Assorted Ephemera: My Three Sons Coloring Book (1971)

This month, I am honoring the premiere anniversaries of many classic TV shows. Check back frequently for TV collectibles, fan magazine articles, special editions of Spin Again Sunday, and more. I will also be posting unique content on Facebook and Instagram.

This month, I am honoring the premiere anniversaries of many classic TV shows. Check back frequently for TV collectibles, fan magazine articles, special editions of Spin Again Sunday, and more. I will also be posting unique content on Facebook and Instagram.

My Three Sons premiered on September 29, 1960, and ran for 12 years. The latter half of the show saw many changes for widower Steve Douglas and his family–the show changed networks, switched from black and white to color, and re-located its setting from the Midwest to Southern California (a change prompted by a real-life change in production facilities).

One son married and departed, a new son joined the family through adoption, grandfather Bub left, and salty Uncle Charley took over as caretaker. In its last few years, the all-male cast got an estrogen infusion: Second son Rob married Katie and moved her into the family home; third son Chip eloped with Polly; and Steve married widow Barbara, who had a young daughter.

my three sons coloring book cover

The coloring book barely mentions Polly, though she was part of the show by 1971. I can’t blame Saalfield. The Chip-Polly marriage was an unfortunate development, mainly because the actors playing the newlyweds looked like 12-year-olds.

It’s not hard to imagine what Executive Producer Don Fedderson was thinking when he introduced Barbara’s daughter, Dodie. Family Affair‘s Buffy and her doll Mrs. Beasley were a merchandising gold mine. Collectibles like this coloring book and Dodie paper dolls–both printed by Saalfield–represented attempts to recapture the Buffy magic. Producers even gave Dodie a companion doll, Myrtle.

Abnormally short girl with unlikely name + strange-looking doll = cha-ching!

Unusually short girl with unlikely name + strange-looking doll = cha-ching!

Dodie merchandising didn’t come close to matching the success of Buffy and Mrs. Beasley, though.

This coloring book features “Dodie’s Favorite Things to Do,” a theme that enabled Saalfield to use random toy and teddy bear pictures for about half the content.

The other pages feature the Douglas family. The illustrator does a pretty good job making Steve look recognizable.

The other pages feature the Douglas family. The illustrator does a decent job with the likenesses, especially Fred MacMurray’s.

Rob and Katie’s triplets are in almost as many pictures as Dodie.

Fun fact: The episode featuring the triplets' birth aired on the day I was born.

Fun fact: The episode featuring the triplets’ birth aired on the day I was born.

The coloring book includes paper dolls of the triplets and Dodie.

It also includes this creepiness--kids are supposed to transform it into a picture of what they want to be when they grow up.

It also includes this creepiness. Kids are supposed to transform it into a picture of what they want to be when they grow up.

One of Dodie's own career aspirations is stewardess.

One of Dodie’s own career aspirations is stewardess.

Uncle Charley gets some ink in the coloring book (although it spells his name wrong).

my three sons coloring book uncle charlie

What a fascinating revelation.

The image below is the only one that comes directly from the show.

I take back what I said about the decent likenesses. I think they borrowed this face from a Planet of the Apes coloring book.

I take back what I said about the decent likenesses. I think they borrowed this face from a Planet of the Apes coloring book.

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Spin Again Sunday Extra: Bewitched (1965)

This month, I am honoring the premiere anniversaries of many classic TV shows. Check back frequently for episode recaps, fan magazine articles, special editions of Spin Again Sunday, and more. I will also be posting unique content on Facebook and Instagram.

This month, I am honoring the premiere anniversaries of many classic TV shows. Check back frequently for episode recaps, fan magazine articles, special editions of Spin Again Sunday, and more. I will also be posting unique content on Facebook and Instagram.

(Note: I meant to post this yesterday because Bewitched was celebrating an anniversary–it premiered September 17, 1964. Alas, I was too busy packing for the Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention. I’ll be tweeting from there over the next few days.)

Today’s Game: Bewitched

bewitched game boxCopyright Date: 1965.

Manufacturer: T. Cohn, Inc.

Recommended Ages: 6-12.

Subtitle: The Samantha and Endora Game. Don’t worry, though–the manufacturers certainly didn’t forget about Darrin.

As in the show, however, Darrin doesn't escape with much dignity intact.

As in the show, Darrin doesn’t escape with much dignity intact.

Oddities: Besides the obscure manufacturer and the unusual subtitle, the strangest thing about this game is a blurb on the inner box lid that describes the show’s premise. This description varies significantly from the premise of Bewitched as it appeared on screen:

Samantha and Darrin loved each other very much. So they married and thought they would live happily ever after. But one day Samantha disclosed that she was really a WITCH. Although that confession created some minor problems, they still were confident that everything would turn out just fine especially since Samantha would become a human after one year of marriage to a mortal. However, during that year Darrin Stevens finds himself somehow subjected to witchcraft.

If the show had used that premise, seasons 2 through 8 sure would have been boring!

Object: Be the first to enter Vacation Land.

bewitched game board

Game Board: Darrin is everywhere. Little Darrin heads line the path players navigate, and each Bewitched Space displays Darrin in an awkward Endora-spawned situation.

bewitched game spinner 1bewitched spinner 2

Game Pieces: The game has two spinners. The regular spinner features a cartoony Samantha figure in witch garb. The Witchcraft spinner intersperses Samantha and Endora heads with those Darrin pictures from the game board. The game also includes 4 witch cards–two of Endora and two of Samantha–and five Bewitched cards featuring those Darrin scenes again.

Game Pieces: You get to play as your favorite character, as long as your favorite character is Darrin.

The four Darrin game pawns, plus two witch cards.

The four Darrin game pawns, plus two witch cards.

Game Play: On his turn, a player can spin the numbered spinner and move as indicated. His other choice is to take a witch card. He then takes a Bewitched card and sends the opponent of his choice to the matching Bewitched space on the board. The opponent can accept this or draw her own witch card. The two players then reveal their witch cards. If one person has Endora and one has Samantha, the person with Samantha has to retreat to the next matching Bewitched space. If they have the same witch, the original player moves back six spaces. Once on a Bewitched space, a player cannot leave it until he spins either Endora, Samantha, or the picture matching the Bewitched space on the witchcraft spinner.

Strategy: The idea is to use witchcraft to slow opponents who are approaching Vacation Land.

My Thoughts: This has been one of my “holy grail” games for a while because Bewitched has always been one of my favorite classic TV shows. It’s not especially hard to find, but it’s hard to find at a reasonable price. Box wear made this one fairly affordable, and box condition is not my highest priority when buying vintage games. I look for completeness and a colorful, aesthetically pleasing board.

Other Spin Again Sunday posts you might enjoy:

The Bride Game

What Shall I Be?

Happy Days Game

Spin Again Sunday Extra: The Family Affair Game (1971)

This month, I am honoring the premiere anniversaries of many classic TV shows. Check back frequently for episode recaps, fan magazine articles, special editions of Spin Again Sunday, and more. I will also be posting unique content on Facebook and Instagram.

This month, I am honoring the premiere anniversaries of many classic TV shows. Check back frequently for episode recaps, fan magazine articles, special editions of Spin Again Sunday, and more. I will also be posting unique content on Facebook and Instagram.

Several classic TV shows celebrate broadcast anniversaries today–Bonanza, The Bugaloos, The Monkees, Lassie, Family Affair. Choosing which one to focus on was a no-brainer.

Today’s Game: The Family Affair Game.

Copyright Date: 1971.

Manufactured By: Whitman. (Remco made another, much more rare, Family Affair game. After years of trying to acquire it for a reasonable price, I finally purchased it last week. It will get the spotlight in a future installment of this series.)

Recommended Ages: 6 to 10.

Object: Be the first player to find Mrs. Beasley.

family affair box

Box: A lovely pastel-colored portrait of Buffy and Jody playing in the park. Jody’s head looks weird and misshapen, yet it’s still one of the best Johnnie Whitaker likenesses I’ve seen on Family Affair collectibles. In the background, French looks younger, thinner, and somehow more sinister than his TV self. Speaking of sinister…

Bwa-ha-ha! They'll never find me!

Bwa-ha-ha! They’ll never find me!

Game Board: Buffy and Jody’s favorite place, Central Park, comes to life in appealing illustrations. The zoo, a lake, a garden, and a playground dominate the scene.

family affair game board

The board, with closeups of its four park settings.

Disembodied Cissy, French, Buffy, and Jody heads float in the middle of the board.

At least, I think this is supposed to be Cissy.

At least, I think this is supposed to be Cissy.

Game Pieces: These are also Cissy, French, Buffy, and Jody.

family affair pieces

family affair pieces back

We even get to see their backsides, so to speak.

The game also includes a spinner and, as we will see, eight cards.

The spinner.

The spinner.

Game Play: To set up the game, players place the cards face-down in designated spaces. On his turn, each player spins and moves his pawn toward a card space. If he lands on one by exact count, he turns the card over.

Most card images are pretty random. They look like they'd fit in with the artwork at Chez Davis, though.

The card images are pretty random. They look like they’d fit in with the artwork at Chez Davis, though.

The winner is the person who turns over one particular card.

Yikes! If I'd seen this as a kid, I'd still be having nightmares.

If I’d seen this as a kid, I’d still be having nightmares.

Other posts you might enjoy:

Gomer Pyle Game

Laverne & Shirley Game

Emily Post Popularity Game

Spin Again Sunday Extra: The Flying Nun Game (1968)

test pattern header

This month, I am honoring the premiere anniversaries of many classic TV shows. Check back frequently for episode recaps, fan magazine articles, special editions of Spin Again Sunday, and more. I will also be posting unique content on Facebook and Instagram.

The Flying Nun premiered 46 years ago today, on September 7, 1967. Personally, I’m not a big fan of the show. I’m kind of bitter than it ran for three seasons while Sally Field’s other show, Gidget, only lasted one. Now, Gidget was a cute show. And, despite its short life it spawned two games. Take that, Sister Bertrille.

Today’s Game: The Flying Nun Game.

flying nun box

Copyright Date: 1968.

Manufacturer: Milton Bradley.

Recommended Ages: 8 to 15.

flying nun board

Object: “Be the first to place Flying Nun cards on changing board spaces.”

Game Box: It’s visually appealing, with a pink background, jovial cartoon children, and a photo of Sister Bertrille flying over their heads.

Game Board: Colorful and cute, if a little busy. I like the flowers in the corners and the illustration of Sister Bertrille’s convent.

flying nun cards

Game Pieces: The games uses standard plastic pawns. Each player also gets six Flying Nun cards. These show Sister Bertrille playing baseball, playing the accordion, flying–typical nun activities.

flying nun board closeup

Game Play: As they say on Facebook, it’s complicated. Each player has her own track. On her turn, she can either roll the dice and move her pawn around the track, or she can play the top card in her deck of six Flying Nun cards. She can place her card on any board space that matches it but ONLY if someone’s pawn is in the lettered circle beneath that space. Each player also has a penalty card–playing that allows her to remove one of her opponents’ previously played matches. The first player to unload all her cards wins the game.

Bonus Feature:

Here’s an article about Sally Field from TV Radio Show, November 1967. The story itself is not quite as silly as the headline.

Spin Again Monday: The S.W.A.T. Game (1976)

For this week’s game, we return to the more innocent 1970s, when kids had no access to violent video games–just violent board games like this.

Today’s Game: The S.W.A.T. Game

Copyright Date: 1976

Manufactured By: Milton Bradley

Based Upon: The TV show S.W.A.T., which revolved around a police “special weapons and tactics” unit. Although its run barely exceeded a year*, the show spawned a number one hit song and a 2003 movie.

swat box

Game Box: The box features scenes from the TV show. Oddly, though, the box doesn’t mention that the game is based on a show. Maybe Milton Bradley hoped the game would have a shelf life that transcended the program’s run. Gun Count: 6.

swat board

Game Board: The board includes more photos from the show, plus a colorful logo and some cartoony urban settings, including a diner, a construction site, and a park. Gun count: 8.

A closer look at part of the board

A closer look at part of the board

Object: Be the first S.W.A.T. team to capture the culprit.

Game Pieces: Each player gets a truck and two matching cardboard pawns. The pawns can ride in the truck–sweet.

A yellow police car doesn't seem too authoritative.

A yellow police car doesn’t seem too authoritative.

The pawns feature sketchy line drawings of S.W.A.T. team members. Gun Count: At least two per pawn.

An all-plastic pawn is supposed to be the culprit, but my game doesn’t seem to include one. The previous owner did include some other random pawns in the box, including some castle-shaped plastic pieces that bear drawings of beefeater types.

I guess this guy could be the culprit, but he looks rather trustworthy.

I guess this guy could be the culprit, but he looks quite trustworthy.

Game Play: A spin of the wheel determines which numbered space the culprit will occupy. Each player rolls two dice–marked with the numerals 1, 2, and 3–and directs his truck around the track. Certain spaces provide entry to the board’s middle footpaths. When he lands on one of these spaces, a player can remove his team members from the truck. On his next turn, he rolls both dice and moves each of his team members by the count of one die. He captures the culprit by landing both his pawns on the red dot near the culprit’s hideout. To complicate things, the culprit changes hideouts after each game round.

Recommended Ages: 8 to 14.

Bonus Feature: Here’s the S.W.A.T. opening sequence with its memorable music. (The theme topped the Billboard Hot 100 on February 28, 1976). Gun Count: Enormous.

*Apparently, the show faced criticism for its violent content. Go figure.

Other Spin Again Sunday posts you might enjoy:

Charlie’s Angels

Planet of the Apes

Dragnet

Family Affair Friday (Not!): Season 2, Episode 12, “Our Friend Stanley,” 12/4/1967 (with vintage toy bonus)

Written by: Henry Garson and Edmund Beloin. Directed by: Charles Barton.

This week’s episode begins with French hustling the twins off to school.

In the elevator, they encounter a sad-looking boy clutched protectively by his mother.

In the elevator, they encounter a sad-looking boy clutched protectively by his mother.

Buffy and Jody, firing off a series of questions that embarrass French, learn that Stanley is new to the building and getting ready to attend his first day at their school. They are pleased to learn that Stanley, like them, is in second grade. (Whew! We’ve emerged safely from last week’s time warp.)

They can’t understand, however, why Stanley and his mother are planning to take a taxi to school, rather than walking.

The light finally dawns when they see Stanley walk out of the elevator.

The light begins to dawn on them when they see Stanley walk out of the elevator.

French explains to them that Stanley has a brace on his leg and encourages them to be friendly and helpful to the boy at school.

(Leg braces always intrigued me when I was a kid. I saw them a lot on TV kids but never on any real ones. Apparently, they were frequently used by victims of polio, which was no longer an issue during my childhood–or Buffy’s and Jody’s.)

Oh, and one more thing before we get to the kids' school--we get a Scotty sighting in this episode!

Oh, and one more thing before we get to the kids’ school–we get a Scotty sighting in this episode!

At recess, Buffy notices that Stanley is sitting by himself and tells Jody that they should help him. Jody invites Stanley to play marbles with his multi-racial band of friends, but by the time he convinces Stanley to play, the other boys have moved on to leap-frog. Jody still encourages Stanley to join them.”If you fall, you fall,” he says, noting that all the boys fall sometimes.

I have a bad feeling about this.

I have a bad feeling about this.

With exquisitely bad timing, Stanley’s mother picks this moment to show up at school with Stanley’s sweater.

Now I've got a really bad feeling about this.

Now I’ve got a really bad feeling about this.

Sure enough, Stanley hits the grass, and his mother doesn’t take it well.

She bans Buffy and Jody from playing with Stanley again.

She bans Buffy and Jody from playing with Stanley again.

Well, that’s going to be awkward because meanwhile, back at the apartment building…

...Bill meets up with one of his many, many old friends in the lobby--and this old friend happens to be Stanley's father. (Incidentally, Bill smokes like a chimney throughout this episode.)

…Bill meets up with one of his many, many old friends–and this old friend happens to be Stanley’s father. (Incidentally, Bill smokes like a chimney throughout this episode.)

Doug invites Bill to stop by later to catch up with him and his wife Estelle. Bill’s visit is marked by pained glances between Doug and Estelle when the subject of children comes up. Sheesh, their kid has a leg brace, not that “elephant man” disease! Eventually, Stanley himself appears, and Bill notices how protective Estelle is of her son.

Stanley's apartment has lots of Family Affair green...and what is that table/shelf thing protruding from the wall?

Stanley’s apartment has lots of Family Affair green…and what is that table/shelf thing protruding from the wall?

When he returns to his own apartment for dinner, Bill learns that Estelle has forbidden Stanley to play with Buffy and Jody.

A worried Bill tells French that this situation is bad for the twins as well as for Stanley--in the future, Buffy and Jody might try to avoid people with handicaps.

A worried Bill tells French that this situation is bad for the twins as well as for Stanley–in the future, Buffy and Jody might try to avoid people with handicaps.

He decides to have a man-to-man, smoker-to-smoker talk with Doug.

Doug agrees that Estelle is overprotective, but he is reluctant to intervene.

Doug agrees that Estelle is overprotective, but he is reluctant to intervene.

Eventually, however, he agrees to let Bill take Jody and Stanley to the park for some kite-flying.

Bill couldn't have come up with an activity that doesn't require running?

Bill couldn’t have come up with an activity that doesn’t require running?

Even before they leave for the park, the situation deteriorates. Stanley has some kind of male-ego chip on his shoulder, and he challenges Jody to a fight. Our sweet-natured Jody has no interest in fighting, but Bill encourages the boys to settle their differences through “Indian wrestling.”

We called it arm wrestling when I was a kid, and not for any PC reasons, I'm sure. We weren't very PC about Native Americans back then.

We called it arm wrestling when I was a kid, and not for any PC reasons, I’m sure. We weren’t very PC about Native Americans back then.

Showing her usual flair for timing, Estelle barges in, having learned about the kite-flying outing and wanting to nip it in the bud.

As it turns out, Stanley is an arm-wrestling wizard. When Estelle sees how proud he is to have beaten Jody, she realizes that he needs normal boy experiences.

As it turns out, Stanley is an arm-wrestling wizard. When Estelle sees how proud he is to have beaten Jody, she realizes that he needs normal boy experiences.

Soon, the boys are flying their kites in Central Park.

Buffy, who apparently prefers to sit with Mrs. Beasley, Bill, and Bill's second-hand smoke, expresses her admiration about the way Bill handled the Stanley situation.

Buffy, who prefers to sit with Mrs. Beasley, Bill, and Bill’s second-hand smoke, expresses her admiration about the way Bill handled the Stanley situation.

“I guess you just like kids,” she says.

Awww.

Awww.

Commentary

This is a nice episode, one of many in which Buffy and Jody meet a child who is different from them in some way. Uncle Bill’s opinion, that it’s as important for twins to experience friendship with Stanley as it is for Stanley himself, seems rather progressive.

Another episode highlight: Buffy and Jody teasing Cissy about her latest boyfriend.

Another episode highlight: Buffy and Jody teasing Cissy about her latest boyfriend, Harold, a “tall, skinny guy whose bow tie wiggles up and down when he talks.”

Guest Cast

Stanley: Michael Freeman. Miss Jerome: Ila Britton. Eddie: Gary Dubin. Estelle: Sally Forrest. Scotty: Karl Lukas. Doug: John Lupton.

Michael Freeman was a cutie and an okay child actor, so it’s surprising he didn’t get more work. His most interesting credit is “The Boy Pusher” in the 1973 TV movie Go Ask Alice. (I see the whole movie is available on Youtube. That’s got to be good for some laughs.)

Dubin was Punky Lazaar in several Partridge Family episodes.Recent titles in his filmography suggest that his career has gone in, um, a different direction lately.

Lupton starred in a 1950s Western series called Broken Arrow and a short-lived 1960s daytime soap called Never Too Young. He played Tommy Horton on Days of Our Lives from 1967 to 1980. He appeared in an episode of the Sebastian Cabot series Checkmate and in the 1972 film Napolean and Samantha with Johnnie Whitaker.

John Lupton

John Lupton

Forrest found modest film success in movies directed by Ida Lupino (who would guest star on two Family Affair episodes herself); the first of these was Not Wanted in 1949.

Sally Forrest

Sally Forrest

Inconsistency Alert

The length of Buffy’s pigtails varies from scene to scene–see below and note the length in relation to her ears. They are shorter in her scenes with Uncle Bill; Brian Keith’s abbreviated shooting schedule undoubtedly led to these scenes being shot at a time far removed from the episode’s other scenes.

VTS_01_8.VOB_000104603VTS_01_7.VOB_000622452

Less easy to explain is the way her hair bows change color from red to blue in between leaving the Davis apartment and entering the elevator. Freaky!

VTS_01_7.VOB_000557847VTS_01_7.VOB_000632615

Notable Quotes

“Once in a while, she just stands there and looks at us and says, ‘Why didn’t I become an airline hostess?”–Buffy, describing her teacher.

This Week’s Bonus Feature

I know I’ve been stingy with bonus features lately, but my husband bought me something yesterday that I just had to share.

Family Affair Colorforms, from 1970!

Family Affair Colorforms, from 1970!

This is one of the few Family Affair toys I didn’t have and one that I particularly wanted–I love Jody’s ridiculous expression on the box. Note also that Mrs. Beasley is wearing a red dress, and Cissy appears to be a 35-year-old woman.

On the inside, the likenesses are even worse.

On the inside, the likenesses are even worse.

All the characters except Cissy have separate top and bottom halves, as well as separate arms.

Wiseacre kids must have had fun with this feature, such as by giving Jody a skirt, Bill a weight problem, and French some tiny legs.

Wiseacre kids must have had fun with this feature, such as by giving Jody a skirt, Bill a weight problem, and French some tiny legs.

I actually prefer the Colorforms version of the Davis apartment to the real one.

And Colorforms Buffy and Jody are lucky--they get a dog.

And Colorforms Buffy and Jody are lucky–they get a dog.

Spin Again Sunday: The Senior Prom Game (Circa 1950s)

senior prom box

Senior Prom–the game for girls whose parents were too cheap to spring for Barbie’s Queen of the Prom game.

In this week’s installment of Spin Again Sunday, we’re going to experience “all the thrills of a social season”–or at least as many of those thrills as a poorly made board game can provide.

This Week’s Game: The Senior Prom Game.

Copyright Date: Unknown, but the game appears to date from the 1950s.

Manufacturer: Warren Paper Products Company of Lafayette, Indiana. The company used the designation “Built-Rite” on their games (and jigsaw puzzles). If this game is any indication, they used the label ironically.

Object: To attain the status of prom queen.

Recommended Ages: 7 to 12.

Game Board: Actually, “board” is a bit of an overstatement for what is a flimsy piece of cardboard. In an unusual move, the manufacturers printed the game directions right on the board. I’m sure they did this to save money, but it does eliminate the possibility of losing the directions.

senior prom board

Game Box: The graphics are cute, with prom-goers depicted against a star-filled sky. The fact that the box brags about the “Large 15 x 18 Playing Board” may be be a hint that there’s not much here to brag about.

I can see why this would be worth a 6-space movement. Why would a "T.V. idol" be at your sock hop?

I can see why this would be worth a 6-space movement. Why would a “T.V. idol” be at your sock hop?

Game Markers: Square pieces of cardboard folded and inserted into round pieces of cardboard. These are supposed to represent crowns. Uh-huh.

Crowns? Really?

Crowns? Really?

Other Game Pieces: The colorful spinner has a metal arrow. Players try to collect cardboard circles marked with the words Date, Formal, Grades, or Dance.

IMG_2192

The cards players must collect.

Game Play: Players move along the board and try to collect the cardboard circles mentioned above. (I give the manufacturers credit for making good grades a pre-requisite for prom queen coronation.) With those cardboard circles in hand, a player can move to the inside track and try to land on a “Selected Candidate for Prom Queen” space. Each candidate places her marker on a numbered star; the first to make it that far and spin the number that matches her star space wins.

You can see more Warren “Built-Rite” games at the very cool Board Game Geek web site.

Other Spin Again Sunday posts you might enjoy:

What Shall I Be? (1972)

Barbie Miss Lively Livin’ (1970)

The Bride Game (1971)