I've written before about the Great One, Jackie Gleason, on this site. Between his television, movie, and music careers, the man was a bona fide superstar during the 1950s and into the '60s. So I don't know why I was surprised to find out that his image was even used to sell toys. In this case, most appropriately, a bus. But not just any bus -- it's the 1955 Honeymooners' Special Jackie Gleason Bus, produced by a company called Wolverine. The Jackie Gleason Bus features Ralph Kramden from the Honeymooners, of course, but other Gleason characters as well. I can spot Joe the Bartender, Reginald Van Gleason III, and the Poor Soul. And awa-a-y we go! Notice that while the bus is tin the wheels are wooden. I also think the POW! license plate is a nice touch. For more auction...
I would so love to own one of these vintage tin beauties -- it's a battery-powered RCA-NBC Mobile Color TV Truck from Cragstan. I've included multiple shots here because there's a lot of great detail here. Based on the NBC logo used, I'd date this at around the late 1950s. Here's a few pics with the original box. Love the vintage '50s color scheme. Great detail on the cameraman, and of course there's the classic RCA "His Master's Voice" logo on the side. On the right side we have the original peacock logo, circa late '50s. I wonder what's going on behind the blinds? For more auction finds, click here.
Courtesy the glory of the internet, here's an original prop poster from the V: The Final Battle NBC mini-series (1984). It's a propaganda poster showing how the visitors are in fact our friends. Looks legit. Click for a larger version. Because you know you want to see those space lizard goggles in their full glory. For more auction finds, click here.
Circa 1940s, here are two fantastic cardboard cut-out advertising signs for Whistle Orange Soda. Whistle, a Vess Beverage Company product, was developed by a Vess salesman named Charles Leiper Grigg in 1919/1920. Grigg went on to invent what became 7 Up. As far as I can tell, both Vess sodas and Whistle are still being sold. Both of these signs feature the well known "Thirsty? Just Whistle" tagline. The first one in particular is just so spectacular to look at. For more auction finds, click here.
This is just a thing of beauty. It's a General Electric light-up analog clock, advertising TV and radio servicing. It features a nifty graphic of a GE electronic (vacuum) tube box. I love the orange and black color scheme. If I had to venture a guess I'd say this dates from the '40s or '50s. Click for a full-size version. For more auction finds, click here.
The original Star Trek TV series ended in 1969, but its enduring popularity was evident not long after. Fan demand for new adventures led to the 1973-74 animated series, and it's from that period that this neat Star Trek toy comes from. It's an Inter-Space Communicator, released in 1974 by a British company called Lone Star. Hell, I'd like just the packaging, featuring a surprisingly decent illustration of Kirk and Spock. In case it wasn't immediately obvious, the communicators here worked with a string attached between them. To the future! Operating instructions and closeup shots are here. For more auction finds, click here.
Here's a dashing action figure likeness of Sean Connery as James Bond from the 1965 film Thunderball. The movie was released in 1965 so I'm assuming the action figure -- produced by Gilbert -- was as well. Dig that sweet SCUBA outfit, complete with fins, snorkel, and super-snug bathing trunks! The Thunderball line turned out to be almost the last hurrah for Gilbert (known officially as the A.C. Gilbert Company), which closed for good in 1967 after almost 60 years in business. Gilbert, incidentally, introduced the world-famous Erector Set in 1913. For more auction finds, click here.
Once more from the farthest reaches of the internet, I bring you cool Star Wars stuff. This time, it's a gallery Star Wars masks and helmets used in the original trilogy. Most of these closeup pictures were taken within the last few years or so, so you have to expect some visible wear and tear. Still, they're fascinating documents that went into the magic of the first three films. Up first is a snowtrooper helmet from The Empire Strikes Back. Bet you never knew they had green eyepieces! Also from The Empire Strikes Back, here's an original Ugnaught foam latex mask. You remember the Ugnaughts as the little pig people who worked in Cloud City and helped prep the carbonite machine for Han Solo. Here are three different angles of a regular ol' Stormtrooper helmet, worn during ...
Here's a really cool piece of vintage TV technology I came across. It's the control box from the NBC game show Name That Tune, which aired on the network from 1952-1954, 1974-75, and 1977. The auction for this box claims it's from the '50s version of the show, which I suppose is possible, except for one thing that contradicts that. See if you can guess what it is. This certainly looks simple enough to be from the 1950s, but a few things make me think it's from the '70s. The first is the faux wood grain DYMO label tape, which I don't think was around in the '50s. But mostly, that NBC logo on the "Made by NBC Electric Shop" label looks newer. Unless this was used internally for a few decades before the public saw it, it's most definitely from the '70s. In fact, that trapezoid N rol