Under The Tree: O.J. Simpson “The Juice” Shindana Toys Super Pro Action Figure

Looks like Barbie has a new neighbor. I think Ken might have some competition. That white Bronco would look nice parked in front of Barbie’s Dream House.

Shindana Toys (a division of Operation Bootstrap Inc.) released the O.J. Simpson “The Juice” Super Pro Action Figure in 1975.

Fully licensed by O.J. Simpson Enterprises, Inc., this action figure was at the time the only one on the market that featured the likeness of All-American running-back O.J. Simpson.

Measuring 9.5″ tall this action figure features a fully-jointed vinyl body. Accessories include helmet, shoulder pads, jersey, pants, two-toned football shoes, striped socks, and football.

In addition to the standalone action figure, Shindana Toys also made an O.J. Simpson “The Juice” Super Pro Set. The set comes with a football suit, football helmet, pads, shoes and football, running suit, sweat socks, tennis shoes, tank top, shorts, boat with oars, 3 hurdles, weight set with stands, tennis racket with frame and ball.

A variant of the Super Pro Set exists. Some of the O.J. Simpson sets were packaged with a red running suit and white tank top/shorts that have the letters “D J” on them. Shindana Toys made a similar action figure of Dr. J.

Many toy companies substitute unused clothes for the original clothes when the figures are at the end of their run. Shindana Toys sold more O.J. Simpson figures than Dr. J figures.

In this case, it looks like Shindana Toys made a decision to substitute Dr. J clothes because it appears they made variant O.J. Simpson decals by removing the “r.” from the Dr. J decals making it appear to be “O J” but its really “D J”. I guess they hoped nobody would notice. If you look fast enough that “D” looks like an “O”.

Card of the Day: Kenny Wallace 1993 Action Packed Young Guns #60

Product Highlight: 1999 Topps Action Flats Baseball

I can still remember going into my local card shop and seeing these crazy little dudes for sale.

The Topps Action Flats line actually began in 1998 with the NFL. Football fans got another dose in 1999 as well. But baseball fans only received one set which was released in 1999. Another baseball set was in the works before the product line got officially dropped altogether.

What are Action Flats? An Action Flat is a small (flat) figure that comes on a stand. It was another attempt at competing with Starting Lineup. The 1999 Topps Action Flats Baseball set consists of (12) players:

  • Chipper Jones
  • Greg Maddux
  • Mark McGwire
  • Sammy Sosa
  • Kerry Wood
  • Barry Bonds
  • Alex Rodriguez
  • Ken Griffey, Jr.
  • Cal Ripken
  • Juan Gonzalez
  • Nomar Garciaparra
  • Derek Jeter

The Action Flat figure is posed to mimic the image on the accompanying card. Cards look just like the flagship set, but have a “Action Flats” foil stamp on them.

Topps did make some parallels to chase. Away and Classic Jersey parallels apply to the figures only. Classic Jersey parallels are more difficult to find. The cards that come with the figures are the same whether the figure is a parallel or not.

Props to Topps for trying something different. But the Action Flats line never really caught on.

Card of the Day: Razor Ramon 1995 Action Packed WWF #3

Card of the Day: Luis Aparicio 1993 Action Packed All-Star Gallery Series 2 #122

Card of the Day: Brett Favre 1991 Action Packed Rookie Update #21

Card of the Day: Lawrence Taylor 1995 Action Packed WWF WrestleMania XI

Under The Tree: 1977-80 Pro Sports Marketing NFL Action Team Mates

Remember the days of flipping through a catalog and circling all the stuff you wanted for Christmas? Those days are long gone.

Sold exclusively through the Sears and J.C. Penney Christmas catalogs between 1977 and 1980 were the Pro Sports Marketing NFL Action Team Mates. Measuring 7.5″ tall, these NFL-themed action figures came with two sets of interchangeable numbers, removable helmet, football, playbook, and display stand. They aren’t player specific, but you could certainly place whatever jersey number you wanted on them and pretend it was Terry Bradshaw, Roger Staubach, etc…

Figures which have never been removed from their box can easily come in pieces. Small rubber bands were used to hold the limbs together. Over the years these rubber bands can disintegrate leaving you with a box of loose body parts.

Today these figures are highly sought after. Triple digit sales are not uncommon for loose figures. Individual parts even have a strong demand.

Compared to the collectible figures we have today, these look quite generic. For a long time this is how sports action figures looked. When these were released, we were still years away from Starting Lineup figures.

I wonder if any of these guys found their way over to Barbie’s Dream House and told Ken to take a hike?

Card of the Day: John Elway 1995 Action Packed #14

Product Highlight: 1994 Action Packed NFL COASTARS

Action Packed lasted longer than most new card companies that got their start during the junk wax era.  They made football, baseball, basketball, racing, and wrestling cards.  Getting into the hockey card business was a top priority, but it never fully panned out.  Almost all of their hockey products were issued as promos.

Given the amount of sports cards that flowed into the hobby during the 80s and 90s, Action Packed needed to do something in order to separate themselves from their competitors.  Their answer was thicker card stock, rounded corners, and “puffy” pictures.  I call them “puffy” because the images are raised resembling those stickers that became popular during the 80s.  The “puffy” picture became Action Packed’s signature style for all of their products.

Action Packed sure had it’s share of unusual products to collect.  In 1994 they introduced their line of COASTARS.  These are actual coasters that you can throw on the table and place your drink on.  Six coasters come shrink-wrapped to a sheet.  You need to punch-out the coaster from the sheet in order to use it.  The checklist features players like Boomer Esiason, Dan Marino, Emmitt Smith, and Jerry Rice.  One side of the coaster has the player in their home uniform.  Flip it over and you’ll find them pictured in their away uniform.  COASTARS is one of the only products Action Packed made that doesn’t include “puffy” pictures.  Probably so you wouldn’t spill your drink.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but COASTARS didn’t catch on.  Fun novelty, but no major demand.