The 1982 JC Penney Christmas Catalog




I used to hoard these and stare at them while balled up on the heat outlet with a blanket covering me in winter.
I think I recognize some stuff but I think either '84 or '85 and maybe Sears would have been my true precious, my parents kept the one which arrived in the mail but I finally got one for myself at the mall.
Like this catalog I think Sears still had firearms in their US catalog into the 80s. I remember imagining owning a listed chemistry set and Armitron(?) robot arm to pour imagined explosive/hazardous chemical mixtures.
(edit)Dig the high waists and foo hair!


If you need more scans of old timey christmas catalogs in your life, check out Wishbookweb. As a kid who anticipated the yearly arrival of the wishbook only slightly less fervently than christmas itself, these are gloriously nostalgic.


Back in my day, we were lucky if the electronic toys sported a light bulb. Many were steam-powered.


Three years later a tape-playing travesty would make life unbearable for any kid named Casey.


Merlin was my favorite electronic toy (until ColecoVision came along), and 30+ years later, it still works perfectly.


I am still the proud owner of an omnibot Jr, though sadly I left the remote on top of the gas fire about ten years ago and melted it. Still not found a replacement (though as it’s ultrasound, it’d probably be fairly easy to figure the relevant frequencies and build one).

I still want an Omnibot 2000 though. Fuck you, Santa, you jerk.


I think I had a bunch of these. Dark Tower was, by far, my favorite on this page.


In retrospect it’s surprising how much enjoyment I got out of playing with the Merlin back then.

(Oh, get your mind out of the gutter!)


Merlin, FTW! I loved that dang thing. It was just the right size for pretend phone-talking, too. Stop judging me.


i wanted Dark Tower and the tabletop D&D games so badly that i can still feel the want.


We owned a Speak and Spell tablet and the Little Wizard calculator. I would not have guessed, that these were $30 * 2.5 and $64 * 2.5. Pricey toys! Helps put some of the edu-app crazy parenting of today in perspective: we’ve always done this, for those with the means.


I think that they had bb guns and air rifles…While they sold firearms in some of the stores, firearms couldn’t be mail-ordered.


I still want Dark Tower.


So so much play time put into my Merlin. I wonder if it is still hidden somewhere in the depths of the old house as my brother now lives in it and I don’t remember selling it.


One of the neighborhood kids had Dark Tower. It was a fun game and as others have said I still want one.


me too, me too. : (


Of course they didn’t mail-order bb guns because…


According to this catalog it was only for the catalog pickup counter, like other large items picked up to avoid shipping charge.


Another cheer for Merlin! That simple little item lasted me many years and many many hours of play time- far out performing any of my other electronic toys.

That electronic battleship was a total PITA to program, but the sound effects and cool sliding buttons kind of made up for it ok. I think we eventually had to start calling out our shots when we would fire a round because the programming accuracy was so hit and miss (ha!)… pretty disappointing when someone would win on the board, but the software wouldn’t know it.