It's hard to believe that Star Trek wasn't much of a big deal when it aired in the 1960s aside from attaining cult status, the show never caught on with kids until it's syndicated runs in the early 70s.
The 1970s were truly the golden age of Star Trek merchandise, prior to that companies were just lazily putting the words "Star Trek" on recycled space guns and "Astro trains"(?) but the 1970s saw the biggest merchandising spree this side of Planet of the Apes....
Here are top ten of the best Star Trek toys from a time when there were only 79 episodes (if you don't include the animated show, which I probably would but let's not go there) Big props to Rob Chatlin for his needed input here.
10: Colorforms PlaySet
This should come as no surprise, colorforms were already awesome toys and now it's combined with Star Trek, it's pretty simple. As an added bonus, you can simulate horrible transporter accidents but switching the Captain's groin with a phaser.
9:Star Trek Cycle
Regular old Big Wheels Ruled but a Big Wheel with a warp drive? That my friend is pimped out! Imagine firing photon torpedos at the approaching Klingon Ship or wait, is that Stevie Brown's Green Machine? Who cares, wipe him out of the cosmos anyway...
8: Remco CSF Enterprise
Remco hit paydirt when they took the Mattel Vertibird concept and added Licenses with their CSF copter series, none quite as cool as the Enterprise set, which was a company staple, it's all kind of bad assery.
Granted, by today's standards these things totally suck but this was 1975, a regular phone was often bigger than your head. Old school walkie talkies ruled! Even more so when they were meant to be Star Trek Walkie Talkies, you could talk to your buddy in the next yard! That may be nothing today but I miss that sense of wonder..
6: Remco Star Trek Utility Belt
One of the staples of the Remco Toy Company in the 1970s were it's series of belts, they made logical ones like Batman and then extremely stupid ones like "The Incredible Hulk" and "Mickey Mouse". However, the Star Trek version is totally and without question, full of win my friends. The Phaser shoots disks and the belt buckle has that awesome "Star Trek" logo on it, just like it shoudn't.
AMT released this kit in 1975 and it was in good company with their other offerings. This wonderful diorama finally gave fans a 3d view of what the bridge set actually looked like plus a little Kirk, Spock and McCoy(?) I used to always paint the 3rd guy's outfit red. I both love and hate this kit, I bought two at the corner store when I was 11 (along with some paint that had been there since the Kennedy administration) and just completely butchered them. I'm tempted to try it as an adult but am worried about massive fail again.
I admit it, it isn't a very "logical" (tee hee) toy but the people at Azrak Hamway were all about making fun silly things you played with, broke in an afternoon and in my case, spent the rest of your adulthood trying to get back. Spock with his parachute is just one of those fun, nonsensicle things that make childhood so memorable.
The lamentably named Dinky Toys was a UK based company known for their amazing selection of die cast cars and fantastic offerings based on the work of Gerry Anderson. It makes perfect sense that they would eventually gravitate towards the Star Trek phenom.
The nice surprise is that they didn't simply just make a model (even though that would have flown off the shelves) but a full blown toy complete with firing disks and a wonderfully out of scale shuttle that comes out the bottom, pure bliss. I wish current toys were less authentic and a bit more fun.
2: TIE Remco Electronic Phaser/Mego Phaser Target Game
I don't know about anyone else, but I love Phasers and we got some awesome versions of them in 1975.
Remco's version was also a light up project that you gave shapes such as the Enterprise while Mego gave us the early version of Laser Tag, it was clunky for sure but have you seen better box art in your entire life? That's the work of the amazing Harold Shull BTW.
The first and possibly the only series made for kids, not collectors. Mego was at the top of their game when creating the Star Trek line with top notch actor likenesses and wonderful yet simple uniforms. These toys are fantastically durable, I beat the hell out of my set and they're the ones pictured above!
Sure, some of the Mego aliens strayed from the TV likeness but this was to make them more appealing to children. OK, the Mugato looks like the work of a mad man but it was 1976 and if you complained about the accuracy of a toy back then you were considered a loveless weirdo.
The Mego Enterprise bridge is probably the least accurate Star Trek toy the company produced and nobody cared. This is mostly because it included the Transporter, a toy so simple in design yet so effective that I don't know if it's ever been surpassed.