a pair of Dearfoams moccasins(slippers), driving gloves, socks(you can never have too many socks), sweat pants and a couple of t-shirts( one from The Nightmare Before Christmas, and a really sweet “Facts You Need to Know About Chuck Norris” shirt).  Although clothes weren’t really appreciated(you all know what I’m talking about) on Christmas during my childhood, they are greatly appreciated now!

The Walking Dead, Book 2, was my secret Santa gift from the X-Entertainment gift exchange(thank you so much velouria_78!) that a few of us who post  on X-E took part in.  This is the hard cover edition, and I can’t wait to start reading it!  While I’m up to date with the tv show, I have only read the first collection(Book 1).  Next to that is a Reveal the Shield, Legends Class, Optimus Prime.  This line has been scarce in my parts, but my wife, somehow, found a place that still had some.

And here’s everything else.  We have a case of Saranac “24 Beers of Winter”, of which I am on my second Chocolate Lager as we speak(it’s pretty good, not too chocolatey or sweet, it’s quite strong though).  I also got a nice Old Spice gift set.  This has everything to keep me clean and smelling good for a little while, plus maybe it’ll turn me into that cool guy in their commercials(and I’m not talking about Ray Lewis either).  My wife(she’s so awesome!), also got me a Remington(they don’t make just guns), grooming kit(I hinted that I wanted this, but didn’t think I’d get it).  You’ll also notice some Slim Jims, a head massager, Werther’s Originals, a few rubber bracelets, some car air-fresheners, some vhs Transformers episodes, Paul Mitchell shampoo/conditioner and a Snoopy toothbrush holder and rinse cup(which is in my bathroom right now, but will end up going into storage with the rest of the Christams decorations in a week or so).

Also, between my wife and myself, we got $160 in cash, a $25 Applebee’s gift card and a $25 Regal Cinemas gift card.

I hope you all got what you wanted, and had a great time as well!  Please feel free to discuss your Christmas in the comments, as I love to hear about stuff like this.

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