Non-toy ad Tuesday: what’s a weekly?

“Zoey and Danny … following the recent zombie holocaust, and as the only surviving children of this school, I’m delighted to inform you that you’ve been made prefects! Now, all you have to do to claim your shiny new badges is explain to me what is a ‘weekly’ …”

Our office cat, Wooof, recently posed the question, What is a weekly?

It’s generally some sort of publication that occurs every seven days, I replied. For example, I could begin this post with … Welcome to TVTA’s weekly edition of Non-toy ad Tuesday!

And you would be lying through your teeth, said Wooof, Non-toy ad Tuesday is never weekly. You use the term as loosely as that ill-fitting bright orange and brown ski-jumper Mrs Coldkettle the tea lady knitted you last Christmas!

Don’t mention that dreadful jumper! I said. Mrs Coldkettle’s heart is in the right place, sadly her taste in knitwear isn’t.

So you admit Non-toy ad Tuesday is not a weekly?

You got me, Wooof. It’s not a weekly.

So what is a weekly then?

Look, why don’t you go and consult your new cat dictionary app you had for Christmas or something, and leave me to get on with posting up the scans?

Fine, said the cat. What are you posting first?

An ad for a French music magazine from 1987.

A weekly?

No. A monthly


Also in this week’s issue: Memorex, Wharfedale, VHS, Lemmy, Air France, News Cigarettes, Mitsubishi cars, and a nifty Judge Dredd towelling robe!

France. Pif Gadget. 1987.

France. Pif Gadget. 1987.

France. Charlie Mensuel. 1983.

France. Charlie Mensuel. 1983.

UK. Sky Magazine. 1987.

UK. 2000 AD Sci-Fi Special. 1987.

UK. 2000 AD Sci-Fi Special. 1987.

UK. Starburst. 1984.

US. Time. 1980.

US. Time. 1980.

US. Time. 1980.

US. Time. 1980.

France. Charlie Mensuel. 1983.

Thanks for looking! Join us again soon for another (un-weekly) edition of Non-toy ad Tuesday!

Five new Hostess Superhero ads

Cousin Betsy the Plant Lady… A pleasant gallop on the waves… Cuckoo cuckoos… Creamed filling worthy of the Gods… it can only be the wacky superhero world of Hostess Twinkies and Fruit Pie adverts!

US. Kull. 1976.

US. Marvel Premiere 50. Alice Cooper. 1979.

US. Claw the Unconquered. 1978.

US. The Warlord. 1977.

US. 1978.


Kinder Surprise chocolate eggs and toys

“In 1974, the iconic Kinder Surprise was launched in Europe. All children love chocolate, playing games and discovering new things. And so, the concept of an egg with a surprise toy was created, representing a special joy-filled moment to be shared between parents and their children.” From

As a lover of both toys and chocolate, Kinder Surprise (also known as Kinder Eggs) made by the Italian company Ferrero, is pretty hard to resist around the scanning rooms of TVTA! Many of the toys contained within the chocolate eggs have become collectable over the years, even giving rise to a reproduction market in some instances. The toys often require simple construction and contain fun action features. Many of the toys are collectable figurine sets featuring famous characters like the Smurfs, Astérix, Mickey Mouse and Friends, Disney Princesses, Shrek, Superheroes, Star Wars Hippos, Hello Kitty and others.

Below are some toy photos as put together by TVTA along with a selection of international ads featuring the much-loved egg and some of the toys available.

Selection of 40th anniversary collection figures.

Selection of Disney’s Mickey Mouse and Friends characters.

Cute animals, Princesses and Simpsons characters.

Robot characters.

Alien characters.

Astérix et Obélix: Au service de sa Majesté / God Save Britannia complete set.

Barbapapa complete set.

Les Schtroumpfs En Ville Kinder Surprise. Complete set.

Les Schtroumpfs 2 / The Smurfs Movie 2 complete set.

Les Schtroumpfs / Smurfs complete set

And you thought one Gargamel was bad enough!!! An example of a variant figure – Gargamel in grey tunic along with the more common black tunic version.


France. Pif Gadget. 1977.

Denmark. Anders And & Co. 1981.

France. Pif Gadget. 1980.

Denmark. Anders And & Co. 1979.

Germany. Fix Und Foxi 37. 1984.

Germany. Fix Und Foxi 37. 1984.

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

France. Pif Gadget. 1982.

France. Pif Gadget. 1980.

France. Pif Gadget. 1981.

France. Pif Gadget. 1979.

Denmark. 1989.

Denmark. 1987.

Denmark. 1988.

Kinder Surprise Disney. Denmark. 1988.

Kinder Surprise Disney. 1987. Sweden.

Post updated with new images June 2019.

1970s US toy ads

US comic books ads, 1970s.

Sandwiched between the pages of a multitude of heroes were toy adverts ranging from die cast giant Dinky to model kit makers Monogram to Ricochet Racers to the wonderful and strange offerings of Heroes World merchandise. Here are few goodies from some recent scans.

US. The Defenders. 1977.

US. Weird Mystery Tales. 1974.

US. Kull. 1976.

US. Kull. 1976.

US. Kull. 1976.

US. Kull. 1976.

US. Kull. 1976.


Is there a cheap analyst out there?

1970s and 80s slightly unhinged comic covers

Is the world dangerous or mad? Or both? Do you continue to possess your own name? What’s that growing silently in the corner of your mind? And why so serious all of a sudden? Because nothing’s very funny anymore, and in case you didn’t notice we’re sinking slowly into the mire. Yes, but why so angry? So changeble? Because we’ve painted ourselves into a corner we can’t get out of, and have finally conquered ourselves. Ah, that would be the inherent human condition to destruct itself, yes? Yes. Now how much do I owe you?

Time to let off some steam with comic covers from the 1970s and 80s featuring characters, stories and themes whose worlds have come undone. Artwork by Kirby, Kubert, Alcala, Severin, Veitch, Trimpe, Sutton, Colan, Ordway, O’Neill and Dillon.

Please pay the therapy bill on the way out.

2000 AD. Sci-Fi Special. Cover by Steve Dillon. 1988.

Marvel 50th Premiere. Alice Cooper. Sutton and Austin. 1979.

Little Shop of Horrors. Cover by Gene Colan. 1986.

Batman Official Movie Adaption. Cover by Jerry Ordway. 1989.

Swamp Thing No.85. Cover by Tom Veitch. 1989.

The Mighty World of Marvel No.107. Cover by Herb Trimpe. 1974.

Weird War Tales No.25. Cover by Alfred P Alcala. 1974.

Kull No.19. Cover by Severin, 1976.

Claw the Unconquered No.11. Cover by Joe Kubert. 1978.

Marshal Law. Cover by Kevin O’Neill. 1988.


Never mind the adverts (Pt6) Sy Snootles and the Rebo Band

Sy Snootles and the Rebo Band. 1983. Kenner.

Welcome to part 6 of TVTA’s series Never Mind The Adverts… Here Are The Toys.

In this edition we focus on the best (or 2nd best, depending on your stance) musical band to come out of the Star Wars original trilogy films:

Sy Snootles and the Rebo Band

Original concept artwork by Ralph McQuarrie.

US toy manufacturer Kenner released the Sy Snootles and the Rebo Band Action Figures in 1983 for their 3.75 inch action figure line. The characters are representative of the alien pop band hired by gangster Jabba the Hutt in the third instalment of the original Star Wars trilogy film Return of the Jedi. The set was also released for the European Trilogo line, and the Spanish Lili Ledy line.

Sy Snootles

Image Lucasfilm.

Singing from curling lips that sprout from the end of her long proboscis, with spindly legs and arms, could Sy Snootles be the galactic female equivalent of Mick Jagger?

There are barely a handful of female O/T Star Wars figures; luckily Sy Snootles attempts to make up for this by being one of the grooviest and most interesting-looking alien of the entire line!

Her action figure does her fine justice.

Max Rebo


Max Rebo is the floppy-eared blue elephant-like keyboard player and leader of the Max Rebo Band. He comes from planet Orto, and his species is Ortolan. His piano is called a Red Ball Organ.

Droopy McCool


Droopy McCool is a flute-playing Kitonak from planet Kirdo III. 


This is the second Sy Snootles and the Rebo band I’ve owned. My first was a boxed Trilogo which I traded a while back for other Stars Wars stuff. Here are a couple of pics I saved.

I really love this set and wish that Kenner had also made some Biths for a cantina band play set. That would be some jam session putting both bands together!

As always, thanks for looking. Join us again soon for another Never Mind The Adverts!



Star Wars The Essential Guide To Characters by Andy Mangels. Boxtree. 1996.


Hey, Ding-A-Ling!

Ding-A-Lings. Not to be confused with: scatterbrains, telephones, Chuck Berry, Ding-A-Ling Dolls, or Dead Deadly Ding-a-Ling the Deranged Clown (currently in prison).

US. Pep. 1972.

Ding-A-Lings are plastic, motorised toy robots made in the early 1970s by North American company Topper. Driven by an interchangeable ‘Ding-A-Lings Power Pack’ each robot was able to perform movements. The colourful line included many characters as well as ‘Ding-A-Lings Space Skyways’ track parts.

For more info on the Ding-A-Lings line check out: Topperdingalings