Once upon a time - back in the 1970s and early 1980s - every primary school kid carried metal lunch boxes, and it was a sign of utter coolness if you had a really neat one. A lot of my friends had the Star Wars lunch box (which displayed a dogfight between an X-Wing and a TIE Fighter on one side), but - ever the contrarian - I owned a Battlestar Galactica lunch box, which featured Boxey and his daggit (Muffey) fleeing from the Cylons on one side; the rag-tag fleet on the other. Another popular one of the day was the Superman: The Movie (1978) lunch box, a red box dramatizing scenes from the Christopher Reeve movie, including baby Kal-El's arrival on Earth and lifting of a 1930s-style truck to save Pa Kent.
Today, I display several movie-TV tie-in lunch boxes in my office collection, including: Planet of the Apes (TV series; 1974), Space:1999 (1975), the UFO one you see here (1973), The Last Starfighter (1983) and even one from Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987). I make a point to collect ‘em whenever I can - and flea markets are often ideal - but I wonder why TV-and-movie lunch boxes don’t have the aura of popularity they did when I was a kid.