Fad toys through the ages

Fad Toys Through The Ages
Fad Toys Through The Ages

We all have that one toy that we always wanted for Christmas but never got.

Over the years, the American toy market has been captivated by the once-a-year holiday bonanza that sends the sales of a single toy skyrocketing.

Hot Wheels, Cabbage Patch Kids, Razor Scooters-all toys that have become part of our holiday memories and now consumer history.

In the spirit of holiday nostalgia, we've combed through Christmases past for a look at the top-toy fads of the past few decades.

We'll start with a simpler time. In a decade that brought us "A Charlie Brown Christmas", the 60s introduced toys that we still see today: Etch-a-sketch, G.I.Joe, Hot Wheels, and the Easy Bake Oven are just some of the famous toys introduced.

Hasbro released G.I. Joe, and coined the term 'action figure' so that boys didn't feel like they were playing with a doll, and its appeal as "America's movable fighting man" has made it an icon among toys.

When Star Wars hit Hollywood in 1977, no one imagined it would change the toy industry so dramatically.

Shortly after the release of the first film, the toy world found itself in the throes of Stars Wars madness, a craze still going on today. And if you've got some of those old Star Wars action figures lying around they may be worth a lot of money. Darth Vader's "Telescoping Lightsaber" from 1978 has an average market value of $6,000.

Games were also popular in the 70's. The Simon memory game, Uno, and the most popular puzzle in history that's as confusing as it is colorful - the Rubiks Cube. Thirty years later it's still ridiculously hard to figure out.

The 80s was a huge decade for some of our favorite toys. Cabbage Patch Kids, Koosh balls, Care Bears, and My Little Ponies all showed up under Christmas trees these years.

Many kids wanted to trade in their Uno decks from the 70's and upgrade to video games. Pac Man hit the scene in 1980, and Nintendo introduced its console to America in 1985, and later the Gameboy in 1989.

The 90s were jam packed with some awesomely questionable fads, and the world of toys was no different.

Beanie Babies, Tickle Me Elmo, Pokemon, Super Soaker, Tamagotchi's, and Pogs, were all part of the insanity that was the toy industry in the 90s. But we cannot forget -- even if we tried -- the demonic interactive stuffed animal that giggled and cooed in an indecipherable language, our good friend the Furby.

Before the NSA was reading your text messages, the agency was investigating the doe-eyed puffball. Its ability to repeat up to 200 words made it a security threat and was banned from the headquarters in Maryland in 1999.

Y2K brought about enhanced technology, and some awesome outdoor fun. Sony PlayStation 2, and the Nintendo Wii, were both introduced. Most kids and teens probably got a razor scooter for Christmas sometime in the early 2000's. And if you weren't checking your MySpace in this decade you were probably listening to your new iPod or rolling around on some Heely's.

We can only wait with childlike anticipation of what crazy new toys the future will bring.

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