Skip to Main Navigation Skip to Content
A daily look back at the toys, games, and objects that captured our attention as children and continue to fascinate us today.

The Friday Five

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

The Friday Five: Michelle Ann Abate

In Michelle Ann Abate’s latest book, Funny Girls: Guffaws, Guts, and Gender in Classic American Comics, she revisits comic book and strip titles from the early 20th century featuring young female protagonists. Abate talks with Toy Tales about the origins of these characters and why they are often overlooked in academia.

The Friday Five: Kay Clopton

The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum recently acquired the Dan DeCarlo Collection, a group of works from the late Archie cartoonist. Kay Clopton, Mary P. Key Resident at University Libraries Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, describes the collection and explains DeCarlo’s contribution to Archie.

The Friday Five: Wade Terwilliger

Urban Culture Auctions is pioneering a new style of auction. Wade Terwilliger, the company’s president, talks about the changing landscape of auctions and the memorable pieces that have come across his desk.

The Friday Five: Barbara and Joe Freeman

Tin Toy Works is a specialty toy- and model-train-preservation business based in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Owners, Barbara and Joe Freemen, talk about their path to making a business of repairing and preserving toys for an international network of museums, collectors, and dealers.

The Friday Five: William Gallagher

The Antique Toy Collectors of America (ATCA) has brought toy collectors together since 1965. ATCA president William Gallagher describes the mission of the organization and shares why he thinks preserving toy history remains important.

The Friday Five: John O’Neil

John O’Neil brings toy collectors, manufacturers, and pop culture enthusiasts together at the Pop Culture Hall of Fame. Here, he highlights the importance of community building and creating a hub where everyone can enjoy shared experiences.

The Friday Five: Christian Braun

The hobby of collecting grows exponentially year after year. With that growth, comes the importance of documenting collectibles as a way of preserving history. hobbyDB CEO Christian Braun talks about how his site takes on that task while also making the world of buying and selling collectibles easier for everyone.

The Friday Five: Nicole Rousmaniere

Manga takes centre stage at an upcoming British Museum exhibit titled The Citi exhibition Manga マンガ.  Nicole Rousmaniere, IFAC Handa Curator of Japanese Arts at the British Museum, explains the history of manga and its impact on modern-day culture.

The Friday Five: Ethan Klein

Just 15 years old, Ethan Klein has already co-created an award-winning STEM-based learning toy for children. Klein talks about his own STEM experience and explains why winning a 2018 TAGIE award is so important.

The Friday Five: Ellia Kassoff

KB Toys set the industry abuzz with news of its reinvention. Toy Tales talks with CEO Ellia Kassoff about the history of the beloved toy retailer and how he’s re-imagining the brand for today’s consumer.

The Friday Five: Andrei Cimpian

Doctor Andrei Cimpian studies the effects of gender stereotypes on young children in his cognitive development lab at New York University. Here, he explains his work and expands on his contribution to Mattel’s Dream Gap Project.

The Friday Five: Meghan Melvin

Winnie-the-Pooh’s world comes to life at a new exhibit hosted by the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. Curator Meghan Melvin shares her thoughts about why Pooh’s world remains universally popular.

The Friday Five: Chris Bensch

Chris Bensch is Chief Curator at The Strong in Rochester, New York. In this interview, he provides insight into the acquisition, conservation, and archival process, as well as sharing his advice for storing collectibles at home.

The Friday Five: Josh Perelman

The Rube Goldberg exhibit at the National Museum of American Jewish History honours the life and work of cartoonist, sculptor, and inventor. The Museum’s chief curator, Josh Perelman, talks with Toy Tales about the exhibit and explains why Goldberg’s work remains relevant decades after the artist’s death.

The Friday Five: Steve Dubnik

The Strong in Rochester, New York announced an expansion in 2018. Its CEO and President, Steve Dubnik, talked to Toy Tales about the importance of play and the role of the Museum in its surrounding communities.

The Friday Five: Mitchel Wu

Mitchel Wu has a passion for artistic expression and storytelling that’s led him from a career at Disney to work as a professional toy photographer. Wu talks with Toy Tales about his path to a career in toy photography and shares his advice for budding toy photographers.

The Friday Five: Marty Abrams

Legendary toymaker, Mego Corporation, is rebooting after shuttering in 1983. Company CEO Marty Abrams talks with Toy Tales about Mego’s return with the “Marty Abrams presents Mego” line and what consumers can expect from the revitalized organization.

The Friday Five: Tony Reich

Tony Reich is president of the Toronto-based Canadian Toy Collectors’ Society, a not-for-profit organization serving individuals with a passion for toy collecting and a desire to preserve Canadian toy history for future generations. Reich talks about the mission of the Society and the appeal that toy collecting has for adults.