TIMELINE: 1978, 1979, 1980, 1982, 1985. TOYS: DC Superhero cars, Golden Girl action figures, Karl May action figures, MOTU merchandise, Die Cast cars, Playmobil figures. MANUFACTURERS: Corgi, Mattel, Siso-Trend, Bburago, Inventive Concepts. COUNTRIES: US, Germany, Netherlands.
The latest addition to TVTA’s toy room is this superb 1983 View-Master MOTU gift set.
I must have been about nine the first time I looked through a View-Master – Planet of the Apes and Disney images are what I remember seeing, all in wonderful 3-D colour. It was like staring through two keyholes that promised magical lands, heroes and creatures… a whole new dimension to the wide-open eyes of the nine-year old me. If kaleidoscopes were the Stickle Bricks of the optical toy world, then View-Master was the Lego 🙂
So, onto the MOTU gift set, and fabulous secret powers were revealed to TVTA when we attempted to photograph a few sample images of He-Man and his pals direct from the View-Master. No easy task. Here are our (2D) results …
Onto the box, which hasn’t fared too badly over the years, and some attractive artwork along with a very pleasing overall design …
Reverse – note the cut-out window through which light could enter, enabling you to view the images of a reel before purchasing the gift set.
And finally, a French ad featuring the gift set …
Thank you for inserting “up for viewer” with us 🙂 Please check out our main View-Master page which has tons of stereoscopic delights for your eyes!
Masters of the Universe 7 inch record story book. 1985. France.
I love how they used the actual toys to illustrate the cover of this!
1983 Masters of the Universe 7 inch record from France, and Secret of the Dragon’s Egg Super Adventure
Masters of the Universe Danish comic cover 1987
Two ads, Masters of the Universe toys
Mattel relaunched the Masters of the Universe toy line with a 1989 line called He-Man, which featured a more streamlined look for the action figures. The storyline shifted the adventures of He-Man and Skeletor away from Eternia and into outer space.
He-Man and Masters of the Universe transfers
Castle Greyskull maze puzzle page
Masters of the Universe, sometimes referred to as MOTU or He-Man, is a franchise created in 1982 by Mattel. The brand quickly became, and still is, hugely popular, providing a range of action figures and playsets, video games, comics, books, an animated TV series, a feature film and many other items of merchandise sold internationally.
Fabulous secret powers were revealed to TVTA when we managed to get our mitts on a number of super cool MOTU adverts from around the world! Enjoy.
Of course, In 1985, they didn’t really put die cast toy vehicles inside the boxes of Banania cornflakes (not that it wasn’t uncommon back then to find cool toys inside boxes, but rarely metal toys that would add significant weight to the box). So, no car in my cornflakes? But this was still an excellent opportunity to grab one of 20 sets of 126 vehicles! In addition there were 1000 other prizes to be grabbed. To be in with the chance to win you had to answer a question and then cut-out and send off the slip on the bottom of the advert.
The advertising images for Banania featuring the smiling Senegalise soldier – and in particular the slogan “y’ a bon” (Pidgen French: “that’s good”) has come under scrutiny by those accusing the brand of racism or colonialism.
The slogan, “y’ a bon”, which had been used since 1915, was finally scrapped in 2011 from all subsequent products and advertising. The image of the Senegalise soldier is still used but more in a comic / cartoon style. This change of style can perhaps be first seen in the 1985 Hot Wheels advert at the beginning of the post, with the soldier’s head morphed into the font of the letter ‘B’.
I’ve included below another advert from 1985 to illustrate this – this time for a He-Man and Masters of the Universe promotion which is pretty much the same as the Hotwheels promo.
Banania in Space
You can see the presence of the “y’ a bon” logo in this 1960 advert from Lissette comic. In this promotion you had to collect 16 points from Banania products then send them off along with 6 postage stamps to receive your space play-set and characters.
Read more of the history of Banania here: