Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Childhood Confessions...

The Others Part 2
now THESE bears I could collect!
I Wanna Be A….
OK yes I admit I liked Care Bears….I actually still do….honest.  I’m pretty secure in my manhood to admit to the entire World Wide Web that I like Care Bears….so there.

I first got introduced to Care Bears through this commercial I saw that was snuck in a cartoon bootleg Betamax I rented (actually, the bootlegger probably was just too lazy to press pause).  I think at that time I was really into Ewoks (more on that later) and so these bears reminded me of them….except they were coloured and had symbols on their tummies.  And I KNOW this commercial was obviously directed towards girls but what can I say?  I was a sucker for small posable bears and bear-like creatures I guess?

unfortunately a little too big to
be hanging around with Ewoks...
I’m not exactly sure how I amassed my collection of Care Bear action figures cuz I really don’t remember actually seeing them in stores or getting them from my parents…I don’t know, maybe I convinced one of my friends to “share” his bears with me, but I did manage to snag a number of them.

And it wasn’t just the figures…I TOTALLY bought into the whole Care Bear scene…I was into the cartoons and movies (my appreciation for them increased tenfold when I found out they could shoot stuff out of their bellies)…I even remember buying a cassette tape with each bear singing a song about themselves.  Even to this day I can name you the original 10 bears, the 3 other bears that followed after them and all the Care Bear Cousins off the top of my head.  (I later learned that my extensive knowledge of the Bears turned out to be an effective way to impress girls!) Yup I was THAT into them…..oh I did draw the line though on stuffed toys…now THOSE were for girls!

Funny story I remember to this day.  My favourite Care Bear was and still is Good Luck Bear. So naturally I had his action figure.  Anyway I also had this other obscure action figure from a line called “Lords of Light”.  Their gimmick was that they had hollow translucent bodies which you could make glow by putting in one of those green liquid glow sticks.  Remember those?  They were little (or big) plastic rods with green liquid inside of them and when you bent them they would glow.  So anyway I thought I could achieve the same effect with my Good Luck Bear, so I popped off his head, stuffed a glow stick inside and “Tada!” I had a glowing Good Luck Bear!  Of course…that wasn’t enough for me and I decided to take things a step further.  I reasoned…if I could break open that plastic tube and slather all that green liquid onto Good Luck’s tummy, I could make him glow…permanently!  Well it SOUNDED like a reasonable plan right?  So with a lot of great effort, I finally managed to crack open the tube and I began to pour the green liquid onto Good Luck’s belly…and I rubbed and rubbed it on until…..His damn clover symbol STARTED TO DISAPPEAR!!!!!! Before I knew what was happening….it was completely GONE!  I was devastated! And from that day on, sadly, Good Luck was just half the Bear he used to be….

Now You see it...now you don't :(
Eventually as we grew older, my friends started making fun of me for liking Care Bears and so I was forced to shove my love (yeah I said love) for these Bears into the dark deep recesses of my childhood subconscious never to resurface until the day it was safe to admit that YES, I love Care Bears.


La La La La La La
hmmm..something doesn't seem quite right here....
Before the Smurfs' Village game, we had THESE guys. Sure they wouldn't grow you virtual smurfberries, but you could hold them in your hands and actually physically play with them which will always make them infinitely cooler.  Les Schtroumpfs, or The Smurfs, they were small and blue and came from a magical forest (or any toy store that would sell them).....other than that, there really isn’t much to say about these guys.  They weren’t really action figures per-se.  But there were literally hundreds of them, all unique.  They had a cartoon show that I watched every Saturday morning, comic books, board game and even a cereal.  This was the magic combination of winning over a young collector’s heart.  Plus, although they were basically little statues, that fact that they WERE little meant I could carry a bunch of them wherever I went and they were cheap enough to convince my parents to get me a Smurf here and there whenever I saw them in some random store. 

Since there isn’t really much to say about me collecting Smurfs, I’ll just put down some random stuff about me and my Smurfs:

not QUITE a super smurf...
I got my first Smurf during a trip to the US.  I picked out a masked and caped Smurf out of a sea of blue thinking he was Super Smurf or something (back then we didn't have any of that blind bag nonsense....you could get whichever Smurf you wanted without having to but possibly dozens before it).  Turned out he was just a Spy Smurf.

I could stare at this poster for HOURS....

Try singing (or humming) the Smurfs theme song back to back with the opening riff of Centerfold by the J. Geils Band.  While you’re at it…try switching between the themes of Star Wars & Superman.

Probably my favourite and most memorable Smurf episode was the one about Purple Smurfs.  There was this purple fly that bit a random Smurf and turned him purple and insane he would hop around shouting “GNAP!” and bite other Smurfs on their tails and infect them as well until the whole village turned purple.  CLASSIC!  I think I got inspired by that cartoon and went off to bite my brother as well in the hopes he'd turn purple too....

to be continued...