14 May 2012

Parker Brothers' Rom Paperwork

If you're a Rom, Spaceknight fan, you've no doubt seen this piece of art before, but probably not in its complete, original form.  For example, a cropped version currently Rom's avatar over on Twitter.  So what is it, you ask?  It's shelf art!  Parker Brothers sent them stores for their Rom displays.  As it says, the yellow "T" was T-tacked, taped, or otherwise attached to the shelf and perhaps folded so that the "ROM is here!" sign was prominently displayed below and/or above the boxed action figures.

I have no idea who the artist for the shelf art is; likely a staff artist at Parker Brothers.  However, it was obviously redrawn for the small house ads that Marvel ran as they were launching the Rom comic book.  Honestly, I don't know who is behind the house ad art, either, but likely suspects are John Romita, Jr. (who drew the presentation page for Marvel's proposal to Parker Brothers) and Sal Buscema (I don't have to tell you who he is, do I?).  Or possibly it's the other way around, as Rom's head in both is how he appeared in the comics, which is slightly different from the action figure's.

The shelf display above and 180-day limited warranty below were sent to me by Max Thorne.  Both pieces of paperwork came from unopened boxes of action figures.  The wording of the warranty is identical to what appears on the last page of the action figure's instructions, just formatted to a wider width.

And for reference, here's how Rom was shipped to toy stores back in the day when it was new:  six action figures to a shipping box.  Sadly, I've lost the information on where I obtained this photo.  Possibly it came from eBay.


  1. cool information, thanks Lee. have you seen the Avengers parody with ROM yet?



    One of these days, I shall find one on the eBay.

    Until then, I'll have to print one out on card stock and place on ROM comic longbox.

  3. Yes, I have. When things like that come up, I just make a note to add them to RSR eventually. I figure Rom, who has more Twitter followers than I will ever have for anything, will tweet it (in this case, he did two weeks ago) and I don't have enough to say about it to make a whole blog entry.

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  5. This is so interesting. I'm slightly more of a fan of the comics than the action figure stuff, but I love, love, love how there's ephemera (appreciate the new word) that resurfaces all these years later...your blog is Christmas every week for an old ROM curator like me (& ~P~, Shlomo, and so on I'm sure)! Your sharing this shelf hanger answered a particular nagging mystery I had thought about again just a week or so earlier. I'd seen the cropped image on the 'net before, and noticed that the orange starburst behind ROM had some cracking & fading to it, obviously scanned from a worn original object; I assumed it was fan art inspired by the house ad copied off of a printout or maybe even a t-shirt. I sure can't remember seeing the shelf hanger at the Ace Hardware where I begged my mom to buy me my action figure in 1980. Good lord, 32 years ago? Thanks for the trips down (faded) memory lane Lee, and keep solving those mysteries for us!

  6. Sorry for the double post, I'm new to blogger, only signed up to comment here & maybe other ROM blogs, and my first attempt didn't show my avatar 'cause I hadn't saved it yet. Now off to prove I'm not a robot again... :-)