|Search the Toy Encyclopedia|
Gumby and Friends By Euphrates
Art Clokey first introduced his claymation star on the Howdy Doody show, in 1956.
In 1964, while Gumby's star was shining it's brightest, Lakeside released its line of Pokey
and Gumby toys, including the famous bendy figures, and the much sought after jeep. Whitman
came on board later, with books, and then Chemotoy joined up, with it's Gumby Modeling Clay.
Gumby and the gang (Pokey, the Blockheads, Farmer Glenn, Prickle, Goo and the rest) managed
to keep children entertained, until 1967, when the show ceased production.
Gumby's popularity suffered during the '70s, but his career was given new life by Eddie Murphy's impersonation on Saturday Night Live. Eddie may not have been the only SNL star influenced by our hero, SNL's Mr. Bill, had a very simliar voice and character. By the late '80s, and well into the '90s, companies like Jesco, Hallmark, Lewco, Applause, Premma/Remco/Ace Novelty, Playskool, Trendmasters and Clay Art, were all on the bendy-bandwagon, making everything from Gumby phones to Gumby cookie-cutters.
Gumby has staying power. A real star. What other character-inspired-toy has been on store shelves off and on for over 40 years? I suppose the Warner Brothers and Hanna-Barabara cartoon characters have had a pretty good life, but Pokey and Gumby weren't cartoons. They were real, well, clumps of clay.
Partial List of Gumby Collectibles
Copyright 1996-2011 GoGoMag.com. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.