1978 toy catalog with oddball action figure assortment

1978 toy catalog with oddball action figure assortment

This past week I picked up a wishbook from a regional chain of stores called “Monroe,” mainly because of its cover and the most 1970s people ever (see below).


the most 70s catalog cover ever

I mean, the only thing missing from this is macrame and a fresh pot of Chicory brewing.

However, the more curious thing is the selection of toys for a 1978 catalog, a weird mix of stuff from 1977 and years earlier and a couple of glaring omissions.


1978 action figure catalog

The top toys here would be Pulsar and Electroman, and Zogg; both toys debuted in 1977 and were actively available so it’s no surprise to see them. The lack of Pulsar’s nemesis Hypnos is a bit strange but not the strangest thing in this toy catalog.

Six Million Dollar Man was kind of a fixture in toy catalogs even in it’s last year so that’s not surprising, Shindana’s Dr. J was also fairly current but Mego’s Muhammad Ali toys came out in 1976 and were discontinued by 1978.


Mattel Welcome Back Kotter

Mego Micronauts were a hot toy in 1978, so it’s no surprise to see Biotron, although it’s weird he’s all alone. The Mattel Welcome Back Kotter series is another line that was discontinued by then. This deluxe classroom was likely a way of closing out unsold figures.

Mego Fonzie

Both Evel Knievel and Fonzie were available but were in the last years of production. Most of these toys made their debut 2-4 years previously.

Stretch Armstrong and Stretch Monster

Finally, we have Stretch Monster (1977) and Stretch Armstrong (1976) which were staples of this kind of Service Merchandise/Consumers Distributing type store.

What’s interesting about this catalogue is what isn’t there, no Kenner Star Wars, No Mego Superheroes, No Mego KISS, Kenner Bionic Woman. It’s weird.

If you had a Monroe store in your area, please let me know what kind of store it was. Was it a closeout store? I need closure on this weird toy catalog.


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weird toy catalog


About The Author

AKA Brian Heiler author of "Rack Toys: Cheap, Crazed Playthings" and co-editor of "Toy-Ventures Magazine". Co-Host of the "Pod Stallions" podcast. Host of the Brick Mantooth Youtube channel, painter, designer, writer, mental health advocate, toy collector, Mego, and Mego Knock-Off enthusiast. I have large feet, ADHD and I live in Canada. Talk toys, not others.

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