The 1972 Kenner “Fun Catalog”: Cheap Toys for Gen X Boys & Girls

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (1)

In 1972, Kenner placed a multi-page catalog in the back of select comic books, advertising some of their products for kids.  This was back when Kenner was owned (along with Parker Brothers and Tonka) by General Mills, as their “Fun Division”… so, I don’t know if they really had a grasp for what really made 70s kids tick.

But beggars can’t be choosers, so boys and girls of the early 70s were happy to get any morsel of store-bought fun they were given.  Unlike today, where it seems everything under the sun is marketed for kids and scooped up by rabid consumers, back then, things were a bit sparse… and therefore even the cheapest, crummiest toy brought joy.  It sounds cliche, but is absolutely true- as evidenced by the fact that most Gen Xers old enough to remember ’72, will fondly recall at least one of these toys….

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (2)

Any boy who grew up in the 70s will remember the SSP (Super Sonic Power) racing cars.  Just rip the cord, and the “Hustlin’ Hoss” is hauling ass across your bedroom floor.

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (3)

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (4)

 

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (5)

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (6)

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (7)

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (8)

I love how the Gabbigale doll is put to various nefarious purposes: to scare the hell out of the family dog, alarm the butcher, and tell on her brother for not cutting the grass.  Gabbigale is a little b***h.

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (9)

“The greatest girl’s toy since dolls”….Kenner would never get away with being so gender oriented with their advertising today.

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (10)

“Aha! Caught you kids with Snoopy again!” I don’t get it.  Is mom just playing mind games with them, or did she really lose her mind over this

? Either way, this is is child abuse.

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (11)

“Yes, kids. Some day you’ll see cassette shows at home.”

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (12)

For one hopeful moment, she believed her idiot grandson had a talent.

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (13)

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (14)

1972 Kenner Fun Catalog (15)