Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Adventures of G.I. Joe - Rookie to the Rescue

The Adventures of G.I. Joe
Rookie to the Rescue

Packet No. B5851974

The various diorama View-Master reels are just about the coolest thing ever. This G.I. Joe set in particular is one of my favorites. Besides probably being just about the most fun photo shoot ever, it also brings to mind that long ago forgotten skill of playing with toys. And, whether G.I. Joe was your toy of choice, or not, it makes one nostalgic for childhood. Or, if nothing else, nostalgic for toy commercials of the seventies.

This fantastic reel packet is actually three separate stories, Rookie to the Rescue, Peril in the Depths, and The Buddha's Treasure. It is hard to imagine that there were any young boy (or girl) out there that didn't beg for this reel set.

And how often does a parent get a chance to buy their child a toy commercial of their very own?

First up - Rookie to the Rescue.

G.I. Joe and
Sarge were
training recruits
in the desert.

The G.I. Joe Adventure Team was on a training mission in the desert land of Utah and Arizona.

G.I. Joe and Sarge, his assistant, were training a group of recruits in the use of rescue and survival equipment.

One afternoon Joe set up the portable training tower near the edge of a canyon. He had rigged up an Escape Slide from the tower to the ground.

"Nice going, Greg," he said as one recruit started down the slide. "Come on Diego - up the ladder on the double!"

Red, who had flown the helicopter to the training site from the team's Mobile Headquarters a few miles away, watched the progress of his fellow recruits.

Sarge arrived
in Turbo Copter
as Greg flew
Flying Rescue.

Just then the men heard the buzz of a Turbo Copter, and Sarge flew down to join them.

"Sharp-looking class you've got there, teacher!" he joked to G.I. Joe. "Say, what's that flying out there over the canyon? Is it a bird, or a plane, or Superman?"

Joe grinned. "That's our newest rookie, Greg, trying out the Flying Rescue chair with the rocket pack."

Together Sarge and Joe watched Diego take his turn going down the Escape Slide. Meanwhile Luke, a Navaho Indian, started up the ladder briskly, trying to beat the others' time.

"Everything's quiet at headquarters," reported Sarge. "I'm going to take a reconnaissance flight over the area. I'll keep in touch by walkie-talkie.

At headquarters,
Joe received
a call from Sarge ...

It was just sundown as the team returned to Mobile Headquarters. Sarge was still out on reconnaissance. Shortly after they returned, Joe's walkie-talkie began to beep. He answered it.

"Joe, this is Sarge," came the voice. "I'm about three miles due southwest of you. I saw a little burro tied to a tree right beside a deep gash in the ground. I flew over to investigate, and found an old prospector down in the hole. He fell in and has hurt his leg and his head. Over."

"We'll be right there," Joe promised. "Over."

..."A prospector
has fallen into
a crevice and
is injured!"

"Hang in there, old timer!" Sarge called to the prospector, shining the high-intensity beam of his signal light down into the hold. "Help is on the way. By the way, what's your name?"

"Zeke," said the prospector feebly. "Zeke Simmons. I seen some shiny rocks down here and clumb down on that there rope, but the rope busted and I landed in a heap. Sure glad you happened along when you did!"

The Adventure
Team sped to
the rescue of
old Zeke.

By the time the Adventure Team, riding across trackless desert land in the jeep and its trailer, reached the place where Sarge and Zeke waited for them, it was beginning to grow dark.

G.I. Joe drove the jeep as close to the edge of the hole as he safely could. In the back of the jeep were a Flying Rescue unit, a rescue sling, and several coils of rope. The trailer contained a searchlight and a first aid kit.

"Okay, Luke, aim the searchlight down into the hold," directed Joe. "Sarge, better lead the burro out of the way."

"This is Bessie, meet my partners. Come on, old gal."

Greg and Sarge
flew down into
the hole and
gave first aid.

The team worked rapidly as darkness fell. "Greg," said Joe, "here's your chance to put the Flying Rescue chair to work in an actual situation. It hasn't got enough power to pull both you and Zeke out of the hold, but if you and Sarge go down together, you can bring him up between you on the rescue sling. Sarge, you fly down into the hold with Greg. You better take the first aid kit with you. Each of you take along a coil of rope."

Greg and Sarge flew down into the hold - Greg in the Flying Rescue, Sarge in the Turbo Copter.

"Just relax, old timer," said Sarge as they knelt beside Zeke. "We're going to bandage your head and that hurt leg of yours, and then we're going to get you out of here."

Rescued, Zeke
proudly showed
"shiny rocks"
he had found.

Before being pulled up, Zeke insisted on bringing along some samples of the "shiny rocks" he had found at the bottom of the crevice. He hugged them tightly in his arm as Greg and Sarge, expertly piloting their different flying craft, brought him carefully up ot ground level in the sling and laid him gently on the ground.

"I'm sure mighty obliged to you gents," said Zeke as he hobbled over to Bessie and gave her an affectionate pat. "Dunno what I'd-a done if you hadn't of come along."

Proudly, he held out his "shiny rocks."

"Ain't them pretty?" he declared. "I betcha they's uranim in them rocks. I'm gonna stake me a claim here!"

Joe smiled. "Sounds good, Zeke, except for one little detail. How are you going to get the rocks out of that deep hole?"

Friday, August 6, 2010

M*A*S*H "Major Topper" - 1978

M*A*S*H "Major Topper
Packet No. J11

MASH was one of those television shows that seems to have been part of everyone's life. I remember it playing in the background when I was young and even as a kid I would watch it because it had a laugh track (most of the time) therefore, I thought it must have been funny, even if I didn't really get all the jokes.

I also have a weird memory of a magazine cover that sat in a rack in my elementary school library that boasted the 10th Anniversary of MASH with a strange Picassoesque image of Hot Lip. As least I think it was Hot Lips.

I also had a hamster named Radar.

Anyway, as an adult I appreciate MASH on a whole other level. I also now understand Major Houlihan's nickname. (The nickname was so much part of the show that once I was old enough to realize the implications, I just never thought about it.)

Thanks to Rob Kelly, blogger dynamo, and operator of the blog After Mash, I am bringing you this 1978 View-Master tribute to everyone's favorite mobile medical team. Thanks Rob!

There are a couple elements of note on this reel set. While looking through you'll notice 3 frames ( B7, C4 and C6) which include a secondary images awkwardly inserted. As well as a Word Find included in the accompanying book. Now, I have seen the inset images, though rarely. But this is the first Word Find I have ever run across myself. Pretty cool stuff! (At least to a View-Master geek.)


MASH 4077, the little world of courageous men and women who care for the wounded as they come out of battle. When going gets tough, Klinger wears a dress! Or Radar offers to lend Colonel Potter his teddy bear. But for Hawkeye and B.J. there's no humor in their tent mate Major Charles Winchester, better known as "Major Topper." Whatever they can do, he can do better.

"Them bones, them bones, them thigh bones ... " sings Hawkeye to Hot Lips as they splint breaks in the Operating Room.

Operating Room

"This is a tough one. I'm going to have to do a lobectomy," says B.J.

Charles begins his daily bragging routine.

"Major Topper"

"Perhaps I should take that, Hunnicutee. I've done at least fifty of those in the Big War."

"What war was that?"

"The War of the Boston Commuters. You name it and I've done it ... successfully."

"Game, set and match to Winchester," quips Hot Lips.

"The snow's getting pretty think in here," says Colonel Potter, trying to keep peace.

"I'm going to get even someday," promises Hawkeye.

"Meanwhile in the mess tent, Klinger is breaking in a new man."This serving ain't a bad gig. Once you lose your sense of smell, you got it licked." But Corporal "Boots" Miller acts very strange. As Klinger hands him a ladle, he begins talking into it.

"One, two, three, testing."

"One, two, three, testing. One, two, three, testing."

Colonel Potter and Father Mulcahy come through the line.

"One brown
puddle. Hold
the shingle."

"Have some stew, Colonel?"

"What kind is it?"

"It could be beef, port or water buffalo. We'll never know and it won't tell."

"Just as long as it's dead. Spoon it on, son. No toast."

Boots barks into the ladle, "One brown puddle. Hold the shingle."

After the meal, B.J. and Hawkeye play chess.

"It's my turn
to beat you."

"That's not fair, B.J. It's my turn to beat you."

Up pops the voice of Charles!
"Did I ever
tell you... "

"Did I ever tell you guys about the time I won the Intercollegiate Chess Tournament for Harvard?"

"Oh, no! I swear someday I'll top you, Charles!"

Boots begins interviewing the men with this stew-dripping ladle.

"What's your name, soldier, and what do you do?

"My name is Colonel Potter, soldier, and I bust wiseacres like you."

Hawkeye backs away claiming "ladle fright."

Finally Boots spots Hot Lips coming into the tent.

"Ah, here's a young lad with peach fuzz still on his cheeks. How old are you, sonny?"

"How old are
you, sonny?"

"Sonny?" Hot Lips asks. "What's going on? Keep him away from me, Klinger. Isn't one of you enough?"

Back in Post-Op more serious troubles concern B.J. and Hawkeye. Nurse Baker alerts them to a serious reaction to a medication.

"We need more

When Radar goes for a new batch, he finds there'll be no more until another shipment arrives in the morning!

In their tent Klinger decides to be firm with Boots.

"Shape up,

"It's time we had a little nut-to-nut talk. The microphone bit is strictly for sandlots psychos. This is the Big Leagues, guy. Up here it takes seasoning, finesse. So from now on you just shut up, put down you ladle, and watch me."

"Right, Klinger! Well good night, Mr. Shoe.

"Good night
Mr. Shoe."

And good night to you, too, Mr. Socks. Don't you worry about this hole. Mr. Toes doesn't mind at all."

Klinger doesn't believe it!

Back in Potter's office, the gang meets and decides how to get through the night until the new medication arrives fro Seoul.

"Let's try a
new pain

Colonel Potter remembers when he was a boy in Missouri. His Aunt Grace come down with a terrible headache and old Doc Schumacher cured it with a couple of pills.

"What kind of magic was in those pills?" asked B.J.

"Sugar!" answered Potter.

"Sugar? Are you suggesting that we keep our wounded sedated all night with only sugar?"

"It's all we've got. If we sell it, it might work."

Hawkeye and B.J. agree that sugar pills are the only chance to prevent shock in their patients. At the pharmacy, they convince Glassberg that they have to do a spot inventory.

"We need to do
a shot

"One of our tongue depressors is missing."

When he finally leaves, Hawkeye and B.J. begin making the pills. Radar arrives with the sugar. "This is all I could scrape off the doughnuts."

Father Mulcahy drops by to see whether he can help.

"You know, I've finally gotten you boys working with me. The patients will be taking these pills on faith, and they have to work."

"Let me help
says Father

Out on the compound Klinger comes to relieve Boots from guard duty.

"I got two of
those gliders!"

Boots has had a busy night.

"Quiet, Klinger. You hear that? Enemy planes!"

"I don't hear anything."

"Of course not. They're gliders."

Suddenly Boots knocks Klinger to the ground and begins shooting at the imaginary gliders.

"I got two of 'em. I got two of 'em!"

"Boots, you are nuts. If they gave me a section 8 tonight, I'd give it to you. Now go back to your tent and sit up with Mr. Shoes and Mr. Socks."

Sugar pills finished, the MASH unit starts the big experiment. As they go into Post-Op, Colonel POetter warns B.J., Hawkeye and Charles, "Remember, these pills are our only chance. They have got to work. It's up to you to convince the patients they do."

"I'm a consummate actor," says Charles. "I was in the Hasty Pudding shows ... at Harvard, you know."

"Not again," moans Hawkeye.

The Drs. begin to pass out the pills.

"You guys will
feel much
better soon."

Hot Lips predicts the wounded will feel better in ten minutes. "No seconds on these pills. They're too strong," cautions B.J. Even Father Mulcahy assures a soldier the pills are better than the ones they usually get.

When Radar comes in a little later, he can hardly believe his eyes. The patients are relaxed; some are even falling asleep!

Exhausted, Hawkeye, B.J., Potter and Charles retire to the mess tent for some coffee.

"Those guys really helped themselves. The best doctor is right up here," says Potter, pointing to his head.

"Don't spread it around. Well all be out of jobs," says Hawkeye.

"Those sugar
pills really

"I knew it would work," gloats Charles.

"Of course. I
knew they'd

The tired men walk off to their tents. Potter is suddenly stopped by Klinger.

"Sir, I've got to talk to you. That Boots is really nuts I tell you. Right now he's holding two invisible prisoners."

Just then Boots rounds the corner and fires a warning shot into the air. Klinger hits the ground and pulls Potter down with him. Boots stars running in the other direction, screaming that the prisoners are leaving on gliders.

"I told you
he's nuts."

"As soon as he runs out of ammunition, get him, Klinger. I'll be in my office writing his discharge," says Potter as he gets up and hurries out of range.

Hawkeye and B.J. are trying to relax in their tent when Charles begins his bragging again.

"You never
dated Grace

"Have you gentlemen ever heard of Grace Kelly? Well, I dated her once."

"Don't you ever give up?" says Hawkeye.

"We're calling you on this one, Chuckles."

And then and there Charles produces a picture of himself having dinner with Grace Kelly!

"I'm gonna be sick," groans Hawkeye. "Uncle!"

But Major
Topper did!

A few months later Potter and Klinger receive a package from Boots Miller at the Novelite Toy Company. In it is a sock puppet named "Stinky."

Boots goes home,
sends MASH
a puppet!

Boots writes: "Mr. Sock was invented in your camp. We've sold over 50,000 of them. Now I have an idea for a new toy, "Enemy Glider." Did you by any chance take any photos of the glider I shot down? Please send them by registered mail. This office is full of spies.

"He really was nuts!" cheers Klinger.

"We're all nuts." That's part of the fun." ends Potter.