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Toys in the Attic: Bringing New Life to Old Friends

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While Parenting at the Crossroads often edges toward the more serious and urgent issues associated with parenting (bullying, teen sex, child safety, etc) there are those subjects associated with childhood that bring about such joy and vicarious pleasure that they cannot be ignored. I am speaking about toys. Not all toys necessarily, just the one’s that effectively functioned as intimate links to our own quiet, burgeoning creativity as children. I am talking about things like LEGOs, Playmobile, Erector, and even Barbie…yes Barbie! These were all toys that served as conduits to parts of our brain that needed unlocking and stimulation. While I won’t say they were the most educational of toys, they were toys that fostered a certain conversance and communion between child and toy. This sort of intimacy was well articulated in the much-praised Toy Story 3 movie of last year.

So it is of little surprise that many adults, far from their years of getting lost in play with molded plastic objects, hold a deep affection for such items. While some live vicariously through their children’s discovery of Star Wars and Snoopy, others just can’t keep their hands off of the raw materials of childhood.

I stumbled upon the truly amazing and evocative video project below that combines two of my most beloved relics from late childhood – post punk and Playmobile. Here is an extremely faithful recreation of the short-lived Manchester band Joy Division doing their song, “Transmission” on the British TV show “Something Else,” rendered entirely in animated Playmobile (click here if you would like to see the making of):

Adults (and some children) have (forgive the pun) toyed with the format of using beloved toys to illustrate favorite movies and/or music. What follows is a welcome diversion from our contemporary world of chaos and despair, and is a salute to creative interpretation utilizing the toys we love(d).

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Eric Steinman

Eric Steinman is a freelance writer based in Rhinebeck, NY. He regularly writes about food, music, art, architecture, and culture and is a regular contributor to Bon Appétit among other publications.

23 comments

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10:08PM PST on Dec 28, 2012

What fun! Shows how useful open-ended toys are. And a collection of Legos can replace separate plastic trucks and buildings.

1:37PM PST on Dec 24, 2012

I've always encouraged creativity with my kids

9:14PM PDT on May 8, 2011

thanks

3:17AM PST on Feb 16, 2011

excelent idea...on weekends

5:07PM PST on Feb 15, 2011

LEGOs are a constant in my house

2:09PM PST on Feb 15, 2011

thanks.

10:40PM PST on Feb 13, 2011

awesome! most of my toys were lost as a result of divorce and frequent moves. i remember some of them fondly, if a little sadly.

have been reunited with some of them thru eBay, my fave find is my Dawn doll. makes me cry with happiness!

1:19AM PST on Feb 12, 2011

sweet, sadly my parents gave most of our toys away.. but it's also a way

12:29PM PST on Feb 11, 2011

The old is new again ... held up well through the age, now as expensive as the "new" and once again allowing free-time pretend and natural creativity. CARPE DEIM!

3:10AM PST on Feb 11, 2011

"Barbie leading to creativity??? .... anorexia and bulimia maybe"
I agree...

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