Innovating Through Artistry

Posts Tagged ‘The Hasbro Toy Company’

Weeble Wobbles Fall But They Don’t Fall Down

In Author: Lisa Canning, Risk, The Idea on January 1, 2009 at 1:34 am

Do your creative entrepreneurial legs feel a little bit wobbly? If they do, just like mine, then join me and let’s wobble together. Since part of the journey on every entrepreneurial adventure includes some moments of wobbliness, thinking of yourself like a Weeble Wobble is rather appropriate, I think. Which weeble would you like to be? Would you like to pick your weeble persona out with me?

Weeble Wobbles, frankly, have been quite a successful creative adventure for the Hasbro Toy Company. The genesis of these little toys that wobbled but never fell down came from The Punching Clown on The Romper Room Show back in the late 50’s. Weebles are nothing more than tiny plastic versions of “bop-bags”, exact miniatures of the punching clown on the show.

When The Hasbro Toy Company aquired Romper Room Inc. in 1969 the Weebles were just about to hit the toy market and make toy history.

Shaped like eggs with a weight at the fat, or bottom end, they wobble when pushed, but never fall completely over, hence the name and the slogan “weebles wobble, but they don’t fall down”. Some Weebles were designed to look like humans.

The original family was a dark-haired father with a red shirt or blue v-neck sweater, a blond-haired mother in a green dress, a boy in blue jeans and a white “W” tee, and a red haired girl with green pants. Go to Wobbleland and check each one of them out. There was a brown family dog, too. A baby was soon added to this line-up; she was pink and held a blue balloon.

The treehouse and cottage followed in 1973. From a single punching clown that caught on, the concept transfered beautifully into the Weeble Wobbles toy line.

Soon the Weebles family had its own vehicles, a boat (the S.S. Lilleputt), a playground (swings, slide, and merry-go-round), pop-up camper/trailer, train, marina, airport and plane (a plane was also included in the Weekender set), haunted house (with scared girl, boy, witch and glow-in-the-dark ghost), blimp (with pilot), circus with Wobbles the clown, Gina the trapeeze artist, and Bert the Ringmaster).

From literature, the Weebles sprang up in a Treasure Island set (complete with pirate ship and four pirate Weebles) and another version of the treehouse for Tarzan and his ape friend.

The Wild West had its own Weeble line — The Weeble West Ranch, a Western Train, the Wagonmaster, and Indian Wigwam sets.

Tumblin’ Weebles came in 1978 as a variation on the standard Weeble. The weight was free to fall into the larger head so that, on an incline, the little guys sommersaulted down.

The last of the Weebles were the Sesame Street crew, in the early 80s. These include: Big Bird and plane, Ernie and Helicopter, Cookie Monster and Sailboat, Bert and convertible, and Oscar, plus a Sesame Street playground.

So many weebles to choose from! It’s amazing what happens when your “lucky” creativity just magically grows? ( no hard work required, right?)

Have you found your favorite weeble you’ll be with me in 2009?

Here’s mine: image011