Dinosaur Dracula!

Dino Drac’s July 2016 Funpack!

It’s hard to believe, but with the arrival of Dino Drac’s July Funpack, I’ve now been doing these for a full two years. WOW. I never expected that this would go on for so long, and I can’t thank all of my subscribers enough. You’ve kept Dino Drac afloat for far longer than its presumed expiration date. Thank you x1000!


For those who don’t know, I sell monthly Funpacks — aka a monthly subscription box, stuffed with all sorts of retro nonsense, novelties, snacks and stories. Dino Drac is not backed by any financiers, obviously, nor is it even constructed to make the most of its modest ad revenue potential. Without readers like you subscribing to the Funpacks, there’d be no Dino Drac!

The cost is $25 per month, and that includes shipping. You can cancel at any time without penalty. (Even immediately after signing up, if you’re only interested in this month’s box.) For as long as you stay subscribed, you’ll keep getting Funpacks! (And I keep excellent records, so don’t worry — you’ll always get the exact amount of Funpacks that you’ve paid for!)

Scroll to the bottom of this post for more information or to get your subscription started, or keep reading to see what’s in store for the July 2016 Funpack!


This month’s anniversary Funpack is an eclectic mix of old and new bric-a-brac, featuring werewolves, Zelda, dinosaurs and more. There are over ten items in every box, including… Read More…

Five Retro TV Commercials, Part 11!

Welcome to the latest edition of Five Retro TV Commercials, starring me, my cat and a broken Mer-Man character bust. Us three.

Sunkist Fun Fruits! (1980s)

I was partial to Fruit Wrinkles, but there’s no denying that Sunkist’s Fun Fruits were THE fruit snacks of the ‘80s. Originally shaped like bloated pill bugs, this commercial marked Fun Fruits’ graduation to other, louder shapes.

The “Letters” and “Numbers” varieties were intended to placate strict parents, because if you’re not gonna be healthy, at least be educational. The “Animals” version was the clear chaser, unless you’re really gonna claim that you’d prefer a gumdrop shaped like the number 9 to one that resembled a tiger.

Animated like one of those old school storybook videos, this particular commercial wasn’t nearly as cool as other Fun Fruits ads, which were usually done with live actors.

I mean, I don’t care if Generic Boy is a cartoon or a real person, but there’s a big difference between an animated tree and a ten foot Evil Dead prop with plate-sized googly eyes. (And if you prefer the former, you’re definitely the same asshole who picked “9” over the tiger.) Read More…

Ratty 1980s Plush Dolls.

My collection of oddities includes many ratty dolls from the 1980s. Only a few are kept on permanent display; the rest live in bins and bags, too cute to throw away, but too filthy to waste shelves on.

The five featured below have been trapped out of sight for years, to the point where I’d forgotten I even owned them. To make amends, I’m giving them a whole Dino Drac article. I wish that sort of mea culpa got me out of trouble with real people and not just stuffed caterpillars, but this is the world we live in.


Teddy Ruxpin (1985)

Y’all remember Teddy Ruxpin, right? The talking teddy bear who was ostensibly built to read stories via audio cassette, even if most people just wanted to make him sing Sussudio? That guy. He was a very big deal in the mid ‘80s, with technology that seems quaint now, but felt sooo futuristic at the time.

Grubby was Teddy’s best friend — a giant caterpillar who looked like he should’ve played bass at Chuck E. Cheese’s. While Grubby “talked” much like his pal, he only worked when plugged directly into him. So yeah, despite the fact that a giant talking caterpillar was a hundred times cooler than a small talking bear, kids had no reason to ask for Grubby until someone got them Teddy Ruxpin. Shame!

(I found Grubby at a church flea market several years ago, tucked into an old playroom that was finally being cleaned out. The five dollar asking price was a steal, even if paying it meant that I had to carry a giant caterpillar across a busy church basement while everyone tried to spot a “666” birthmark in my hairline.) Read More…

Spider-Man loves Kool-Aid Man.

My obsession with old Kool-Aid packets takes me to strange places. Like the back pages of Spider-Man comics from the late ‘90s.


Thanks to a hot tip on Twitter (love you, Aaron and Skinslip), I learned that the July 1996 issue of The Amazing Spider-Man was hiding something awesome inside. For those looking to play along, it’s issue #413. The one with Godzilla and Luke Skywalker on the cover. No, seriously.


Freebies had been stuffed inside of comic books before, but it was usually just a random trading card, or at best a foldout poster. In the summer of ‘96, the Kool-Aid Man set a new standard. Dude always does.

Indeed, every copy of The Amazing Spider-Man #413 came with a free packet of Slammin’ Strawberry-Kiwi Kool-Aid. Protected by cellophane and sandwiched between a two-page Kool-Aid advertisement, the fact that I’ve gone this long not knowing about an issue of Spider-Man with fucking Godzilla on the cover THAT CAME WITH FREE KOOL-AID is sobering and embarrassing. By all rights, this should be my seventeenth article about it.

A closer look: Read More…