Sunday, March 06, 2016

At Flashbak: Star Trek Happy Meals (from McDonalds)

This week, as part of my continuing celebration of Star Trek’s 50th anniversary, I wrote, at Flashbak, about the McDonalds Happy Meals related to the franchise.

“In December of 1979, Star Trek: The Motion Picture premiered in movie theaters. The 40 million dollar film was heavily merchandised through Mego but also -- surprisingly -- via McDonalds. 

In particular, the fast food restaurant introduced a Star Trek-themed Happy Meal with delightful art from illustrator Ron Villani, and featuring a number of games on the box for diners and pre-pubescent Trekkies to enjoy.

For instance, you could play “connect the dots” on one panel of the box, completing an image of the U.S.S. Enterprise on the “viewer screen.” 

Or, on another panel you could solve a maze, helping to “guide the Enterprise through a meteor shower.”

The Star Trek Happy Meals also featured factoids about the Trek universe, and such aspects as the Klingons or the Federation.  Amusingly, the Federation was described as overseeing “the universe” and keeping peace there.

That’s a big job!

Some panels on the McDonalds Star Trek Happy Meals also recreated in comic-book format scenes from the movie, for example the destruction of the Klingons by the space ‘cloud,’ or a report by Starfleet outpost Epsilon 9 that it was on a direct course for Earth.

The boxes also featured Klingon Code to break, and bad jokes. 

What do you call a sick Klingon?
An ailing alien!

Finally, the happy meals also came with a toy: a small plastic, silver communicator…”

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