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October 24, 2005

"Art director, shmart director. Shoot the picture."

Lionel trains have been a part of kid's lives for over 100 years now. That's an impressive feat that few companies can rival. That doesn't mean that it's a history that lacks some, well, stinkers now and then.

Take this for example:


Easily my least favorite Lionel catalog cover of all time. It looks like the movie poster for "Attack of the 50 foot Blind Kid" or some such. Besides the squinting eyes the kid's missing lower lip doesn't exactly breed confidence either. If I was little Johnny's mom the last thing I would want is to have my child playing with Lionel trains and run the risk of losing both his sight and his lower lip.

It's also a remarkable cover in that it doesn't convey anything that almost every other Lionel catalog does: fun with trains. Key elements are missing here: track, Mom or Dad, scenery, etc. Even the trains on the cover aren't presented as a train. It's more like a jumble of things thrown around with no thought or regard.

How this cover got made is beyond me. To someone who used to have to work with evocative imagery in a hobby related field it positively gives me the willy's. Ugh.

Be patient though. I have more. So much more.

(Is it just me or does he look like he's about to bite the searchlight on that car in his hand.)

Posted by Jim at October 24, 2005 08:42 PM


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