Fire & Water #192 – Aquaman Merch

Break out the tub toys! Rob welcomes back fellow Network All-Star Chris Franklin talk about some of their favorite (and not so favorite) Aquaman merchandise from the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, and 2000s!

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17 responses to “Fire & Water #192 – Aquaman Merch

  1. Would hope that alternate earth that had Charlton Comics publishing a Super Friends title is the same one that had DC license its characters to Marvel in the 80s.

    And who doesn’t keep Rob Kelly photos? Shag and I swap and trade!

    1. I believe the TwoMorrows magazine you are looking for is Comic Book Artist #12. In the Joe Staton interview, Mr Staton mentioned how George Wildman, managing editor at Charlton, told him that “Charlton came within half a day of having rights to Super Friends, because DC didn’t notice they should be picking it up, and Charlton almost got it with a package of other things. It should have happened!”

      My understanding is that Hanna Barbera was not happy with Charlton’s quality, and so let the license expire in 1977 and then gave it to Marvel…

  2. That checkers game looks amazing! I would have played with that forever if I had that growing up.

    And thanks for pointing out the Black Canary piece. For the record, it’s a recolored image from WORLD’S FINEST #244 drawn by Mike Nasser with Terry Austin, although it looks much “softer” and I can definitely see a Cardy-esque quality to it.

  3. FYI: In Cleveland, OH we have a GREAT store that’s filled with all those old toys, games, action figures, etc from your childhood. It’s called Big Fun and here is the website:

    Anyone looking for that special item your mom threw out 25 years ago should check them out ASAP!

  4. Fun show. I’m not a toy collector – I’ve never even seen a picture of a Super Powers toy – but I love you two guys talking, especially when anecdotes arrive.

    It’s funny, here Chris asked why Seventies merchandise didn’t just always use the name Super Friends – I always wondered why the Super Friends cartoon wasn’t just called Justice League of America… Super Friends sounded so sappy, so unbelievably babyish.

    Wasn’t Craig Hamilton’s Aquaman based on Buster Crabbe, or did I imagine that?

    Why did Aquaman make Chris cry in 1984 – was it that dissolving the JLA business? Hey, that was his privilege as a founder, i.e. he could make up rules that were previously unheard of.

    1. I still have my old Super Powers figures and cherish them. I recall how happy I was to get that special Clark Kent figure that you had to send away for. I was getting “too old” for toys by the mid 1980s but I couldn’t resist.

      1. I remember the sticker for Clark Kent said “wait 8 to 14 weeks for delivery” or something like that. It was 14 weeks to THE DAY!!! I was like Ralphie waiting for his Little Orphan Annie decoder pin!!! The line was probably cancelled by the time I got him! But he was worth it anyway.

        By the way, the Retroblasting videos are a lot of fun!


    2. Yes, Martin, the JLA bylaws printed in The Amazing World of DC Comics #14 explicitly state that “The Justice League organization may be disbanded by unanimous vote of all active members”… Apparently this bylaw was ammended sometime during the following 8 years…

        1. No, that’s Ryan. Ryan is going to do that.

          But yes, you figured right Martin. I literally cried when I read JLA Annual #2. My Mom brought it home to me, and a half hour later I was teary eyed. When she asked me what was wrong I told her “Aquaman broke up the Justice League!”. She replied “Oh honey, I’m sure they’ll be back together next month.”

          I’m still waiting!


  5. Pre-90’s DC character toy talk always fills me with the feeling of sadness of oh, how I missed out. Thanks for letting me feel a part of it.

  6. I almost didn’t listen to this, as I figured it would just be Shag slagging off Aquaman toys, but I’m glad I was wrong! I loved hearing the stories about the pieces and the personal anecdotes, too! I clicked on the links to look at the items, and was duly impressed by them AND the Aquaman Shrine! Now, I had known of it, but did not ever pay it much mind, as my interest in Aquaman diminished after Don Newton was no longer drawing his book. But these toys fascinated me, as well as the links to the interviews Rob has done with Aquaman writers and artists. Like I needed to find more time-wasters on the internet! I did a quick perusal of the other items pictured there, but did not see the Viewmaster set with the DC heroes. Rob, have you seen it? It is the only super-hero toy I ever got as a kid. If you don’t have it, I can send a picture.

  7. This was a fun episode, guys! Last year I FINALLY pulled the trigger on the Aquaman / Aqualad dual set from DC Direct. I wanted to buy it so badly when it first came out, but I really couldn’t afford it. Every so often I would track it down on eBay and just sit with it in my shopping cart. During a convention I was working, I discovered the set in a vendor’s collection. Fortunately, I had a good show that day and I treated myself—not only with this set, but to DC Direct’s Super Friends Aquaman-Black Manta combo! It was a glorious day.

    Also… that ToyBiz Aquaman is a piece of crap. Even as a kid I was massively underwhelmed. It’s a close cousin to the Target Exclusive Aquaman that was packaged with the team a couple years ago. What an atrocious sculpt. The best thing about that toy was that it taught me the important truth that I don’t need to own EVERY Aquaman figure. Just the good ones.

    I could see you doing another episode just based on modern Aquaman figures. Listing them, rating them. Favorites, least favorites. Just action figures. I’d be down for that!

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