Clown Around

Do You Remember Mego’s Clown Around Figurines?

There are quite a few people who suffer from Coulrophobia, the fear of clowns. However maybe they never were able to play with Mego’s Clown Around PVC figurines. Before I go further into the joy of the fantasy world of Clown Around. I need to thank Michael R. Johnson of the Retroist Clubhouse for reminding me of these awesome toys.

Clown Around - Brochure

Image courtesy of the Mego Clown Around Blog.

It is an honest fact that I had plumb let the Clown Around figurines slip from my mind. Having sad that though I can add I was a fan of the collectibles. Back in 1981 you must remember that The Smurfs were making lots of money. Thanks in no small part to their animated series as well as their awesome figurines.

Read: My Review Of The Excellent ‘World Of Smurfs’ by Matt. Murray

It of course is no wonder why Mego would decide to throw their hat into the collectibles market. I would very much like to know how they decided on clowns though however. Furthermore they ran with the ball in naming the Clown Around characters. For example you had the likes of President Ronald Reaclown and Bad Bad Leroy Clown as well.

Image courtesy of the Mego Clown Around Blog.

While I never owned a large collection of the figurines. It should be no shock that the two I fondly recall and long for to own again to this day. Were two PVC figures from the Universal Monsters inspired Monster Clowns.

Image courtesy of the Mego Clown Around Blog.

I think we should start with that Dark Prince of Puns. Clownula.
Clown Around

And let us not forget the jolly lycanthrope, Clownman.

I never obtained Clownenstein I am sad to say. But in addition to those two wonderful figures. I also owned the Clown of Steel – Superclown!

Now I have some pretty great news for you if you want to know more about the Clown Around characters!


The Mego Clown Around Blog is chock full of images of the PVC collectibles. Not to mention it has information on the various playsets that were made available in 1981. So make sure to hop on over and check the site out by following the link provided here.

That is totally not Mayor Ed Clown! That is Saturday Night Clown!

The World Of Smurfs: A Celebration of Tiny Blue Proportions By Matt. Murray

Thanks to our friends over at ABRAMS books for sending a review copy of their upcoming new book The World of Smurfs: A Celebration of Tiny Blue Proportions! Which so happens to be excellently written by Matt. Murray, the world’s only known Smurfologist!

Murray was President and First Executive director of New York’s Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art, working on an exhibit entitled “Saturday Morning”, which examined not only the art but political, and social aspects of the shows in the exhibit. While setting up the show he came to the realization what some of us writers and readers of the Retroist already know…once a Smurf fan…always a Smurf fan. But Murray took it on himself to try and figure out what made the Smurfs so popular across the world.

Murray warmly relates his own personal experiences with the Smurfs in the Introduction, such as his maternal Grandmother watching the show so that not only would the two of them have something to discuss during their talks over the telephone but that she might be able to understand what words he was ‘Smurfing’.

Murray goes into detail of famed Smurf creator Pierre Culliford or as he was more commonly known throughout the word, Peyo. Murray takes time to educate the reader on Peyo’s childhood and early adult life, when the artist was desperately seeking to sell his cartoon strips to magazines. At this time in his life some other famous creations of Peyo like Johan and Pirlouit (Johan and Peewit as we know them in the United States) came into existence.

Which would lead to the creation of the Les Schtroumpfs or as they would later be known in America, the Smurfs!

The World of Smurfs book of course chronicles the global popularity of not only Peyo but his family as well as obviously that of his blue elflike wonders…that were only 3 apples high. One of the features in the book that I cannot heap enough praise on is the reproductions of animation cells, movie posters, the Smurf Village poster and original Les Schtroumpfs ephemera. For the most part you can take these items out of the book…including a sheet of Smurf stickers…that I’m having to resist applying to my laptop as I type this!

Murray also dives into the Red scare that I vaguely recall in my youth, yep, some people complained that the Smurfs were secretly sowing the seeds of Socialist behavior in the animated series. How Smurfing sad.

Of course Murray goes in depth with the upcoming Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation big budget Smurfs film starring Neil Patrick Harris, Jayma Mays, and Hank Azaria. There is some really neat looking production art for the Smurf village that will be seen in the movie, I particularly loved the Smurf blacksmith shop design.

In closing, do I think you should pick up this book when it hits store shelves in August? Absolutely! If you still smile at the thought of playing with a handful of those wonderful blue PVC Smurf figures you will not only find all the history of the Smurfs fascinating but I bet you’ll want to share the book with your family and friends.

The World of Smurfs: A Celebration of Tiny Blue Proportions is U.S.$24.95/Can. $27.95

Saturday Morning Preview – Back to Next Saturday (1985)

Last weeks post, Saturday Morning Pac Preview Party (1982), was so popular I thought I would keep the ball rolling on these Saturday Morning Preview, with the help of master video poster, dukeofcrydee. The Duke, as I like to call him, also posted the 1985 NBC Saturday Morning Preview show, which is aptly, but loosely (in name) based on the “Back to the Future” with some Wizard of Oz thrown in for good measure.

The special features Keshia Knight Pulliam (Rudy from The Cosby Show) who is read to sleep by Lisa Welchel (Blair from The Facts of Life). Keshia in her dreams meets all the stars of NBC’s Saturday Morning Shows and they need to help her escape her Dream Zone. It might actually be better than then Pac Preview Party, simply because it includes Welchel (dressed as Glinda the Good Witch) singing the now classic (and on my mp3 player) “Back to Next Saturday”.

Enjoy…

Saturday Morning Preview – Back to Next Saturday (Part 1 of 2)

Saturday Morning Preview – Back to Next Saturday (Part 2 of 2)

Gotta get back..back..back…