Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Top Toy Of 1973 And The Greatest Toy I Ever Owned

1973: Evel Knievel Stunt Cycle

Ideal Toys debuted its popular line of tiny toy bikes in 1973, the year the celebrity stuntman made a lucky 13 jumps on his Harley, including an epic 13 vans to start the year. Well, he crashed once, not that that stopped him or slowed the sales of his merchandising.



I have highlighted this as my favorite toy of all time. I mentioned before that my father knew a great toy when he saw one and one Christmas I got everything - the figure with bike, the 'Stunt Stadium', the 'Scramble Van' and the 'Jet Bike'. We didn't have enough room in the house to really let the bike do the tricks it could so we packed up everything and took it to the base where a huge empty hanger became our staging area. We spent hours that Christmas setting up the coolest jumps and everyone who saw us had to participate in the activity, lending their two cents to our playtime. Fuck my Dad was awesome. The bike itself was practically indestructible and I am sure that Evel's suit was fire proof because we tested its ability to resist flame with a massive ring of fire. Its times like this (when I know my reissue of the toy is sitting downstairs in the Cave of Cool) that I regret not having children of my own. Seeing these terrific images at 'Yesterville Toy Room' I had to post them here for me to enjoy. After all it is the 'Cave of Cool' and these are totally cool.


In the 1970s, Evel Knievel was a phenomenon that's difficult to describe to those that weren't "of age" in that decade. Evel was almost like a living super hero. In the eyes of a child, a man that would try to jump the Grand Canyon (it was the Snake River but we didn't know any better) in a rocket, seemed capable of ANY feat. Evel was a merchandising phenomenon, as well. There were Evel posters, t-shirts, toothbrushes, drinking straws, model kits, lunch boxes...the list goes on and on. However, to kids, it was the toys that mattered most. In 1973, the Ideal Toy company started producing the line of Evel Knievel toys that would become almost legendary in the minds of so many adults today.


I found pictures of this amazing Evel collection.
Now that is a fan.



Konsumterra said...

i had several and loved this guy - was depressing hannabarbarra
cartoon the devlins or something too

j-swin said...

I just don't get the appeal, maybe I was born too late. So he jumps over things on his bike?

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

You really missed out. YEH HE JUMPED THINGS...on a BIKE and the toy replicated that with enough speed that you could play rough with it but the bike was indestructible.