Tag Archives: toy adverts

Fast Cars, Key Chains and Cop Show Guns

Courtesy of the 1976 Pilen catalogue from Spain 

Pilen S.A. was a Spanish company that produced die cast model cars, key chains and toy guns. TVTA is pleased to present the full scans from this terrific little catalogue printed in Spanish, French, English and German. Featuring international model cars, a Tiger tank, toy guns from top cop shows like Kojak, Columbo and The Untouchables, and somewhat randomly… a set of child’s kitchen scales. It’s all here. And how about those front and back covers… with what looks like a De Tomasa Mangusta launching itself through a set of tyres against a deep red background. Always good to see some art on the covers of a catalogue.  

The cars

While many of Pilen’s models are considered recasts of Dinky, Corgi, Solido and Polistil, see here and here, Pilen nevertheless stamped their own identity on them by producing superb vehicles made of quality materials, with attractive paint apps and working features.   









Tiger Tanks


Guns N’ Wrenches

Pilen produced some cool toy guns, managing to snag licenses for big name 60s and 70s TV shows like Kojak, Columbo, Matt Helm, U.S. Marshal, Cannon, Get Smart, and The Untouchables. Pilen key chains featured various mini tools like wrenches, saws, hammers, and even a pistol. I had one of the key chain tools as a kid and I’m almost certain it had working features. According to Wikipedia the key chains were already in production by Pilen long before the company began selling cars. Included with each car purchase was a mini catalogue with a slip which could be cut out and collected then used to send off for a free key chain. 






On balance …

I don’t know why the child’s kitchen scales are included on the last page… maybe it was an end of line sale, or just a space-filler, or the company testing the market for the launch of a line of die cast super kitchen accessories? Here at TVTA we never mind a little speculation, and are always happy to end a post with a kitchen unit or accessory 🙂


 

ETS De Neuter toy trade catalogue 1995

ETS DE NEUTER is a French toy distributor that has been in operation for more than 60 years. The following scans are from its 1995 Christmas trade catalogue and feature many of the big name toy and game brands. The front cover has a wintry, foresty, Christmas wonderland feel to it, while the back cover shows a range of cool merchandise for popular 90s film The Lion King. In between these covers are more than 80 pages of well-presented toy photos and dioramas, making this catalogue a joy to look through.

As well as toys and games, ETS De Neuter distributed household, sports, leisure and electrical goods, which the catalogue also features – but we’ll save those goodies for another time. For now, sit back and enjoy these cool 90s toys. Click if you need to go bigger. Thanks for looking.

Cover. Ets De Neuter. Catalogue Noël. 1995. France.

Batman and Robocop toys.

Biker Mice From Mars.

Playmobil sets and Wild West sets.

Joustra construction. Road Rigs.

K’Nex.

Lego Technic.

Meccano construction.

Barbie dolls, play sets and accessories.

Barbie dolls, play sets and accessories.

Barbie merchandise.

Action Man.

Polly Pocket.

Power Rangers.

Play-Doh.

Crayola

Spirograph.

Spirograph.

Monopoly.

Qui Est-Ce? / Guess Who?

Cluedo.

Tir’Pic / Ker Plunk.

Touche Coule / Battleships.

Mastermind.

Docteur Maboul / Operation.

Trivial Pursuit.

Astérix plush.

Sailor Moon.

Sindy.

Tintin.

Nikko Radio Control.

Nikko Radio Control.

Nikko Radio Control.

TCR.

Transformers.

Le Roi Lion / The Lion King. Back cover of Ets De Neuter catalogue. 1995. France.

Thanks for looking 🙂

Latest ads: Big Jim, Mickey Mouse, Corgi, Dungeons & Dragons and Mini-Jeux

I always enjoy coming across the toy artwork ads by Ogilvy and Mather, the company responsible for Mattel’s Barbie, Big Jim and Hot Wheels adverts in France during the 70s and 80s. Here are two Big Jim adverts featuring the eponymous character himself along with fellow action figures Géronimo, Bloody Fox, Captain Flint and Captain Hook.

France. Castors Juniors. 1979.

France. Castors Juniors. 1979.


France. Castors Juniors. 1979.

France. Castors Juniors. 1979.


Mickey Mouse Summer Holiday Reading

France. Castors Juniors. 1979.

Suggested reading for the summer holidays – this bumper edition of Mickey Mouse featured fourteen complete stories and forty pages of games and jokes. Advert from Castors Juniors, 1979, France.


Superman Die Cast Vehicles by Corgi

US. Weird War Tales. 1979.

British company Corgi has never been shy when it comes to producing toys based on Marvel Comics and DC Comics characters. Their Superman pocket-size die cast vehicles range were a big hit when I was a kid, and I remember having the truck, the police car and the helicopter. Advert from Weird War Tales, 1979, US.


Glow In The Dark Posters from Pineapple Kids Club

US. The New Mutants. 1985.

In 1985 Canadian-based company Pineapple Kids Club were offering some cool sci-fi themed glow in the dark posters, as well as the chance to get free glow in the dark shoe laces. Advert from The New Mutants, 1985, US.


Dungeons & Dragons

US. House of Mystery. 1981.

A “Dungeons & Dragons” black and white “Adventure” ad featuring the three heroes Valerius the Fighter, Grimslade the magic user, and Indel the elf. Advert from House of Mystery, 1981, US.


Mini-Jeux Pocket Games

France. Castors Juniors. 1979.

Mini-Jeux pocket games were licensed by the Meccano company in France. In the UK they were known as Pocketeers. Advert from Castors Juniors, 1979, France.


 

New ads: X-Men, SGT Rock, Kenner, Bburago, Ponte Car, Bill and Ted, PS2 and Victor

It’s a mixed bunch of ads today from the 1970s to the 1990s spanning the US, UK, Brazil and Italy.


US. Dark Hawk. 1991.

US. Dark Hawk. 1991.


US. Legion of Superheroes. 1983.

US. Legion of Superheroes. 1983.


TTP Turbo Tower of Power Weird Mystery Tales 10 1974

US. Weird Mystery Tales. 1974.


Italy. Topolino. 1979.

Italy. Topolino. 1979.


Brazil. Peninha. 1987.

Brazil. Peninha. 1987.


US. Dark Hawk. 1991.

US. Dark Hawk. 1991.


US. Crimson Dawn. 1997.

US. Crimson Dawn. 1997.


UK. Victor. 1975.

UK. Victor. 1975.


 

Mini-jeux, Kinder Surprise, Big Jim and the end of the LEGO-Shell love affair

Mini-Jeux are mechanical games based on the Japanese Tomy hand-held games.

In the UK these were marketed as ‘Pocketeers’ by the Palitoy company. See TVTA’s post POCKETEERS

France. Pif Gadget. 1979.

France. Pif Gadget. 1979.


100 new surprises… more beautiful than ever.

1978 Kinder Surprise ad from France. More Kinder Surprise here

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.


Big Jim helicopter. 1978.

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.


LEGO Sea stuff.

Lego used to have a corporate deal going with the Shell oil company. For years the Shell logo appeared on numerous brick products like tankers, petrol stations and oil rigs – until recently (2014) when Lego finally cut its ties with the oil giant following a sustained capaign by Greenpeace

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.


 

Zombie cats, office cats, science cats and 1970s toy ads…

While hunting mice today, our office cat, Wooof, found these five French vintage 1970s adverts lodged down the back of the refrigerator. We hope they haven’t been there since the 70s (unlike our sub editor’s Christmas cheese selection or, indeed, the fridge itself!).

Anyway, we’ve been looking for these ads for ages. Well done Wooof, treat yourself to the afternoon off and go and visit some cat-science exhibitions in the town centre or something. You may also wish to send a get-well-soon card to brave Bart the zombie Cat

Here are the ads…

Kojak's action-packed Buick by Corgi. France. Pif Gadget. 1977.

Kojak’s action-packed Buick by Corgi. France. Pif Gadget. 1977.


Create your own medieval world with Playmo. France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

Create your own medieval world with Playmo. France. Pif Gadget. 1978.


Sindy Disneyland drawing competition. France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

Sindy Disneyland drawing competition. France. Pif Gadget. 1978.


France. Pif Gadget. 1978.

France. Pif Gadget. 1978.


Pif Gadget comic character, Rahan, even gets his own action figure courtesy of Group Action Joe - he French version of Action Man! France. PIf Gadget. 1978.

Pif Gadget comic character, Rahan, even gets his own action figure courtesy of Group Action Joe – the French version of Action Man! France. PIf Gadget. 1978.


 

MECCANO… mechanics made easy

Meccano has built a strong legacy as one of the oldest construction systems in the world when it was invented in England by Frank Hornby in 1898. In 1913, a very similar construction set was introduced in the US under the brand name Erector. Today, these two great brands have joined forces under one global brand name – Meccano.

Text taken from official website: Meccano

UK. Hamleys Catalogue. 1983.

France. Pif Gadget. 1982.

France. Pif Gadget. 1982.

Ets De Neuter. Catalogue page. 1995. France.