| Tom Corbett | Space
Patrol | Solar Guard HQ | Site
Review by Cadet Ed
BLAST OFF is an excellent resource for the science fiction space toys of a by gone day, written by fans, for fans. These toys are not collected because they are the spawn of a big budget Hollywood movie, but are collected because they are remembered from the active play found in the imagination of a child's mind.
BLAST OFF contains many professional quality pictures and excellent layouts of rare space toys that many of us have only heard about but not seen. BLAST OFF is not a price guide or a complete encyclopedia of the genera. It IS a personal remembrance of fans that have loved, remembered and kept many of these toys alive in their minds and collections.
BLAST OFF is assembled in an interesting and informative format from Harlson Ellison preface, to the dawn of early science fiction television. BLAST OFF even includes a chapter on the invasion of the toy robots of Japan. It is all here, the early space hero prototypes of Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, old friends of the small screen, Tom Corbett Space Cadet, Space Patrol, Rocky Jones and generic spaceman found in toy and department stores. Chapters about the early manufacturers of space toys are included with information about the major players of the era; Archer plastics, Marx Playsets and the plastic Pyro Spaceships. All laid out in an exciting format that had me turning back and forth between chapters reading bits of information in each one. I tried not to read it "all up at one time", but was unable to stop myself from burrowing into the book finding new information about old friends of my childhood. It brought back many good memories along with information and research that should be saved and shared with future generations.
However, the core of BLAST OFF is the interviews with collectors and their memories of why they collect the space toys of their childhood. It is not how much the toys are worth, it is the memories that are attached to them that make the toys a valuable treasure to remember, keep and pass on to another generation. Why we remember and kept these playthings of our childhood is as interesting as the fantastic photos and ads that are generously spread throughout the book.
I hope BLAST OFF stays in print for a long time with additional volumes of other rare and wonderful space toys. It is a book that needed to be written and it has been written well. Future generations need to know about the history of toys that sparked the children's imagination from the 30's to the 50's.
Thank you Mark, Steve and
Mike for nailing down a piece of our history that needs to be remembered.
This book could not have been made possible without the support and work of
fans like you.