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Monster Kid Nostalgia: Vincent Price and Shrunken Head Apple Sculpture

toyTheoFantastique is usually the place for in-depth exploration of issues related to the fantastic. But the flips side involves a fan's enjoyment as well. With this post I take a stroll down memory lane to fondly remember a toy that this monster kid had growing up in the 1970s.

Those fascinated by the fantastic don't know how easy they have it these days. There are any number of films and television programs, DVDs, books, and thousands of websites, not to mention various conventions that can be explored to enjoy whatever aspect of the fantastic that is desired. Growing up in the 1970s, on the tale end of the monster kid phenomenon that had begun a decade or two prior, it wasn't quite so easy. We had to work hard at it in order to satisfy our monstrous fetish. One way this was done was to secure whatever toys became available that connected to the fantastic. I have a soft spot in my heart for one such toy, Milton Bradley's Shrunken Head Apple Sculpture kit with Vincent Price on the box cover, a favorite of mine growing up, who also did the television advertisements for the kit. Although you supplied the apples, the kit included beads, glue, paint, hair, string, and a plastic apparatus that was put on a lamp and which was designed to hold the carved apple as it dehydrated into a form resembling a shrunken human head. I know know if my mom was very happy with my grotesque art project connected to her living room lamp for a few days, but I sure had fun in the process. I only wish I had held onto this and other monster toys from the period. Those interested in learning more about the kit can Google it and visit sites like X-Entertainment, and can even order this retro toy at eBay.

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Update: Another item from my childhood came to mind the other day, a model that I built in the early 1970s, and I was able to track it down on the Internet. It was the "Dead Man's Raft" by MPC based upon Walt Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean ride. One of the interesting features was its "zap action", a rubber band providing tension on the skeleton in the chest who would pop out when the chest was opened and slam the knife in his hand into a treasure map. I found this on eBay listed from a seller in an unopened, sealed box with an asking price of $495! An only slightly more reasonable copy of the complete model is available at The Pop Top Shop for $295. That page also includes examples of the other Pirates models available in the 1970s, and a 1968 AMT model of the USS Enterprise from the original Star Trek that I also remember building. For background information and photos of various monster toys from the 1970s and other decades visit The Gallery of Monster Toys.

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There are 2 Comments to "Monster Kid Nostalgia: Vincent Price and Shrunken Head Apple Sculpture"

  • debbie masminster says:

    We have acomplete vincent price shrunken head kit complete with instructions. We are trying to find out what it could be worth. If you know and could email me it would be greatly appreciated thanks.

  • Check ebay for a guide. It depends on what someone is willing to pay for this nostalgia.

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