Kid Stuff #8: Trading Card Hell

Once upon a time, nearly every movie or TV show, no matter how stupid or inappropriate, had its own set of trading cards. Kids collected cards from Mork & Mindy, Star Wars, The Incredible Hulk, and Battlestar Galactica like their life depended on it. There were even Bo Derek cards and cards about that awful Bee-Gees' train wreck of a movie, Sgt. Pepper - the sort of things that don't instantly pop into your mind when you think of children's products.

Of course, this was a time when TV/movies were being merchandised like ever before. Thus, you had ridiculous products like Taxi lunch boxes and Welcome Back, Kotter Halloween costumes. I distinctly remember a Three's Company children's puzzle of Suzanne Somers in a revealing bathing suit. Even then, I knew this merchandising thing was getting out of hand... but I liked it.

For fun, I thought I'd take this 1970s trading card phenom to its bizarre extreme.

I don't think there was ever a Kojak trading card, but if there can be a Mod Squad trading card set, why not? Although not marketed for kids, Telly did record an album (see a previous post). BTW: I also discuss in grotesque detal particularly bad examples of shirtless celebs in a previous post.

As I've mentioned before, James Evans scared the hell out of me as a kid. I was ready for him at any minute to just take down his family one by one. Anyway, Plaid Stallions and its spin-off Sitcom Diablo are good places to go to check out great TV and movie merch from the 1970's.

Many of you may remember my post on Camper Tramps - that unbelievably sexed up RV brochure from the 1970s (found at Retrocrush). If there was a Bo Derek and Charlie's Angel's trading card set, why not this one?


  1. I also thought that one day James Evans was going to kill his whole family. Dude had some anger management problems.

    That shot of Telly Savalas has truly disturbed me.
    If anybody needs me I'll be cowering behind my couch guzzling the brain bleach.

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  3. I used to buy a lot of the trading cards during this time and over time they have all been lost. But one thing I recall was that in almost all the packs, regardless of the theme.. sports, films, comics, "odd-rods"...there was included in the deal a pink rectangular piece of powdery chewing gum. When cards began to make a come back in the 90's and I collected and lost a good collection yet again the chewing gum stick was absent and that always depressed me :(

  4. hairball - Sorry about the Savalas picture, but think about those poor people in checkout lines in the 1970s who had to see it full size. They're probably still coping with the pain.

    bill - I agree. It was more like pink wood veneer or shale than chewing gum, but I wanted it in there nonetheless.

  5. I've always been a big Telly fan, but that card would be giving me nightmares though. lol

  6. I want the whole collection of Camper Tramp cards! That one alone made up for the distrubing Savalas image. I've got a bunch of trading cards and will be posting more. Stay tuned.

  7. K..you were just a bit harsh on those Camper Tramp cards. Those girls needed the work. They have campers to maintain...and towels to drop. Can a brother get an amen up in this bitch?

  8. Good Times cards..wow..lol I've just started to collect these cards, I'm glad demand isnt all that high on ebay. I bought an unopened pack of saturday night fever cards for 2.50