The First New–Sort of–Scrappy Toy in, Oh, 70+ Years

scrappypulltoyI own a lot of Scrappy products. A bizarre number of Scrappy products. And until recently, they’ve all had something in common: They were made several decades before I was born. Come to think of it, I think most date from a few years before my parents were born. Scrappy may still be protected by copyright, but his owner, Sony Columbia, has shown absolutely no interest in merchandising the little guy.

I would have wagered that the era of the Scrappy toy was long gone and wasn’t coming back. Until I found and bought a new Scrappy pull toy.

Yes, it’s a replica–of a wonderful 1930s Scrappy pull toy, which I’m pleased to say I own. That’s the two of them in the above photo. Which one’s old and which one’s new? You might guess that the brightly-colored, beautiful one on the left was the replica, and the scruffy, faded one on the right was the oldie. But nope–the replica is the junior-sized version on the right.

It’s a reasonable facsimile, but not perfect: Scrappy’s head is misshapen and they’ve unaccountably flipped Yippy around. The xylophone doesn’t have real bars, and Margy’s skirt–tragically–is printed rather than real.

Oh, and the manufacturer eliminated the Columbia copyright message on Scrappy’s left shoe. Which is probably evidence that this is a bootlegged product, or at least one produced by someone who thinks Scrappy is in the public domain.

The replicator definitely tried to make the toy look aged–note the battered paint on the wheels–but it’s also not as well-made as the original In fact, the paper cutout with Scrappy printed on it is starting to peel away on one side. My old one, on the other hand, has survived in remarkably good shape.

Here’s the oddest thing about this toy other than the fact it exists at all: I bought it at the gift shop at San Francisco’s wonderful new Walt Disney Family Museum. I’m not sure if its proprietors think Scrappy was a Disney character, or are paying respect to Dick Huemer, or what. Maybe they’re just cheerfully oblivious.

I just know it was a little thrill to plunk down my money for this. Let the Scrappy renaissance–complete with DVD box set–begin right now…

2 thoughts on “The First New–Sort of–Scrappy Toy in, Oh, 70+ Years”

  1. Very well done Harry. Why didn’t you put this note on the Scrappy web site? Was the color too well, colorful?

    The original Gong Bell Scrappy you have which is from 1936 or thereabouts, is quite nice. It looks like Margie just got that hula skirt off the rack. I’m glad you bought one and put them side by side for the photo. It saves me from having to do the same. If you don’t mind, I’ll put a link to your note on the article I wrote about these reproductions on my web site: http://belltoys.ning.com/

    I’ve seen many of these reproductions on ebay, often touted as originals. Sometimes the sellers have been fooled by these. I try to email every seller to let them know. It’s quite amazing to think that these were being sold at the Walt Disney store.

    The same company that made this reproduction made many other reproductions of popular Gong Bell, N.N. Hill and Fisher Price pull toys. It’s unfortunate that many beginner collectors get suckered in by these.

    I hope Sony grants your wish.

    Life is good,
    Bob Watrous

    rain, if you want one contact me. I think I have an extra one.

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