One thing I’ve rediscovered when going through old issues of Wizard is just how successful the X-Men toyline was in the 1990s. I’m assuming it was a massive success, because how else could you justify virtually any character to ever cameo in an X-book receiving his or her own action figure? Kids had to be desperate for more X-toys if they were buying Slayback figures, right?
The X-Men toy commercials, though -- who even remembers those? Looking on Youtube, every Masters of the Universe, Super Powers, G. I. Joe, and Transformers toy commercial seems to have been lovingly archived.
X-Men toy commercials are there, but I don’t sense any enthusiasm around them. Is this true for all toy commercials of this era; is it just accepted as fact that ‘80s toy commercials are superior to ones made in the ‘90s? Did the FCC impose some strict regulation on toy commercials that just made them dull after the ‘80s? Or were toy companies no longer willing to pay for higher-quality animation to use in these spots? Also, given the money flying around the industry at this time, I now wonder why Marvel didn’t produce high-quality animated ads for X-Men comics, like the ones Hasbro bankrolled years earlier for G. I. Joe.
Two commercials I do distinctly remember from the early ‘90s:
The commercial for the X-Men Sega Genesis game.
And the commercial for the second edition of the Marvel Universe trading cards.
(This is where I would've posted the commercial, but I can't find it online. Anyone up for finding this one? It aired during the summer of 1991 fairly regularly.)
Which is another memory triggered by old Wizards -- trading cards were a phenomenon during this era. Yet, no one produced any first-rate animated ads for Marvel or DC cards, either. The ‘80s really were the Golden Age of selling kids stuff, weren’t they?