@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents on Twitter
I can still remember the first time I saw a Smurf. It was the summer before third grade (1981) and I was looking at the comics section in the Sunday edition of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The section that week featured a half page ad with all the upcoming cartoons on the Saturday morning lineup on NBC. Back then, Saturday mornings were filled with hours of cartoons and it was glorious. Anyway, there was a picture of the Smurfs, promoting its September debut in the United States. I was instantly obsessed.
Later that summer we went back to school shopping and I insisted on getting a Smurf lunch box. The blue plastic box featured many of the Smurfs staring in awe of the only female (at the time) Smurfette. It came with a yellow and white thermos with a Smurf and Smurfette featured on the front.
|Gargamel & Azrael
Of course with any successful show there are plenty of things to market along with it. My favorite was of course the little rubber toys. I had (and still do have) dozens of these little Smurfs. There was a bowling Smurf, a clown Smurf, a doctor Smurf, even a Santa Smurf. I also had a collection of plush Smurfs, tshirts, games, and even ate the Smurf cereal (which for the record I hated) When Hardee's introduced a line of Smurf soda glasses, you can bet my family was there each week to get another one. They're still packed away ever so safely in my attic. I ate breakfast in bed on my birthdays on with my metal Smurf TV tray.
|Just a few of my Smurfs
|4th grade & now