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Target Channels Toys R Us from 1984

When I was a kid in the '80s, every other Friday evening was a very special time. My dad and I would go to the Cheltenham PA Toys R Us (which was like taking your life into your own hands, even then) and we would see what amazing new additions had been released to the toy lines that still drive sales and collections today. Of course, there was no Internet, there was no handy constantly updated checklist, but at least Hasbro and most others saw fit to keep us mostly informed with their beautiful catalogs and box-back figure lists. One day it was Stinger from the M.A.S.K. line, the next it might be the Defiant Playset from G.I. Joe, but those mammoth shelves always held a new surprise.

It's probably that I've just returned from finally seeing the G.I. Joe movie that puts me in such a nostalgic frame of mind. Without getting into too much detail, as I know many other sites have already done, I'll say that I didn't hate it, I appreciated it as a fun action movie and there were enough classic nods and character respect that I was pleased on several levels. If you haven't seen it - go! I was a little concerned that there were only 5 other people in the theater, granted for the Sunday evening show, but still. G.I. Joe 2 is already green-lighted, though, so I guess there's no real rush!

One last point, and the initial purpose of this post - pertaining to the new Target reset. Something I hadn't realized at first, but a reason that I feel so at home in the new layout, is their new decision to pile overstock on top of the toy aisles to nearly the cieling. Most rows contain plastic storage bins (fitting, given the home of many of the new additions to the Preserve, due to lack of display space) but one row even had hundreds of electric tea kettles reaching to the sky! The effect, to me, recreates the warehouse style shelving that defined Toys R Us back in the day. It adds a touch of comfortable closeness to the shopping experience, and perfectly compliments the ingenious new layout of the products themselves. If you're longing for the sort of toy shopping experience you can only barely remember, Target has done a pretty bang up job of bringing it back to us, so very many years later.
Posted by charlie on August 16th 2009, 07:40 PM
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