I am sure I have mentioned in past posts that the Planet of the Apes movies were some of my favorite scifi movies when growing up. In fact I still enjoy watching them. Here is a play set based on that the Planet of the Apes theme.
I currently have all the movies (including the Saturday morning series) except for one, Battle for the Planet of the Apes. I need to see if it’s available now.
This post is really about the spaceman more than the whole set pictured here.
I don’t know if my spaceman came with any of the vehicles or buildings like those pictured above. I just remember that in the late 60s my dad had bought me some of the these plastic spacemen. I say bought, but they could have been hand me downs from my brother. I really liked these just as much as my army men. Thru the years though, they shared the same fate as the army men. They were all eventually lost or broken.
A couple of years ago, my wife bought me a whole bag of these guys on Ebay. Boy did the memories come flooding back when I opened that gift! (Yes, sadly I think I am an over-sized kid. 🙁 )
Okay, this has to be the most boring play set I have ever seen.
I am all for learning about the past presidents, but come on! My army men had to fight off Godzilla on a regular basis. When do you ever send in the presidents! In 1972 I would have been six so I give this play set a rating of ten Zs… ZZZZZZZZZZ.
This was another one of those play sets that, when it finally found its way into my hands, there was only bits and pieces left. I couldn’t even begin to tell you what play set we had. I just remember some of the chickens, sheep, cows, horses and etc. They weren’t as fun to play with as the army men or dinosaurs. Let’s be honest…. it is hard to find ways for animals to terrorize the countryside to the point that army men have to intervene. Though I did manage to do so!
My brother (who was five years older than me) had one of these as a toy. I am not sure which set he had because when I started playing with it many of the pieces were missing. The only thing that survived after I had grown up was an orange colored Stegosaurus.
Like most kids my age I had a huge fascination with dinosaurs. I had lots of fun with the pieces that I had, but sadly many army men died a glorious death protecting civilization from the dinosaur invasions. Calvin and Hobbes would have been proud.
In the late 70s the Navarone play set got a face lift and it became the Iwo Jima play set.
It looks to have fewer army men than the Navarone play set, but it does have some additional vehicles. This will become one of the last great sets of plastic army men to come out of that time period. About the only thing you can find these days are cheap and low quality knock offs.
I like comparing the value and quality of toys from when we were kids to that of today. Here are Battleground Europe and Battle of Fort Apache play sets from 1966. (The year I was born!) I am sure 9.99 was a lot of money back then but look at the number of pieces that came with these plastic army men sets. 330 pieces!
I think plastic army men were pretty much standard issue toys for most boys in the 1970s. My brother had the Marx Battleground play set. I am amazed how many pieces this set came with. My brother and I played with this for years.
This is the Marx Navarone play set from the JCPenny Christmas Wishbook. I wanted this one really bad, but it never ended up in my Christmas stocking.
And another cool set from Marx called Desert Fox.
Even our dad used to play army men with us. We had a huge dirt pile in the backyard and our father would help us set up the army men posed in a classic American versus German configuration. The cool thing was, he was planting firecrackers in strategic places while helping us set up. Then when the battle was ready to commence he would light the firecrackers one at a time as we watched the battle unfold. Those were some good times.
Oddly enough (maybe not so odd if you knew me) not a single piece of that set survived. I clearly remember what happened to the last surviving army man in that set. I don’t remember which army man it was, but it was an American soldier. I will not outline exactly what happened (as I don’t want to give ideas to younger readers) but it involved a model rocket engine, an exacto knife, the army man, and an ignition device. All I can say is not even a single piece of molten plastic was left behind.
I was wrong in my previous post. I thought my brother had the Fort Apache play set but turns out he had the Fort Cheyenne version of the toy.
They look similar. The fort in the Fort Cheyenne play set is about half the size of the fort in the Fort Apache because part of the battlefield is an Indian reservation. The set pictured above is from 1968.