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From 1987-90.

McDonalds Changeables.  They were McDonalds own transforming robots that came with Happy Meals from 1987 to 1990.  The Transformers toy line was extremely popular at the time and McDonalds capitalized on the idea with success.

These were great.  I still have a few of the foodbots.  McDonalds no longer creates anything original for their Happy Meals.  It’s all licensed products. 


Think about this very carefully: what if this were the last face you ever saw?

You shivered, didn’t you? You felt the cold hand of your own mortality but you also felt true fear, a fear tinged with existential dread. For those under a certain age this thing is nothing more than a passing horror. But to those old enough to have grown up with Mr. Rogers you’ll recognize it as, get this, Lady Elaine Fairchilde. Yep. Lady Elaine. 

It was never explained. Every kid alive who saw it shivered and felt the deep sensation that something was wrong. Something was very, very wrong. But because it was contained within the rather benign wrappings of a very mild mannered and friendly children’s show each child assumed that perhaps only she felt the icy wind of death blow throw her living room. I mean, it must be me, right? Nice Mr. Rogers wouldn’t do this to children, would he?

The eyes, brimming with dead menace. The chopped haircut of a madman. The gin blossoms of the meanest drunk who ever killed a man at a train station for a can of beans. Clown white trowled heavily into the brows. The nose like W.C. Field’s fungus infested toe.

And the smile. A smile of bottomless malevolence. A smile that says, “Oh, I will kill you. Yes, my friend, that is a given. But I won’t just kill you. What I have in store for you is whole galaxies of suffering as yet undreamt of by the cruelest sadist ever spat out of hell.

You can pray for death, but it will not come. Look into my eyes — ah, good, I see the despair now. You know your prayers cannot find their way to God because I have killed Him. I have killed all hope. All redemption. Only suffering lives now. You and it have become one thing. I shall make eternity even longer through the sheer force of my own cruelty.”

Anyway, I remember watching it before afternoon Kindergarten.


You know, it’s a funny thing - Bob Taylor nicknaming you “The Queen.” I could never see just why he picked that title. You’re so down-to-earth, so free of phoniness and any “grand manner,” you’re so American, it doesn’t seem to fit. Like when you got your Irish up, as you said, and told off some of those haughty characters who are forever complaining that their caviar isn’t cold enough - you’ve never forgotten, you see, those days on the way up when corned beef and cabbage tasted good. Now that you’re a world famous movie star who can have anything she wants, you still like corned beef and cabbage. If anything could spoil you, it would have been your welcome in England, when they mobbed you at the London premiere of “The Other Love.” I asked you about it. “Oh, it wasn’t me so much,” you said, “or even Bob. It’s just that they haven’t seen any Hollywood people in so long, they’d have done the same for everybody.” And that was no coy act, you meant it. That was simply the Stanwyck sincerity speaking. You save all your “acting” for pictures anyway. And very fine acting it is, too. Did you know you and Bergman rate highest with other stars who recognize talent when they see it? But you probably won’t believe that, either. You just won’t make like a movie star. I believe I do understand now why Bob calls you The Queen, at that. You take off your hat to a queen.”
- Delight Evans (An open letter to “The Queen” July, 1947)

This is why Barbara Stanwyck is my favorite of the “golden age of Hollywood” actresses, and possibly my favorite actress of all time.  She had it all, looks, brains and a good heart.  An all-around terrific lady.

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