Category Archives: Peel Here! Stickers of the 80s

GPK Monster Madness: Day 4

It’s day four of the 2013 Countdown to Halloween and I’m back with my next set of monster GPK stickers. I decided to sort of group the stickers by themes, and today starts a series of creature/mutant/freaks.  For the first in this bit I decided to share my copies of these series 2 stickers printed back in 1985, stickers 71a&b, Odd Todd and Bent Ben!

4 - Bent Ben

This painting was done by my all-time favorite GPK artist, John Pound. One of the things that I love about these earlier GPK stickers is that the concepts were simple.  Later in the series, and on into the modern era so many of the stickers are a cluster of annoying and repetitive imagery (cracked heads, poop, vomit, etc.), which is fine and all, but there’s something to be said for a simple concept execute well.  The purpose of these stickers was to be a parody of Cabbage Patch Kids, and the idea of a hunchback adorable doll is hilarious in and of it’s own right.  He doesn’t need to be crapping his pants while simultaneously vomiting up five week’s worth of fish lunches.

Once again, I’m also helping to organize the annual Countdown to Halloween alongside the tireless and super cool monster kid John Rozum. So if you like what I’m doing over here, you might want to head on over to the Countdown site and check out the huge list of other sites participating in this year’s spooky festivities. There’s also a like-minded sister collective called Blog-O-Ween being put together by my pal Cody, the Crooked Ninja Turtle Sensi. Be sure to check them out as well.

2013 Fruit Brute 200

GPK Monster Madness: Day 3

It’s day three of the 2013 Countdown to Halloween and I’m back with my next set of creepy GPK stickers. I decided to sort of group the stickers by themes, so the first few of the count are all spooky non-human cards. Earlier in the week I shared some gloomy headstones and a ghoulishly gooey tree.  Today we switch gears a tad with a GPK ancient evil temple from series 6 printed at the tail end of 1986, stickers 224a&b, Monte Zuma and Pagan Megan!

3 - Monte Zuma

This painting was done by my all-time favorite GPK artist, John Pound. I wonder how many Cabbage Patch Kids were sacrificed to appease this evil deity?  Obviously I love the headdress and necklace of skulls, but there are other fun details like the eyeball belly button (creepy!) and the scale of this character (as there are normal-sized worshiper/guards at the foot of the temple…

Once again, I’m also helping to organize the annual Countdown to Halloween alongside the tireless and super cool monster kid John Rozum. So if you like what I’m doing over here, you might want to head on over to the Countdown site and check out the huge list of other sites participating in this year’s spooky festivities. There’s also a like-minded sister collective called Blog-O-Ween being put together by my pal Cody, the Crooked Ninja Turtle Sensi. Be sure to check them out as well.

2013 Yummy Mummy 200

Garbage Pail Kids Monster Madness: Day 2

It’s day two of the 2013 Countdown to Halloween and I’m back with my second creepy GPK sticker.  I decided to sort of group the stickers by themes, so the first few of the count are all spooky non-human cards.  Yesterday I shared some gloomy headstones, and today is another of my favorite cards from the later sets (series 7 from 1987 to be precise), stickers 273a&b, Haunted Forrest and Sappy Sarah!

2 - Haunted Forrest

This painting was also done by the super rad James Warhola.  If there in one thing that I would change about this card it’s the color scheme of the name plate and GPK logo.  The red, white and blue really detract from the overall creepiness of the card and it makes me wonder if those choices were thought out or were they assigned randomly?  This is also one of the times where the name plate obscures a gag in the art as you can see the dead bird (crow, owl?) at the right at the base of the tree…

Once again, I’m also helping to organize the annual Countdown to Halloween alongside the tireless and super cool monster kid John Rozum. So if you like what I’m doing over here, you might want to head on over to the Countdown site and check out the huge list of other sites participating in this year’s spooky festivities. There’s also a like-minded sister collective called Blog-O-Ween being put together by my pal Cody, the Crooked Ninja Turtle Sensi. Be sure to check them out as well.

2013 Boo Berry 200

Garbage Pail Kids Monster Madness: Day 1

Okay, I’m gonna come right out and say it. I totally blew it during last year’s countdown to Halloween. I blew it worse than that time when Van Helsing failed to fling Dracula into Limbo. I totally intended to post animation cels every day and somewhere in the middle of the month life got the better of me and I put the countdown aside. This year I’m a bit more prepared and I fully intend to make it to the end. So what’s in store for my favorite month of the year in 2013? Well, for starters, I want to stick to a set of themed posts, so every day this month I’m going to share some of my favorite monster-centric Garbage Pail Kids sticker cards from the 80s era vintage sets. I culled 31 of the most ghoulish, gross, and, well, monstery stickers from my collection. In addition, I’m going to try and pepper the month with other Halloween articles, some reviews, and other fun ephemera from the archives of Branded in the 80s.

Once again, I’m also helping to organize the annual Countdown to Halloween alongside the tireless and super cool monster kid John Rozum.  So if you like what I’m doing over here, you might want to head on over to the Countdown site and check out the huge list of other sites participating in this year’s spooky festivities.  There’s also a like-minded sister collective called Blog-O-Ween being put together by my pal Cody, the Crooked Ninja Turtle Sensi.  Be sure to check them out as well.

Alright, so for Day one of the GPK Monster Madness I present sticker cards 334a&b, Ashley to Ashes and Dustin to Dust!

1 - Dustin to Dust

This pair of sibling headstones hail from series 8 and were printed back in 1987.  Painted by James Warhola, my second favorite GPK artist next to John Pound, the dreary and yet morbidly cheerful stones seem like a good way to kick off this Halloween countdown.  Though I have no intention of ever being buried, if I had chosen to go into the ground, you can be sure that this would be my first choice for a headstone design!

2013 Franken Berry 200

 

Cult Film club Stickers Now Available for Purchase!

So, the stickers I’ve been so excited about making for the Cult Film Club?  Well they’re now available for purchase!  Included in the CFC “No Tipping” Sticker Pack are 4 die-cut stickers, measuring between 2.4″x2.4″ and 3.4″x2.4″, featuring the CFC Logo, Official Membership Badge, our mascot the Phantom Ticket Taker, and the one, the only Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi)!

Stickers 1

The Cult Film Club is totally siding with Mr. Pink when it comes to the idea of “No Tipping”, at least receiving them that is. We’d love your support in helping to cover our costs, but instead of holding out our grubby hands for a tip or donation we’ve got these rad stickers to sell instead.  All profit goes directly into paying our podcast hosting and equipment fees.  I’d really like to sell through the 40 packs we have by the end of the month, and I’ll be honest, I’m going to need your help to do it.  Right now we’re almost half way to that goal, which is awesome, but we still have a little ways to go.

Plaster these on your car, Trapper Keeper, or your favorite pet!  In addition, if you leave a comment below letting me know you put in an order, I’ll include a Branded in the 80s Logo sticker for free!

Stickers

Thanks in advance for supporting this project, and especially to those who have already picked up a pack or two.  And thanks always for stopping by Branded and reading my silly thoughts!

Click to be whisked away to the Cult Film Club sticker store!

I made some F-ing stickers!

*Update* Like, Go Buy some and Junk!

So there’s been some behind the scenes stuff going on with Branded, moving hosts, fixing broken junk, you know a bunch of technical wizardry that is way beyond me (I’m super lucky to know a rad lady named Jaime who is like single-handedly saving the site), but posting has been kind of quiet lately.  Hopefully I’ll be changing that soon.  During this time though I haven’t been just sitting on my butt and starring at the toys and crap on the walls of Branded HQ.  I’ve also been working on a small project for the Cult Film Club that any longtime reader of Branded will probably know is sort of like a dream come true.

So I really like stickers, like a lot, and in the back of my head I’ve always wondered what it would be like to have some of my own designs and drawings turned into decals.  Well, Tommy of Top Hat Sasquatch and Boxsome recently tipped me off to a company called Stickerapp.com that specializes in short-run glossy die-cut stickers for pretty affordable prices.  So I went a little nuts and had a bunch of stickers printed…

Stickers

To say I’m excited about these is a bit of an understatement.  It’s a struggle to not apply these to every single bit of free wall space that I can find actually.  I’m not even usually all that crazy about my own drawings, but right now I’m sort of in love/lust with these stickers.  I can admit that.  But I have to control myself, because I have a plan for these.  Details to come soon for anyone who might be interested in picking some of these up and helping to support the Cult Film Club.  In the meantime, I’m going to try my best to NOT spread these out on the floor so that I can lay in them and make sticker angels…

more stickers

 

Cereal Killers sticker cards series 2!

This is a great week for those in the mood to buy some cool stuff! Not only did the second series OMFG! minifigure Kickstarter begin, but on Tuesday Wax Eye officially started selling the second series of their awesome Cereal Killers sticker cards!  I absolutely adore the first series and I was super curious to see what Joe Simko and crew had in store for their second helping of sugary, gory insanity…

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These are available in two formats, either in a hobby box of 24 packs (as pictured above), or in the super cool mini cereal box edition (pictured below.)  Either way you’re guaranteed to secure a base set of the sticker cards this time out, though I do have to admit that I had a lot of fun trading my extras last time…

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Here are a few examples of what’s in store this time out…

To sweeten the bowl, so to speak, this time Simko is also offering even more special chase cards too!  There are three new blacklight/glow in the dark stickers…

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…as well as silver spoon foil cards, sketch cards, and the ones I’m super keen on getting my hands on, Sugar Gitter cards!

7494947684_d8e865808a_oYou can find Wax Eye on Facebook!  Tell ‘em Branded in the 80s sent ya!

Peel Here #112, Of course Robo Force stickers are puffy, makes them more hugable!

I was rifling though my personal cabinet at work looking for my sketchbook when I came across this sheet of Robo Force puffy stickers that I meant to scan and write about awhile ago.  Though I’m sure there was a name brand version of these stickers, I’ve only ever seen them issued as generic unbranded knock-offs on eBay and elsewhere.  I’m pretty sure these were released in 1984 along with the rest of the toy-line and Robo Force merchandise before the franchise took a nose dive into obscurity.  I’ve written about these toys on the site before, and actually I just recently managed to find a mint in box S.O.T.A. figure (pictured in the stickers below to the left) to add to my 80s robot collection…

The other sticker featured is Wrecker which has a bit of resonance with me since he was the only Robo Force figure I had as a kid.  The missing sticker on this sheet featured one of the cooler Robo Force characters, Sentinel, which is probably why he’s absent.  There was also a second set of three sticker availalbe that featured the main hero and some of the villains from the line (Hun-Dred, Cruel, and Max Steele himself).  I’d also like to point out that these stickers were gifted to my by the gracious Jerzy Drozd of the Art & Story and Comics Are Great podcasts.

In other Peel Here news, yours truly was referenced on the Retroist website recently in a wonderfully odd Alternate History of the Sticker by none other than the Claymation Werewolf himself, J.C. Beirau.  I can only hope to be half as reclusive in my old age as he made me out to be…

Cereal Killers Trading Cards and a Contest!

**Update** Alright, I picked three names at random from a hat (well, empty coffee mug) and the lucky winners are: Laura I., Jeremy T H., Khris L.  Congrats guys and gals (I’ve notified you through the FB messaging system for your snail mail address) and thanks to everyone else for entering!

So I came home yesterday and found a package waiting for me at the door, and upon cracking it open I was excited to see this…

These came courtesy of a contest in the premiere issue of the Strange Kids Club Comix Anthology, and I couldn’t wait to dig into the individual boxes to get a glimpse at the loot.  These Cereal Killer trading cards are pretty darn cool and they follow in the tradition of Topps Wacky Packs and Garbage Pail Kids.  The brainchild of artist Joe Simko, this set of spoofs perfectly blends a childhood love of sugary cereal with a score of monsters and horror movie icons.  These sets come with three mini cereal boxes, each containing 20 cards, a special prize and a gross piece of eyeball gum.  As for the special prizes you can expect to find black-light stickers, magnets, gold foil cards, and if you’re lucky an original sketch card from Joe himself.

One of the cool aspects of the set is the social networking built into trying to complete a set.  Wax Eye has set up a thread for trading doubles over at the Wacky Packages forum.  Sure you can buy additional packages, but it’s kind of cool to get back to what it was like in elementary school trading with classmates trying to complete the latest series of Garbage Pail Kids.

In the spirit of this, I’ve decided to hold a mini contest to get my doubles out into the world.  I’m offering up three prizes, a stack of 20 cards, a stack of 10 cards, and one of the super cool black-light stickers.  To get your grubby hands on these all you have to do is head on over to the Branded Facebook Page and leave a comment in the Discussions tab on the left (you can also click on the cards below).  I’ll be picking three winners at random this Friday, May 20th at 3:00pm est.  Good luck, and go check out Joe Simko’s Cereal Killers trading cards!

Peel Here #111: A Grossville High School Reunion!

It’s not very often that I get a chance to revisit a set of stickers I’ve shared before with some interesting behind the scenes updates on the production and input from those involved in creating the set.  I was really happy to have a chance to do just that this past week when Gary Cangemi the co-creator, artist and writer behind Fleer’s 1986 sticker set called Grossville High paid a visit to Branded.  Not only did he share some of his experiences working on this set, but he also graciously provided a scan of the original artwork for one of the cards to share here as well as to clean up a bit of a buggy mystery.

About a year ago, a reader of the site named Joe pointed out one of the obscure facts about this set that I neglected to talk about when I first posted about the Grossville High cards.  Basically, the Grossville mascot (named Ronnie the Roach) is hidden in the artwork for each card in the set, so there was a additional bit of fun to be had in searching for the little bugger.  Joe had also pointed out that there was one card that didn’t feature a hidden Ronnie, sticker card #58, Miss Body English (pictured below at the center-left.)

As you can see in the original artwork below, Ronnie is indeed there, he was just cropped out of the final card art by Fleer…

What I really love about getting a chance to see this original artwork is the little details and differences between it and the final printed card.  First of all, one of the things that I’d appreciated about the artwork when I first took a look at this set was the care that was put into the aesthetics of the color when it came to the backgrounds.  This set is very loud with a lot of neon yellows, neon greens, reds, oranges and purples, and it can be an assault on the eyes at times.  One of the ways that I assumed Fleer tried to tone this down was by dimming the backgrounds, which both highlights the main characters and reduces the color “volume” so to speak.  Well, with the original piece, we get a chance to see the artwork as it was intended without the background obscured, and honestly it’s not nearly as eye-strain-inducing as I’d imagined.  Actually, the overall art seems less garish and less intense.  I think this has a lot to do with the fact that Fleer went with a very vivid and saturated look to the set instead of using the more subdued palette Cangemi originally chose.

Closer inspection of the piece also reveals some changes in the art that Cangemi noted Fleer had asked him to make.  In particular you can see a reduction in Miss Body’s bustiness…

Anyway, here’s what Gary had to say about working on Grossville High…

“My business partner Larry Newman came up with the concept of a gross high school and most of the names.  I did all the writing and artwork for the series.  There are some creative and design problems with the series caused mostly by the lack of time given me to complete 66 designs PLUS the humor on the backs.  I remember doing the whole thing in 5-6 weeks.  Some of the stuff got repetitive because there wasn’t enough time for creative development and feedback.  You will notice there are no African-American characters in the series.  Joe Stereo WAS black originally but fleer was so afraid of being accused of racism they made me turn him into a white guy.  I told them they were wrong, that to exclude African Americans was more racist.  Of course they had no objections to my stereotypes of Chinese, Italian, or Latino characters…go figure.  Some of these cards wouldn’t survive today’s hypersensitive market and others make me cringe a little, but the 70s-80s were a different time when people could kid around about race without all the political correctness.  Sitcoms were loaded with these stereotypes.

The only resemblance I see to GPK (in response to my assertion that Fleer was riffing on Topps’ GPK stickers – Shawn) is the naming scheme and the grossness, but I tried to be as original as possible and more MAD-like.  The faded backgrounds were fleer’s decision.  The original art, which I still possess, is rich in color depth and detail, too much so.  Fleer said the characters didn’t stand out enough like the GPKs did so they cut masks around the characters and lightened the backgrounds.  There IS a roach on the Miss Body English card, you just need to look harder.  I had a great time designing these cards but wish they had given me more.  They would have been much better.  By the way, the GH originals were not painted, they were done in Prismacolor markers, ink and colored pencil on Arches watercolor paper.”

As for the future of Grossville High, Gary had this to say…

“I now own the exclusive rights to Grossville High and plan on resurrecting them in some form or another, either a class reunion or a next generation concept.  I also wrote a script for a GH graphic novel which I would like to produce someday.  I think Grossville High, with some updating, would make a great CGI film.”

Also, another bit of fun trivia for this set is that it was originally intended to be called Grossburger High, but Fleer nixed that idea for being too close to yet another of their rival Topps’ products, Gross Bears (their Garbage Pail Kid-like parody of the Care Bears released in 1985.)

I really want to give a huge thanks to Gary Cangemi for sharing his thoughts on the set and for giving the Branded readers a chance to look at some of his original untouched artwork!  I also hope he gets a chance to bring these characters back to life in a new project, and I’m really excited to see what might come in the future…