For many action figure collectors, the former company Palisades holds a special place in our hearts. Palisades was a company that produced toys people actually wanted. They listened to fans, while staying true to their license holders. Their products were fun toys and works of art. Palisades was a company that cared at a time when other companies just didn’t give a hoot about their customers.
Perhaps no line of theirs embodies this spirit better than the Muppets. Muppet fans and toy collectors in general held this line in high esteem. The sculpts were gorgeous. The accessories made sense (and there were lots of them). And the toys were fun to play with! (Shocking, I know.) Palisades even bucked the system and made (gasp!) playsets!
As the Muppets line was reaching maturity, Palisades announced it would be developing a matching line of Sesame Street characters. As a long-time fan of both, I was really excited by the prospect. (Most folks know I interned on the set of Sesame Street during college.) Prototypes were shown, and public interest was building.
And that’s when the bottom fell out. Palisades closed its doors forever.
There are probably many blogs and sites that can cover the hows and whys concerning the end of Palisades. I won’t go into that here. Suffice to say, it was the only time I was genuinely sad to hear of a toy company closing.
As is my habit, when new toys are announced and prototypes shown, I usually save photos of such things as a reminder of what’s coming. Usually, as new items hit the market or they make their way to my shelf, I delete the images. But that means that those items that never get produced stay on my hard drive.
I’ve recently been posting some photos of old creations as part of the Inanimate Objects History series of articles. While I was digging through old photos, I found these of unproduced Muppets and Sesame Street figures. Seeing what might have been still brings a pang to my heart. Such amazing things that we’ll never see.
So take a trip down memory lane that never was. I’m sure these photos do not represent everything. What am I missing?
Palisades, we salute you!
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