Memories Of A Misspent Youth

I’ve mentioned before that one of my earliest memories was being allowed to watch the first moon landing, and how it inspired me to take on science and technical subjects at school.

Well, recently I’ve been doing some research on spacesuits (more on that later), and a memory flitted up from the depths about some dolls (or “action figures” if you prefer) that were astronauts. I can only assume that my parents bought me these when I became so crazy about space in the wake of the moon landing.

I couldn’t remember much about these dolls, only that they were made by Mattel, and had rubber bodies, and had different colored spacesuits–red, white, blue, and yellow.

Matt Mason, Doug Davis,
Lt. Jeff Long, and Sgt. Storm

Well, a quick duck-duck-go search soon brought them up, and the memories came flooding back. The dolls were the “Major Matt Mason” range and featured a whole range of accessories and extras that I have no memory of. It’s possible that many of these weren’t available in the U.K. (or perhaps my parents couldn’t afford them–we didn’t have a lot of money).

BUT, I did have all four of the figures, plus the grapple hook backpack, and the space sled. They were great fun, albeit potentially lethal, and I’m sure would never be approved now. You see, inside the rubber they had a wire “skeleton” that allowed the figures to be posed. The trouble was that the wire wasn’t really up to the job, and fatigue would make it break, making the joint useless and, more vitally, the sharp ends would poke through the rubber!

I don’t remember the “Major” part of the title. That could be because I was a kid at the time, or maybe they were branded slightly differently in the U.K. I also don’t remember any of the alien figures or add-ons. Looking at the array of accessories is quite bewildering, and so are the prices that these things are going for on Ebay! Wow, I wish I’d kept hold of mine.

Do you remember Matt Mason? Or maybe you still own an original? Let me know in the comments!

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