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A daily look back at the toys, games, and objects that captured our attention as children and continue to fascinate us today.
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The Friday Five

Look into the minds of movers and shakers in the play industry – five questions, one fascinating person.

The Friday Five: Arlene Biran

As its iconic toy Etch A Sketch celebrates 60 years of encouraging analog play, Spin Master’s Arlene Biran discloses why the company acquired the brand and what consumers can look forward to seeing (and buying!) in honour of the milestone anniversary.

The Friday Five: Ella Newman

Spin Master recently announced their Meccano Co-Lab STEM programme for schools in the United Kingdom. they talked to Toy Tales about the programme and how Meccano serves as a conduit for both learning and fun.

The Friday Five: David Glanzer

David Glanzer has the enviable job of promoting one of San Diego’s most anticipated upcoming attractions, Comic-Con Museum. Here, Glanzer explains the impetus behind the attraction and what the recent appointment of Chief Curator, Gary Sassaman, means for the Museum.

The Friday Five: Cynthia Jones

Cynthia Jones oversees operations at The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation in Dearborn, Michigan. Here, she shares details about the Museum’s surprising upcoming exhibit, Marvel: Universe of Super Heroes.

The Friday Five: Nathan Vernon Madison

Once considered a lowbrow form of entertainment, pulp magazines went on to influence major contemporary filmmakers. The Pulp Magazine Project’s editorial board member, Nathan Vernon Madison, talked to Toy Tales about the genre’s journey from guilty pleasure to respected art form.

The Friday Five: Matt Proulx

Matt Proulx oversees location-based entertainment at Hasbro. Here, Proulx shares Hasbro’s plans for a theme park at West Edmonton Mall in Alberta, Canada, as announced in December 2019.

The Friday Five: Jill Nash Malool

Jill Nash Malool is the Museum Director at Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta, Georgia, a nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping the history and art of puppetry alive and well in North America. In this edition of The Friday Five, Malool expands on the role of the Center and shares why it’s important to preserve the history of puppetry arts.

The Friday Five: Kelly McClain

Kelly McClain serves as consignment manager of Hake’s Auctions. Here, McClain tells Toy Tales how Hake’s came to auction the Boba Fett J-slot rocket-firing prototype and explains why the demand for pop culture collectibles has changed over time.

The Friday Five: Katie Edwards

A new exhibit called Toy Boom! at the North Carolina Museum of History showcases toys of the 1950s and ’60s. Here, curator Katie Edwards talks about the role of the museum in preserving the cultural heritage of North Carolina and how toys fit into that mandate.

The Friday Five: G. Wayne Miller

Writer G. Wayne Miller captured the dynamics of the toy industry and its relationship with Hollywood in his 1998 bestselling book Toy Wars. In his new book, Kid Number One: Alan Hassenfeld and Hasbro, Miller revisits Hasbro to uncover the unlikely rise of the Hassenfeld Brothers – the eponymous founders of Hasbro – and shines the light on one of the company’s most fabled leaders.

The Friday Five: Jeff Imel

BMC Toys is quickly becoming a household name since announcing a new line of female toy soldiers. Jeff Imel, company president, talks about the genesis of the idea and the challenges involved in creating a line from scratch.

The Friday Five: Robin Gerber

While Barbie debuted in 1959, the doll’s impact on popular culture is still unfolding to this day. Author Robin Gerber has dedicated significant time researching and writing about the toy doll. With her second Barbie-focused book, Barbie Forever: Her Inspiration, History, and Legacy, approaching its release date, she talked to Toy Tales about Barbie’s notable legacy.

The Friday Five: Bill Paxton

Blacked-out windows, video surveillance, and elaborate disguises; toy-industry legend Marvin Glass was an eccentric and highly-private man. Author Bill Paxton uncovers the myths and realities about Glass and his career in his new book A World Without Reality: Inside Marvin Glass’s Toy Vault.

The Friday Five: John Lind and Robert Pistella

The Society of Illustrators in New York City showcases the history of Batman art and illustrations in a series of exhibits on until October 12, 2019. Co-curators John Lind and Robert Pistella explain the mandate of the Society and share what surprised them the most as they put together the exhibits highlighting the crime-fighting superhero.