But Star Wars and GI Joe action figures on the other hand were quite fun. The clawed hands could actually be fit with guns and light sabers (with Luke and Vader’s eventually built directly into its arm) and the figures could actually battle one another for ruling power. Sure we had to move each figure with our hands, but hey, at least there was a bigger story and purpose for these toy lines. The GI Joe guys had cool code names like “Snake Eyes” and “Storm Shadow” and were equipped with their own specialty weapons. My brother made me memorize these facts for days. He would quiz me on the real name, code name, specialization, and weapon of each different GI Joe. I spent many summer hours reading the information on the back of the action figure cardboard cut outs. He even made a little box out of white construction paper and staples to file all the cards in order. Eventually all those memorization exercises eventually paid off and got me through high school and college.
Transformers were cool because the concept of attaching multiple robots to build an even larger robot was a thrill. And who, but the Japanese, would think of turning each transportation vehicle into a dinosaur, bird, animal, or robot. My brother and I would have timed races to see who could transform each toy the fastest. It was such a hot concept that even McDonald’s Happy Meal toys would transform plastic mini McNuggets, Hotcakes, Shakes and Fries into a robot of sort. Of all the Transformers, Bumble Bee the little yellow bug (VW) was my favorite. Perhaps that’s why I wanted a VW in college. My friend Angie and I wanted to paint one hot pink and plaster sorority Greek letters on the hood and doors.
Cheers to my brother who was my best friend and who made childhood and growing up so much fun and memorable. I can’t imagine my childhood without him