Gender Roles Included: The Unreal Estate of 1980s Playsets

By J.E. Anckorn

In the 1980s, the action figure ruled the toy store shelves. Some kids were loyal to one franchise (I was a strictly My Little Pony girl, myself). Some children’s affections and parental pursestrings could stretch to several different brands, but whatever flavor of molded plastic you were hooked on, the pinnacle of aspirational toys was always the playset. These big-box behemoths offered a fantasy local where our toys…

Get Smart: ‘Look-in’ Pop Annual, 1982

Christmas day, 1982. Stomach heavy with the contents of her Cadbury selection box, swaddled in the acrylic comfort of her new Argos pyjamas, the typical tween’s thoughts have naturally turned to the god-like powers of creation afforded by the inevitable coloring section of the holiday Annual. Look-in’s 1982 offering is fashion-based, with four pages featuring the year’s hottest trends for our eager youth to adorn in felt tip…