Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Ride With Fred, Bathe With Huck

You almost have to wonder why Pebbles had to be created. Hanna-Barbera didn’t need to make money off an oh-so-cute kid doll from Ideal Toys. It was already marketing the crap out of the Flintstones before Pebbles was around.

Roving correspondent Billie Towzer has found pictures of yet more H-B merchandise on the internet which is generously being passed on to you.

If you play a word-association game with anyone who watched Saturday morning TV, say about 1964, and said “Marx” (as in ‘toys’, not ‘brothers’), the response will likely be “Rock ‘Em, Sock ‘Em Robots.” They must have been advertised on every cartoon show at one time. Nevertheless, Louis Marx and Co. made heaps of other things for kids, including Flintstones items licensed from Hanna-Barbera. Among them were wind-up toy tricycles, made in Japan in 1962, featuring Fred, Wilma and Dino.

Kids love trains, or they used to. Marx came through for them with a couple of train sets. The Flintstones Bedrock Express was kind of cheesy. It had Fred and Barney on a handcar which went around a moulded plastic track surrounding a few houses, streets and three palm trees. This is from about 1962 as well.

How many Perry Gunite toys are there? At least one. It’s a wind-up train, by Marx. Bonus points for an on-model drawing of Baby Puss (by Dick Bickenbach?). The description I found on the internet says:

...train depicts all the various Flintstone characters looking out of the windows. Fred and Wilma ride in the locomotive. On both sides of the train is written in white letters "Bedrock Express." On each of the three cars, as if carved in stone, is text "The Flintstone/Choo Choo/Train." Other characters appear in car windows w/names above. Included are Barney/Betty/Rodney/Rocky/Baby Puss/Dino/Perry Gunite/Stanley Stonedome/Mrs. Dweller. On the back of the train is a .75 x 7/8" bw image w/four main characters w/names below. .25 x 3/8" cast metal bell on locomotive top.

Before we leave the Flintstones, check out a series of buttons. 1964 or so, maybe?

Whitman had a series of Huckleberry Hound colouring books in the early ‘60s. Here’s the cover from one of them, copyright December 23, 1960. The drawings are by John Carey and Bill Edwards. Yes, the same John Carey who animated at Warner Bros. in the ‘30s and ‘40s.

I’ve never heard of Milvern but it seems they were in the bath business. They licensed bath soap with the cast of ‘The Huckleberry Hound Show’ on the box. The artwork’s fun. I love the pissed-off Jinks.

There was a time long before computer games when children could amuse themselves with a simple deck of cards. There was a gin rummy set that my parents bought me which featured Yowp and the always fun Fibber Fox. But this is a different set altogether. I can’t remember if I had these but I’m pretty sure I saw them when they came out. If you look closely, you’ll see they’ve been cut from stiff paper. Perhaps they were on the back of a Kellogg’s Corn Flakes box.

My thanks again to Billie. We’ll have more in a future post.


  1. Another great post - so good to see these pictures. Do you have a photo of the Marx Yogi Bear on a yellow friction-drive scooter? I'd love to see that again.

  2. I never thought of this before but the deal with Ideal Toys to market a Pebbles doll was probably in conjunction with their agreement for Magilla Gorilla and Peter Potamus as well. I'm so smart.

  3. Yowp, the art from the Barney and Betty & Wilma buttons are from the '70's Charlton Comics run, so they might be from around that era. (someone really liked employing the "Annie" blank-eyed look)

  4. My youngest brother had the Flintstone tricycles. Worn out and thrown away decades ago. As kid's, we lived for the " here and now ". If we knew then what we know now, right? My best friend Randy, had his trusty " Rock Em, Sock Em Robots ", also long gone. " He knocked my BLOCK OFF!!"