Friends, while it is sadly true that we do not have the gift of a working time machine readily available – we have something close to it, thanks to The Museum of Classic Chicago Television uploading this 1972 interview featuring toy designer extraordinaire Marvin Glass. This interview with Marvin Glass was part of a WBBM Channel 2 news report featuring Bob Wallace who interviews the toy designer who had a hand in Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots, Hot Wheels, Lite-Brite, and so many more. Originally airing on December 15th of 1972 – Wallace is treated to a brief behind the scenes look at the goings on at Marvin Glass and Associates, which includes a blink and you’ll miss it look at the shop factory floor. Interestingly during the interview Bob Wallace brings up with Glass if he felt the way the toy companies advertised their product was perhaps dishonest – something that seems to me that the late Marvin Glass was quick and passionate to set straight.
For what it might be worth in regards to Marvin Glass discussing with Wallace the issue of toy safety – I’ve read online that 1960’s Mr. Machine, which was a very popular wind-up construction toy was altered for it’s rerelease in 1978. Unlike the version that debuted 18 years earlier, this version of Mr. Machine couldn’t be taken apart – because the 1960 toy sported 44 disassembled parts that could present a choking hazard if the child were inclined to pop a piece in their mouth. While that might have been an issue that was brought up later, the fact is that Mr. Machine which appears to have been co-designed by Leonid Kripak was so popular for the Ideal Toy company that it was made their official mascot for many years.
Two years after this 1972 interview with Bob Wallace, Marvin Glass would sadly pass away at the age of 59. Although for kids of a certain generation as well as children today – they are still being entertained with some of the toys and games that Glass helped develop. While over the years the product may have been updated with new technology – parents and their children can still pick up a copy of Mouse Trap, Operation, or even Lite-Brite and more. Helping to make happy memories for children isn’t too bad of a legacy, right?