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scarlet for the 90s

9 toys you grew up with... that are actually terrible

Sorry, but your fond memories are wrong.

There’s a new GI Joe movie out at the moment, keeping Bruce Willis and Channing Tatum in work. And also hitting the nostalgia button for anybody who played with GI Joe toys as a child.

But what if you looked at some of your favourite childhood items in the cold hard light of adulthood?

Get ready to feel somewhat mortified for your own youth.

1. Stretch Armstrong

Was this a plastic doll with infinitely stretchy arms or just some kind of torture device your friends would use to whack you on the arm?

Either way, the long long long limbed antics of Stretch Armstrong seem massively weird when you watch them back

Dyll87 / YouTube

2. Sindy

Peter Jordan/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Many young girls grew up with the high-octane glamour of Barbie and her many pals.

But there was also her British rival Sindy.

Sindy hit her 50th anniversary last year and was a huge hit in the 60s/70s with her slightly more “regular” image. But by the 1990s Sindy was losing ground to Barbie, and rapidly became the doll you got from a well meaning aunt when you really wanted whatever new incarnation Barbie was flogging.

Mind you this Crimp and Bead Sindy looks pretty fun.

Oh who are we kidding? She’s no Barbie. Morto for Sindy.

SatOnTheTellyThing / YouTube

3. Beanie Babies

The Beanie Baby crazy of the 90s didn’t just have both adults and children buying up stuffed beanbag toys in bulk, it also had them become “collectors” who were convinced the toys would have value on the much-vaunted Beanie Baby market.

This of course didn’t happen and nobody made their fortune flogging Beanie Babies. Sadly.

Mind you, someone did manage to use them to make a Harlem Shake video last month so maybe they do have a use after all:

Furious Talks / YouTube

4. Pogs

Can we be frank here?


Like, we all collected them and threw one at a stack until somebody won. But it was a game that seemed to require little or no skill. Basically you ended up with an ever growing collection of strange tiny discs that had no real function.

toastichedu / YouTube

5. Baby Born

Pretty much every baby related doll is insanely creepy. There’s something about plastic renditions of human babies that always seem a bit odd.

But the “life like” Baby Born will forever be the creepiest.

It goes to the toilet, cries and does other real life baby things all without batteries.

If you’re of a certain age, watching this ad for it will bring on serious shudders.

oonai5000 / YouTube

6. Cabbage Patch Kids

MARK AVERY/AP/Press Association Images

Speaking of creepy childlike toys, how did we ever think Cabbage Patch Kids were anything less than totally weird?

They looked like alien babies masquerading as humans no matter what you dressed them up in

Also one variation of the Cabbage Patch Kids was actually eating children’s hair in 1996.

The doll was recalled but you can watch the ad for it below. Very scary.

lloydbentman / YouTube

7. Polly Pocket

Sure, it seemed like a fun idea to give Barbie and co a tiny, tiny rival. But the small plastic figurine of Polly Pocket and her miniature sized play sets were a bit of a nightmare.

If you owned a Polly Pocket you probably lost half the accessories every time you opened the tiny compacts or even Polly herself.

And if you also had a pet nearby they probably hoovered up some part of your Polly Pocket collection along the way.

Very distressing.

wtcvidman / YouTube

8. Tamagotchi

David Cheskin/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Whether you had the official Tamagotchi or another “virtual pet”, chances are it took over your life.

When the craze first hit , you spent your days making sure you kept your digital pet regularly fed and cleaned so that they didn’t disappear due to neglect (also, without being crass don’t you think Tamagotchis seemed to poo quite a bit?).

Looking back, it’s hard to see why it was so addictive.

Valentina Caicedo / YouTube

9.  Furby

PA Archive/Press Association Images

You can blame the Tamagtochi  pet effect for this one, the world’s most irritating and pointless toy.

If you had a Furby in your house you got used to it waking up in the middle of the night demanding to be fed and talking gibberish.

Even if you became fluent in Furby’s “furbish” language it was still hard to have any actual fun with them. Childhood shouldn’t be that stressful.

toretroandbeyond / YouTube

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