I’ve only cried at the movies three times in my life. The first time was at the end of a Japanese film called Voyage Into Space when Johnny Socko’s giant robot sacrifices himself to save the world (“Come back, Giant Robot! Come back”). The next time was at the end of a Bruce Dern movie called Silent Running when the last surviving robot drone, Dewey, is left to tend Earth’s last forest (in space!) while Joan Baez sings over the closing titles. And most recently, near the end of the animated feature, Iron Giant. I can suck it up and keep my cheeks dry during any screening of Old Yeller or Where the Red Fern Grows but if Yeller was a stop-motion flying robot, or if Old Dan and Little Ann were played by double-amputees in drone costumes, I’d be blubbering like an idiot.
Maybe it was because I didn’t have a dog when I was a boy. But I did have toys. And, oh, what wonderful toys we children of the Sixties had.
Here are examples of some other toy robots from 1961. Make sure you turn up your speakers!: