Topping the Wish List - 1949
This Christmas gift enjoys the distinction of being the first toy ever to be advertised on TV. In 1949 inventor George Lerner conceived and developed the toy. Three years later Hasbro purchased the rights and began production of their new hit.
The original toy cost 98 cents and contained a styrofoam head, a body, hands, feet, ears, two mouths, two pairs of eyes, four noses, three hats, eyeglasses, a pipe, and eight belt pieces resembling facial hair.
It is said that a number of the original accessories reflected certain features of the members of the inventor's own family.
Within one year over one million Mr. Potato Heads were sold. The cultural impact of Mr. Potato Head has been felt years later as the character made its first cinematic appearance in the Pixar movie Toy Story.
Burger King brought Mr. Potato Head on board to help them launch their try a fry campaign in support of the new B.K. french fries and more recently Lays Potato Chips has done the same.
It's hard to believe this cultural icon all started with an actual potato in someone's kitchen back in the 1940s. But it certainly has earned its place Topping the Wish List.