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Hot Holiday Toys of the '90s: Socker Boppers

Hot Holiday Toys of the '90s: Socker Boppers


Since about 2005, the hot holiday gift has more often than not been either an Apple product or a gaming console. But remember when we had actual toys? Remember the '90s when we had things like Socker Boppers?

Original commercial for Socker Boppers

The inflatable boxing pillows first hit stores in the 1970s and enjoyed a few years of success before fizzling out.

Over the years, brands tried to re-launch the toy unsuccessfully, but in the mid-'90s, Sam Harwell of Big Time Toys managed to resurrect Socker Boppers after running a series of new TV commercials in the Chicago area.

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After a trademark dispute forced Harwell to change the name to "Sock'em Boppers," the toy went on to sell over a million units in its first fall run, spawning several spin-offs such as Sock'em Swords, Sock'em Shields, and Sock'em Screamers.

Sock'em Screamers TV Commercial

After selling more than 4 million units, Big Time Toys was sued by "Rock'em Sock'em Robots" maker Mattel, who claimed the name "Sock'em Boppers" infringed on their copyright. Harwell settled with Mattel after agreeing to change the name back to "Socker Boppers," which you can still find in stores today.

Which '90s pop song are you?

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