Chatter Telephone

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Chatter Telephone
Type Toy telephone
Company Fisher-Price
Country United States
Availability 1962–present
Materials Wood, plastic

The Chatter Telephone is a pull toy for toddlers 12 to 36 months of age.[1] Introduced in 1962 by the Fisher-Price company as the "Talk Back Phone" for infants and children, the Chatter Telephone is a roll along pull toy. It has a smiling face, and when the toy is pulled, it makes a chattering sound and the eyes move up and down. The toy has a rotary dial that rings a bell, and was conceived as a way to teach children how to dial a phone. The original version was made of wood, with polyethylene receiver and cord.[2] In 2000, Fisher-Price changed the rotary dial for a push-button version with lights in an effort to modernize the toy, but consumers complained and the rotary version returned to the market the following year.[3]

From its introduction through the 1970s, the Chatter Telephone was Fisher-Price's best selling product.[4] It has been cited as one of the company's offerings that helped save Fisher Price in the 1990s following a failed attempt to market toys for older children in the late 1980s,[5] and enjoys continuing popularity.[6] It is available both as an authentic reproduction[7] and in a modern form.[8]

Cultural references[edit]

In 1985, Fisher-Price offered to donate a Chatter Telephone, Rock A Stack, and Activity Center to NASA for Senator Jake Garn to play with while on the STS-51-D space shuttle mission. This offer was rejected as NASA felt there was insufficient time to test the toys for safety.[9]

In 2003, the Chatter Telephone was listed as one of the 100 most memorable toys of the 20th century by the Toy Industry Association.[10]

In 2005, the Chatter Telephone was chosen as one of Dr. Toy's Best Classic Toys.[11]

Chatter Telephone appears in the 2010 animated film Toy Story 3 as a minor character, assisting Woody and his friends in their escape from Sunnyside Daycare. He is voiced by Teddy Newton and speaks with a film noir style.[12]

The Powerpuff hotline, a telephone from The Powerpuff Girls, somewhat bears a few resemblances to a Chatter Telephone.

In The Simpsons episode, "Moe Baby Blues", the Chatter Telephone appears on a Maggie's room.

The Chatter Telephone influenced a real-life art car created by Howard Davis for his telecommunications company.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Brilliant Basics™ Chatter Telephone®". Fisher-Price. Retrieved 8 June 2013. 
  2. ^ "Louis Wiesel: Your Christmas Wond [sic] Fisher Price Toys". The Tuscaloosa News. 1963-12-05. Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  3. ^ Barnes, Julian (2001-02-10). "Where Did You Go, Raggedy Ann?; Toys in the Age of Electronics". The New York Times. Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  4. ^ Moss, Meredith (1980-12-09). "Flash is fine but kids still go for classic toys". The Miami News (The Cox News Service). Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  5. ^ Germain, David (1992-12-25). "Kids Save the Day for Fisher Price". Gainesville Sun (AP). Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  6. ^ "Retro Toys". WCTV Tallahassee Thomasville Valdosta. 2008-12-28. Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  7. ^ "Fisher Price Chatter Telephone". www.backtobasicstoys.com. Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  8. ^ "Chatter Phone-Fisher Price Toys". Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  9. ^ "Space senator's toys must be borrowed". The Spokesman Review. 1985-02-24. Retrieved 7 March 2010. [dead link]
  10. ^ "Toy Industry Association Announces Its "Century of Toys List"". All Business (Business Wire). 2003-01-21. Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  11. ^ "Dr. Toy's Best Classic Toys, 2005". Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  12. ^ Toy Story 3 at the Internet Movie Database
  13. ^ "The Phone Car". Retrieved 10 June 2011. 

External links[edit]