There were quite a few strange toys that were released back in the nineties. Here are nine of the weirdest toys from the nineties.
9. Gooey Louie
Now, I must admit to kind of liking this one. The name sounds gross, as is the game. The aim of the game is to pull bogies (yep, you heard that right) out of Louie’s nose. Louie being the fake head that is the centre of the game. The winner is the one who manages to pull all the bogeys out before his brain and eyes pop out. Amazingly, this game is marketed to children over three years. I can’t work out whether the game designers were drunk, or geniuses. As the game is still on sale today, it’s probably the latter.
8. Snack Time Cabbage Patch Kid
Ok, so the Cabbage Patch Kids were technically an 80s toy that continued into the 90s, but the snack one was released in 1996. If the odd looks weren’t weird enough, Mattel decided that a doll that could chew would be a great idea. I suppose the idea of a doll chewing food is kind of cute, but all didn’t quite go to plan. It transpired that the doll could chew pretty much anything. Including children’s fingers and hair. This ultimately led it to be recalled only a few months later.
These were weird. I mean, has no one watched Gremlins? They looked like a cross between Mogwai and a chicken. Their eyes flickered and they could talk back to you. Albeit with a limited vocabulary. Although, they were briefly banned in the US after the NSA believed they could be recording secret conversations. This was lifted after it was proved they couldn’t record voices, but still. Weird looking and weird sounding. They were extremely popular in the late 90s, selling over 40 million units in the first three years of production. That said, imagine being a kid and your Furby starts talking to you in the middle of the night. Nope.
For those of you not born in the 90s, the Tamagotchi was basically babysitting some pixels on a screen. Looking back now, it’s just plain weird and a bit naff. But in the 90s, it was the closest thing you had to hand-held tech that’s taken for granted today. In fact, it was the closest thing 90s kids had to having an app. It involved a digital egg hatching into a pixel pet. You then had to monitor it to make sure it was fed, watered, and looked after. The modern-day equivalent of checking our social media feeds on our phones. They were hugely popular back in the day but checking on a bunch of pixels to see if it’s died is just a bit weird.
5. Ouija Board Game
Ok, so the Ouija board has been out for well over a hundred years, but Hasbro released a kid’s version in 1991. We’ve all seen the horror films featuring Ouija boards, so this seems like a bonkers idea. The commercial even had kids asking if they’ll be going to school tomorrow, or that skiing holiday. Unsurprisingly, there were reports that kids had spoken to dead relatives and that their house was now haunted. Whether you believe in that or not, the idea of a kids Ouija board is just plain weird.
I remember having one of these back in the 90s. They were hand-held puppets that looked like goblins. And freaky looking ones too. They looked like Wes Craven and Jim Henson had combined creative forces. They had bulbous eyes that you could move with a lever. If that wasn’t weird enough, you also stick your arm up them and move their mouths. They were great fun for scaring your siblings and neighbours, and they had an amazing ability to gurn as well. To add to the freakiness, the eyes were also glow in the dark. One that should be confined to the 90s.
3. Monster Face
Keeping with the horror theme, Monster Face was released in 1991. The dream of every young Dr Frankenstein wannabe. It’s basically a Mr Potato Head for those predisposed to the grotesque. A plastic head that you can manipulate and add things to make him look even grosser. There was slime, goo and even a pulsating skull. I’m sure it never messed up any impressionable small children.
2. The Punisher
The 90s saw quite a few action/horror figures grace the shelves. It wasn’t unusual to see a pint-size Freddy Krueger or Jason from Friday 13th sat on a child’s bedside cabinet. What was bizarre, was how The Punisher figure ever got signed off. Based on the ultra-violent justice warrior, the toy itself featured a massive cannon attached to the character. Unfortunately, it was placed in the most inappropriate place and looked rather, phallic. Still, it sold a lot so the designers must have been rubbing their hands with glee. Whilst still laughing to themselves.
1. Bed Bugs
A game where you must physically pick blood-eating insects from a bed with tweezers. Ok, so it’s all plastic and the bugs bounce around on the bed whilst you try to pick them up, but still. It’s a weird concept for a kid’s game. Makes you wonder if all the game designers in the 90s were on illegal stimulants. That said, I’ve played this game, and it’s a lot of fun. The decade really did have the best games.
That’s our list of nine of the weirdest toys from the nineties, did we miss any? Let us know in the comments below.
Check out the rarest and most valuable Pokemon cards HERE.
Star Trek Tech That’s Almost Here
Star Trek is iconic for many things, but its futuristic technology is what wowed and inspired many a viewer.
Bearing in mind that the franchise is 55 years old, some of that tech from the future is already here. So, let’s take a seat on the bridge of the Enterprise and have a delve through the computer’s logs.
What’s been and gone
Let’s delve into the futuristic tech that is within touching grasp of our fingertips. Believe it or not, a warp drive could be coming our way soon. Perhaps not as quick as Picard heading off to engage with the Borg, but still. There are exciting rumblings coming from NASA regarding their EmDrive technology. Although this isn’t ‘exactly’ warp drive, it could lead to super-fast interplanetary travel. Which could then lead to warp drive. So come on NASA, make it so.
Next up, the trusty food replicator. Ever ready to present Jean-Luc with his ‘Tea, Earl Grey, Hot’, the replicator was a staple part of Star Trek. Although there isn’t yet a way to magic up cups of tea, we are close. We have 3D printers. They can print complex three-dimensional objects, so maybe in time, we’ll get an instant Early Grey cup of tea.
Another regular element of ships on Star Trek (and other sci-fi shows), is the tractor beam. Used for a variety of reasons, it was most commonly used to help tow stranded ships to safety. Now, bear with me. We don’t have to ability to use tractor beams to pull large objects along, but there is something similar. Albeit on a smaller scale. Optical tweezers work by holding and moving microscopic objects with two lasers. So, it’s not moving shuttle craft around space, but it’s a start. And who knows where that technology could lead in a few years?
Beam me up, Scotty…
How many of you have wished you could get instantly teleported to where you need to go? Maybe it’s being stuck in a traffic jam and late for work? Or maybe you’re at a social event stuck talking to the worlds most boring person. We’ve all wished there was a metaphorical Scotty to beam us out of a situation. Well, real-life transporters to move human beings are some way off. But there is a glimmer of hope. This all comes down to quantum mechanics. Back in 2015, scientists managed to transport photons across 63 miles of fibre optics. This was a big jump on what was achieved previously, so opens the door to more advancements in the coming years. Good old science.
Tricorders were a doctor’s best friend through Star Trek. They gave them the ability to find out what’s wrong by a quick scan over the body. It was also able to mend minor wounds. ‘Bones’ McCoy certainly enjoyed using it. There was a competition launched in 2014 for companies to create a Tricorder type device. It should be able to detect certain conditions. Although it won’t have the abilities that the fictional device had, it’s still exciting stuff.
One of the coolest things from the Star Trek universe was the cloaking device used by Klingon ships. It enabled them to go undetected from scans until they decloaked. How far off are we from having real-life cloaking devices? Maybe not as far off as you think. Scientists have created cloaking with a small assortment of electronic devices (metamaterials). They managed to change the reflection and refraction of light that we’re used to. This is cool as it opens the door for newer metamaterials to possibly give new effects. Although according to NASA, invisibility cloaking is still a way off.
Full speed ahead
There were many times where Captain Kirk ordered for full impulse power from Mr Sulu. The fictional impulse engines were based on fusion reactions, as opposed to the chemical reactions of real ones. We don’t have impulse power just yet, but they are a real possibility of future engineering. In recent years, ion drive engines have been used by various space agencies to propel probes to asteroids and comets. They’re much more efficient than chemical rockets and were mentioned a few times in Star Trek. Although electric cars are the imminent future, imagine being propelled down a highway with an ion thruster behind you?
One of the more science-focused elements of Star Trek was the matter and antimatter generation. It was one of the most efficient types of power sources for ships. Antimatter has been created in microscopic quantities, but not enough for power generation. Certainly not enough to power anything that resembles a starship.
Who knows what the future will bring, but advancements in science certainly give us optimism that the future just might be Star Trek.
That’s our list of Star Trek tech that’s almost here. What would you most like to see come to life from the shows? Let us know in the comments below.
Check out what we can expect from Star Trek: Strange New Worlds HERE.
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