Sunday, June 13, 2010

Robot Dreams

So I was cruisin' through a couple of the blogs I read on an occasional basis (Morbid Anatomy, io9) the other day and ran across this in both of 'em:

"Yasutaro Mitsui poses with his own steel humanoid, Tokyo, Japan, in 1932."

This, of course, sent me off on one of my obsessive Web Quests because, you know, giant robots! Apparently, Japan has a long and intimate association with robots/mechanical men quite apart from that of the Western world where they are seen as monsters or servants--see Loving the Machine: The Art and Science of Japanese Robots (non-Amazon review here).

Being a typical Monster Kid of the '60s pretty much meant I was Robot Mad as well and my parents, bless 'em, indulged me as best they could. One Christmas they got me this:

(from Robots Inc)
(from Robots Inc)

Gosh-golly-gee, this was a GREAT toy! And when he took on my vast collection of Army Men, well, you can imagine what happened:

A couple of years later my parents and I went to see The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming (a fun movie which stands up surprisingly well today) where I was surprised and delighted to see my Robot Buddy on the big screen:

Sadly, I no longer own Chief Robot/Mystery Moon Man; once I was older and had left home he suffered the fate of many of my toys--Mom gave him away.

But I could once again! Aaron's Tin Toy Arcade has a reproduction for a mere $69.95.

I'm so tempted...

1 comment:

Doc Atomic said...

A great toy! When I started collecting vintage robots, it was among the toys at the top of my want list, and even today, years and many 'bots later, it remains a favorite.

I think it's great that you owned one as a kid -- it's surprisingly rare to meet people who actually played with these when they were growing up. And I had no idea it was in any movies.

I recommend the reproduction. As repros go, it's very accurate and runs great. It'll probably do a great job of triggering the ol' nostalgia gland.