And the Popples!
I’ve talked about Popples on a few occasions, from the 1987 addition to the toyline that took on a more boyish theme, to the time I had Popples Christmas pajamas. I’ve said it then, and I’ll say it again, I loved Popples! These days, they’re still cute, and I’m sure just as cuddly as they were in the 1980s.
I had three of these toys…
And Pretty Bit, albeit in a “Pocket Popples” size…
For some reason, I slept with that Pocket Popples version, even though it wasn’t nearly as cuddly as my other two Popples were.
Today’s commercial comes to us from the year 1985, and introduced the Popples line of toys, which didn’t actually see their official release until 1986. There’s two commercials in this set – they’re the same commercial, but specially plugs the Popples the girls are playing with, and the other mentions the entire line available upon their debut.
The commercials feature variation of “Pop Goes The Weasel,” except the lyrics say “Pop goes the Popples!” Kind of reminds me of the time “Perfection” tried a similar approach, without making the game look like the anxiety-inducing nightmare it was.
It is a commercial featuring happy girls transforming Popples, and suddenly turns into a dance party that involves Popples out of their pouches, little girls doing the whole “Sexy Secretary” thing (seriously, that was the first thing I thought when this happened)…
And a whole “Popples Gone Wild” theme.
Remember, I said it was to the tune of “Pop Goes The Weasel.” So it was G-rated.
Click play, and live the fun of a Popples Party!
The Popples original lineup was manufactured from 1986 until 1988 by Mattel, with nine characters in the lineup. There were additional characters added during that time – Sports Popples, Rock Star Popples, Babies, Pufflings, Pocket-sized (as I said, I had one of these), and Popples that turned into flowers, pillows, fruit, and costumes. There was a limited edition set in Europe of animal-themed Popples.
During that time frame, there was a live action “pilot” episode featuring the Popples, as well as an animated series produced by DiC (yes, DEEK) and aired for two seasons (44 episodes, 3 of which were unaired) between 1986 and 1987. There was also a 2015 Netflix series that did away with the original character names and setting out on a whole other course for the transforming sock-type dolls. Three seasons (26 episodes total) were produced for Netflix between 2015 and 2016.
After the original toyline’s discontinuation, there were three attempts to revive the franchise in 2001, 2007, and 2015. The first revival saw the introduction of new characters, Popples featuring celebrity names, and ancillary items featuring images of the original Popples. The 2007 version, that introduced four new characters, but also included ancillary items that depicted the original Popples. Of course, the 2015 version coincided with the Netflix series.
I actually just found out about 2015 series, like, right now, and based on the animation I just looked at…I’m good. I’ll stick with the version I know. It is better this way, trust me.
The Popples toyline was born of a time when the very existence of a toy meant cartoons, ancillary items (stationery, board games), commercials galore, and sugary breakfast cereal (of which this franchise did not take part in). It was a time of parent groups expressing concern over 30-minute “commercials” targeting the sensibilities of children, and a life before regulations cut down on such marketing, and focus more on educating while entertaining. What a time, my friends.
As for Popples, they’re obviously still floating around a (pretty) bit, but there will never be anything quite like the original run.
And to think, all of this started because of the concept of rolling up socks.
Who said toys don’t teach? Popples taught us how to roll up socks into pairs!
And how to do the Sexy Secretary look before the age of ten!
Seriously, she takes her glasses off, and her hair down, pops out her Popple, and she’s a wild woman!
Have a great Throwback Thursday.