|Pic from Amazon.com|
Just Can’t Get Enough: Toys, Games and Other Things from the ‘80s that Rocked
When my now-wife and I started dating back in 2009, one of the first things we bonded over was our mutual love of the 1980s. Sensing my fondness for kid's toys and pop culture, she loaned me the subject of today's review, which I instantly loved and have never really returned -- now that we're married, the point seems kind of moot, too.
How do all of these retro relics hold up after so many years? As might be expected, it’s a little bit mixed. There are plenty of toys within that still look cool as an adult. Other items have not fared so well, or were simply terrible at time of release, but people were sucked in by hype. Take Pogo Balls -- much like the authors, I remember just about everyone owning one of the things, but I would be hard pressed to remember seeing anyone actually use one. I suppose it’s a powerful example of how well marketing can work on young impressionable minds.
ot long after the original version of this article was published online, I actually interviewed Jensen Karp via email. My document of this seems to have been lost (though I am looking), but I recall him mentioning there were a number of other chapters planned, but for space and other considerations, they just didn't happen (possibly accounting for the lack of TMNT?). He also mentioned the prospect of a 1990s-based sequel, which didn't seem like it was getting off the ground through no fault of their own -- one was released in 2013, but it seems that it was entirely separate from their involvement. I own that volume too, though, so I may have to look at it on here soon.
Though it seems increasingly unlikely, I’d love to see a companion volume, covering some other '80s fads. With their reverential yet irreverent tone, Jensen Karp and Matthew Robinson did a thoroughly entertaining job of bringing some of these near-forgotten things to life again.