Tuesday, October 13, 2015

"Stand by to catch fainting females!"--Sunset House catalog, late 1964

The 1964 Sunset House Christmas mail-order catalog has a number of creepy, Halloween-style gifts of the type also featured in the comic books of my youth.  I figured out the year from four clues: two 1965 calendars, a commemorative JFK bracelet charm, and a reproduction of the Beatles' Royal Command Performance poster ("complete with authentic autographs of Ringo, Paul, John and George," no less).  So this is probably Sunset House's Christmas 1964 edition.  (Another clue: the Ripley's--Believe it or Not! Sea Circus was copyrighted in that year.)

The order form and envelope are still there, so it appears no one sent for anything from this copy.  Maybe he/she/they already had multiple toe-warmer footrests, indoor hopscotch games, bobble-head car trolls, grenade lighters, 4" replicas of a genuine Amazon Jivaro native shrunken head, pocket-sized fortune tellers, electric back scratchers, and Gingerbread beanbag families.  Maybe their kitchen table was covered with the last five Sunset House orders.   Maybe they were under a court order to abstain from catalog ordering of any kind.  We have no way of knowing, so we're free to make things up.  (Or, describe the History Channel's format in a single phrase.)

Anyway, here are some of the more Halloween-specific ads, not counting the genuine shrunken head replica, from this priceless document of cheap gifts past.  Personally, I'm torn between the pants-falling-down Frankenstein monster, the creeping hand, and the winking skull turn-signal.  Pick your own favorites:


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Happy HaLEEween, Lee !!
Would love that skull turn light and I think that's the golf ball that winked at Jerry Lewis in the Martin and Lewis film 'The Caddy'
Thanks for the super neato stuff as always
Love the Haunted Victrola pic look forward to the macabre music from the 30's