Rainbow Brite

Do You Recall Rainbow Brite Sprites At Taco Bell?

When Rainbow Brite hit the scene back in 1983 it took hold. Created by none other than Gary Glissmeyer, Cheryl Cozad, and Dan Drake of Hallmark Cards, Inc. Rainbow Brite had dolls and toys, produced by Mattel. In addition to the images of the more popular characters being found on clothing, bedding, and other media.

The sales of Rainbow Brite merchandise also led to an animated series in 1984. With Warner Bros. releasing the feature-length animated movie Rainbow Brite and the Star Stealer to theaters in 1985. An adventure that leads R.B. and the Color Kids to attempt to thwart a Winter on Earth. A supernatural and never-ending cold brought on by Stormy, the opposite of our heroine.
Rainbow Brite

There is of course a lot of songs included in the film. Naturally.

[Via] I-Mockery

With all of this popularity it only stands to reason that fast food giants of the time would jump in. Incredibly popular places like Taco Bell for example. Instead of focusing on offering R.B. dolls they wisely chose to sell Sprites. The hardworking and lovable companions to R.B. and the Color Kids.

[Via] Hai Karate 4

So now that you might be hungry for Taco Bell. This would be the perfect time to remind you that Rainbow Brite also had a cereal!

[Via] Retrostatic

Halloween and McDonald’s

We’ve talked a little bit this month about what constitutes bad Halloween treats (pencils, pencil erasers, toothbrushes), but what about … gift certificates?

I remember receiving McDonald’s Gift Certificates a few times in the late 70s and early 80s, back in my prime trick-or-treating years. The 1979 commercial below says that the gift certificates were good for a free drink, but I seem to remember receiving some that were good for a sundae as well.

If you didn’t have a pillow sack or some other cool bucket to stash your goods in, you could always pick up one of these plastic carriers from McDonald’s.

At least one year, McDonald’s dressed up the McNuggets in various Halloween outfits.

This commercial coincided with McNugget Happy Meal toys in similar Halloween-themed costumes.


Burger King … RIP?

It was announced over the weekend that Burger King (the restaurant) is retiring the most royal of mascots … “The King”.


Burger King first opened its doors back in 1954, and although “The King” has gone through several redesigns throughout the years, he’s always been part of the company’s brand.


Here’s a picture from TVAcres.com of a Burger King doll from the 1980s.


Unfortunately Burger King’s “King” was never as strong of a character as Ronald McDonald or even a Fry Guy. As a result, the King made few television appearances from the 1950s all the way up through the 1990s.

(Eagle-eyed Retroist fans should have spotted Elizabeth Shue and Andrew McCarthy in that clip. If you did, good job!)

In the late 2000s, Burger King tried to revamp the King’s image by making him … creepier. In a series of television commercials, the King would randomly appear and deliver people food.

I’m pretty sure accepting a breakfast sandwich from a strange adult who you’ve just discovered was sleeping in your bed pretty much breaks every “Stranger Danger” rule I learned in grade school.

This newer, creepier King became so popular for a short period of time that three Xbox 360 games were released starring The King. Each game was $3.99. My favorite of the three was Sneak King, a game in which you, as the Burger King, had to sneak up on people and deliver them sandwiches. The first level had you, dressed as The Burger King, sneaking up on working loggers — guys actively using chainsaws and axes. This has “bad idea” written all over it.

Over the weekend, Burger King (the company) announced that in an effort to reinvent itself, it will be moving away from the mascot. Maybe The King will be Burger King’s response to McDonald’s McRib, and will only make yearly appearances.

If you really start missing The King, keep in mind that Halloween is right around the corner, and Burger King costumes, especially over the past few years, have been a big hit.


Classic Roy Rogers Fast Food Sign

Roy Rogers dotted the landscape of New Jersey when I was growing up. Sadly in the competitive fast food market, they just couldn’t keep up and they did not make it. I do think that 1 or 2 independent ones still might exist there though. When we stopped there, I would have chicken usually and I really enjoyed their french fries.

I wonder if they had put up some of these old style signs, if it would have helped keep Roys in business.

Roy Rogers

Classic Roy Roger’s Sign [via] Retroist Image Pool

Sea Galley’s Got Crab Legs

Did you have a restaurant in your town when you were growing up that you thought was pretty fancy, but upon maturing you realize that it was just a mid-range seafood restaurant with a bunch of fake seafaring memorabilia on the walls? For me, that place was Sea Galley, a Pacific Northwest regional chain that, because of where it was located, probably actually had pretty good seafood, along with all the nets and buoys and anchors all over the place. I imagine that with these kinds of ads, though, Sea Galley might not have been as fancy as I thought, as fancy restaurants generally don’t promote themselves with singing monster-crustacean-waiters literally embodying the restaurant’s claim that they’ve “got crab legs.” I never had the crab legs; I probably tried to eat my age in pounds of fried shrimp instead.