In the late 1980s, Topps released monochromatic mini figures in blind bags with along with packs of cheap, chalky candy. Nope, I'm not talking about Garbage Pail Kids Cheap Toys. I'm talking about the very obscure and seldom discussed Dino Toys with Candy Eggs!
|Each pack came with a figure, checklist & candy eggs|
Even though the Dino Toys are not nearly as popular as Topps' GPK toys that used the same "blind bag with candy" concept, they are really awesome in that old school, cheap toy sort of way. In fact, they're some of my favorite dinosaur mono minis.
Packs were sold individually and came 24 to a box, which you'd most likely find on the counter in candy, toy and hobby shops. The box features colorful artwork of a T-Rex chompin' on some candy eggs while a pterosaur tries to get in on the action. Each individual pack inside had the same artwork as the box and contained one random dino figure, a checklist showing all of the different dinosaurs available, and a pack of the eggs. From the looks of the candy, I'd imagine it tastes something like how Topps' Garbage Can-dy did, but I must admit I'm not brave enough to sample gobs of colored sugar that are coming up on 30 years old.
Now for the most important part -- the toys! There are 12 different dinosaur sculpts that could be collected. The figures range from about 1 to 2 inches tall and are made of a hard plastic reminiscent of retro plastic dinosaurs from the 1960s.
Each dinosaur came in three different colors: brown, gray and mint green. The green is by far my favorite, and the brown looks good too -- it's a nice chocolate brown that makes the details pop. The gray is a bit dull, but it does look nice when put together with the other two colors.
Here's a photo of the entire set with the checklist:
And here are some closer individual shots:
|Brontosaurus, Anklyosaurus, Dimetrodon|
|Tyrannosaurus, Trachodon, Pterandodon|
|Plesiosaurus, Iguanodon, Stegosaurus|
|Allosaurus, Parasaurolophus, Triceratops|
It's hard to pick favorites, but the Plesiosaurus is probably my top choice. I also love the sculpts that have a lot of really cool bumpy texture like the Triceratops, Stegosaurus, Anklyosaurus, and Dimetrodon. Topps did a great job of capturing the fun vibe of retro dinosaur toys from the likes of Marx, Tim Mee and MPC while adding a bit more fierceness to the sculpts.
I don't think these Topps Dinos have ever got their due among mini figure and dinosaur collectors (possibly because most don't know about them). I got only one of them when I was a kid (the green Trachodon) and don't even remember getting it, but looking at them brings such a feeling of nostalgia for the days when this kind of thing was common and could be had for under a buck.
What about you? Do you remember Topps Dino Toys with Candy Eggs from back in the day? What do you think of them?