Archive for the 'Ray Harryhausen' Category

Mattel’s Clash of the Titans Toys: Kraken Sea Monster (1980)

COTT Kraken 1980

COTT Kraken 1980-2

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Crappen would have been a more appropriate name, because the thing actually looks like a turd. If you snapped off the arms and dropped it in a toilet, nobody would know the difference. In fact, the next time you’re hunkered down to do some business, feel free to cry out: Release the Crappen! (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

The Clash of the Titans action figures look much better in comparison, though the whole line is forgettable, even compared to other second-tier efforts of the time like Mego’s The Black Hole and Star Trek figures (both from 1979).

You can see all the Clash toys at Plaid Stallions. The line tanked for the same reason all of the other lines tanked: Kenner’s Star Wars franchise was a ravager of allowances, the absolute ruler of wishlists, and it wouldn’t face any serious competition until G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero and Masters of the Universe crashed the party in 1982.

I’ll be posting the carded figures, and Pegasus, as soon as I gather them all. Mattel did get the packaging right. I love the lurid reds and purples—reminds me of Harryhausen’s breathtaking Medusa scene. The art isn’t bad either.

Side note: Clash of the Titans premiered on June 12, 1981, the same day as Raiders of the Lost Ark. What a summer.

UPDATE (6/20/14): I’m posting exhaustive images of the box below. Notice the price tag in the first photo: $23.49. For comparison, Kenner’s Empire Strikes Back Millennium Falcon retailed for $30 or just under.

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CGI Is and Always Will Be a Cold Dead Spectacle Thanks to the Real Life Wizardry of One Man: Ray Harryhausen

Trying to imagine what my childhood would have been without him is like trying to imagine Western civilization without the ancient Greeks.


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