A Century of What I want for Christmas

by James

SciFi’s DVice has a very interesting graphic that shows the evolving tastes of kids over the last century of writing letters to Santa asking for toys for Christmas. From Teddy Bear to Teddy Ruxpin, PlayDough to Playstation, kids tastes for the hot toys are getting more sophisticated. Here’s a breakdown of some of the toys kids have wanted over the last century …

In 1920, nearly 50 years before I was born, the top toys for Christmas were the Teddy Bear, Erector Set, and Lionel Trains. Noteworthy facts about each, the Teddy Bear was named after former President Teddy Roosevelt – who refused to shoot a black bear while on a hunt. and Lionel Trains is now owned by musician Neil Young.

Then, in my era, the hot toys were Rock’em Sock’em Robots, Barbie, GI Joe, and the introduction of a little juggernaut known as Star Wars action figures. It also marked the beginning of what would soon come to dominate the toy world, as video games like PONG were the obsession of every kid willing to forsake outdoor play for watching a little white dot bounce back and forth across the screen.

By the 1990s and 00s, video games were well entrenched as kids have wanted Game Boys, Playstations, Nintendos and XBoxes. Yeah sure, kids have wanted action figures like Power Rangers and Buzz Lightyear, LEGOs and Transformer Dolls (and remember POGs?), but it’s clear that kids trends have gone from imaginative play and building things, to virtually blowing stuff up while networked with other kids all around the world. For a peak into the evolution, check out the timeline here.

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