Wishing Happy Days Were Here Again

If I made a list of top five favorite sitcoms of all time, Happy Days would be on that list. It may not be recognized for snappy writing but I think it’s the sitcom that is the most fun. It’s certainly iconic.

After the recent post of Happy Days memorabilia photos I started kicking myself for never owning a single Happy Days item back when the show aired on prime-time television. While a lot of collectibles were release during the 1970s, like paper dolls, lunch boxes, puzzles and board games. However, the best was the Mego toy line. It was simple, small and managable. By sticking with Fonzie, Richie, Ralph and Potsie as the only action figures, Mego was able to have the core group of the Happy Days gang on the market.

The retro-style releases from the mid-2000s from Classic TV Toys had these four characters plus variants and others from the show like Chachi, Joanie and Al. I’m not sure these additional characters would have sold well back in the 1970s.

In addition to the action figures Mego released two vehicles. The main vehicle in the Mego line was a working version of Fonzie’s Motorcycle. Since this vehicle was integral to the character it made perfect sense for it to be a toy for the action figure. The Evel Knievel toy line had proven that a toy motorcycle could be successful.

The next vehicle available for the Mego action figure line was Fonzie’s Jalopy. Any fan of Happy Days knows that this is Ralph Malph’s car not Fonzie’s. However, I understand needing to use Fonzie’s name to brand the toys.

Then to complete the Mego toy line was a playset of Fonzie’s Garage. I don’t understand why Fonzie’s Garage was the choice for a playset. Arnold’s Drive-In makes more sense. That setting was shown more than Fonzie’s garage ever was.

A second runner-up to the Mego toy line are the Happy Days pinball machine and video game. You wouldn’t think Happy Days would lend itself to any type of arcade experience but here are two. Granted the pinball machine is one of those produced for home use rather than the arcade.

Anyone of age ever own any Happy Days merchandise? How about a lunchbox, coloring book, paperback novel, or collector glass?

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13 thoughts on “Wishing Happy Days Were Here Again

  1. plcary says:

    I didn’t realize how much merchandise they released for the show. I rarely see this stuff in flea markets with the exception of the Fonzie action figure. I spotted one about a month ago but they wanted $75 for it. I do remember receiving a huge button about the size of a dessert plate with a picture of Fonzie saying his iconic slogan… “Aaaayyyy!”

  2. mwentworth says:

    Yay SMGJ!! I love the description for the Fonz arcade – “scoring with the Fonz is beautifully simple….”

  3. @Plcary – was the Fonzie you saw loose or MOC?

    I got my four Happy Days Mego figures in the mail today. Man they are PERFECT. They are loose but really in mint condition. I got them for less than $40 apiece. And the seller even included stands with them. I’ll have to snap a pic and show it.

    @Mwentworth – Did you ever see that game in arcades? I don’t recall ever seeing it.

  4. plcary says:

    @TheSixMillionDollarJedi – This Fonzie was in the original box. It was a box, not a card with the plastic bubble.

  5. I have no memory at all of the Mego Fonzie Garage!

    @plcary Friend, you and I are going to have to hit the flea markets together one day, can you imagine the damage we could do. :)

  6. Dudley88 says:

    As a boy in the ’70s, I too was a Happy Days fanatic. I didn’t have much of the merchandise, though. I had a couple of t-shirts and the Happy Days board game. I believe it was by Parker Bros. I don’t remember much about the gameplay, except that the winner was the first player to accumulate a certain number of “cool points.”

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