Having been born in the 60’s I mourn quite a few things that have been lost to time and technological advancements. Drive-In theaters, video stores and record shops are places that I don’t think my six year-old son will ever be able to fully appreciate or understand.
But the one thing that I think makes me sadder than all of that; Saturday morning cartoons. Now, when I was a kid, there was a two hour block of kid’s TV on a weekday and there were only three major networks and a handful of local UHF stations. After school, cartoons ran between the soaps and evening news. I pounded out my homework to watch Ultraman or Speed Racer before dinnertime.
But Saturday mornings… they belonged to me. I sat in front of the television from the moment I woke and I watched until lunchtime and my folks were glad to have their morning coffee in silence.
Saturday morning cartoon programming has been dying a slow death since 1992. It pretty much ended completely last October. I understand it. I mean, my kid watches cartoons on his tablet when he feels like it. On Demand, streaming and DVR services have made a few weekend hours committed to entertaining kids irrelevant.
But you know what my kid will also miss and it makes me just as sad? Those great toy commercials that used to air with the cartoons. Oh, my son may get an ad he can skip after five seconds on YouTube, but he will never know the joy of the retro commercials that really got you excited and made you hound your parents to get you to a Toys R Us before everyone but you had the newest Six Million Dollar Man play set. They just don’t make them like they used to!
And of course, my favorite commercials were those that advertised horror themed toys and games. So here are 13 of my favorite horror toy commercials. They run from the 50’s to the 90’s and if you are 25 or older, you have probably seen at least one of those assembled on this post. Enjoy and if you have a favorite that you don’t see here, share it in the comments!
Kenner Stretch Monster Commercial
Dark Shadows Groovy Horror Head Toy Commercial
Monster Cereal Toy Commercial
Mad Scientist Monster Lab Toy Commercial
Barnabas Collins Dark Shadows Game
Stay Alive Vincent Price commercial
Toys R Us Halloween (1980)
Baby Laugh A Lot (not intentionally horrific, but sheesh… I would burn the damned thing…)