Have you ever wondered where your favorite toys and games came from?
This holiday season, many of those burning questions will be answered in a new, four-part docuseries from the History Channel that will delve into the real-life stories behind some of the most iconic, American toys and games.
The Toys That Built America premieres Sunday, Nov. 28, at 9 p.m. ET/PT with an episode that explores the history behind Slinky, Silly Putty, and Frisbee. The series blends dramatic reenactments with archival footage and interviews with experts, including our own Toy Insider Mom Laurie Schacht, President and Chief Toy Officer at Adventure Media and Events, publisher of the Toy Insider, the Toy Book, and the Pop Insider. Check out a preview below!
In the tradition of other installments in the “That Built” franchise, The Toys That Built America weaves its stories amid key events in American history, such as the Civil War, the Great Depression, and World War II. Over the course of the series, audiences will learn the true origins of G.I. Joe, Barbie, Monopoly, Hot Wheels, Matchbox Cars, and more alongside the stories of the companies and creators behind them, such as Mattel, Hasbro, Parker Brothers, Milton Bradley, and more.
Additionally, History Channel will continue its Mission To Honor campaign in partnership with Blue Star Families to provide toys and educational products to the families of those who have served in the U.S. military. The donations are made possible through the support of Basic Fun!, deuter, Educational Insights, Funko, Radio Flyer, Silly Bandz, and the Sydney Paige Foundation.
“Toys teach us to imagine, have fun and, most importantly, dream big,” says Eli Lehrer, executive vice president and head of programming for The History Channel. “In The Toys That Built America, we learn the fascinating history behind the inventors of some of the greatest and most ingenious toys of all time — many of which shaped our childhoods. As toys continue to encourage a new generation to dream bigger, we are proud to continue our commitment to honor and support military families by partnering with Blue Star Families to thank and give back to those who have sacrificed to serve our country.”
To celebrate the release of the series and the start of the holiday season, Blue Star Families and The History Channel will hold a Mission To Honor philanthropic event at the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore on Monday, Nov. 22. U.S. military families and veterans will receive an assortment of toys and educational products at the event.
The Toys That Built America is distributed internationally by A+E Networks as The Toys That Built the World.