Thursday, January 22, 2015

Super Mates Episode 23: Colorforms and Presto Magix with Brian Heiler

Brian Heiler, mastermind behind and author of Rack Toys; Cheap, Crazed Playthings returns to talk about some of our favorite creative toys from childhood! But first he dishes the dirt on the exciting new Captain Canuck Mego-style figure he is helping to produce!

Then we dive into discussion about Presto Magix, those great rub-on transfers featuring our favorite characters! All you needed was a pen or a coin and you could create some awesome action scenes.

Our talk leads into a gabfest about Colorforms, the toys that stick like magic! Famous for “stick-on” sets including sets based on many of our favorite Super Heroes, cartoon and TV shows. But they also made some truly innovative toys, many created by the father of the legendary Colorforms Outer Space Men, Mel Birnkrat.

Along the way we ramble into general toy talk, and basically leave no stone unturned! You’ll get Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Super Friends, Spider-Man, Hulk, Captain America, Avengers, Star Wars, Star Trek, Space: 1999, Flash Gordon, Captain Action, KISS, Barbie, Strawberry Shortcake, G.I. Joe, Transformers and more!

Download directly or via iTunes.

Visit Brian’s Plaid Stallions.

You can order your Captain Canuck action figure from Brian’s Odeon Toys

The documentary on Canadian comics is called Lost Heroes

Mel Birnkrant’s fantastic career retrospective site, including Colorforms is here

Stop by the Mego Museum for lively toy and geek discussion!

Be sure to let us know what you think! Let your voice be heard! We’d love to read it aloud in an upcoming episode. Drop us a line in our comments section, or email us at If you're listening on iTunes, please consider leaving a review of our show! We’re also on Facebook!

Chris (aka Earth 2 Chris) co-hosts the Power Records Podcast with the esteemed Rob Kelly over at the Fire and Water Podcast feed! 

Next time, we celebrate our first anniversary by taking a look at comic’s greatest wedding issues!


  1. --I distinctly remember my parents dragging me to a party at their friends' house. It was a long drive and there would be few (if any) other kids there, so they had to mollify me. They did that by buying me some comics and a Hulk Presto Magix!

    --Why does Brian refuse to participate in the whole JLGL PBHN initiative? Maybe it's a Canadian thing?

    ----Nice editing job, removing what must have been Cindy's pleas for mercy when Chris suggested that the show could do "another three hours" on Colorforms.

    --I had that Super Friends Colorform set, I loved it so much. Kids were a lot easier to entertain back then.

    Another fun show!

  2. It was indeed much easier to bribe kids back then. I know from experience. A stack of comics and something like Presto Magix could make any unbearable trip...bearable!

    I don't think Brian wants to get involved. Who can blame him?

    That Super Adventures/Super Friends Colorforms set really haunts my dreams now. It's so odd to have Sekowsky lifts from 15 year old JLA comics!

    Thanks for listening Rob!


  3. I'm in the middle of a move across town so it's a great opportunity to catch up on old episodes!

    This episode was fascinating to me because I'd forgotten all about PrestoMagix and Colorforms as part of my childhood. It's funny because in my head, I connect Colorforms and PrestoMagix with the corner symbols of comics of the 70s and 80s. In fact, here's a weird memory I have: I must've been frustrated over the lack of more Colorforms as a 6 year old, so I used to cut out those corner symbols with a set of blunt plastic scissors and use them for my adventures! Then if I saw an interior figure in a similar scale to those corner symbols, I'd cut that out too! The horror! For years I thought I was a bit of a horrific freak for doing this, but then I came across a blog post on Dwayne McDuffie's website where he wrote about doing the same thing! Jeepers!

    My hobbies nowadays seem to come out of playing with Colorforms. I'm a big fan of Heroclix, which are kind of like 3D Colorforms. I've also started exploring the world of paper miniatures, first as a potential source of sets to place my Heroclix, but now also as a source of miniature figures. So, in a weird way, after 40+ years since playing with Colorforms, I can see what an influence they still have on me.

    Anyway, thanks for the great shows. I have lots of boxes to unpack so that should give me plenty of reason to listen to more episodes.