Random Retro Issue 3
Computer Warriors, Cassette Tapes, Marvel Comic Trading Cards
In this issue:
Computer Warriors Pepsi Can, Back to the Future Soundtrack on Cassette Tape, and Marvel Universe Trading Cards (Series 1)
Computer Warriors Pepsi Can
Computers Warriors is probably my favorite line of toys ever made. These little known relics are just awesome and this Pepsi Can is one of the coolest out of all these fun toys.
Made by Mattel in 1989 and 1990, Computer Warriors was a very short lived toy line. It was sort of like a mix of Tron and MASK with small figures that came with playsets or vehicles hidden in everyday household items.
The back of the box shows illustrations of most of the rest of the line but I won't get into those today, the focus here is on this awesome Pepsi Can which opens up to reveal a really cool flying vehicle called a hoverjet.
The vehicle was nothing special, but it did it's job and the focus was really on the fact that this was a can of Pepsi that opened up to let this guy appear from his hiding place and bomb some evil computer viruses.
You can clearly look at the can and realize that something isn't exactly right but as a 9 year old kid when this came out it looked right on to me and it's still just as fun today as it was twenty years ago. The design on the Pepsi can is dated these days but the size hasn't changed and this thing is exactly the same size as any regular can of Pepsi (or a can of the often hated but not quite retro enough yet Pepsi Blue, which I loved).
This toyline deserves so much more attention than it gets and I plan to include more of it, including the hugely awesome computer playset, in later issues of Random Retro.
Back to the Future Soundtrack Cassette Tape
Back to the Future, released in 1985, was a very musical movie. The film used music as one tool to help portray the decades in which it was set. The 1980's had current releases, headlined of course by Huey Lewis and the News who wrote and performed two songs for the movie. The other decade featured in the film was represented on the soundtrack as well and the music from that time is just as good with Earth Angel and Johnny B. Goode rounding out the must have songs on the soundtrack.
The most common format of the time this soundtrack was released was the now endangered cassette tape. These were nothing like the CD's that are the standard of today.
Though Cassette Tapes have long ago been taken out of most major retail stores they are still not impossible to find. The may not have the quality of a CD or be as easy to pick out a certain song but the Cassette Tape needs to be remembered for all the years it helped bring great music anywhere you went.
Marvel Universe Trading Cards (Series 1)
In 1990 Marvel Comics ventured into trading cards. I first discovered these at a tiny grocery store a few blocks from my house and I was instantly hooked. These were like baseball cards without the boredom.
The series contained standard hero cards and included several of the heroes in different costumes or personas including Wolverine in his Patch alias as well as his costumes in brown and in yellow.
Villain cards were also included in the assortment and featured some great bad guys in original art showcasing the evildoers of the Marvel Universe at the time.
Spider-Man Presents was a section that was unique to this series. It contained twelve cards of Spider-Man doing a short interview with different characters. The cards may have been slightly corny but were humorous nonetheless.
The 1990 series of Marvel cards also featured characters considered Rookies at the time. The Rookie cards gave this series the feel of a regular sports card but with much more added excitement.
The only cards in the set to not contain original art were the MVC or Most Valuable Comics cards. These were cards showcasing covers of some of the most popular comics through Marvel's history. The backs of these even showed what the comic was worth in 1990 as well as how much its original cover price had been.
These were some great cards and introduced me to tons of awesome Marvel characters I had little previous knowledge of. These cards also led the way for future cards from both Marvel and DC to make it into my hands.
Random Retro Advertisement
Just for an extra kick of fun there will now be a random ad from a retro comic or magazine included in every issue of Random Retro.
This is a 1986 ad for Tonka's forgotten toyline, Legions of Power. Another cool forgotten gem from the past. The toys focused on vehicles that you built from various parts. The parts were interchangeable between the different sets giving you tons of potential vehicle choices.
The ad contains pictures of one parts set built into several different machines.