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Mattel Retailer/Trade Catalogs
Mattel Catalogs were created for toy store owners to use as reference for ordering new merchandise. Mattel went all out on these catalogs, sometimes embellishing them with pull-out posters or pop-up characters. The most desirable catalogs are those issued in very limited numbers at the annual Toy Fair. These Toy Fair editions often had mis-prints or showcased items that were pulled from final production.
Mattel 1967 "Toy Fair" Catalog
The first appearance of Major Matt Mason was in this special preview catalog for the 1967 Toy Fair. The entire catalog was re-worked for the Fall Release... the most noticable difference is the missing "Space Rover" from both the front and back covers. This vehicle was removed and the "sky" was lightened (changed to bright blue) for better contrast and more color.
Mattel 1967 "Fall" Catalog
The more common version of the 1967 catalog, released in the fall, had a blue sky and changes to several item's descriptions. To say that this catalog is common is really a misnomer, as this is the key catalog to have and fairly scarce as Mattel Catalogs go.
Mattel 1968 "January (Spring Introductions)" Catalog
A recap of the 1968 Fall Catalog, this spring issue introduces Liddle Kiddles and the MMM Space Exploration Game.
Mattel 1968 "Toy Fair" Catalog
Most Mattel collectors don't realize that the 1968 Catalog also had a Toy Fair version. In this initial offering, the catalog was printed with a white background. This was changed to blue for the normal fall version. So I believe that this catalog is the actual first appearance of Hot Wheels and much more significant.
Mattel 1968 "Fall" Catalog
The common version of this catalog with a blue contrast background behind the Hot Wheels track on the cover. The games have beem moved to a single page from the original two page spread.
Mattel 1968 Quick Reference Toy Guide
These catalogs are extremely rare... given to toy distributors and sales people to aid them with product information. Each item includes "Things to say and do:" to entice store owners to buy!
Mattel 1968 Spielzeug Catalog
This is the first German Mattel catalog to feature Major Matt Mason, with a rehash of the cover of the 1967 Mattel Fall catalog.
Mattel 1969 Spring Catalog
Mattel introduces Cosmic Kiddles, along with many MMM accessories in this catalog. Also, new astronauts Doug Davis, Jeff Long and the alien Callisto are added.
Mattel 1969 "Fall" Catalog
A continuation of the Spring Catalog, the "fall" catalog has some interesting group shots and mock-ups of packaging.
Mattel 1969 Quick Reference Toy Guide
One of my favorite catalogs, the 69 Quick Ref Guide has some wonderful store mock-up pics on the back cover. I've referenced these from the Playsets Index as well. Well worth the time to take a look-see.
Mattel 1969 Spielzeug Catalog
Utilizing the cover of the US 1968 Catalog, Mattel continues in the German marketplaces, offering their usual fare, and in particular Major Matt Mason!
Mattel, S.P.A. 1969 Giocattoli Catalog
Utilizing the cover of the US 1968 Catalog, Mattel continues in the Italian marketplaces, offering their usual fare, and of course, Major Matt Mason!
Mattel 1970 Spring Catalog
Mattel introduces the Chip Box accessores, along with Scorpio and the Super Powers Set.
Mattel 1970 "Fall" Catalog
Here we get our first images of Or, the Orbitor and other playsets.
Mattel 1970 Spielzeug Catalog
Interesting catalog with a plastic, spiral binding.
Mattel 1971 "Toys" Catalog
The dregs here...with only a single page devoted to MMM!

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